'A Way We Grow'
Martha's Vineyard Garden Club
January 2024
From our President...

I am so happy and proud to be starting my term as President of the Martha's Vineyard Garden Club. I know I have some enormous shoes to fill, as Susan Hobart was a wonderful, passionate leader and an exceptional organizer. Her role now is “Past President”, and I'm sure I'll tap into her knowledge a lot. Besides her, of course, I have an amazing board, full of smart, energetic people who each bring a unique and heartfelt presence to my side. Thank heavens, because truly, it “takes a village to grow a Club!”

A little about myself. I am a retired Montessori teacher, and I've taught all ages from 3 year olds all the way up to 8th graders in that method. My husband, Bob, and I have had a small guest cottage in West Tisbury since 1996, but moved to the Vineyard full-time in 2014. I've had a passion for gardening for decades, and even used to be the President of the Sharon Garden Club for several years when I lived there. I have 3 grown children and 4 grandchildren. I enjoy walking with my dog and husband, gardening, yoga, reading, and doing puzzles. I really enjoy working with the women and men I've met in the Garden Club!

My vision for the year is enormous. The biggest picture I have before me is our club's 100th Anniversary Celebration, which will take the form of several big and small events scattered throughout the year. One of the biggest, and one that has already taken countless hours, is the creation of a timeline of our past. One hundred years is a lot to cover, to be sure, and so much happened throughout them. Hopefully the result of all the archival digging and writing will be a document and visual timeline that will make all of you proud! Stay tuned!

Other projects include the continuing work on the Old Mill, our community outreach work with Windemere and the Scholarship committee, our new Conservation committee's efforts, our fabulous Greenhouse, Blooming Art, Floral Design, and another Edgartown Stroll! Communications, Membership, and the town Vice Presidents are also part of this stellar team. So as you can see, all the willing, eager people around me who have volunteered to help with each of these activities are essential. Thank you to them all. -Ty Johnston, President
Update from Floral Design for 2024!

Your Floral Design team is busy planning for you for 2024. We had an incredibly successful Holiday Wreath Decorating Workshop on December 2 nd and thank everyone who enthusiastically participated. And if you have not yet seen Nancy Cabot’s beautiful wreath on the
outside of the Old Mill, please do so!

Our next event will be Nancy’s Challenge in late January at Wakeman. Nancy is in the process of selecting an art piece, ideally one that
members on island can go and see in person. We will also send photos of the art piece to any member off island who would like to participate. Details to follow in early January. Participating members will bring their floral design interpretation to Wakeman, and off island members will provide a photo of their design to be displayed. Light lunch will be provided for everyone attending!

We will also hold a Valentine’s Day workshop on February 10 th at Wakeman. More information on this in the new year.

Finally, it is never too soon to start thinking about Blooming Art 2024. Debbie Barrett and Jayne Isford have begun planning the floral design component for Blooming Art 2024.

Happy Holidays to everyone. We are grateful for your support of floral design for our Club. - Jayne Isford and Nancy Cabot
Our First Meeting/Program of the Club's Centennial Year is:

Tuesday, January 16, 2024  
Begins @ 1:00pm at The Wakeman Center located in
Vineyard Haven / Program Room
 Refreshments / Social Time @ 12:30 
The Program Is :
A moderated discussion about the 100th MV Garden Club
and programs for the year.

Tentative Topics for Celebrating Our Centennial Year: 

• Our History
• Our Commitment to Community
• Our Commitment to Horticulture
• Our Commitment to Conservation
• Looking to the Future

FREE to MVGC Members / Open to non-members @ $10.00 pp
Oak Bluffs members and VP to provide snacks & refreshments
Its the MV Garden Club's Centennial Year!
How exciting is that?
Be sure to renew your membership so you don't miss out on any of our
upcoming Garden Club events!

If you are not already a MV Garden Club member, DO consider joining the Club so you can share in all that we have planned!
Some news from Communications!

If you haven't visited the MV Garden Club website in awhile, this would be a great time to do so! Our upcoming 2024 Programs & Events (Under the MEETINGS/EVENTS/WORKSHOPS dropdown) are now on the website and there will be updates made as future plans are solidified.

The new Leadership for 2024 is on the website, along with info about our Committees. (Both under the 'ABOUT US' dropdown)

There are new web pages for Conservation (Under the CONSERVATION INFORMATION dropdown) and Floral Design (Under the 'ABOUT US' dropdown) as well as a new page for The Club's Centennial Year (Under the 'ABOUT US' dropdown), where we will share interesting information related to our Club's history and our dedication to the Island's beauty and conservation through the Club's 100 years.

