January Program
NC Land Trust: Past & Future 
January 6th
9:30 am
read more ...
Annual Appeal
Appeal Bag Pick Up
January 6th
Following program presentation
read more ...
NCBL Board Meeting
January 20th
9:30 am
Waveny House
Victorian Tea
February 3rd
11:30 am - 2:00 pm
Waveny House

A Letter From Our Presidents

Happy New Year!

In December we made holiday magic in town using our bows, wreaths and greenery.  Our volunteers, led by Sharon Johnson and Liz Orteig in a joint effort with the Garden Club of New Canaan, decorated the wreaths at the Annual Holiday Greens Workshop.  Two of the larger wreaths were put up at Town Hall, two at the Nature Center, and the remaining four large wreaths were hung at the Library, the Police Station, the Outback, and the Railroad Station.  Twenty eight smaller wreaths adorn the Police Station, Waveny House, School House Apartments, Lapham Community Center, Vine Cottage, Irwin Park, the Railroad Station, the Parking Commission, and the EMT building.  In addition, our members decorated the bandstand at God's Acre and wooden picket fence at the end of the train station.

Bianca Romano enthusiastically jumped in, and made a thick, beautiful wreath and then made  three arrangements for the First Selectman's office, Town Hall, and Public Works.  She also recruited volunteers for the December flower arrangements for Waveny Care Center dining room.
We prepared for a beautiful spring by planting bulbs at Town Hall, Center Bell, and the courtyard at New Canaan High School.  Chris Schipper of Colorblends Wholesale Bulb Co. donated over 1200 bulbs.  We joined forces with the New Canaan High School PFA in their landscape renewal of their front entry garden and courtyard areas.  With historical input from Peggy Dannemann and Faith Kerchoff, and guidance from master gardener and NCHS mom Leslie Kammerer, the newly formed NCHS Beautification Committee is restoring beauty and order to NCHS.
We are excited to have Chris Schipper, president of the New Canaan Land Trust and our generous bulb donor, as our program speaker on January 6th.   We will kick off our Annual Appeal this day also.   Annual Appeal Chairmen Angie Brenninkmeyer and Karen Hanson will distribute bags of envelopes and letters to the League as we start working on the 2016 appeal, for mailing on March 1st.  This is a big and important job.  Let's all make it easier on Karen and Angie!

The NCBL is a service organization with a goal of beautifying New Canaan.  With the help of hard working and dedicated volunteers, generous donations from the people of New Canaan through our Annual Appeal, and the support of our Public Works Department, we have been very successful.   

"The service you do for others in the rent you pay for your room here on Earth." -
Muhammad Ali

Have a Happy and Healthy New Year,

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Wednesday January 6th 2016 
9:30 am Social
10:00 am Presentation
New Canaan Nature Center

New Canaan Land Trust Header
Chris Schipper Land Trust  
Please join us on Wednesday, January 6th, 2016 for "New Canaan Land Trust: Past & Future" presented by Chris Schipper, President of the New Canaan Land Trust. 

Since he joined the Board of the Land Trust in 2012, Mr. Schipper has worked tirelessly to support the mission of preserving open space, wildlife sanctuaries and the scenic beauty of New Canaan.  The Land Trust was awarded "Organization of the Year" by the New Canaan Advertiser in 2013 and is currently one of the largest property holders in New Canaan.  The non-profit organization protects and cares for 367 acres of diverse woodlands, meadows, orchards and wetland marshes: 261 acres outright ownership, 50 acres under conservation easements and 56 acres formerly held by the New Canaan Audubon Society. 

Come hear about the important activities of the Land Trust such as The Stewardship Program for youth as Mr. Schipper raises our awareness of the vision of this special community resource.

New Canaan Land Trust logo
You can visit the New Canaan Land Trust website HERE.
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Annual Appeal Header
Many thanks to everyone who helped us make the 2015 Annual Appeal so successful!

On January 6th we will start working on the 2016 appeal, for mailing on March 1st.

We are encouraging everyone to address envelopes again this January.  You will be able to pick them up at the Wednesday, January 6th NCBL Program at the Nature Center. The "appeal bags" contain a list of addresses, cover letters, bookmarks, remittance envelopes, and envelopes to address.  Handwriting the envelope makes a difference in personalizing the mailing.  Again, we are NOT allowed to write a personal note of any kind on the letter this year (per post office bulk mail requirements).  

