Located in Quincy, Massachusetts and incorporated in 1931, The Wollaston Garden Club is currently celebrating its 92nd year. We presently have 120 active members including men and women gardeners of all ages, abilities and interests, from novice to master gardener.
Most of our educational programs and meetings are open to the community. Members' programs include garden strolls, field trips, lectures and workshops in floral design and horticulture. Our Civic Beautification committee maintains a number of public sites in the City of Quincy, our Garden Therapy committee visits senior living communities to provide floral workshop and gardening opportunities, and our Conservation Committee is actively involved in projects preserving and protecting the environment in our city.
We encourage local gardeners interested in joining our club to attend a meeting or two, and read the club by-laws, membership responsibilities and other pertinent information located in the Members section of this site.
October 19, 2023 - "Fun With Flowers"
Our own member, Jo Costello, used a pumpkin as a base for a beautiful fall-themed buffet table arrangement. Pat Artis continued the fall theme with individual table arrangements in containers decorated with leaves and vines and filled with colorful autumn flowers.
An elegant lunch was prepared by Head Hostess Nancy Nelson and her team. Our horticultural table was once again a wonderful display of flowers from our own gardens, and was supplemented by envelopes of Milkweed seeds donated by Kay Borek so that members could add their own pollinator friendly gardens. Club member Maureen McCarron provided several begonias she had grown at home and Claire Turck donated some home grown pothos and spider plants for members to take home and enjoy.
All the floral arrangements by our guest speaker as well as those by Jo Costello and Pat Artis were part of our Opportunity Drawing. Some of the lucky winners are pictured below with their prizes and photos of the many horticultural displays are shown as well.
We would also like to thank all the club members who participated in the Interfaith Social Services Food Drive by donating many, many bags of food to help local families at this time of year. A photo of the lineup of donations is also below. Thanks also to Co-President Kathy Ceurvels for heading up the food drive for us, and her husband Joe for transporting everything to Interfaith.
September 23, 2023
September 16, 2023 Field Trip
On Saturday September 16th, 15 intrepid garden club members braved the threat of Hurricane Lee and ventured to the garden of Landscape designer Christie Dustman in West Roxbury. What a wonderful experience. She and her partner, who is a welder, have made the most unusual landscape of conifers in every size with many industrial metal sculptures. Water features, granite boulders and steps with paths throughout. A few of us commented we had never seen a garden like this. We had a lovely lunch back in Quincy after the field trip.
August 17, 2023 Garden Stroll
We ended our Club Year with a stroll through the gardens of new member Susan Watkins, and found that not only does she have a backyard full of thriving plants, but also a front yard filled with color. Approaching the house we found a path winding from the sidewalk to the front steps. Five groupings of purple alliums, all in full bloom, surrounded us. Additionally, we enjoyed seeing the variety of hanging plants, container plants, hostas and a beautiful small blue spruce. Proceeding down the driveway towards the back yard we were surrounded by greenery: hostas, white hydrangeas, cleome, phlox and potted coleus. The yard itself contained large hostas, several large white hydrangeas of different varieties, beautiful bright yellow/green stag horn sumac, dahlias and much more. There was a charming sitting area under the house overhang where Susan and guests can sit and enjoy the yard without getting wet. Please enjoy the photos and you might even see yourselves in some of them.
Annual Garden Tour 2023
On Thursday, June 22, our club enjoyed perfect weather and a beautiful evening at our annual garden tour. This year we enjoyed the largest number of members ever for this event. Co-president Kathy Ceurvels and her husband Jon hosted in their garden which has a wonderful mixture of sun and shade plants, and everything in between. Added to their established beds were a number of new and interesting plants, many of which were photographed and appear in the slide show below. Members were encouraged to take their time wandering through the many different areas of the yard to try to see the foliage and flowering plants in bloom.
Kudos to horticulture chair Ann Foresman for her selection of location and the labeling of plants for easy identification (not to mention the balloons to guide people to the house) and to Hospitality co-chairs Ellen Donnelly and Amy Bisconte for arranging the wonderful buffet. As is usual for a garden club event, many members were involved in helping get the garden "viewing ready", providing food and coordinating the flow, so a big thank you to everyone who was involved and all who came to enjoy.
April 20, 2023 Tri Club Meeting "Transforming Personal Space: From Backyard to Garden"
The Wollaston Garden Club hosted this year's Tri Club meeting with the Seaside Gardeners of Squantum. We had a wonderful turnout with members of each club mingling and meeting each other. The food and decorations were outstanding.
Sally Muspratt, a well-respected landscape designer and GCFM Lifetime Award winner, presented "Transforming Personal Space: From Backyard to Garden". She showed us some of her past projects and what techniques she recommends to create private spaces within residential gardens as well as small city gardens.
