Gulf Coast Resource Conservation and Development Council Supports Keep Mobile Beautiful, Inc. Outreach Program

Through the generosity of the Gulf Coast RC&D Council, the KMB outreach program will have more opportunities to  address  its mission  of motivating Mobilians to take greater individual responsibility in their community environment. The $9,030 grant award  will  be used  to support campus beautification, school recycling,  school  presentations,  and community  interactions and cleanup activities.  An example of  GCRC&D support can be found in the December blog postings.  GCRC&D funding made it possible for the  illustrations to be made into posters for use in presentations and interactions.

Due to  GCRC&D support,  KMB outreach coordinator, Phyllis Wingard, will conduct a teacher workshop on January 16, 2020, at the John Archer Agricultural Center to apprise schools of  $500 campus beautification grants available to  schools in Mobile County.  Information concerning the workshop  is being sent to school principals. Thank you to Gulf Coast Resource Conservation and Development Council for helping to make Mobile County a greener, cleaner and more beautiful place to live.

Learn more about the Gulf Coast  Resource Conservation and Development Council at the following link. GCRC&D

Progress

Progress is impossible without change, and those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything.”
-George Bernard Shaw

A or B   Which will you choose?

One time use plastic products are not earth friendly choices. Plastic straws find their way into  waterways, bays, and the Gulf of Mexico, becoming threats to wildlife.  Avoiding the use of plastic straws or using paper straws are better choices.

 

Conscience

“The ultimate test of man’s conscience may be his willingness to sacrifice something today for future generations whose words of thanks will not be heard.”
—Gaylord Nelson

A or B   Which will you choose?

Fiber choices have an effect upon the planet. 70% of microplastics polluting the air, water and the land are synthetic fibers made from petrochemicals.   Plastic degrades into microplastic particles entering the food streams of aquatic life, wildlife, and human beings.   Microplastic fibers float into the air,  as synthetic materials are abraded,  and enter water systems when synthetic materials are laundered. Choosing natural fibers such as cotton, flax, and wool having the ability to decompose, are earth friendly choices.

 

Dreaming of a White Christmas

“Christmas waves a magic wand over this world, and behold, everything is softer and more beautiful.”      Norman Vincent Peale

 

 

While it is highly unlikely that snow will create a white Christmas for residents of lower Alabama,  marvelous alternatives are available.  The snowy white specimens of the camellia family located at  Mobile Botanical Gardens and Bellingrath Gardens are joined by a plethora of festively colored camellia family members  which  provide a wintery afternoon of ethereal pleasure. Visit  Mobile Botanical Gardens  and Bellingrath websites to plan an escapade among  the exotics.

 

Links:

https://www.uaex.edu/yard-garden/resource-library/plant-database/shrubs/sasanqua-camellia.aspx

https://www.americancamellias.com/care-culture-resources/the-camellia-family

December Beauties

“Gardens and flowers have a way of bringing people together, drawing them from their homes.”
― Clare Ansberry, The Women of Troy Hill: The Back-Fence Virtues of Faith and Friendship

Camellia sasanqua, a   traditonal favorite in southern gardens, is wearing her finest in December.  Bellingrath Gardens, nestled on the banks of Fowl River, is ready to show off these exotic beauties in their finery.  Take  time to stroll the walkways with friends  and partake of the delicate blossoms gracing the landscape. You will not be disappointed!

Learn more about sasanquas at the links below.

https://plants.ces.ncsu.edu/plants/camellia-sasanqua/

https://www.southernliving.com/home-garden/gardens/camelia-fall

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Camellia_sasanqua

Dresses of Red and Gold

Come, little leaves,” said the Wind one day, “Come to the meadows with me and play. Put on your dresses of red and gold; For Summer is past, and the days grow cold.”
― George Cooper

Vibrant signs of autumn can be found in L.A.  They include  the  dramatic chrysanthemum displays at Bellingrath  Gardens and the unique leaves of ginkgo trees, also found  at Bellingrath. 

Learn more about ginkgo trees at the following links.  https://www.arborday.org/trees/treeGuide/treedetail.cfm?itemID=1092

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ginkgo_biloba

 

Hiking Discoveries

“I am Falling in love again with autumn,
The smell of warm cider,
The orange color leaves,
Pumpkins everywhere
and the crisp breeze,
People walking or riding their bikes,
Folks jogging or going on hikes,
I love autumn for many reasons and
I’m pleased to admit- this is my favorite season”
― Charmaine J Forde

An autumn hike may allow one to discover native plants unfamiliar to many suburban dwellers. The above plant, Phytolacca americana, is very familiar to birds, consuming the purple berries.  However, this plant should be avoided by human beings and other mammals. All parts of the plant are toxic. Commonly called pokeberry, pokeweed, poke sallet, poke salad, and polk salad, the leaves of this native plant  have been consumed  by human beings, through a boil and drain process. But, a far safer method to eat greens  is to buy  them from the local market. Hikers should enjoy the shiny purple berries from a distance,  keeping pets and children away from this toxic plant.

Learn more about this native plant at the following link.  Wikipedia

Gold on the Ground

“Autumn carries more gold in its pocket than all the other seasons.”
― Jim Bishop

 

 

NEVER, NEVER, NEVER burn one of nature’s best resources – pine straw!  Pine straw  should be used for mulching garden beds. Azaleas, blueberries, camellias and other acid loving plants will appreciate your efforts.  Autumn is a great time to train little gardeners  about the BMPs of gardening.  Collect the “gold” on the ground.

Autumnal Faces

No spring nor summer beauty hath such grace as I have seen in an autumnal face.  John Donne

This adorable autumnal face belongs to an eastern screech owl, a resident of the Mobile County  Public Schools  System’s Environmental Studies Center.  Serving as a greeter to the many visitors attending the fall open house at the Girby Road facility, this little beauty does not exemplify the reclusive behavior of its fellow screech owls. Most screech owls will be heard rather than seen.  Click on the following link to  identify the calls of this petite raptor.

All About Birds