The Groton Garden Club is involved in many types of community service projects. Members maintain ten municipal gardens and planters throughout the town. These gardens beautify the community. Some of the gardens were created in memory of specific people or groups. In addition to the gardens and planters, Club members create floral arrangements for the Groton Public Library. We also hold a Boxwood Tree Workshop, a free public lecture, and help with maintenance at a local Healing Garden.
Annual Public Lecture
This committee plans the annual lecture, including confirming the speaker, site, publicity, and refreshments. The Trust Fund Lecture is open to the public, and is funded by the Groton Commissioners of Trust Funds.
Blue Star Memorial
The Blue Star Memorial, located on Sawyer Common, is a marker program which began in 1945 to honor men and women serving in the Armed Forces during WWII. It now serves as a memorial to all who have served or will serve. This is a program of the National Garden Clubs, Inc. Green wreaths with red bows are placed on all the Memorial Stones during December and January.
The Book Group reads and discusses books with a gardening theme. Members choose a different book selection each month.
Boxwood Tree Workshop
Members of this committee purchase and organize materials that will be used for the Boxwood Tree Workshop. Each participant makes one tree to donate to the Groton Council on Aging, which distributes them to area residents receiving Meals on Wheels. Trees are also given to the Police and Fire Departments, the library, and GGC members who are ill or unable to attend meetings. Members may also create a second tree for themselves. All club members are welcome to participate in the workshop. Sign-up sheets are circulated at the monthly meetings.
Carol Wheeler Park
Carol Wheeler Park is located next to the Squannacook River in West Groton Village. It was created 20 years ago with a substantial donation from a local business owner who had a dream of a West Groton Park. In 2019, the Groton Garden Club received permission to revive and maintain the park.
Firemen’s Common, also known as Charles Gorden Square, is located adjacent to the Main Street watering troughs. In 2016, the Garden Club refurbished this small park in Groton that had been created approximately 15 years earlier as an Eagle Scout project in honor of the Groton Fire Department. In 2019, new park benches were donated by the Groton School and installed by the town.
Four Corners Traffic Island
This committee plants and maintains the Four Corners Traffic Island at the intersection of Route 119 and Route 225 adjacent to Shaw’s Marketplace. Members participate by volunteering to water, weed, and dead-head. This garden is on state-owned land, so work on this space is coordinated with the Massachusetts Department of Transportation. It requires that volunteers follow certain safety rules while working.
The Groton Garden Club sets up a booth each year at Grotonfest, the annual town festival. The committee plans, organizes, and runs the booth. All members are encouraged to visit the booth and help during the day.
Hanson Family Memorials
The Hanson Family Memorial Gardens are located off Playground Road behind the library. These gardens are a memorial to Peter, Sue, and 2 1/2 year-old Christine Hanson, who lost their lives during the tragic events that occurred on September 11, 2001.
The historian collects photographs, board and membership meeting minutes, annual reports, press clippings, and other pertinent information. These materials are placed in archival binders and stored safely. A copy of each annual Groton Garden Club Yearbook is also stored at the Groton Public Library.
Hollis Street Traffic Island
The committee plants and maintains the Hollis Street Traffic Island located at the head of the intersection of Hollis Street and Main Street in Groton Center. Because of its high visibility, the committee utilizes blooming plants from April through October and adds seasonal greens during the winter.
This committee promotes ongoing horticultural information, outreach, and education by holding special meetings after the general meetings. We try to answer members’ horticultural questions and concerns by scheduling regular opportunities for group discussions in order to share and exchange knowledge that can produce better gardening outcomes for all Groton Garden Club members.
This committee serves as host for each General Meeting, the Annual Meeting, and Member Luncheon in June. As a membership requirement of the Garden Club, each active member is asked to donate refreshments and assist with set-up/clean-up of the meeting venue at least once per year.
This committee chair organizes the delivery of floral arrangements and/or decorative plants bi-monthly to the Groton Public Library’s circulation desk and the Children’s Room. Sign-up sheets are circulated at the monthly meetings.
