Get Adobe Flash player


Farmers' Market underway for the season


By Darla Huffman, Farmers’ Market P.R.

Butterfly gardens will be the topic of the week at the Jasper Farmers’ Market’s Master Gardeners Information Tent this Saturday, April 2, with a focus on creating a butterfly garden for your yard. There will be volunteers to answer your questions and “how to” information to take home. For the children, there will be butterfly pictures to color and caterpillars to make while learning about the life cycle of these winged creatures.

If you have ever wondered who are these people arrogant enough to call themselves Master Gardeners, here is definition: “The Master Gardener Program in Georgia is a volunteer training program designed to help Extension agents transfer research-based information about gardening and related subjects to the public by training home gardeners.”

Educating the public is what Master Gardeners are all about.  As sponsors of the Jasper Farmers’ Market, they bring information on farming and gardening into the community with our Educational Opportunities during the Market season. Stop by the Master Gardener Tent this week with your questions.

The Jasper Farmers’ Market is held every Saturday morning from April through October and Wednesday mornings, June 15 to August 31, from 7:30 a.m. to noon, except for the 4th of July Celebration and the Marble Festival. The location is the Park & Ride lot beside Lee Newton Park on Highway 53 near downtown Jasper.

Only handmade and homegrown items can be sold at the Market; see the Master Gardeners Web site for complete rules. The Farmers’ Market is a project of Pickens County Master Gardeners ( and the County Extension Office (706-253- 8840). Please contact either for more information.

Overdue depot project back on track at Tate

By Jeff Warren, staff writer

A long-awaited happening, relocation of the Tate railroad depot for renovation and preservation on county land at Tate south of State Highway 53 may soon be back on track after long delays. County leaders, Georgia Department of Transportation officials and Howard Bach of transportation consultants Moreland Altobelli met Friday afternoon, March 18, at the County Admin Building to begin ironing out details preliminary to the depot move.

Bach serves as go-between, connecting grant recipient Pickens County to Georgia DOT, which has awarded two transportation enhancement grants totaling $800,000 for the depot project. The money is federal, administered through the state transportation department and comes with many requirements that must be met before the money can be received.

Forest Fire Under Control in Marble Hill

Ga. Forestry crews burn areas along Highway 53 in Marble Hill to prevent the spread of a wildland fire that has consumed 780 acres since Tuesday. Seth Pierce with the Ga. Forestry Commission said Friday afternoon that the forest fire was 80 percent contained and under control. He said by nightfall Friday they would have it completely controlled, but the area may still continue to smoke. Pierce said they had established lines around the perimeter and burned some areas ahead of the fire. They will continue monitoring it.

Only one house has been threatened with no other homes in the area.

The fire began Tuesday and was thought to be mostly out Wednesday afternoon, but strong winds in the storm that night brought it back to life. No structures have been damaged.

Ga. gas prices 80 cents a gallon higher than last year on same day

Georgia, March 28- Average retail gasoline prices in Georgia have risen 3.7 cents per gallon in the past week, averaging $3.46/g yesterday. This compares with the national average that has increased 3.4 cents per gallon in the last week to $3.56/g, according to gasoline price website

Including the change in gas prices in Georgia during the past week, prices yesterday were 79.1 cents per gallon higher than the same day one year ago and are 15.9 cents per gallon higher than a month ago. The national average has increased 21.5 cents per gallon during the last month and stands 76.5 cents per gallon higher than this day one year ago.


GasBuddy operates,, and over 225 other local gasoline price-tracking websites that follow prices at over 125,000 gasoline stations in the United States and Canada. GasBuddy also uses Facebook ( Twitter (, and phone apps to keep motorists ahead of changing gasoline prices. was named one of Time magazine's 50 best websites and to PC World's 100 most useful websites of 2008.

Trout streams now open


 It is time for pre-season trout stocking and the Georgia Department of Natural

Resources’ Wildlife Resources Division and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service plan to stock

more than one million trout in Georgia streams, rivers and small lakes
by the end of the year. Many streams will be stocked by the end of the
month and in time for opening day for seasonal trout stream fishing -
Sat., March 26th.

“Our goal is to replenish all of our stocked streams before the end
of the month,” says Perry Thompson, trout stocking coordinator for the
Wildlife Resources Division. “Since stream flows are up, we’ll have
an opportunity to spread our fish out well. Flow can drop quickly
though, and we’ll manage accordingly.”

Anglers anxious to fish the seasonal trout streams can do so beginning
Sat., Mar. 26th. Some popular seasonal streams include Cooper Creek in
Union County, Wildcat Creek in Rabun County, Dicks Creek in Lumpkin
County and Johns Creek in Floyd County.

“If you want to fish for trout before opening day, visit one of the
state’s many year-round trout streams,” says Thompson.

In north Georgia, Rock Creek in Fannin County, Tallulah River in Rabun
County or Holly Creek in Murray County are recommended, while the
Chattahoochee River at Buford Dam Park and Jones Bridge are excellent
nearby destinations for metro Atlanta anglers.

“These sites are well-stocked and provide great angling experiences
for someone new to the sport,” explains Thompson.

Anglers must possess both a current Georgia fishing license and a trout
license to fish in designated trout waters and to fish for or possess
trout. Licenses can be purchased online and at various local sporting
good dealers. The daily limit is eight trout on general regulation trout
waters. Anglers are reminded to respect private property rights along
streams flowing through private lands and to obtain permission before
fishing on private property.  Buy a license online
(, by phone (1-800-366-2661) or at a retail
license vendor (list of vendors available at website).

For those seeking additional county-specific trout fishing information,
visit where current Georgia Sport Fishing
Regulations, a complete list of stocked streams, a Northeast Georgia
fishing guide, and the award-winning Trout Streams of Georgia map are
available. Printed copies of the regulations and trout stream map are
available at all Wildlife Resources Division Fisheries Management
offices and at some official fishing license dealers.