San Juan Island Garden Club celebrates 75 years

Posted May 14, 2022 at 4:23 pm by

The Gar­den Club sends along an update about their activ­i­ties and their 75-year anniversary.

The San Juan Island Gar­den Club was estab­lished in 1947 – 75 years ago – to pro­mote beau­ty and gar­den­ing inter­est in the islands.

Over the decades the Club has cared for the Eng­lish Gar­den at Eng­lish Camp, bought and installed the plants at the Cir­cle Gar­den, and fur­nished the land­scape plants at the island’s first med­ical cen­ter. Recent­ly they donat­ed 400 daf­fodils to the new ani­mal shel­ter. Every year since 1982 the Club has mon­e­tar­i­ly sup­port­ed the pur­chase and main­te­nance of the hang­ing bas­kets which fes­toon the Fri­day Har­bor down­town area dur­ing the summer.

The month­ly meet­ings are the first Tues­day of the month at 1 p.m. at the Mullis Cen­ter, Sep­tem­ber through Decem­ber and Feb­ru­ary through June. Cof­fee, tea and vis­it­ing time pre­cede the get-down-to-busi­ness meet­ing, fol­lowed by speak­ers on hor­ti­cul­tur­al top­ics. Zoom meet­ings have kept the mem­bers con­nect­ed dur­ing the past cou­ple of years.

The Club has offered fall bulb class­es and a spring ses­sion on hang­ing bas­kets. Off-island tours to the Ama­zon Spheres in Seat­tle, Chi­hu­ly Glass and Gar­den at the Seat­tle Cen­ter, and the Dahlia show in Belling­ham have been offered as part of the con­tin­u­ing edu­ca­tion. Decem­ber often fea­tures a trip to Molbak’s Nurs­ery in Wood­inville just for the fun of it. An excur­sion to the North­west Flower and Gar­den Fes­ti­val offers new ideas, infor­ma­tive lec­tures, and hope for spring. The guest speak­er vis­it of Cis­coe Mor­ris, in 2019 was host­ed by the Gar­den Club. The event was both edu­ca­tion­al and a great deal of fun.

The Children’s Veg­etable Gar­den at the back of the ele­men­tary school is fund­ed and staffed by the Club. Every grade from kinder­garten through fifth grade has a grow­ing project, start­ing with a fairy gar­den for the lit­tle ones and a pol­li­na­tor gar­den for the big kids. Beds of radish, sal­ad greens, onions and spinach are plant­ed for the com­mu­nal sal­ad bar at the end of the school year. In sum­mer, we water and har­vest the pro­duce for the Food Bank.

Look for the San Juan Island Gar­den Club ban­ner at the Coun­ty Fair in August. The Club, with much help from the island gar­den­ing com­mu­ni­ty, super­vis­es the Flower Hall from set up to clean up each year.

As the Gar­den Club mem­bers emerge from the COVID restric­tions of the past cou­ple of years they are look­ing for ways they can con­tin­ue serv­ing the islands and renew the empha­sis on edu­ca­tion. The goal is to share our activ­i­ties with both the plunk and plant gar­den­ers as well as the very expe­ri­enced gar­den­ers who some­times use Latin plant names.

And please remem­ber – every­one is always wel­come at Gar­den Club events.

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