The schedule for the 2018 AHS National Convention will be posted soon!
Browns Ferry Gardens
Heidi & Charles Douglas
Heidi & Charles Douglas
A large commercial daylily nursery and AHS display garden, Browns Ferry Gardens offers 8 raised beds displaying more than 500 cultivars. While focused on the introductions of owners Heidi Douglas and Charles Douglas plus those of Gene Tanner, the garden also features selected favorites used in their extensive hybridizing programs. Visitors are welcome to browse the more than 10,000 seedlings and give opinions on their favorites. In addition, more than 10,000 potted plants are offered for sale, making for an impressive display and difficult selection. A lush row of hydrangeas grow along the road into the garden, giving a nice contrast to the daylily colors. A large air-conditioned sales building complete with kitchen and meeting area offers a cool place to sit down and get something cold to drink. brownsferrygardens.com
Odessa & Johnny Bourne
Odessa & Johnny Bourne
It is difficult to believe Canterbury Garden is a home garden. The more than 2,200 different cultivars arranged in easily accessible and gorgeously lush beds make you feel like you’re walking through a large public garden. Enticing seating areas around the garden give shady spots to study the many cultivars from Region 15 hybridizers. You won't believe this garden has some significant damage during Hurricane Matthew, everything looks like it has been exceptionally grown for years. Owners Johnny and Odessa Bourne have poured their hearts into this spectacular garden and you'll thoroughly enjoy viewing daylilies that run the gamut from spiders to doubles, tiny to large, old to very new – plus it is an AHS display garden.
Southern Charm Garden
Ann & Marlon Howell
Ann & Marlon Howell
It’s all in the family at the Southern Charm Daylilies, where Ann and Marlon Howell garden alongside Jeanette Howell in adjoining yards. Not only do they have more than 700 named varieties and at least 400 second and third year seedlings in pleasing planter beds. Marlon is especially anxious to get feedback from visitors on his hybridizing program! Trees that came down during Hurricane Matthew have meant more sunshine for larger daylily beds. Refreshing gazebos are available for sitting with a cool drink to admire the view. Many beds have companion plantings of perennials and vines to enhance viewing, plus Miss Jeanette's garden art enhances and highlights choice cultivars.
Therrien / Zahler Garden
Diploids take front and center at the hard working Therrien/Zahler garden. Ed Zahler’s 40 years of hybridizing hasn’t dimmed his enthusiasm for creating new shapes and colors and his latest introductions will be featured alongside his established favorites. Duane Therrien caught the hybridizing bug and has joined Ed in their current efforts to create diploid daylilies with fantastic ruffles, super flat blooms, gold edges with tetraploid-like qualities, flat reds with big green throats, extra large pinks, and multi-colored eyes and edges. Their suburban garden features hundreds of daylilies in flower beds near the house and lined out in seedling beds. Sizes are from the very tiny (think Zahler introductions like H. 'Dot Dot' and H. 'Dash Dash') to the very large and blousy. Interspersed in the garden are delightful areas like a waterfall with garden pool, sedum rock garden, a calming zen area, and unbelievably huge elephant ears. A lovely patio offers views across the garden and a convenient place to rest. You'll find yourself saying their tagline, "I can't believe it's a dip!" icantbelieveitsadip.com
A former hog farm, the Don Albers garden is a throwback to the old days in this part of Horry County, long before the transition to suburban neighborhoods and busy shopping centers. Hundreds of daylilies are displayed in angled beds, featuring Albers introductions plus old and new favorites. A stroll through the garden brings a gasp of recognition of an older variety one doesn’t expect to see right next to another gasp-inducing Albers introduction. A meandering stream separating the property from the neighborhood next door provides a lush background for some of the many specialized perennial hybrids that have been Don’s passion. Visitors get a good appreciation for the overall contribution Don has made to the world of gardening with his hybrid iris and other perennials. The impact of Hurricane Matthew can be seen most acutely in the Albers garden -- in the front yard is the enormous rootball from a 200-year-old live oak tree that fell in the 70 mph winds. Unable to remove this monolith, Don has instead let the azaleas originally planted at its base take over, making it a lush conversation piece.
