Building Blocks of a Healthy Ecosystem

As spring unfolds, much of the wildlife that has been dormant for ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | May 28, 2021 | SHR-News, SHR-News

Gardener’s Corner with Director of Horticulture Eric Kimbrel

  Spring is a wonderful time in the garden; the pops of ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | May 28, 2021 | SHR-News, SHR-News
By Southern Highlands Reserve | May 28, 2021 | SHR-News, SHR-News

Outreach with TC Henderson Elementary

Our partnership with TC Henderson Elementary (“TCH”) began in the fall of ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | February 3, 2021 | SHR-News, SHR-News

Gardener’s Corner

Director of Horticulture, Eric Kimbrel With the leaves now gone, we can ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | February 3, 2021 | SHR-News, SHR-News

Stewards of an Endangered, Prehistoric Tree

Torreya taxifolia Safeguarding Project It is our responsibility to the land and ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | February 3, 2021 | SHR-News, SHR-News

Leave the leaves

Fall is the natural world’s swan song for the growing season. Colors ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | November 23, 2020 | SHR-News, SHR-News

Fall Gardener’s Corner

Fall seemed to arrive quickly this year. Cool temperatures twenty degrees below ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | November 23, 2020 | SHR-News, SHR-News

Fabulous Fungi

Visitors to the Reserve this season have noticed an unusual abundance and ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | November 23, 2020 | SHR-News, SHR-News

Introducing our newest team member

We would like to introduce the Reserve’s newest team member, Diana Hiles. ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | August 3, 2020 | SHR-News, SHR-News

Summer Gardener’s Corner

Summer on a mountain is a somewhat different when it comes to ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | August 3, 2020 | SHR-News, SHR-News

Panthertown Valley by Marci Spencer

About ten highway-miles west of Lake Toxaway on US-64 on land now ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | August 3, 2020 | SHR-News, SHR-News

A Garden Unapologetic by Kristin Landfield-Howe

“Green mosses, being so many, are as good as brawny. How important ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | August 3, 2020 | SHR-News, SHR-News

SHR National Public Garden Week Photo Contest!

Photographers are encouraged to enter their best shots of their own home ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | April 19, 2020 | SHR-News

Spring Garden’s Corner

Written by Eric Kimbrel, Director of Horticulture Winter is gone now but ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | April 7, 2020 | SHR-News

Healing the Earth One Garden at a Time

This article was guest written by Todd Forrest, Arthur Ross Vice President ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | April 7, 2020 | SHR-News

Conserving Medicinally and Culturally Significant Southeastern Plants

Written by Lauren Garcia Chance, Director of Research and Conservation There are ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | April 7, 2020 | SHR-News

Marvelous Magnolias

This article was guest written by Greg Paige, Director of Horticulture & ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | April 7, 2020 | SHR-News

Big, Green, Cleaning Machines

Plants are incredible. We may seem biased in saying so, but we ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | January 14, 2020 | SHR-News

2020 Winter Gardener’s Corner

As the plants become dormant and hibernation falls on the land, I ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | January 14, 2020 | SHR-News

Using Our Senses

What was your first memory of ‘being’ in nature? The first recollection ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | January 14, 2020 | SHR-News

Wild Collecting in North Carolina: Southern Highlands Reserve and the Arnold Arboretum partner for plant conservation

by Sean Halloran, Plant Propagator, The Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University In ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | January 14, 2020 | SHR-News

Gardener’s Corner with Eric Kimbrel

Nature’s schedule is always interesting to observe—it pays no mind to our ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | October 1, 2019 | SHR-News

Finding Beauty In the Familiar

“hu·man be·ing noun 1. a man, woman, or child of the species Homo sapien, distinguished from ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | October 1, 2019 | SHR-News

SHR Receives Commendation from The Garden Club of America

The Garden Club of America recently presented Southern Highlands Reserve the Zone ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | October 1, 2019 | SHR-News

Seed Collecting: A Shared Experience

The world of botanists, horticulturists and landscape architects is a tight knit ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | October 1, 2019 | SHR-News

Springing into New Life

As spring advances, signs of renewed life are appearing at the Reserve ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | July 9, 2019 | SHR-News

Gardener’s Corner with Eric Kimbrel

I always eagerly await this time of year when leaves emerge and ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | July 9, 2019 | SHR-News

