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Outdoor Adventure on Geocaching Day at The North Carolina Arboretum

Wednesday, October 26th, 2011

ASHEVILLE NC – The high-tech treasure hunt activity known as geocaching is gaining popularity in the mountains of Western North Carolina and around the world. On Saturday, November 5, The North Carolina Arboretum will host its second annual Geocaching Day, offering families, individuals, and groups an opportunity to take part in an outdoor adventure.

By using a handheld GPS unit, along with coordinates downloaded from www.geocaching.com, geocaching enthusiasts can solve clues to find one of 1,215,555 geocaches located around the world. These geocaches contain a log book and pencil for recording the find, and often include trinkets that can be traded out as a memento of the experience.
The Arboretum owns and maintains nine active geocaches located within the borders of the Arboretum by special use permit from the United States Forest Service. The first geocaches on property were placed in the summer of 2009, and have received more than 400 visits from guests of the Arboretum. In honor of Geocaching Day, a special “series” cache will engage participants in a trek around the Arboretum on a search for clues to its location. The new cache, titled “Arboretum Adventure,” will have starting coordinates available at www.geocaching.com just prior to the event.

Experienced geocachers with their own equipment may begin seeking caches as early as 8:00 a.m. Newcomers to the sport are invited to attend a demonstration led by Arboretum educators prior to embarking on their own adventure. The program will be offered at 1:00 and 3:00 p.m. Diamond Brand Outdoors, a Community Partner of the Arboretum and sponsor of its youth education programs, has donated GPS units that may be borrowed for the guided program. Also beginning on Geocaching Day, families and youth groups may borrow one of eight GPS units provided by Diamond Brand Outdoors to seek caches within the Arboretum, free of charge.

Pre-registration to seek caches or attend the guided programs is not required, though regular Arboretum parking fees apply ($8.00 for personal vehicles, $30.00 for commercial vehicles, and $50.00 for buses). Families and individuals wishing to seek caches on their own may visit geocaching.com to set up a free account and download geocache locations and descriptions to their handheld GPS unit or phone.

For more information about the event, visit www.ncarboretum.org, or call (828) 665-2492, Ext. 228. The central mission of The North Carolina Arboretum, an affiliate institution of the 17-campus University of North Carolina system, is to cultivate connections between people and plants.

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Green Home Tours Offered by Local Realty Company and The North Carolina Arboretum

Wednesday, October 26th, 2011

ASHEVILLE NC – A Community Partner of The North Carolina Arboretum is offering green home tours now through December. MOSAIC Community Lifestyle Realty is leading tours of a variety of homes and constructions sites that are green-built or green remodels.

Tours include:
Green Home Driving Tour Sunday, November 6 at 2:00 p.m. Caravan in your own vehicle (carpooling with family and friends is encouraged) and visit new green homes and green construction sites throughout Central and West Asheville. This tour will last approximately three hours.

Green Remodel of a Conventional Home Saturday, November 12 at 1:00 or 2:30 p.m. See a green home makeover of a conventional home, and learn more from the builder, homeowners, and a building scientist. This tour will last approximately one hour.

Weirbridge Village Tour Saturday, December 3 at 2:30 p.m. Get an up close tour of this new 280-unit ENERGY STARTM apartment community being built in South Asheville. See what it takes to construct an energy efficient multifamily building. This tour will last approximately one hour.

Gaia Village Tour Saturday, December 10 at 2:30 p.m. See what a modern sustainable village looks like. Gaia Village is a green community of 15 homes that share a central courtyard and community gardens, with a greenway connection to West Asheville Park and a meditation garden on Rhododendron Creek.

Tour space is limited, and registration is required. To reserve your space, please call (828) 665-2492. A cash donation of to The North Carolina Arboretum Society is suggested at the time of the tour. All tours begin off-site and attendees are responsible for their own transportation.

The tours are being held in conjunction with the Arboretum’s new exhibit, Sustainable Shelter. The exhibit introduces visitors to the functions of shelters, and how animals and humans have adapted to different environments through a diversity of structures. Biodiversity, human and animal architecture, ecosystems, and energy and water conservation are concepts explored by Sustainable Shelter, all from the perspective of the “home.”

The NC Arboretum is located next to the Blue Ridge Parkway entrance at Milepost 393. From I-26, take Exit 33 and follow Blue Ridge Parkway signs for two miles to the entrance ramp. Visit www.ncarboretum.org/plan-a-visit for parking fees, property hours and building hours. For general information call (828) 665-2492 or visit www.ncarboretum.org.
More than 15 interactive components uncover how we can learn from nature to make our dwellings more sustainable parts of the earth’s natural systems. Graphics, cartoons and interactive computer games explore how daily actions are part of the earth’s carbon and water cycles. Visitors can test ways to make homes more sustainable with hands-on exhibits. Scale models show how the size and environmental impact of American homes have changed over time. Visitors can then build a model of a home that incorporates many of the environmental features presented in the exhibition.

