Laurel Branch – March 2013

Laurel Branch – March 2013

Susan Harvey Receives Hannah Lide Coker Award

Vern Myers, Chairman of the Kalmia Garden Board of Directors (BOD) presented Susan Harvey with the Hannah L. Coker award. Vern stated, “In 1992, the BOD established the Hannah L. Coker Award for Volunteer service to Kalmia Gardens. Recipients should be (or should have been)  actively involved in hands-on volunteer service to the Gardens such as helping with tours, day camp, weeding, building, repairs, organizing events, facilitating procurement of supplies, etc.

Our current Board has identified an individual who has we believe more than meets all the named activities in the criteria. This person has served two consecutive terms on the Board, been active in the Master Gardner program, and done more weeding, organizing, facilitating, building and leading than anyone will ever know. Her love of the Gardens knows no limit.

Congratulations to Susan.

Susan Harvey & Vern Myers

Oyster shell recycling at Kalmia Gardens

Scout Troop 523 has once again helped with bagging oysters. The first time scouts successfully bagged 268 bags in June of 2012.  A few of the troop’s members returned to earn community service hours on Friday, February 15 filling 68 bags.  Thank you Scout troop 523!  Kalmia Gardens, a part of Coker College, is a public drop off location for oyster shell recycling. Recycled oyster shells are used by S.C. Department of Natural Resources (DNR) to refurbish oyster grounds. Shells provide the necessary hard substrate for juvenile oysters to attach and grow.  When oysters are harvested, some of the habitat for future generations is lost. Replanting shells replaces this habitat and insures that our local (or our state’s) oyster populations will continue to thrive. DNR maintains 26 recycling drop-off locations, predominantly along the SC coast, where the public can recycle their shells. Maps of recycling drop-off sites and tips on shell recycling can be found at tp:// or by calling (843)953-9397.

Scout Troop 523 Baging Oyster Shells

Kalmia Gardens Oyster Roast

Come enjoy some wonderful SC Low Country Oysters at the 18th annual Kalmia Gardens Oyster Roast Fundraiser. Along with SC Oysters there will be appetizers, soups, desserts, wine, beer, music by Slope Valley Bluegrass Band and more! Tickets are available for a $35 donation by calling 843.383.8145. Advance ticket purchase only, please.

Slope Valley Bluegrass Band

Kalmia Gardens Green Garden Course

Kalmia Gardens of Coker College is excited to announce that it will be offering a Green Gardening Course.  This ‘short’ course will cover many important gardening topics: from plant pathology and soil health to landscaping and proper pruning, as well as many topics in-between.  The class will meet at the Joslin Education Center on Tuesday evenings from 6:00 – 8:30 p.m. beginning April 9th. The cost for this 4 week class, which includes one Saturday lab, is $100. This class has something for everyone, regardless of experience. If you are interested in signing up or receiving more information on the Kalmia Gardens Green Gardening Class, please call 843.383.8145 or email

Kalmia Green Gardening Class

Tuesday  April 9 – Tuesday  April 30, 6:00-8:30 p.m.

 (Lab Saturday April 27, 2:00-5:00 p.m.)

Joslin Education Center 1520 W. Carolina Ave. Hartsville, SC

Third Annual Duck Cup Race

Do you recall the epic Duck Cup of 2012?  625 rubber ducks, one creek (Black Creek), prizes for the top 3 ducks…  The race was close; but in the end three ducks emerged victorious and earned prizes for their owners.

This year, on March 23rd at 10am, the race will be more intense than anyone could ever imagine.  Our goal is 1,000 rubber ducks racing down Black Creek, leaving it all in the water.  To increase the chance of winning for those willing to take a chance on a duck this year, we’re giving prizes to the owners of the top 10 ducks:

1st: 27″ flat screen TV

2nd through 10th Choose from gift cards to local eateries and businesses, gift baskets, and more!

One duck is just $5 (but you may buy as many as you’d like).

All proceeds benefit Kalmia Gardens.  Attendance is not required on March 31st to win (but it will be more fun if you’re there).

To purchase a duck, contact Mary Ridgeway at Kalmia Gardens (

Duck Cup Fun

Duck Wranglers

Flock a Friend

Do you have a good sense of humor and, like me (Dan), a bit of mischief in your bones?  If so, and you also are dedicated to supporting community…we have an opportunity for you: FLOCKING!  What is flocking you may ask; well, flocking is a fun prelude to our annual Duck Cup Race. We want names and addresses of good people you will pay $10 to “flock.”

Once a flock arrives you will have two options:

  • Option 1: donate $20 and we will remove the flock from your yard.
  • Option 2: donate $10 and give us the name and address of a “friend;” and we will relocate the flock.

If you would like to help with this fun prelude to the Duck Cup please email the name and address of someone you would like to flock.

Earth Day Festival

Kalmia Gardens will have the Earth Day Festival on April 20th from 9:00 am to 2: 30 pm. The event is free and has something for everyone. We will have a guided canoe ride on Black Creek, micro talks followed by a “meet and greet” with the presenters, Max the red-tailed hawk, Holly and her herps (reptiles and amphibians). The event will also feature many other exhibitors, arts and crafts vendors, games for children, several guided nature walks, and much more. Also, this year the Earth Day Festival will be held the same day as the Darlington County Master Gardener Plant Sale. The plant sale will be at the Joslin Education Center, and is shaping up to be one of the best plant sales yet! The Master Gardeners have been busy bees, buzzing around the new greenhouse propagating many exciting plant varieties that are sure to impress even the most discerning plant enthusiast.  So mark your calendars for April 20th for these two great events all in one day: Kalmia Gardens Earth Day Festival 9 a.m.-2:30 p.m. and the Darlington Co. Master Gardener Plant Sale 9 a.m.-2 p.m.

Earth Day Festival at Kalmia Gardens

2013 Events for Kalmia Gardens:

  • March 16 – Oyster Roast
  • March 23 – Duck Cup
  • April 17- May 8 Wednesday Warbler Bird Watching
  • April 20 – Earth Day Festival, Master Gardener Plant Sale
  • May 1 – Open registration for Week in the Wild

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