Old Unicoi Trail Chapter, NSDAR, was hosted by Hamilton Gardens staff on November 6, 2020. According to Shelli Kelly, Chapter Vice Regent of Hiawassee, “Daughters were updated by Executive Director Grace Howard on the garden schedule and upcoming plantings including one by the American Rhododendron Society and the replacement of recently lost tree canopy. The garden manager, Maggie Oliver received from the Chapter a sign, “Love Our Pollinators” for their 2021 pollinator garden. Linda Jones, Board Member, led a walk to recent yard art additions and talked about the upcoming live wreath and plant sales. We can’t wait to return in April when the garden is in bloom.” Accompanying Kelly were Noni Hammerstrand, Chapter Treasurer of Young Harris; Pam Greene, Service for Veterans Chair of Hiawassee; and Annette Hopgood, chapter member, and State Conservation Committee Chair.
Hamilton Gardens at Lake Chatuge, a 501(c)3 Georgia corporation, needs volunteers and welcomes donations. After orientation, volunteers choose from hands-on garden work and hands-off administrative work. Contact the Gardens at 706-970-0011 for the most current information on volunteering and to provide financial support.
Hamilton Gardens was the gift of Hazel and Fred Hamilton to Towns County. The Hamilton’s were collectors of both native azaleas and rhododendrons as well as propagators of the same. Upon searching in Towns County, Mr. Hamilton found property donated by the Tennessee Valley Authority to the County to be used by the county as a park. The present location was planted in 1981 with 1,091 plants, most of which were rhododendrons and native azaleas. His only request was to maintain the gardens in perpetuity and to keep them open to the public.
The National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution promotes historic preservation, education, and patriotism. For information on DAR and Old Unicoi Trail Chapter email Pam Matthews, Regent at [email protected].