Upcoming Events

Longleaf Botanical Gardens Third Thursdays


Join us for the February Third Thursday program which will feature the queen of the winter garden and Alabama’s state flower, the camellia! The presenter, Hayes Jackson, has 300 different camellias in his garden. Camellias are well-suited to central Alabama landscapes. The plants are tough once established and make excellent hedges, mass plantings, and foundation plantings. Camellias come in a bewildering number of varieties and can bloom from late August through April depending on species and variety. The program will focus on a variety of unusual and stalwart cultivars. Weather permitting and plants cooperating, there will be a nice display of blooms to ogle. Join us at 5pm to discover the wonderful array of beautiful camellias and talk about camellia culture in central Alabama.

To reserve your spot, call Anniston Museum of Natural History at 256. 237-6766. Reservations are required. Cost is $5.00 per person or free to members. Payment is to be made at the time of registration and may be made by cash, check (made payable to Longleaf Botanical Gardens and earmarked for educational programs) or charge card in person or by phone).

For information on upcoming “Third Thursday” programs, as well as other Longleaf events, check out LONGLEAF BOTANICAL GARDENS on Facebook.

2017 Lunch & Learn Series

bee on cosmos

Lunch and Learn is a series of FREE gardening programs sponsored by the Calhoun County Commission and Calhoun County Master Gardeners.  Held the 4th Wednesday of each month, noon-1pm at Cane Creek Community Gardens, 77 Justice Avenue, McClellan.  Bring your lunch (and a friend!!) and learn with us!

April 26th  The Story of Alabama’s Native Americans     Speaker:  Harry Holstein, JSU Professor of Archaeology

May 24th  Planting, Transplanting & Re-Potting     Speaker:  David Doggett, Jefferson County Master Gardener

June 28th   Classy Caladiums           Speaker:  Hayes Jackson, ACES

July 26th   What’s Wrong with My Plant?          Speaker: Dr. Jim Jacobi, ACES Plant Pathology Lab

Aug 23rd   Inviting Good Insects Into Your Garden       Speaker:  Dani Carroll, ACES

Sept 27th   “T” is for Tropical        Speaker:  Hayes Jackson, ACES


*Dates and/speakers subject to change.  Contact the Calhoun County Extension Office 256-237-1621 to confirm.

Drought Emergency


MONTGOMERY – Governor Robert Bentley on Wednesday signed a Drought Emergency Declaration due to extremely dry conditions.  The declaration, often referred to as a “No Burn Order”, prohibits all outdoor burning for 46 counties in north and central Alabama.  The order is effective as of 3:00pm, Wednesday, October 12, 2016.

“The current drought condition in our state is posing a serious threat for wildfires,” Governor Bentley said.  “The continued lack of rain combined with low relative humidity and strong winds put us at a very high risk.  This declaration is mean to prevent unnecessary burning, reducing the chance of avoidable fires.”

The No Burn Order affects the following counties which have been upgraded from the previously-issued Fire Alert:  Autauga, Bibb, Blount, Calhoun, Chambers, Cherokee, Chilton, Clay, Cleburne, Colbert, Coosa, Cullman, Dallas, DeKalb, Elmore, Etowah, Fayette, Franklin, Greene, Hale, Jackson, Jefferson, Lamar, Lauderdale, Lawrence, Lee, Limestone, Lowndes, Macon, Madison, Marion, Marshall, Montgomery, Morgan, Perry, Pickens, Randolph, Russell, Shelby, St. Clair, Sumter, Talladega, Tallapoosa, Tuscaloosa, Walker, and Winston.

Additionally, the Alabama Forestry Commission (AFC) has issued a Fire Alert for the remaining counties in South Alabama, effective immediately.

“We need rain desperately.  Over the past couple of weeks we’ve seen an increase, not only in the number of wildfires, but also in the size of these fires.  Several of them have been very large wildfires,” State Forester Gary Cole said.  “With this extremely dry weather, conditions are such that any fire can quickly spread out of control, not only resulting in damage to our forests but also threatening and destroying homes.  These burning restrictions are a necessary result of the ongoing lack of precipitation, the recent increased number of fires, high probability of fuel ignition, as well as the reduced availability of firefighting manpower and suppression resources across the state.”

Over the last seven days, 341 wildfires have burned over 4,100 acres in Alabama, according to AFC fire officials.

The Drought Emergency Declaration order will remain in effect until rescinded by the State Forester, at which time conditions will have changed sufficiently to reduce the occurrence and frequency of wildfires.  To report persons burning in violation of this law, contact your local law enforcement.  For more information on the current wildfire situation in the state, visit Alabama Forestry Commission’s website.

For drought updates, click here.

For information regarding Emergency Farm Loans, visit USDA .





Camp Cane Creek 2016


Camp Cane Creek has come to an end. The Extension office would like to thank our camp counselors, Rachel Brinks and Brandi LaBenne, our youth counselors and all our camp participants for another successful camp. Thanks to all those who volunteered their time presenting exciting programs for the campers and to the parents who trusted us with your kids. Until next year…

Check out all of the fun we had by clicking HERE.



Alabama Master Naturalist Program


The Alabama Master Naturalist program is a new statewide program whose goal is to help promote awareness, understanding, and respect of Alabama’s natural world among Alabama’s citizens and visitors. In addition, the AMN program will also develop a statewide corps of well-informed volunteers providing education, outreach, and service dedicated to the beneficial management of natural resources and natural areas within their communities.

Learn more about how you can participate today!