'A Way We Grow'
Martha's Vineyard Garden Club
October 2023
From our President...
This summer season was one of weather sieges rather than individually varied days. Long dry spells, weeks of heat, humidity, and mosquitos, and ending with a back-to-back tropical storm and northeaster. An exhausting season!

As summer gardening lost its appeal, John Forti offered a new, less transactional perspective on our gardening heritage, Nancy Cabot delighted us with a fall floral design challenge and Nancy Weaver offered us one last chance to share some of our overgrown plants.

We’re in the season of new beginnings. The greenhouse committee has reconvened for their long winter’s work, we’ll learn how to force bulbs at our October meeting, visit a cranberry bog before Thanksgiving, and make holiday wreaths early in December, which is a teaser for future floral design projects.

I’m very impressed by and proud of the spectacular array of experiences the Garden Club continues to offer this year, and the contributions, knowledge, and energy of Garden Club members.
- Susan Hobart, President
A Contribution from Joan Eville, our Windemere Representative:
On September 20th Joan Eville and Gay Smith supervised our monthly flower arranging project at Windemere Nursing Rehabilitation Facility. Residents ranging in age from 85 to 103 participated. Nancy Cabot led an art activity designing collages of cornucopias. The participants thoroughly enjoyed both of these activities. Pictures of them happily engaged in their projects are on our website. The MV Garden Club appreciates the generosity of Donaroma Nursery for their support by supplying the flowers each month.

The Fall MVGC Plant Swap was organized by Nancy Weaver and took place on Tuesday, September 26 in the Old Mill parking lot!

To use Nancy's words, "A good time at the swap - Short, sweet and plant-y!!!

16 MV Garden Club members brought their knowledge and some plants to share! Here are a few pics from the Plant Swap!

Thanks to Nancy, for organizing!
From Jayne Isford...Some BIG NEWS For the MV Garden Club!

New Committee on Floral Design for our Club! Come Join Us!

We are delighted to announce the creation of a Floral Design Committee for our
club. Our objective will be to expand floral design workshops and opportunities
for our members throughout the year in addition to what we currently provide specifically for Blooming Art designers. All members are welcome to join, and we appreciate your input and suggestions!

Our first event will be a Holiday Wreath Decorating Workshop on Saturday,
December 2 nd at Wakeman.

In addition, we will be asking for a member to volunteer and bring a Floral Arrangement to our membership meetings starting in October.
We will continue this throughout 2024 at our meetings, along with some
Challenge competitions like the one that Nancy Cabot oversaw in September.

In 2024, we will start the new year with some informal social gatherings hosted by
an experienced designer who will talk about and demonstrate how they approach
doing a floral arrangement.

We also plan to hold additional Floral Design panels and workshops throughout
2024 and will assist the Anniversary Celebration Committee with any floral design
assistance that they may need. Please join our committee—there is a seat at our
Floral Design table for all of you.

Jayne Isford—Co-Chair

Nancy Cabot—Co-Chair
DON'T MISS the articles below. If they appear chopped off, just follow the instructions in the lower left hand corner of this email and click on the link that says "View entire message."
A HUGE Thank You to
John Forti
for inspiring us with his talk,
Heirloom Gardening with Traditional Plants and Skills

What a thrill to have John speak to the Club at our September meeting! His engaging personality and passion for heirloom gardens remind us to pass on the best of our plant and gardening knowledge to future generations. He shared 'old time' practices and had us reflect on what brought each of us to love nature, gardening and working in the outdoors as we do. His talk became very personal to me and being able to take home a copy of John's book as a keepsake of the day was a real bonus!

There could not have been a better introduction to September's program than Nancy Cabot's 'Summer's Over' Floral Design Challenge! There were somewhere around 20 floral arrangements that members brought to be judged and wow... it was super hard to pick a favorite!
Some of the dazzling arrangements!
Nancy Cabot holds up the winning arrangement...and Sarah Lolley was the lucky winner! Each member who attended gave their favorite arrangement a star...and Sarah's design earned the most stars!
John chats with Garden Club Member, Susan and his old friend, Heidi of
Vineyard Sound Herbs!
What a small world...found out that John and Deb, a GC Member grew up in the exact same town in Massachusetts!
Membership peeps Susie and Sarah along with Deb, Greenhouse Committee Member.
All in all, it was a wonderful meeting that was
jam-packed with great information, creative inspiration, sincere appreciation and a feeling of excitement for the Autumn Season!

It was wonderful to have 10 non member/guests, attend, and a few folks who joined the Club at the September meeting. For me personally, it was a real thrill to host John for the week in our home...I have been following him on Facebook for years and really love his whole approach to gardening and all things 'heirloom'. For those who did not attend the meeting or want to purchase John's book, there is a link to purchasing via Amazon under the Resources tab / Reference Info on our website or click the direct link here.

-Donna Arold, Programs 2022/2023
Thanks to the West Tisbury Members for the yummy array of savories, sweets and refreshments!
Anda and Joan posing with their beautiful floral arrangements after the meeting.