Change: A Perspective on Aesthetics and Climate in the Garden

Written by Matt Sprouse, PLA, Sitework Studios – Principal and Amy Fahmy, PLA, Sitework Studios ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | July 9, 2019 | SHR-News

Ephemeral Magic

Written and Photographed by Caleb Melchior   Southern gardens are known for ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | April 2, 2019 | SHR-News

Gardener’s Corner with Director of Horticulture Eric Kimbrel

Much of this season at the Reserve has been spent inside enhancing ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | February 5, 2019 | SHR-News

Southern Highlands Reserve’s Volunteers of the Year

Southern Highlands Reserve is pleased to announce the 2018 Volunteers of the ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | January 28, 2019 | SHR-News

Sprucing Up the Forest for Fairy Diddles

Commission biologists lead habitat restoration projects to benefit the Endangered Carolina Northern ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | January 15, 2019 | SHR-News

What is SASRI and Why Do We Care?

The Southern Appalachian Spruce Restoration Initiative (SASRI) 2018 annual meeting took place ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | December 4, 2018 | SHR-News

Southern Highlands Reserve Helps Rescue Native Plants at High Hampton Resort

Southern Highlands Reserve recently had the opportunity to assist in a local ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | November 6, 2018 | SHR-News

Gardener’s Corner

Autumn, marked by cooler weather and shortening days as Earth’s axis begins ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | November 6, 2018 | SHR-News

German Forestry Society Visits Red Spruce Restoration Site

Southern Highlands Reserve was honored to join the United States Forest Service ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | November 6, 2018 | SHR-News

How You Can Help Grow a Greener World

Biodiversity refers to the diversity, or variety, of living organisms on the ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | November 6, 2018 | SHR-News

Gardener’s Corner with Director of Horticulture Eric Kimbrel

With its warm weather and long days, summer beckons us outside and ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | August 6, 2018 | SHR-News

Cultivating Reciprocity: Plants and Animals in Your Garden

Cultivate is an active verb. We cultivate our gardens, among other things; ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | August 6, 2018 | SHR-News

Being There: The Benefits of Being in Nature

Stop what you’re doing. Get up. Walk outside. Chances are, depending on ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | August 6, 2018 | SHR-News

Gregory Bald Azaleas: Hybridization at its Finest

Every year in early June, visitors to Southern Highlands Reserve are rewarded ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | May 1, 2018 | SHR-News

Learning from History: The Importance of Genetic Diversity

“History doesn’t repeat itself, but it does rhyme” ~ Mark Twain The ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | May 1, 2018 | SHR-News

2018 Native Plant Symposium: The Role of Pollinators in the Landscape

Southern Highlands Reserve will host its 2018 Native Plant Symposium on Saturday, ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | April 20, 2018 | SHR-News

Southern Highlands Reserve Launches Digital Database to Advance Native Plant Research

Southern Highlands Reserve (SHR) is pleased to announce the development of a ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | December 21, 2017 | SHR-News

SHR Welcomes Two New Staff Members and Celebrates Retirement of Inaugural Greenhouse Manager

2017 was a banner year for the Reserve in many ways. SHR made its mark by changing the mountain landscape, planting over 900 red spruce trees on public land near Black Balsam with the first ever restoration project for the endangered Carolina Northern Flying Squirrel. The organization’s landscape changed in 2017 as well, welcoming two new staff members and celebrating the retirement of our inaugural Greenhouse Manager, Sue Owen....
By Southern Highlands Reserve | December 14, 2017 | SHR-News

Carbon and Climate: Forest Management Strategies for Climate Change

The carbon cycle is a part of our daily lives, although most ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | December 7, 2017 | SHR-News

Connecting People, Places and Trees: SHR Shares Red Spruce Restoration Best Management Practices at High Elevation Forest Restoration Workshop

When people aligned in the same mission gather together and work cooperatively towards a common goal, an interconnectivity emerges. Linking pieces of information, relationships and people together begins to form one larger, more valuable picture. Each individual piece of the puzzle is important alone but when connected, as the great philosopher Aristotle observed, “the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.” ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | December 4, 2017 | SHR-News

Red Spruce Restoration Program Grows New Roots: Partners in Restoration Plant 900 Red Spruce Near Black Balsam

