FORSYTH COUNTY, N.C. — Nestled inside Forsyth County’s Tanglewood Park is an escape for plant, tree and nature lovers alike: the Tanglewood Arboretum.
When Forsyth County’s N.C. Cooperative Extension program took over the arboretum in 2000, they did so with the support of the Winston-Salem Foundation.
“We have different gardens, lots of different things, we have annual plants, flowers,” said Leslie Peck, Tanglewood Arboretum director.
Much of the foundation’s funding was directed to the restoration of the arboretum’s landscaping, beautification and the addition of a deer fence to protect the gardens.
“We have things you’ll see in everyone’s yard, like a crepe myrtle, a hydrangea, but then we also try to have some unique plants to show you some different things you might not have seen,” Peck said.
The arboretum is also used as an educational space. There, they hold classes for people young and old. Some of the decided to stay once their classes concluded.
“I took the master gardener class in 2010 and I’ve been an active volunteer ever since,” said Bill Deck, a master gardener and curator of the vegetable garden.
In Forsyth County, Peck says, there are about 140 extension master gardener volunteers. On Wednesdays, several of them come out to help.
“It’s just a love for what you do and the opportunity to teach,” Deck said.
Over the years, volunteers have restored more than 20 themed gardens, plus the greenhouse.
“The peoples’ interest is so diverse. We have people that are only interested in annuals, only interested in perennials, only interested in native plants,” Deck added.
Master gardener volunteer training will be held in the fall of 2018. The training will be held weekly on Monday afternoons, beginning in August and ending in November. In addition to completing the 40-hour course, students are also required to volunteer 40 hours of their time in order to become certified.
To learn more about the program, click here.