To broaden the visitor experience, an exhibit called Home Green Home is featured in the Baker Exhibit Center Greenhouse. Designed and produced by Arboretum staff, the exhibit includes a variety of animal shelters, insect hives, and nests native to our area. Visitors are introduced to xeric landscaping examples, and local green home building products will be on display, courtesy of Mosaic Community Lifestyle Realty.

Sustainable Shelter is on display at The North Carolina Arboretum through January 2, 2012. The exhibition will be open to the public during regular Baker Exhibit Center hours: 9:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. daily. Exhibit admission is in addition to the standard parking fee ($8 per personal vehicle), and is $3 for adults and $2 for students age 18 and under. Admission and parking is always free for Arboretum Society members

For information, call (828) 665-2492 or visit www.ncarboretum.org. The central mission of The North Carolina Arboretum, an affiliate institution of the 17-campus University of North Carolina system, is to cultivate connections between people and plants.

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The North Carolina Arboretum Celebrates Take a Child Outside Week

Thursday, September 22nd, 2011

ASHEVILLE, NC – The North Carolina Arboretum is participating in a growing nationwide effort geared toward getting young people off the couch, unplugged from technology, and enjoying the outdoors in their local community. Taking place September 24 through 30, Take a Child Outside week is a program that urges all citizens to participate in outdoor activities. The event is designed to help break down obstacles that keep children from discovering the natural world, and to provide parents, teachers and other caregivers with resources and recreational activities for exploring local habitats.

The Arboretum provides a perfect location for families in the community to connect with nature during the week, or any other time of year. Stunning color in 65 acres of cultivated gardens, as well as 10 miles of hiking and biking trails offer children and families a place to embrace and explore their world. To enhance the experience, Discovery Packs are available to check out from the Visitor Information Desks at the Baker Exhibit Center and the Education Center. Each pack includes a notebook, binoculars, insect net, magnifying jar, seasonal activity and kid’s guide to discovering the Arboretum. Packs are free to borrow, but an Arboretum membership card or driver license must be retained while the pack is on loan. Packs must be returned by 4:45 p.m.

Also taking place on Saturday, September 24 is Heritage Crafts Day at The North Carolina Arboretum. Held from 11:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m., the event features artists and crafters whose work reflects the heritage of Western North Carolina. In addition to the fine crafts featured, there will be children’s activities from 2:00 until 4:00 p.m.

Started in 2007 as an initiative of the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences, Take a Child Outside week is held in cooperation with partner organizations across the United States and Canada. The goal of the movement is to help children across the country develop a better understanding and appreciation of the environment in which they live, and a burgeoning enthusiasm for its exploration. More information can be found online at www.takeachildoutside.org.

The North Carolina Arboretum believes children want to embrace and explore their world. This exploration shapes their lifelong relationship with their parents and the environment. Stress reduction, greater physical health, a deeper sense of spirit, more creativity, a sense of play, even a safer life, are the benefits for a family when it invites nature into their lives.

Heritage Crafts Day and general admission to the Arboretum is free for Arboretum Society members or with the standard parking fee ($8 per personal vehicle). For information, call (828) 665-2492 or visit www.ncarboretum.org. The central mission of The North Carolina Arboretum, an affiliate institution of the 17-campus University of North Carolina system, is to cultivate connections between people and plants.