March 16, 2023 "Objects in the Garden"
Christie Dustman presented "Objects in the Garden", a unique program explaining the role that objects or "non-plants", play in the creation of a beautiful garden landscape. Christie is an award-winning landscape designer with a passion for conifers, having over 100 species. She has won numerous prestigious design awards and has had her work included in Fine Gardening and New England Design among others.
Later in the year, we will have an opportunity to tour Christie's own yard for a more detailed view of how she uses objects in her garden design.
February 16, 2023 "Let's go to Japan! Floral Design from Tokyo's Mami Floral School"
Lisa Oberholzer-Gee took the club on a wonderful slide presentation that included a behind the scenes look at the Japanese Flower Mart. She then let us watch as she took a 'Mami Floral School' designs class in Japan that used very different forms of mechanics to support the flowers. A live demonstration followed with Lisa practicing these new techniques. Using only natural materials Lisa amazed the club with her one-of-a-kind approach to floral arrangements. Lisa has mastered the art of making a Zoom meeting entertaining and fun!
Valentine's Day Workshop
On Monday, February 13, Susan Lynch conducted our first Valentine's Day workshop ever, and it was a huge success. For a nominal fee, members were invited to come and select from a collection of holiday mugs and create their own arrangements using the flowers she provided. While the original 15 slots were filled pretty quickly, they found room for a few last minute attendees, and everyone walked away with a beautiful arrangement, using festive boxes provided by Susan as an added surprise. Enjoy the pictures of attendees and some of the creations.
January 27, 2023 - 100th Anniversary of the Wollaston Branch
On Friday evening, the Wollaston Branch of the library held a celebration in recognition of its 100th anniversary. Details of the celebration can be found in the Ledger article by clicking
Many club members were in attendance, and Books in Bloom floral arrangements were provided by Jo Costello (Daughter of Fortune), Pat Artis (Half of a Yellow Sun), Kathy Stachowski and Pam McIsaac (Many Colors Make a Rainbow), Cynthia Lewis (Girl in Hyacinth Blue) and Pattie Lauretto (The Scarlet Letter). Distinguished guests include Mayor Thomas Koch and state senator John Keenan. There were refreshments and the exchange of many fond memories of the library over the years.
December 3, 2022 - Annual Holiday Greens Sale
This year's Holiday Greens Sale was a huge success. Each year The Wollaston Garden Club harvests greens from across the city of Quincy (with permission), members create beautiful wreaths and other decorations, and then we sell everything to the comminuty. The profits from this sale support all of the club efforts throughout the next year. It's a massive effort but the members and community all benefit! Thanks to all that participated.
Abigail Adams Statue Dedication: Farmer, Writer, Patriot
With a huge turnout from the community, Abigail Adams has returned to Quincy Center. On Saturday, November 5, 2022, a statue of Abigail Adams finally joined the statues of John Adams and John Hancock in the Hancock-Adams Common. Catherine Allgor, president of the Mass. Historic Society and Danielle Allen, a Havard professor and an Adams expert, both spoke to the crowd about Adam's impact on history that is not nearly as well known. She fought against slavery and for women's rights making her a fantastic role model for all women to this day.
Adam's is flanked on either side by exerpts of her writtings to her husband John. On one stone it reads: "In the new Code of Laws which I suppose it will be necessary for you to make I desire you would Remember the Ladies, and be more generous and favorable to them than your ancestors. Do not put such unlimited power into the hands of the Husbands." March 31, 1776
Thursday, October 20, 2022 "A Begonia For Any Season"
Thursday, September 15, 2022 "Grow it, Cut it, Arrange it"
Because of a family illness, our first announced speaker of the year was forced to cancel, but we were fortunately able to find a replacement in time to insure that the year would begin on a high note.
Cheryl Monroe, a seasoned gardener and speaker with an impressive list of topics, presented "Grow It, Cut It, Arrange It." Aided with live materials and a powerpoint presentation, she spoke about the importance of selecting the right types of plants to grow for your own use in arranging flowers in your own homes. She provided handouts listing the plants she herself grows and uses, and also discussed using containers that you like, with no specific rules.
There were about 52 members and several guests present, and our members outdid themselves with the flowers and vegetables they brought from their gardens for the horticultural exhibit, the largest variety we have seen in many meetings. Hospitality hostess Anne McCarthy and her team made sure that there were plenty of tasty refreshments, and Patti Lauretto provided a stunning arrangement flowers for the buffet table.
