Scarecrows at Old Alabama Town!

Monday morning was an exciting time in the Old Alabama Town Herb Gardens. A beautiful day with many wonderful plants growing in each garden dressed up for fall with blazing colors. Art Adventure in the Gardens this year resulted in some wonderful sculptures designed by many. Judging was completed by Mayor Todd Strange with Capitol City Master Gardener taking first place blue ribbon, Ms Lizzie Turnipseed receiving second place red ribbon, a tie for third place white ribbon went to Elmore County Master Gardner and Ms Jane McCarthy OATHS member, and also an honorable mention ribbon to Eat South. Many thanks to all who participated in this fun filled event.

OATHS’ Annual Art Adventure/Scarecrow in the Gardens

Montgomery’s Mayor Todd Strange will judge the Old Alabama Town Herb Society’s annual Art Adventure/Scarecrows in the Garden competition on Monday, September 26 at 10:00 am.  Installation of the Scarecrows will take place on Saturday, September 24th, at Old Alabama Town (Living Block area).

Rosa ParksAwards categories are Best in Show, 1st, 2nd, 3rd Place, and Honorable Mention.   The public is invited to attend.

Members of the Old Alabama Herb Society (OATHS) gather each year to create scarecrows for an annual display of Art Adventure/Scarecrow in the Gardens at Old Alabama Town (OAT).  The mayor’s office, local schools and Eat South have participated in the annual event. This year, OATHS are inviting local colleges’ art departments, and businesses to participate.

OATHS president, Duck Mara, said “We really want to expand participation in the annual event.  It’s a fun Fall event and an excellent way to get local businesses involved, and students to display their creativity to the many Old Alabama Town visitors from across the world, thus encouraging interest in the downtown Montgomery area.

scarecrowTherefore, if you are creative and are interested in participating in the Old Alabama Town Herbs Society’s (OATHS) annual Arts Adventure/Scarecrow in the Garden program, or in becoming a member of the OATHS, please contact Jean Szabo at (334) 277-6536 or Maxine Taylor for membership information at Please include Scarecrow Competition or Membership in your subject line. Also, for future events and information on OATHS, please like the OATHS Facebook page, or visit the OATHS blog at:

July 19 Meeting

Join us on Tuesday, July 19, at 6:00 the Loeb Center at Old Alabama Town for the monthly meeting. Bring your ideas and suggestions for the coming year to make plans for the best year ever!
Be thinking of the committees you want to assist and which herb garden team you plan to join. It’s the beginning of our fiscal year and dues are due if you haven’t already paid.
Refreshments will be served and bring an item for the door prize.

June Meeting in the Gardens

At the Tuesday evening meeting Jane McCarthy and Ann Hamill conducted the induction ceremony for new officers of Old Alabama Town Herb Society for 2016-2017, using the language of plants for each officer’s purpose. Those present were President Duane “Duck” Mara, Secretary Christine Robinson, and Treasurer Maxine Taylor. After the induction, Jane McCarthy gave a demonstration of propagating plants and a walking tour of the OATHS herb gardens.

June 21 Meeting

Join us on Tuesday, June 21st for the Installation of Officers for 2016-2017 Old Alabama Town Herb Society. Thank you to the officers for the coming year- President Duane Mara; Vice-President TBD; Treasurer Maxine Taylor; Secretary Christine Robinson; Corresponding Secretary Marsha Allison. Jane McCarthy will conduct the installation ceremony. The meeting will be held in the herb gardens of Old Alabama Town (where Herb Day is held). Parking on Jefferson, enter through the gate mid-block. Bring a chair. We will have a short business meeting. Following the installation of officers Jane will give a demonstration on propagating herbs. Bring an empty water bottle (16 oz. to 2 liter and a cutter). Volunteers to bring refreshments are Carolyn Gomillion, Ann Hamill, new members Yma Carrington and Kathy Quinn. No door prizes this month. See you there!

May 17 Meeting

Join us on May 17, 2016, 6:00 the Loeb Center at Old Alabama Town for the monthly meeting. The nominating committee will present a slate of officers for 2016-2017. If you are called upon – please do your part. The officers will be installed at the June meeting and preside at the July meeting. Herb Day committees plan to report for an Herb Day recap. Bring your ideas and suggestions for making next year better – the 20th Annual Herb Day. Refreshments will be provided by Marsha Allison and Kayren Pittman.

Thanks for a wonderful Herb Day!

Thank you all for making Herb Day 2016 a success!
The beautiful weather, interesting programs, variety of vendors, sponsors, music, art, plants, and attendees all contributed to the perfect day. Thanks again for your support and participation.

Patrick 8 y.o. at Herb Day 2016Patrick, 8 years old, had his own way of enjoying Herb Day!

One of our vendors said “Out of six festivals that we go to each year – this one is our favorite! It’s because of the beautiful park, the atmosphere, the variety of programs, activities and most of all it’s the people. Our sales here are better too!”

Enjoy this slideshow of photos from Herb Day.

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About our Herb Day Speakers

About the Speakers

TiaTia Gonzalez 
9:30 a.m. “Growing and Using Turmeric – The Spice of Life”
Tia Gonzalez is the part-time Curator of Auburn University’s Medicinal Plant Garden, a part-time technician for the AU Department of Crops, Soils and Environmental Sciences, and a freelance garden designer.  She will talk about the research on turmeric cultivation underway at AU and on a few of the healthful values of the plant. Turmeric, a beautiful plant that is easy for gardeners to cultivate in middle and south Alabama, is an ingredient in curries.

Debbie BoutelierDebbie Boutelier 
11:00 a.m. “You’re Getting Warmer!  Naturally Hot Herbal Medicine”
Past president of the Herb Society of America, former Autauga County Extension Agent, and Alabama Master Gardener, Debbie Boutelier has studied medicinal uses of herbs for over 10 years and completed a three year intensive study of the medicinal aspects of herbs at the Appalachian Center of Natural Health.  She teaches nationally and gives many seminars on organic gardening, nutrition, the many aspects of herbs, and other garden-related topics.

jessinorwoodJessi Norwood 
12:30 p.m. “From South America to South of the Mason Dixon, Peppers in Culinary History”
Native Alabamian, Jessi Norwood has always loved spicy food and cooking.  It wasn’t until she tried homemade pepper jelly that she fell in love with this spicy condiment.  She began exploring how peppers enhance other ingredients’ flavors and how different types of peppers hit the tongue in different places.  Since then, she’s been hard at it growing a wild variety of peppers and pairing them with local produce.