The Upstate Native Nursery
ABOUT THE UPSTATE NATIVE NURSERY
The SCNPS Upstate Chapter has conducted plant sales since the late 1980s, and in 2011 established the Upstate Native Nursery on the estate of Miller & Kitty Putnam. The UNN has since become a legacy here in the Upstate and plays a vital role within the Society and throughout our Upstate community. The UNN propagates and grows around 3,500 plants each year, many of which are not available elsewhere.
The Society conduct two sales ‘events’ each year; one at the beginning of the Spring sowing season (April), and another at the beginning of the Fall sowing season (September-October). At other times of the year, the Nursery is open by appointment only. Email [email protected] if you’re interested in coming by to buy plants or just for a tour, and the Greenhouse/Nursery volunteers will do their very best to accommodate you.
That being said, the UNN (and the SCNPS write large) is an all-volunteer organization, and we rely upon the goodwill and energy of our members and volunteers to help make all the Nursery magic happen. Here are just a few of the ways they make it all work:
THE GREENHOUSE GANG This group of tireless volunteers, led by UNN Manager Cathy McCurdy, propagates seeds, nurtures cuttings, divides and up-pots plants year-round, and makes sure the plants have optimal growing conditions. (Want to help? Contact Cathy McCurdy and she’ll hook you up!)
PLANT SALE CREW Twice a year Sales Chair Kathy Harrington assembles these volunteers (150 of them, at last count!) to staff the Spring and Fall Plant sales. Why do these volunteers come back, plant sale after plant sale, year after year? Are they just gluttons for punishment? NO! Plant sale volunteers get to shop each sale early, getting the pick of the litter (to mix fauna with flora). Contact Kathy Harrington to learn more!
OUR GROWERS The Nursery can’t do it all alone, and many of our members (Diane Creaton, Jon Fritz, Susan Lochridge, Judy Seeley, and Tom Simpson — we’re looking at YOU!) grow plants by the hundreds for us at their own homes or nurseries. The Society also supplements its sales with native plants purchased from local “Mom ‘n’ Pop” retail growers.
SEED BANKERS This group shares insights on when, where, and how to collect true native South Carolina seeds, as well as how to clean and store them. These folks are building a storehouse of seeds (called the “Seed Bank”) and a database of knowledge on how to propagate them. (This is a project-in-progress. Stay tuned as we update this page!)
HOW TO GET TO THE UPSTATE NATIVE NURSERY
From I-85, get off at Mauldin Road, exit 46C (exit for Augusta Rd/ Pleasantburg Dr./ Mauldin Rd.) Go south on Mauldin Rd. for 3.0 miles. Once you pass Conestee Park Sports Complex and Conestee Lake Road on the right, look for Lakewood Dr. (a small street heading off to the right). Turn right on Lakewood and go 0.4 miles, crossing Conestee Road. Continue to 180 on the right. (The mail box numbering jumps a little and is not easy to see. The Putnams have dual mail boxes with a “South Carolina Native Plant Society Greenhouse-Nursery” sign.) As you turn into 180, there are two driveways on either side of a pond. Take the right-hand paved lane around the pond and park adjacent to the first home on the left.