Brookgreen Gardens is the jewel of the South Carolina coast. The combined properties from former rice plantations, Brookgreen Gardens was created by Anne and Hyatt Huntington to provide a backdrop for the display of Anne’s larger than life sculptures. In recent years, the gardens have expanded to become a destination featuring a lush zoo, butterfly enclosure, education center, boat tours, labyrinth, musical venue, gift shop featuring local artists, luscious restaurant and tranquil kitchen house, large indoor sculpture area, enclosed display galleries for art, and most of all, sumptuous gardens. The centerpiece is the live oak alleé which is bedded with thousands of colorful caladium. Next to that is a palm court featuring hot-colored plants around a rectangular pond. Outside of the palm court, running along a decorative brick wall is the daylily display bed. This bed features plants donated by the Georgetown Area Daylily Club featuring Region 15 hybridizers and GADC hybridizers in particular. Companion plantings of various perennials along with beautiful statuary enhance the daylily colors. brookgreen.org
Belin Memorial United Methodist Church
While not one of the tour gardens, the location of lunch for our north tour is gorgeous in its own right. After enjoying your lunch in the Family Life Center, stroll across the street to the historic church nestled among old live oaks. This version of the church was built in 1991 to resemble the first church that sat here, constructed in 1925. It is named for the Reverend James L. Belin (pronounced Blane), a local Methodist minister and well-know community philanthropist of the Waccamaw Neck area. Walk to the back of the church for a breath-taking view across the marsh. You'll see oysters, seabirds, seagrass, plus boaters and swimmers enjoying the many waterways through the marsh.
What should I expect? What should I bring? Here's a reminder list:
- Clothing. Daytime and tours are very casual. Capris or shorts are great, especially in darker colors that won't show pollen or daylily juice. T-shirts and tops in lighter colors are better to reflect the sun and keep you cooler. Don't forget a light sweater to use on the bus or while attending forums or clinics. Friday and Saturday evening banquets are a bit dressier. Plan to wear what you might wear to church like nice slacks, a skirt, or dress, and men will not be out of place in a sports jacket.
- Shoes. Sneakers or sports sandals are great for walking in the gardens. For Friday and Saturday evening dinners, nice shoes or fancy sandals will look great.
- Bugs. Bring your favorite bug repellant for the gnats and no-see-ums.
- Fire ants. Okay, even paradise has tiny little flaws. Bring your benadryl or whichever product you use if you're especially sensitive to insect bites. While you're strolling the gardens, walking around Brookgreen or Murrells Inlet, keep at least a casual eye on the ground. Take care to walk around any ant mounds you see (they're hard to miss). Should you accidentally disturb the mound and they get on you, brush them off as quickly as possible. If they do bite you, it will sting like the dickens. Take your benadryl (or whatever you take for stings) and there are a variety of things you can put on the bites to reduce the sting (ammonia, calamine lotion, paste of baking soda and water, vinegar).
- Hat and sunscreen. If you're wearing sandals in the gardens, make sure you put sunscreen on your feet. And don't forget the back of your neck and the backs of your legs. This is the convention where you'll bring your big floppy hat because in addition to the garden tours, you'll be going to the beach!
- Plastic poncho and small umbrella. Here's hoping we won't need the poncho, but you may want the umbrella for shade if the day is very hot and sunny.
- Bandaids, especially if your shoes are new.
- Camera, extra batteries, memory cards, cell phone charger. While there are stores nearby where you can buy batteries, memory cards, and phone chargers, you'll want to bring your own to save money.
- Binoculars. You'll have a chance to see swallowtail kites, eagles, ospreys, and a wide variety of song birds while in the gardens, as well as gulls, pelicans, and even dolphins while at the beach.
- Plastic bags to carry plants home. If you're checking your luggage or driving, bring scissors to cut foliage.
- Plastic tags and a sharpie. In case you split plants with someone and need to label the other half.
- Extra cash to use in the boutiques, plant sales, and at the cash bar during dinners.
- Bathing suit, fun summer reading book, sunglasses, beach cover up. You're going to the beach! You can pick up a really cheap beach towel, chair, and umbrella at one of the many nearby stores, or you can rent chairs and an umbrella already set up on the sand (prices vary).
- After you check in, you'll have a small tote bag and your name tag. Wear your name tag at all times; it will have space for a pen, your room key, and a little cash. Use the tote bag on tour buses to bring along your camera and extra batteries and memory cards, sunscreen, pens, your convention handbook, small notebook, tiny water bottle, and dramamine if you need it.