The Chair is responsible for coordinating the admission process for new members, including informing new members of their club responsibilities, providing them with a Groton Garden Club Yearbook, and welcoming them to the Garden Club. The Chair oversees the distribution of name tags at general meetings, and maintains records of all members.
Native Plant Test Garden
Installed in 2021 at Groton Town Hall this garden has given us the chance to try out native plants in a public setting and to see how they perform in our town. This will allow residents of Groton to see these plants and to be inspired to add some to their own gardens. The members of Groton Garden Club have been learning that Native plants are the cornerstone of our planet’s ecosystems. Native plants provide food and shelter that specific insects, birds, and mammals need.
This garden was installed as an educational contribution to the town of Groton. Members of this committee are needed for garden upkeep, but more importantly to assess the performance of the plants in the garden in terms of beauty and how well these plants support wildlife.
The annual plant sale each May is the club’s major fundraiser. Each member is required to donate plants from their own garden, donate propagated plants, or make a monetary donation to the sale. Members are also expected to participate in digging and dividing donated plants, potting up, or labeling plants prior to the sale and help before, during, or after the sale.
Police and Center Fire Station
This committee maintains the gardens and planters at the Police and Center Fire Stations. Center Fire Station gardens include the 9/11 memorial garden, the front doorway entry area and entry sign. Police Station gardens include the foundation plantings. Planters include two large and four small planters at the fire station and two large planters at the police station.
This committee is responsible for planting and maintaining Prescott Common located on lower Main Street. Members participate in the watering, weeding, and deadheading schedule during the summer season and help with spring and fall cleanup, planning, and planting sessions.
Programs & Field Trips
This committee researches, plans, and organizes club programs and workshops which reflect the interests and talents of the membership. The chair contracts with presenters, arranges meeting or workshop space, and coordinates logistics in collaboration with the Hospitality Committee. The committee also plans visits to interesting botanical gardens, open private gardens, and New England garden centers.
This committee manages new ideas for club projects and considers new gardens or projects that reflect the community service of the club. Proposals may be generated by the committee, the membership, or the public (with a club member as liaison).
This committee is responsible for keeping the public informed through press releases, fliers, and signage about club activities, including the annual Plant Sale and Trust Funds Lecture. This committee assists the Yearbook and Website Committee chairs with photos, written submissions, and also maintains a press book.
The Sunshine Correspondent sends cards and notes of support to Garden Club members in the club’s name. All members are asked to make the Correspondent aware of any member who might benefit from a cheerful message from the Groton Garden Club throughout the year.
Telephone & Email
This committee notifies club members of special events, changes in meeting schedules, and other club-related information. Most communication is done through blind copy email. To submit information for a club-wide email, send email to both Chairs, and indicate if official business or a “tidbit” for general interest. Please do not send promotional or advertising information. Replies should be sent to the originator of the message, not the Email Chair.
Virginia Thurston Healing Garden
The Virginia Thurston Healing Garden is an educational non-profit dedicated to providing integrated cancer care through therapeutic services, educational programs, and a healing environment for all people with a cancer diagnosis. Located at 145 Bolton Road in Harvard Massachusetts, it was once part of Ginny Thurston’s home. Ginny was an extraordinary horticulturist and leader of a number of regional gardening organizations, including the Garden Club Federation of Massachusetts. She died of breast cancer in 1999, but leaves a legacy of healing opportunities for other women. Thanks to the generosity of her husband, Bill Thurston, there are no financial barriers to receive client services. For more information, visit https://healinggardensupport.org or contact the chair.
This committee focuses on seasonal design of the town watering troughs and the planters. The troughs are located at Firemen’s Common on Main Street and in West Groton Center. The planter at Carol Wheeler Memorial Park in West Groton is also maintained by this committee. Members plant, maintain, and participate in the watering schedule for these sites.
This committee maintains the club’s website. The website contains updated information on our programs, calendar, and events for the club.
This committee prepares, proofreads, prints, and distributes the annual Groton Garden Club Yearbook. Unlike other garden club committees, this group meets from Oct. 1 to Sept. 30. The yearbooks are distributed before the first meeting.