On Monday morning, dozens of people gathered near the entrance of Jackson County Park to attend a dedication of the Vernon Bush Nature Trail and Gardens. Bush served the park for 24 years and this trail, while it may look natural to some, was mostly grown by Bush.
“Vernon’s interest and love of propagating plants benefited both the Huntsville Botanical Gardens and Green House and our Jackson County Park. Vernon was a tireless volunteer, logging thousands of hours. He spent most Wednesdays at our park and the fruits of his labor surround us today,” Vice President of the Jackson County Master Gardeners Association Tom Gallagher said.
During the dedication, a wide variety of people stood to speak on Bush and his work on the trail. From fellow gardeners, co-workers, Vernon’s son, Keith Bush, many stood to speak about Bush’s passion for gardening.
“I can honestly say I learned as much or more, especially about native azaleas, from a rocket scientist,” former Vice President of Horticulture and Education at the Huntsville Botanical Gardens Harvey Cotton said. “[Winston] Churchill said you make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give. Vernon gave us all a great gift, we’re all better people for knowing him, we’re all fortunate to have a living legacy to his memory surrounding us both here and at the [Huntsville Botanical Garden]. I know that each time I know that each time I will see a native Azalea in bloom, I’ll pause, smile and remember the extraordinary life of my friend Vernon.”