Under the Resources dropdown, there is Gardening Resources -1 and Gardening Resources-2 where you can find information from past programs, information related to pruning, soil health and info garnered from the climate action fair in 2023. There are also recommended online classes, interesting garden and nature related videos, garden blogs, and relevant websites shared by Garden Club members. Do take a little time to check out some of the recommended info throughout the Winter. We'll all be looking for a little garden inspiration in the dreary days to come! - Donna Arold, Communications
From Laurisa Rich and Kate Putnam, Conservation Committee Co-Chairs!

Vineyard Conservation Society (VCS)  
Beach BeFrienders Cleanup @ Lobsterville Beach. Cleanup is January 1st, 1-3 pm at Lobsterville Beach in Aquinnah. Volunteers will be posted at both ends with bags and gloves, and free ice cream tokens for the kids !

Winter Walk Squibnocket Ridge | Saturday January 13th, 10am-12pm Registration required:

Sheriff’s Meadow Foundation - First Day Hike at Cedar Tree Neck | Mon, January 1st, 9–12pm: Join Director of Stewardship, Kristen Geagana for a special 3-hour, 5-mile hike at Cedar Tree Neck Sanctuary.
Registration required: call 508-693-5207 or email hall@sheriffsmeadow.org

Trustee’s Of Reservations, First Day Hike At Menemsha Hills | Monday, January 1st, 3-5pm Registration And Fee Required:Https://Thetrustees.Org/Event/408185/
Hike to the Brickyard | Saturday, January 6th, 9-11:30 am| Registration And Fee Required: Https://Thetrustees.Org/Event/408434/

Start off the New Year with renewed energy! Discussion and action are encouraged to combat climate change. Join in at the Oak Bluffs Public Library on Saturday January 6, 2024, 1:30pm as Nina Hitchen, local waste reduction superstar speaks on her family's journey to reduce using plastic and create less waste. What she and her family have accomplished is a true inspiration, demonstrating that we all can make a difference, individually and collectively.
Nina's journey to “life without plastic” began when she was pregnant with her now 12-year-old twins. Concerned about the health effects on her growing family, Nina decided to rid her kitchen of plastic, then was inspired to try to quit plastic altogether. Along the way, Nina learned about the Zero Waste movement and the facts of plastic pollution. She has successfully traded disposables for reusables and shows us how to grocery shop plastic-free on MV. In sharing what she's learned, Nina helps each of us take another step on our own plastic-free journey. No registration is necessary, walk-ins are welcome.
Upcoming Climate Change Discussions at the Oak Bluffs Library:
March 2 - 1:30pm  Emergency Preparedness at Home -- Russ Hartenstine, WT EMD
May 4 - 1:30pm  Going Solar -- Vineyard Power & the Solar Coach -- Luke Lefeber

At The Polly Hill Arboretum -
Winter Walk | Saturday January 13th, 10-11am | $5; Free for members | Registration is required. Please register here:https://bit.ly/WinterWalkPHA
In every season the Arboretum offers something of beauty and interest to visitors. At this time of year plants display unique foliage colors, textures, cones, and berries. This walk will be led by Executive Director Tim Boland and Education Coordinator Jenna Zier, and will highlight PHA's significant holly collection. Please meet at the Visitor Center.

Forest Bathing | Tuesday January 9th AND January 23rd at 9-10am | $15; $10 for members | Registration is required. Please register here: https://bit.ly/forest-bathing-2023  
Enjoy an easy, mindful walk through beautiful Arboretum trees in a peaceful winter setting. This walk is led by Shanta Gabriel, who has worked in the field of alternative health for 40 years and has been leading groups in nature for over a decade. Please meet at the Visitor Center.

Special Tour to Celebrate Polly's Birthday | January 30th - 10-11am | $5; free for Members | Join Arboretum docent Nancy Weaver for a special tour to celebrate Polly Hill’s birthday. In memory of Polly Hill and her love of plants, Nancy will tell stories of Polly and highlight some of her favorite places around the Arboretum.

If you need help finding the right plant for your landscape and site conditions, visit Polly Hill Arboretum's web-based searchable plant selection guide. Searches are based on site conditions, native region, plant type and plant characteristics. Each category has more detailed options, allowing your search to narrow down plant options for each location. CLICK HERE to access the plant selection guide.
For more information about these events, reach out to the group listed. To submit content, email the MVGC Conservation Committee via our website.
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."
From Joan Eville, MVGC outreach member to the Food Bank. The MV Garden Club members in honor of its 100 anniversary are hoping to donate 100 items to the Island Food Pantry. We are close to our goal with 80 items and checks already donated. Three checks were for $100.00 in recognition of our 100th anniversary. I am overwhelmed by the generous response. The drive will last through January 15th. Items can be dropped off on my front porch at 14 Beecher Park, Oak Bluffs or at the food pantry which is next to the PA Club in Oak Bluffs. Hours are 2-4 on Monday, 1-6 on Wednesday and 10-1 on Saturday. Please label your donations from the Martha's Vineyard Garden Club.  It is very important to check expiration dates. The 2 most desired items are peanut butter and spaghetti sauce. Thank you, Joan Eville, outreach member to the Food Bank.
-photo was taken the day Joan and Al Eville dropped off donations to the Food Bank in December. Joan and Al are pictured along with two Food Bank volunteers.
From Ty Johnston, MV Garden Club President