Eileen Lauinger - OB

Caroline Lucas - OB

Chyrisse McElroy - VH

Mac McElroy - VH

Adrianne Ryan - C

The MVGC Education/Programs Committee is changing hands with the beginning in 2024. Kathie Skinner will take over as committee chair from Donna Arold with the assistance of Kathy Werber, both of West Tisbury. Fawn Hurwitz and Angela Egerton both of Edgartown have volunteered to help with the planning.

In the spirit of “the more hands, the less work for each, but more productive for all,” if you are
interested in joining the committee, please email Kathie at kjskin@comcast.net. Our meetings will be held on Zoom at a time and day convenient for all.

In the November newsletter, there will be a link to an MVGC Education Survey to gauge member interest in various program topics and formats. Possible lecture topics may include landscape design, garden maintenance, mixed border plant selection, types of gardens, and gardening problems. Potential hands-on workshops for smaller groups will include floral arranging, propagation techniques, pruning, creating stepping stones or hypertufas.

When you receive the November newsletter, please click on the link and complete it – it will take less than 10 minutes. Your responses will help the committee in planning the 2024 club programs. -From 2024/2025 Programs Chair, Kathie Skinner
An E-Mail sent to news@mvgardenclub on 9/20/23:

Thanks for a terrific meeting this week and wonderful refreshments. The floral arrangements were wonderful. The arrangements led me to take a walk contemplating plants I would use.
During the meeting my 18/year old granddaughter who up is taking biology at Reed College texted me with a link to an article from
nim.nih.gov titled Plant blindness and the implications for plant conservation.
I wanted to share it with the club because it follows the theme of the talk.
Thanks again. Betty Surbeck

For those who may be interested, here is the direct link to the article Betty speaks of: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/27109445/
The ultimate in Floral Design...so I was walking the dog in Edgartown and happened upon this in the morning on Saturday, 30 September! Blew my mind and I just had to share! Absolutely magical! -Donna Arold, Communications
Our Next Meeting is Tuesday, October 17
Speaker: Lifetime Master Gardener, Kathi Gariepy
Program Title: ‘Forcing Bulbs’
Refreshments/Social Time @ 12:30
​Meeting/Program begins @ 1:00pm at The Wakeman Center located
in Vineyard Haven / Program Room

Forcing bulbs is easy and fun. In the depths of the New England winter we all long for a little color and sunshine. Forcing bulbs in autumn can bring fragrance, color, and joy to the holiday season. Forcing spring bulbs lets us enjoy the beauty and fragrance of spring a few weeks early and helps to make the last weeks of winter bearable. Learn about the history of bulbs, which bulbs are best for forcing, and how and why they are able to be forced.
...and on the heels of this upcoming meeting...buy bulbs (PLUS plants, perennials, gardening books and tools!) and support the MVGC at the same time!  Your order via Brent and Becky's will earn the MV Garden Club 25% of your purchase! Visit www.bloominbucks.com, and select our Club's registered name (which is Martha's Vineyard Garden Club, Inc.) and then begin your shopping. The items you choose will be sent directly to you and our Club will receive 25% of your total purchase. Its really that easy!
Huge thanks go to Joan Cavazuti (joancavazuti@yahoo.com) and Trudy Williams (trudyw906@comcast.net) for setting this up!

For more info on this program and the speaker CLICK HERE and scroll down!

Since our 'traditional' meeting/program would have fallen on the Tuesday of 'Thanksgiving week', the Board made a decision to have the field trip to the Cranberry Bog act as the November meeting, meeting place is The Wakeman Center, Program Room.

For details, please refer to the Programs page of our website. Additional info will follow in the next newsletter, on the website and at our October meeting. Stay tuned!
Our FINAL 4 O'clock Friday
at The Old Mill for 2023!

The weather really DID NOT cooperate...we were hoping for sunny conditions so attendees could enjoy the outdoors and the beauty of the Old Mill side yard that members spent time cleaning up last Thursday...but Mother Nature had other ideas! :-(

Despite the weather, we had a nice turnout with libations and sweet and savory snacks provided by the members! We all conversed and it was great to meet one 'guest', invited by a Club member who plans to join in 2024. All in all, the evening was a nice one even tho the rain soggied the grounds! Thanks to everyone who braved the rain and helped to make it a worthwhile get-together! -Donna Arold, Communications
If you're interested in becoming a part of the Conservation Committee, please reach out to MVGC President, Susan Hobart! This is a newly formed Committee that needs some dedicated members to create and participate in conservation initiatives on behalf of our Club.
Join The MV Garden Club OR Give the Gift of a MVGC Membership!

If you enjoy this newsletter and are interested in learning more about gardening, do consider joining the Martha's Vineyard Garden Club!
Our Club hosts informative garden and conservation related programs each month along with interactive workshops, member hosted 'Garden Walkabouts', and social events year-round! There are committee opportunities available if there is something you are particularly interested in being a part of. We are always happy to welcome new members! DO click on this link to join!

On Saturday, October 7, 10 AM- noon, join Polly Hill's executive director Tim Boland for The American Oaks: Diversity, Ecology, and Identification
—a lecture and tour of the PHA herbarium and living collections to understand the diversity of oaks throughout New England and North America. Time will also share his work saving oaks from extinction around the world.