Valdosta Daily Times

September 20, 2013

Fairy Garden

Dean Poling
The Valdosta Daily Times


Explaining a fairy garden destroys some of the magic, says Patty Dunn, who will present such a garden this weekend as part of the 53rd Annual Valdosta Antique Show and Sale.
Still, she explains the basics. A fairy garden includes miniature items. It can include repurposed yard implements such as a wheel barrow or a birdbath. But the true magic of a fairy garden is dual concepts of introducing children to gardening while giving parents and/or grandparents an opportunity to spend more time with their young ones while teaching them something, too.
In creating a magical setting for fairies and wood nymphs to settle, children can learn important lessons about gardening and the green, Dunn says.
While fairy gardens have made inroads in other areas of the nation, they are a relatively new concept for South Georgia. An idea which Dunn has been introducing to people for the past couple of years. For the past six years, she has operated her Terra Cotta gardening shop in Omega. In the last two years, she has become involved in fairy gardening. People can purchase pieces for their fairy gardens in her shop, or order them from her Facebook site, or find them as she visits area shows.
This weekend, she joins the many regional antique vendors participating in the annual Valdosta show at Mathis City Auditorium, sponsored by the Garden Center to benefit The Crescent. While the show runs three days, Friday, Saturday and Sunday, Dunn will present her fairy garden in a special presentation at 2 p.m. Saturday, and expects to be available at the show for the remainder of the day Saturday. 
To prepare for a traveling fairy garden, Dunn says she travels with most of her Omega shop loaded into her vehicle. She will spend Saturday morning and early afternoon preparing the fairy garden for viewing and her presentation.
Show organizers say the presentation should be a charming event for grandchildren, children, parents and grandparents.
Dunn says fairy gardens can be built piece by piece. Think of it as an outdoor, garden version of a model train set, built and grown slowly, one piece at a time, but each new piece incorporated into a garden with the other pieces.
The 53rd Annual Valdosta Antique Show and Sale runs 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Friday and Saturday, Sept. 20-21; 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 22, Mathis City Auditorium, 2300 N. Ashley St. Admission: $5. The special 2 p.m. Saturday Fairy Garden presentation is included in the regular admission.