Several intrepid garden club members got together on a cold, sunny Saturday in December to plant some hope for the spring!
Gay and Archie Smith, Sarah Murphy, Linda Shaw, Ty and Bob Johnston, and Laurisa Rich planted about 160 daffodil bulbs of various varieties along the fence-line and front wall of the Old Mill. Now we just have to wait until spring to see what emerges from the sandy soil. Hopefully the winter won't bring too much snow and too many snow plows along the way. The planting is the first of many remembrances of our Club's 100th birthday celebration.
Some pics from our annual 'Holly Day' party!
Our Club's traditional 'Holly Day' party was held on December 12th at the Agricultural Hall, located in West Tisbury. The party was a potluck as attending members were asked to bring an appetizer or a dessert to share. Each member was able to bring a guest and judging by the smiles on these faces, fun was had by all! Thanks to Linda Shaw and her Committee for the decorations and for planning and coordinating this event, decorating the Ag Hall and managing the evening. Thanks too to Nancy Weaver and Donna Arold for the images shared here. From all of us at the MV Garden Club, we wish everyone reading this a peaceful, happy and healthy 2024!
Long time MV Garden Club Member, Anita Christian is leaving the Island and heading south to PA to be close to her relatives in late December. She was honored by friends with a small gathering and loving send off at the Henrietta Brewer House on December 27. MV Garden Club members Joan Eville and Jayne Isford attended the gathering and Joan gave Anita a card and scarf as a 'thank you present' from the Club.

Anita has been an active member of the MV Garden Club for many years, serving as President from 2006-2007, was an organizer of off-Island trips, hosted Garden Club teas and participated in Blooming Art up until last year, as a floral designer. She was active in the MV Garden Club's mission to maintain the Island's beauty through nature and conservation. (Note the above letter which Anita wrote in 2007 to the OB Commission)
In February of 2024, Anita will celebrate her 96 birthday. Below is her new address for those who may want to drop her a birthday card or a note.

Anita's new address will be:
Heartis Yardley
Anita Christian #238
255 Oxford Valley Road
Yardley, PA 19067

All of us at the MV Garden Club wish Anita the best on her move to Bucks County! And sincere thanks to you, Anita for all you have done over the years for our Club!
Here's Something Fun to do in Winter while being YUMMY in the Tummy!

SO, if you're looking for a task to attempt, maybe consider following in Trudy Williams' (past Edgartown VP, and new Hospitality Co-Chair) footsteps and try your hand at creating some fancy focaccia for yourself! Trudy shared her cardinal creation with me via email and I simply had to share it here! She paired the focaccia with tomato soup on Christmas Day and Trudy confessed that she would not have attempted to make it if it had not been for the 'Flowery Focaccia' Program presented to us by Teri Culletto in Autumn of 2022. If you want to try your hand at the dough and the process, here is the link to the recipe and technique! Teri also has a book available for sale called 'Beautiful Bread' which has lots of inspirational photos for focaccia and recipes for breads you may want to try in the Winter months. CLICK HERE to access that info and thanks to @VineyardBaker for the yummy inspiration and to MV Garden Club treasure, Trudy Williams for sharing her Focaccia Art with us! - Donna Arold, Communications
From the archives: from our archivist, board member Irene Ziebarth, this invoice from 1930. Check out the labor charge, second item from the bottom, for preparing for the flower show: $3.80. If only.
- Submitted by Irene Ziebarth
In case you need a little fix of flowery art this Winter, the Louisa Gould Gallery, located at 54 Main Street, Vineyard Haven is having a Winter Blooms Art Show, beginning on Friday, December 29, going through March 31, 2024. All the art is flowers, and since Louisa is a member of our Club, we thought it would be nice to share this information. Those who find themselves on Island may be looking for a bit of color and a flowery lift during those winter doldrums!
MVGC Aprons are available through 2024!

This classic navy and white gardening apron with large front pockets to hold all of your garden tools are still in stock and available for sale! Made of cotton twill for easy laundering and ease of use...purchase an apron and maybe pair it with a MV Garden Club membership in 2024 as a lovely gift for the garden person in your life!
The apron is shown here by our Past-President Susan Hobart. DO support the MV Garden Club in our Centennial Year by purchasing an apron, joining the Club OR donating to the Club's Charitable Initiatives!
(Apron price $30)