Free nutrition classes starting March 28th
Most Chatham County locals refer to it as simply “The Bamboo Farm”, but an ambitious master plan that includes a new visitors and education center, a children's garden, a butterfly pavilion, and a four acre bamboo maze has led to the rebranding of the historic 50-acre institution as “The Coastal Georgia Botanical Gardens at the Historic Bamboo Farm”.
Established by the U.S. Department of Agriculture as a plant introduction station nearly 100 years ago, the Bamboo Farm forms a large triangle of lush green vegetation situated between U.S. Highway 17 and Interstate I-95 in southeastern Chatham County. Although the garden’s 140+ varieties of bamboo first gave it national prominence, the property today is also home to a variety of test gardens where the growth of banana trees, camellias, dragon fruit, roses, sugar cane, strawberries, blackberries, day lilies, crape myrtles, palm trees and lotus plants are carefully monitored.
According to event planner, Elizabeth Lubrani, the Gardens will open their facilities to Savannah's Hispanic community when they begin hosting a series of free bilingual nutrition classes in March.
“Each Wednesday morning, beginning on March 28th, Georgia Extension agent Lisa Jordan and her staff will offer nutrition classes here as part of their Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program (EFNEP),” Lubrani said. “ The Spanish nutrition classes will be held at 9:30 each Wednesday morning and the classes will then be taught in English at 1:30 the same day.”
EFNEP is federally funded and conducted through the Cooperative Extension Service in every state and U.S. territory. For over 30 years, EFNEP has been helping families with children learn how to eat healthier meals and snacks, stretch their food dollars and reduce the risk of food-borne illness. Ms. Jordan is the Area EFNEP Agent in Chatham County and has bilingual program assistants in Chatham, Liberty, Glynn, Appling/Wayne, and Ware Counties.
6 Free EFNEP Nutrition Sessions- March 28, 2012 thru May 9, 2012: 9:30 am- Spanish; 1:30 pm- English. To reserve your spot call: 912-652-7991 or 912-652-7994.
“We are very excited about all the changes underway here at the Botanical gardens,” Lubrani said. “Our expanded camellia gardens are home to over 900 varieties and we have partnered with the Oglethorpe Astronomical Association to offer special events for fans of star-gazing. Even with all the new construction under way, we plan to continue offering popular events like our strawberry and blackberry picking and garden festivals.”
Spring Garden Festival, March 24, 2012, 9:00am to 4:00pm, plant vendors, arts, crafts, children's activities, and food.
The Coastal Georgia Botanical Gardens at the Historic Bamboo Farm are located at 2 Canebrake Road off US Hwy 17 and are open to the public each weekday from 8 am till 5 pm, on Saturdays from 10 am till 5 pm, and Sundays from noon till 5 pm. Many of the facilities can be rented for special events like weddings, family reunions, and conferences at very reasonable rates. For more information call 921-5460 or visit their web site at www.bamboo.caes.uga.edu/
1) From I-95: Take Exit 94 (Savannah/ Pembroke/ HWY 204) to HWY 204 E (towards Savannah). Turn right on E Gateway Blvd (1/10 mile), then left on Canebrake Road (1/10 mile). Drive 1/4 mile and enter Canebrake gate on your left.
2) From HWY 204 (Abercorn Street): Take the HWY 17 S exit (toward Richmond Hill). Drive 1/2 mile and enter HWY 17 gate on your right.
3) From HWY 17: Enter property through gate approx 1/4 mile south of WalMart and 1 mile north of Ogeechee river bridge.