The N.C. Arboretum Hosts Dahlia Society Show this Weekend

Monday, September 12th, 2011

ASHEVILLE, NC – The North Carolina Arboretum will host the 25th Annual Show of the Carolinas Dahlia Society Saturday and Sunday, September 10 and 11. Hundreds of dahlias in every shape, size, and color will be on display. The show will be open to the public from 1:00 until 5:00 p.m. on Saturday, and 9:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m. on Sunday.
Exhibitors from five states, including commercial and amateur growers from our local mountains, upstate South Carolina, Metro-Atlanta, southeast Tennessee, southwest Virginia, and the North Carolina Piedmont, will participate. The Flower Displays will contain blossoms in every color except black, blue or green; in every size from 3⁄4 inch to over 12 inches in diameter; in over 17 distinct forms recognized by the American Dahlia Society.
Dahlia Society members will answer questions and offer advice on cultivating dahlias, and flowers will be available for purchase while supplies last. The Carolinas Dahlia Society was featured in the August 2011 issue of Southern Living, and will be hosting the 50th National Dahlia Show in September 2016.
The Dahlia Society Annual Show is one of the most popular events hosted by The North Carolina Arboretum. Each year more than 376,000 visitors experience the Arboretum’s gardens, trails, exhibits, shows and expos, educational programs, demonstrations and lectures. The Arboretum’s ability to meet its mission and enrich the visitor experience is made possible by a community of supporters—from members, volunteers and staff to state and local funds, tribute gifts, grants, and community partners.
The show is free for Arboretum Society members or with the standard parking fee ($8 per personal motor vehicle). For more information, call (828) 665-2492 or visit www.ncarboretum.org. The central mission of The North Carolina Arboretum, an affiliate institution of the 17-campus University of North Carolina system, is to cultivate connections between people and plants.

Learn All About Roses

Monday, August 29th, 2011

ASHEVILLE, NC – Yes, you can grow beautiful roses and fall is a great time to plant! These beautiful flowering shrubs add color and fragrance to your garden or landscape.

Learn how to choose the right rose for the right spot and how to keep it happy.Learn how to choose the right rose for the right spot and how to keep it happy. This class will cover site selection, soil preparation, planting, and feeding. Different sizes and types of roses will be discussed, including modern and old garden roses, floribundas, polyanthas, shrub roses and climbers.

There are roses for almost every site. Roses that require little or no spraying will be emphasized, but organic and traditional sprays will be covered. Tips for dead-heading and pruning will be given and you will learn how to prepare your roses for winter. This program is intended for the relatively novice rose grower.

The class will be held on Wednesday, August 31 from 1 – 4 p.m. at the North Carolina Arboretum. Instructors are Extension Master Gardeners Judy Deutsch and Mary Reeves and the cost is $16 Arboretum members/$21 Nonmembers (includes entry/parking fee). There will be a limit of 40 students – register online at the NC Arboretum website www.ncarboretum.org.

For more information, contact Judy Deutsch [email protected].

Two Weeks Remain to See Summer Exhibits at The North Carolina Arboretum

Friday, August 26th, 2011

ASHEVILLE, NC – Two art exhibitions have taken center stage at the Arboretum this summer, both giving unique and awe-inspiring perspectives on how artists utilize plants in their work. Showing concurrently in the Baker Exhibit Center’s Exhibit Hall, the shows are open to the public through Tuesday, September 6.

Botanical Chords by Terry Ashley blurs the line between science and art. A former research scientist at Yale University School of Medicine, Ashley developed her technique while pursuing her hobby of photographing plant parts under the light microscope. Ashley termed her art “chords” because they connect two separate images, one traditional plant photograph and one image taken at a cellular level.

To create the microscopic image, Ashley carefully peels a single layer of cells from a plant leaf, stem, or petal and photographs it under high magnification. She then places a picture of the plant’s exterior on top of the picture of its cells, creating a textured, multi-layered piece of art. Aesthetically stunning and scientifically accurate, the images encourage an understanding of plants at a cellular level.

Also on display, The Fine Art of Wood: An International Invitational Exhibition of Woodturning features the work of more than 40 artists from across the country and around the world. The exhibit showcases a wide variety of style and presentation, from pedestal and tabletop pieces to wall hangings. The American Association of Woodturners, along with their local chapter, the Carolina Mountain Woodturners, helped facilitate this exhibit.

To broaden the visitor experience, an exhibit called Into the Wood is featured in the Baker Exhibit Center Greenhouse. Designed and produced by Arboretum staff, Into the Wood explores the differences between hardwoods and softwoods, as well as the many variables that can affect the appearance and health of a tree. Seven interactive stations provide visitors a closer look at a variety of woods and the similarities and differences that exist among them. The exhibit introduces basic concepts in wood, such as figure, growth rings, and rays through hands-on components that allow visitors to see and touch actual tree cookies. Microscope tables with various tree cells on slides offer students the opportunity to view and note different structures within cells and cell wall formations. Predators of wood, including microbes, bacteria, fungi, and insects are also featured in the exhibit. Support for Into the Wood is provided by a grant from the American Association of Woodturners, as well as Asheville Hardware, Community Partner of The North Carolina Arboretum.

The Fine Art of Wood is one of three shows this summer bringing the best of woodturning art and craft to the region. Blue Spiral 1, located on historic Biltmore Avenue in downtown Asheville, is hosting Wood Moving Forward, featuring the work of 14 premier Southern artists through September 30. Grovewood Gallery, located near the Grove Park Inn Resort & Spa, presents A Wood Collector’s Home, featuring work by 19 top wood artists from across North America through October 2.

