George Sanko honored by Garden Club of America
By Antonio Garay – News Editor
CEO of the Botanical Garden, George Sanko, was honored with the “Award of Excellence” by the Garden Club of America for the Botanical Garden. George Sanko created the Botanical Garden back in 1990, when GPC was formerly DeKalb College. Over the span of 21 years, Mr. Sanko has expanded the small garden into five acres of plants, ferns, sun beds, vines and meadow. “I’m very
proud to receive such a prestigious award for the Botanical Garden,” said Sanko. The Botanical Garden is a combination of the ”Native Plant Botanical Garden” and “Ferns of the World”. The “Ferns of the World” garden is the largest collection of ferns in the state of Georgia and possibly in America.
In addition, Mr. Sanko also hosts ten tours a semester titled “Walks and Talks.” In the tour, visitors are exposed to all the plant life of the garden and learn about the history of the special native plants.
Sanko has attracted visitors from across the U.S. and Europe to purchase and visit plants of the garden. The Royal Fern Society from England will be visiting the garden in June 2011
Furthermore, the Botanical Garden is maintained by two paid workers and a staff of 15 non-GPC student volunteers who preserve the garden from decaying. “The garden requires a lot of attention, so I’m very thankful to have volunteers who put time and effort into to sustaining the garden’s beauty,”said Sanko. When asked about expanding the Botanical Garden in the future, Sanko responded “Well, it would be nice to expand, but my biggest concern is maintaining the richness of the garden for the future.” The Botanical Garden is also looking for student volunteers who are interested in maintaining the garden and hosting tours about the native plants.
Botanical Garden “Walks and Talks” tours are from 10:30-12:30 a.m. every other Wednesday on the Decatur Campus.
Plant Sales are from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. on Wednesday at the Decatur Campus.
CEO George Sanko also accepts donations at http://www.gpc.edu/~decbt/