On September 18th and 19th, representatives from the Southern Appalachian Spruce Restoration Initiative (SASRI) gathered in Black Balsam to restore red spruce on public lands in Western NC. Over 900 young red spruce trees were carried on foot and horseback by dozens of volunteers and members of SASRI to their new home deep in the woods on public lands. In two days, these dedicated conservationists made at least seven trips down the Flat Laurel Branch Trail, some logging 14 miles for the day. The red spruce trees were grown by Southern Highlands Reserve as part of a larger long-term effort to restore red spruce to its high-elevation native habitat on public lands in the Southern Blue Ridge Mountains....
By Southern Highlands Reserve | October 18, 2017 | SHR-News

Gardening for a Changing Climate: How Shifts in Climate Should Guide our Conservation Practices

The onset of hurricane and fire season this year has brought an alarming degree of destruction to communities across the planet and disruption to the delicate balance of ecosystems. Record-breaking precipitation levels, fires, storm intensity, and storm frequency parallel the predictions of climate scientists for the past two decades: as oceans warm, we will observe increased storm activity, frequency, and intensity. In light of the devastation of recent extreme weather events from Hurricane Harvey and Irma on such a harrowing scale, we ask ourselves: are we powerless to stop this kind of catastrophic damage from happening again? What can we do at home to reduce our ecological footprint and adapt to the predicted long-term weather conditions? Further, what can we do to help strengthen the resiliency of our ecosystems and empower others to leave this earth better than we found it for future generations?...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | October 18, 2017 | SHR-News

Gardener’s Corner – Fall Edition

As the summer comes to a close for fall, we prepare for winter by helping the gardens go into a hibernation of their own, tucked into their beds and ready for a long, dormant season. Throughout the year, SHR staff prepare for the next generation of native plants to adorn the landscape. After bearing summertime fruit, plenty of seeds are ready for harvest throughout the gardens. Our gardeners are busy collecting seeds from our native plant collection, storing the genetic programming for the coming years. Seeds are stored in the Chestnut Lodge, each labeled to identify species, date and location they were collected. This information will then be added to our accession records once these seeds germinate and are planted back into the gardens. SHR takes great pride in our meticulous data collection as this is the lifeblood of the landscape; knowing where we come from will help steer us where we are going in the future. ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | October 4, 2017 | SHR-News

Soils: Nourishing Gardens from the Ground Up

Soils are the backbone of the landscape, nurturing gardens from the ground ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | August 31, 2017 | SHR-News

Gardener’s Corner: Summer Edition

With the onset of the warm summer months, the gardens are at their fullest and our gardeners are busy adding new native plants to our garden rooms and maintaining them daily, preventing pests and weeds from encroaching into the landscape. We are pleased to see a positive impact on the gardens from the implementation of our most recent water mitigation best management practices. By controlling the direction of water flow and rate at which water moves across the landscape, we are able to minimize the need for maintenance following heavy precipitation events. We’re adding mulch and soil to low areas that have been washed out by rainfall. In the Vasyei creek, we’re adding additional rock to slow the flow of water and prevent further washout. The increase of intensity and frequency of precipitation events is a by-product of climate change. By planning ahead and implementing measures now, we mitigate the negative effects of climate change at the Reserve....
By Southern Highlands Reserve | July 7, 2017 | SHR-News
By Southern Highlands Reserve | July 6, 2017 | SHR-News
By Southern Highlands Reserve | June 28, 2017 | SHR-News

Celebrating National Pollinator Week at Home and in Your Garden

Although pollinators are busy year-round, the third week in June is celebrated ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | June 23, 2017 | SHR-News
By Southern Highlands Reserve | April 13, 2017 | SHR-News
By Southern Highlands Reserve | April 13, 2017 | SHR-News

Green Infrastructure: Designing with Best Water Management Practices to Conserve Resources

Water is our most precious resource. We’ve all heard this phrase before, but it always seems the things that are a part of our lives every day are the things we most often take for granted. Access to clean water is a vital part of our lives that would not be possible without the services provided by the ecosystems that support our global habitat. Forests and soils provide filtration services, plants participate in the transpiration process, pulling water out of the soil and releasing it into the atmosphere through their leaves and needles. Perfectly balanced by nature over eons, these processes are now being disrupted by a changing climate and human development....
By Southern Highlands Reserve | January 16, 2017 | SHR-News

Women of the Woods: How the Daughters of the American Revolution Found a Forgotten Forest