The NC Arboretum is located next to the Blue Ridge Parkway entrance at Milepost 393. From I-26, take Exit 33 and follow Blue Ridge Parkway signs for two miles to the entrance ramp. Visit www.ncarboretum.org/plan-a-visit for parking fees, property hours and building hours. For general information call (828) 665-2492 or visit www.ncarboretum.org.

Botanical Chords and The Fine Art of Wood are on display at The North Carolina Arboretum through September 6. Both exhibitions are open to the public during regular Baker Exhibit Center hours: 9:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. daily. There is no admission fee for these exhibits.
For information, call (828) 665-2492 or visit www.ncarboretum.org. The central mission of The North Carolina Arboretum, an affiliate institution of the 17-campus University of North Carolina system, is to cultivate connections between people and plants.

Noted Author to Speak at Symposium Hosted by The North Carolina Arboretum

Thursday, August 18th, 2011

ASHEVILLE, NC – The North Carolina Arboretum will host a half-day symposium featuring botanist and author, Dr. John Grimshaw. The symposium is presented by the Southern Appalachian Rock Garden Society, and will take place Wednesday, September 14.

Having been interested in plants all his life, Dr. Grimshaw holds a first class degree in botany and a doctorate in African forest ecology from Oxford University. Though African plants remain his primary focus, he is fascinated by all plant life and will adventurously attempt to grow anything in the garden. Dr. Grimshaw finds the origins of garden plants to be of particular significance, having traveled around the globe to see plants growing in their native habitats. His first book, The Gardener’s Atlas, recounts the journeys plants have made from their beginnings to our gardens.

Dr. Grimshaw is currently Gardens Manager at Colesbourne Park in Gloucestershire. He is responsible for maintaining and developing the historic Elwes family garden, particularly the snowdrop collection. In addition to The Gardener’s Atlas, he has co-authored Snowdrops: A Monograph of Cultivated Galanthus (with Matt Bishop and Aaron Davis) and New Trees: Recent Introductions into Civilization (with Ross Bayton). He is a member of the Royal Horticultural Society’s Advisory Committee on Nomenclature and Taxonomy, and Woody Plant Committee. Dr. Grimshaw is also an honorary elder of the Masai community of Lerang’wa, Tanzania.

The symposium will feature two lectures by Dr. Grimshaw: “In a Botanist’s Garden – an Eclectic Sampling of the World’s Flora,” and “An Ethiopian Adventure – a Journey to the Bale Mountains with the Alpine Garden Society.” Registration for the symposium is $20 for Arboretum members and $25 for non-members. Parking fee and light refreshments are included in the program fee. Seating is limited and registration is required. Registration is available online at www.ncarboretumregistration.org/Rock- Garden-Society-Symposium-P555.aspx, or you may call (828) 665-2492 to register by phone.

For more information, visit www.ncarboretum.org. The central mission of The North Carolina Arboretum, an affiliate institution of the 17-campus University of North Carolina system, is to cultivate connections between people and plants.

Sustainable Shelter Exhibit Begins National Tour at NC Arboretum

Monday, August 15th, 2011

ASHEVILLE, NC – Shelter is a universal human need – a need we share with other living things. A new exhibit coming to The North Carolina Arboretum introduces visitors to the functions of shelters, and how animals and humans have adapted to different environments through a diversity of structures. Opening September 24, Sustainable Shelter explores biodiversity, human and animal architecture, ecosystems, and energy and water conservation, all from the perspective of the “home.”

Just as birds select and gather materials from their local environments to fashion safe and nurturing nests, humans build homes that use natural resources to meet a vast array of our needs and desires. Sustainable Shelter investigates the ways that human dwellings extract, use, and discard energy, water, and other precious natural resources. The exhibit reveals innovative new building technologies and strategies that can help restore the health and viability of natural cycles.

More than 15 interactive components uncover how we can learn from nature to make our dwellings more sustainable parts of the earth’s natural systems. Graphics, cartoons and interactive computer games explore how daily actions are part of the earth’s carbon and water cycles. Visitors can test ways to make homes more sustainable with hands-on exhibits. Scale models show how the size and environmental impact of American homes have changed over time. Visitors can then build a model of a home that incorporates many of the environmental features presented in the exhibition.

To broaden the visitor experience, an exhibit called Home Green Home will be featured in the Baker Exhibit Center Greenhouse. Designed and produced by Arboretum staff, the exhibit includes a variety of animal shelters, insect hives, and nests native to our area. Visitors will be introduced to xeric landscaping examples, and local green home building products will be on display, courtesy of Mosaic Community Lifestyle Realty.

