The Major Ridge Demonstration Garden at Chieftains Museum has received recognition from two different Georgia state programs this month.


In early August, the museum received a certificate from the University of Georgia Center for Urban Agriculture in recognition of the creation of a pollinator garden as part of the Pollinator Spaces Project sponsored by UGA Extension, Northwest District. This certificate honors the efforts of the museum and the Master Gardeners working in the Major Ridge Demonstration Garden to include pollinator plants as part of the landscape. Native pollinator species, including butterflies and bees, have had a severe drop in population in recent years. Pollinators are responsible for causing plants to make fruit or seeds by transferring pollen to areas of the plant necessary for fertilization. Without these important species, plants cannot reproduce. The Center for Urban Agriculture at UGA created the Pollinator Spaces Project to combat this population decline throughout the state. Working with Master Gardeners and Keith Mickler, the County Extension Agent/Coordinator for Floyd County, Chieftains has now become a part of this vital horticultural program.


In late August, Chieftains Museum received another honor when the Major Ridge Demonstration Garden was named the newest stop on the Rosalyn Carter Butterfly Trail. Started in 2013 by Annette Wise with the Georgia Department of Education, the trail was inspired by former First Lady Rosalyn Carter’s desire to bring awareness to and combat the declining monarch butterfly population. As part of the trail, the museum’s garden includes both nectar plants to feed butterflies and host plants for butterflies to lay their eggs. There are currently 25 public gardens on the Rosalyn Carter Butterfly Trail in Mrs. Carter’s home town on Plains, Georgia and 97 public gardens on the trail outside of Plains that span several U.S. states and stretch all the way to Japan. As a part of the trail, Chieftains Museum will display a sign in the Major Ridge Demonstration Garden and be listed on the trail’s official website.


Chieftains Museum/Major Ridge Home hopes to grow and expand the Major Ridge Demonstration Garden, including the pollinator plants, in the future. The museum and all of its programs, including the garden, are funded through memberships, private donations, and fundraising events like the Fall Plant Sale scheduled for September 2nd-October 17th this year.


For additional information about the garden or to find out how you can get involved, contact Chieftains Museum at (706) 291-9494 or visit our website at