On October 14, 2016, the clouds parted to cast a few glimmers of sunlight on a special ceremony taking place on the Blue Ridge Parkway. Honoring nearly 100 years of conservation, members of the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) gathered together to commemorate a forest once forgotten to the light of knowledge. The forest of 50,000 red spruce was planted in 1941-1943 by the Civilian Conservation Corps and dedicated to the deceased daughters of the American Revolution, but its location and existence was almost completely forgotten. As if illuminated by a divine mirror to commemorate the moment the forest was remembered, the sun shone down through the clouds on the unveiling of the memorial wayside sign honoring the rediscovery of the DAR Jubilee Memorial Forest. ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | January 13, 2017 | SHR-News

Stanley Smith Horticultural Trust Awards Southern Highlands Reserve with a $20,000 Grant to Build Digital Native Plant Research Database

Southern Highlands Reserve is honored to announce the award of a $20,000 grant from the Stanley Smith Horticultural Trust. The grant will support SHR’s development of a customized digital database to store the Reserve’s plant accession records, phenology, weather data, and more. The research database will further enhance the Reserve’s capacity of native plants in the Southern Appalachian Mountains, one of the world’s biologically significant hot spots. With the database, horticulturalists can conduct research on our native plant collection from anywhere in the world....
By Southern Highlands Reserve | January 5, 2017 | SHR-News

Southern Highlands Reserve Featured in Franklin Press

Southern Highlands Reserve was recently featured in the Franklin Press thanks to columnist Bob Gilbert, who visited the Reserve for its Annual Symposium. Gilbert writes about the Reserve, its Founders, gardens, and purpose....
By Southern Highlands Reserve | October 25, 2016 | SHR-News
By Southern Highlands Reserve | October 18, 2016 | SHR-News

Cullowhee Native Plant Conference Attendees Experience SHR’s Rich Biodiversity during Conference Field Trip

For nearly two decades, the Cullowhee Native Plant Conference at Western Carolina ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | October 18, 2016 | SHR-News
By Southern Highlands Reserve | October 18, 2016 | SHR-News

Plant with Natives in Your Garden at SHR’s Annual Plant Sale

Our seasonal Native Plant Sale is coming up just around the corner! ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | August 16, 2016 | SHR-News

SHR Announces the Installation of its View Site Sculpture by Wesley Wofford Studios

This year’s visitor season marks a milestone for SHR – its second ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | July 1, 2016 | SHR-News

SHR Presents its First Feature Film: “Genus Loci: Southern Highlands Reserve”

During this year’s Symposium, SHR premiered the final version of “Genus Loci: ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | July 1, 2016 | SHR-News

Native Plant Experts Speak at Southern Highlands Reserve’s Annual Symposium: “Balance and Function: The Role of Native Plants in our Ecosystems”

On Saturday, May 14th, horticulturalists, gardeners, landscape designers and plant lovers gathered ...
By Southern Highlands Reserve | June 30, 2016 | SHR-News
By Southern Highlands Reserve | May 27, 2016 | SHR-News
By Southern Highlands Reserve | March 29, 2016 | SHR-News

Wet and Wild: A Partners for Plants Wetland Revegetation Weekend and Optional Camping Trip

As a member of Garden Clubs of America, the Cherokee Garden Club is pleased to present “Wet & Wild: A Partners for Plants Wetlands Revegetation Weekend” to be held on June 10-12, 2016 in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park to celebrate the 100 year anniversary of the National Park System. The purpose of the event is to revegetate a marshy site cleared of invasive exotics in 2014 with genotypes of native sedges, rushes, alders, swamp roses and other select native plants collected by the National Parks Service....
By Southern Highlands Reserve | March 2, 2016 | SHR-News

From Seed to Forest: Restoring Red Spruce in the Southern Appalachia

On Tuesday, January 19th, members of the grass-root organization Southern Appalachian Spruce Restoration Initiative (SASRI), joined the Reserve's staff in cleaning red spruce cones and preparing their seeds for germination in the Reserve's Nursery Complex. Nine volunteers joined four SHR staff members, all contributing a total of 44 hours of labor, cleaning an estimated 53,000 seeds from 22 collections of red spruce cones in the Southern Blue Ridge Mountains....
By Southern Highlands Reserve | February 29, 2016 | SHR-News