Thanks for your support of this important fund raising campaign.
 "Many hands make light work".

Looking forward to seeing you in January!  

Enjoy the season!

Angie Brenninkmeyer
Karen Hanson
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Watch your inbox ... your invitation is coming soon!

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Wonderful wreaths were made last month with the NC Garden Club at our Greens Workshop.  See our President's Letter to read of all the places you'll find the wreaths this season.

Libby Butterworth and Bianca Romano get "framed"! 
Yvonne Hunkeler, Eileen Boehme, and Susan Weatherly at work.
Kathy DeMarco, Sara Hunt, Liz Orteig, Tracy Phillips, and Carol Seldin decorated the bandstand at God's Acre about a week later. 

Find all of the photos from the
Holiday Greens Workshop
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Shirley and Susan
Coordinators Susan and Shirley with Shirley's beautiful arrangement.
Flower Arranging 101 Workshop

To see our photos from this wonderful event click HERE.

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Balmy Bulb Planting
On a 58 degree day (in December!) we planted bulbs in the  NCHS interior courtyard off the cafeteria. The bulbs were part of a donation from Chris Schipper (our program speaker this month) and his Colorblends Wholesale Bulb Company.

NCBL voluteers at NCHS

Left to right: Kathy Lapolla,Kristen O'Connor, Tracy Phillips, Peggy Dannemann, Faith Kerchoff, and Bianca Romano. Taking the photo was Yvonne Hunkeler.

Refurbished and Beautiful

NCHS garden
The front entrance garden at NCHS. 

Peggy Dannemann, Kathy Lapolla, Tracy Phillips, Faith and Sara met with the high school PFA to review the history, design and care of the NCHS front entrance garden, planted by NCBL in 2002. It has been refurbished with the help of Justin Defelice Landscaping. The PFA has started a Beautification Committee at the high school and has more plans for making the grounds more attractive.

NCBL was thanked for their help and service to the NCHS gardens by Principal Bill Egan:

Hi Faith,

I wanted to thank you, the Beautification League and all of the people that came out to plant bulbs today. They will be a wonderful addition to our courtyard and I thank all of you so much for taking the time to plant them.

I came down to see you, but everyone was finished. Thank you again!


Bill Egan
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Waveny Arrangement
Waveny Flower Arranging

These flower arrangements were made by Bianca Romano and Liz Mallozzi for the Waveny dining room for the week of December 7th. 
Our next Waveny Flower Arranging month is June 2016, so you have plenty of time to dream and plan!   Contact Bianca Romano to volunteer. 
Waveny Arrangement
Waveny Arrangement

On a following week, the same containers were used by Judy Gilroy to make her festive arrangements:

Judy Gilroy December arrangement

Waveny Flower Arrangement Guidelines can be found HERE .
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Around Town 
With our unusually warm temperatures, some garden plants are blooming in December.  This hellebores from Faith Kerchoff's garden bloomed this December and normally blooms late February or early March.

Hellebores in December
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Did You Know That image

Did you know that lichens consist of multiple organisms? 
The organisms are symbiotic, depending on each other for survival.  The dominant organism is a fungus, and the other organisms in the relationship are algae and/or cyanobacteria. 

lichen covered branch

When flowers fade and our leaves have fallen, color can still be found in our landscape in the form of lichen.  Most lichens grow very, very slowly, often less than a millimeter per year and some are thought to be among the oldest living things on Earth.  Throughout history lichens have been used as dyes, food, medicines, and more.  Lichens can also have deleterious effects as some are poisonous and some have hastened deterioration of artwork in Europe.

Go for a walk and you will see lichen on rocks, trees, and buildings in our cities, suburbs, and woodlands.  There is a magnificent grouping of distinctive lichen covered rocks in the boulder drifts at our own Lee Memorial Garden. 
lichen covered rock
You can find out more about lichens online here:

New Hampshire Garden Solutions (a gardener's personal blog with lovely photos)

Lichen.com (a informative website dedicated to lichens) 
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Area Happenings

The New York Botanical Garden Train Show is happening now through January 18th.  This year is the largest yet, with 3,000 square feet of additional space added including a multisensory finale of light and sound.  Landmarks are recreated with natural materials and much of the display is at a height perfect for little ones in the family.

NYBG Train Show NYBG Train Show
To find out more about the NYBG Train Show click here. 
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Tiny Garden