The North Carolina Arboretum is the first facility to host Sustainable Shelter as a traveling exhibit. The exhibit is funded by a grant from the United States Department of Energy, and was developed by the Center for Sustainable Building Research, and the Bell Museum of Natural History, University of Minnesota. Support is provided locally by Community Partners of The North Carolina Arboretum: Smoky Mountain Living, Mosaic Community Lifestyle Realty, WNC Green Building Council, and Mathews Architecture, P.A.

Sustainable Shelter will be on display at The North Carolina Arboretum through January 2, 2012. The exhibition will be open to the public during regular Baker Exhibit Center hours: 9:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. daily. Exhibit admission is in addition to the standard parking fee ($8 per personal vehicle), and is $3 for adults and $2 for students age 18 and under. Admission and parking is always free for Arboretum Society members.

For information, call (828) 665-2492 or visit www.ncarboretum.org. The central mission of The North Carolina Arboretum, an affiliate institution of the 17-campus University of North Carolina system, is to cultivate connections between people and plants.

The North Carolina Arboretum Celebrates Heritage Crafts Day

Monday, August 15th, 2011

ASHEVILLE, NC – Traditions of the Southern Appalachians will be celebrated as The North Carolina Arboretum hosts Heritage Crafts Day on Saturday, September 24 from 11:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m.

The event, now in its sixth year, features artists and crafters whose work reflects the heritage of Western North Carolina. Vitally important to the region’s craft heritage is the close relationship between the crafts and plants used in their production. Much of the artistic expression of mountain crafts originates from the character and nature of plants.

Fine crafts made from local and natural materials will be highlighted, as will art created from recycled and sustainable sources. Past shows have featured woodcarving, basket making, weaving, and spinning, as well as native and medicinal plant sales, music and garden education classes.

Because the region is known for an abundance of high quality art and craft, Heritage Crafts Day is a juried crafts event. All art and craft represented is original and handcrafted by the exhibitors. The North Carolina Arboretum is now accepting applications for artists and crafters. Interested parties may download an application online at http://www.ncarboretum.org/education/heritage-crafts-weekend- 2/.

Visitors to the Heritage Crafts Day are encouraged to explore the Arboretum’s Heritage Garden. The garden showcases plants used in the multi-million-dollar craft industry of Western North Carolina, including those used for handmade paper and brooms, baskets and dyes. Visitors can discover the many plants that support crafts and understand how they are grown, prepared, and used in the industry.

Heritage Crafts Day is one of many popular events hosted by The North Carolina Arboretum. Each year more than 376,000 visitors experience the Arboretum’s gardens, trails, exhibits, shows and expos, educational programs, demonstrations and lectures. The Arboretum’s ability to meet its mission and enrich the visitor experience is made possible by a community of supporters—from members, volunteers and staff to state and local funds, tribute gifts, grants, and community partners.

The event is free for Arboretum Society members or with the standard parking fee ($8 per personal vehicle). For information, call (828) 665-2492 or visit www.ncarboretum.org. The central mission of The North Carolina Arboretum, an affiliate institution of the 17-campus University of North Carolina system, is to cultivate connections between people and plants.

Asheville’s Focus on Flowers: Going Green in the Garden – July 16

Wednesday, July 13th, 2011

ASHEVILLE, NC – On Saturday, July 16, garden writer, lecturer and photographer Pam Beck is the keynote speaker, and will kick off the day with “Change How You Garden,” with an eye toward common sense, sustainability and developing a deeper understanding of your garden. Beck says that “it is time to reevaluate your landscape and your relationship with it. Let’s plan for sustainable urban landscapes that arChange how you garden with an eye toward common sense, sustainability & developing a deeper understanding of your garden.e maintainable, water wise, nature friendly, and food producing, and created with a holistic approach.” This lecture, with slides, is filled with practical suggestions to apply to your own outdoor habitat.

Ms. Beck will be joined by such speakers as Randy Burroughs, Debbie Wood, and Linda Blue addressing such topics as “drought tolerant plants” and “common sense container garden displays.” This year’s agenda incorporates additional breakout sessions to allow for more specialized topics. Participants will receive handouts and resource information from all presentations.

This program is co-sponsored by the NC Cooperative Extension Service, the Buncombe County Master Gardeners and the North Carolina Arboretum Society. It will be held on Saturday, July 16 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Parking fee, lunch, and beverages are included in the program fee, which is $49 for NC Arboretum members and $55 for the general public. Register here.