Thursday, June 16, 2022 - Members' Garden Tour
This year we are lucky enough to be able to resume in person member garden tours. Hosted in Squantum at a member's house, this tour included the opportunity to view a mature, well kept garden, meet and mingle with others in the club in a relaxed, informal atmosphere as well as a light supper (provided by Milton Market) and desserts prepared by our membership.
Saturday, May 21st, 2022 - Annual Plant Sale
This year's plant sale was held on an unusually chilly Saturday morning. Eager customers started forming a line at 8:30am and waited patiently until we opened up at 9am! This year's offerings included Day Lilies, Irises (some already in bloom), Rose of sharon, Hydrangea, Assorted Perennials, Trees, Vegetables, Black Earth mulch and more.
The volunteers worked so hard to make this day happen (from propagating, potting, transportation, and caring for the plants weeks before the sale even happens) and we thank each and every person that pitched in. The proceeds from the sale each year go to support our philanthropy efforts in the community. Also, it's a great way to meet potential new members.
Thursday, May 19th, 2022 - Installation Luncheon
This past Thursday, we had a meeting to install the new officers of the Wollaston Garden Club. The Clifford family sponsored a lovely luncheon that followed, in honor of former president, Florence Clifford. A beautiful photo of Florence, who recently passed, sat near the food as if she were with us and participating in the party.
Master Gardener Carol Fischer spoke after lunch about Container Gardening.
First photo shows past presidents (from left to right): Cynthia Lewis, AnnForesman, Emily Lebo, Kathleen Ceurvels, Anita Fasano, Ruth Griffin, Pat Artis, Jan Clifford and Janet Lynch.
Dorothy Quincy Homestead Spring Tour
Rebecca Dinsmore, the volunteer gardener for the past 23 years at DQH, gives a tour of the property. Read about it here.
Saturday, May 7, 2022 - Cleaner, Greener Quincy
"Many hands makes for quick work"
The traditon of Quincy area schools, companies/organization and residents coming together to clean up the city continued on this past Saturday, May 7th. For more than 30 years the Parks Department of Quincy has provided the basic tools to anyone that wants to help and treats the volunteers with tee-shirts and a cook-out hosted by the mayor at Pageant Field.
Our club had groups working in two locations, at the corner of Grand View Avenue and Beale Street and also at the Josiah Quincy House. The teams braved the winds and removed garbage, weeds and branches before laying down mulch and over at Josiah Quincy's house they added more white clam shells on the paths.
Next year we will have to remember to take before and after pictures as the difference is really impressive.
Thursday, May 5th, 2022 - Garden in the Woods Tour
Eleven members of our club drove to Framingham to visit Garden in the Woods for a private tour. It was a lovely day to stroll through this unique 45 acre botanical garden and learn all about the native plants they maintain. If you get a chance to go on your own we highly recommend it as you are sure to learn something new and more importantly, to gain inspiration for your own garden.
Art In Bloom at the MFA 2022
For the first time since 2019 the Museum of Fine Arts (MFA) hosted Art In Bloom, showcasing 50 interperative floral arrangements based on artwork. Several of the WGC members attended and/or participated. Cynthia Lewis (representing Houghs Neck) created an interpretation fo teh Peony bowl and Jo Costello and Ruth Griffin (representing WGC) showed their interpretation fo the Coconut Cup.
Thursday, April 21st, 2022 - "Compost, Grow, Eat...Repeat."
Due to illness our original speaker wasn't able to present so Andrew Brusseau of Black Earth Compost filled in.
Thursday night our group met at the Wollaston Congregational Church Social Hall to learn about the rewards of composting. Speaker Andrew Brusseau gave us insight on how his company, Black Earth Compost, began and where it sees itself in the future.
As landfill space runs out, Massachusetts' revelutionary commericial food waste disposal ban has created the perfect conditions for a company like Black Earth Compost to benefit the community. Brusseau demonstrated how the public can safely dispose of food which is then re-entered into the growth cycle of your backyard garden or at a local farm to creates zero waste.
Brusseau also gave the group a highly effective way to compost in their own backyards without having to invest in composting tools. With just leaves, sticks and a little work we can all create a "bread oven" compost that will break down pretty much anything you can imagine. It's also the perfect way to feed your trees!
Also at the meeting we were given handouts for shrub pruning and jumping worms. See handouts below as well as some pictures of our beautiful raffle basket and the food table.
Saturday, March 26, 2022 - "Bring Abigail Back!"
Everything you need to know about the Abigail Adams statue that sparked a rally in Quincy
A group of residents rallied Saturday and demanded a statue of Abigail and John Quincy Adams return to Quincy Center. The rally was covered by the Patriot Ledger and the Boston Globe. Click the links* for more details on the future location of our founding mother.
*The Partriot Ledger article is only visible to subscribers.
March 2022 - Drought Tolerant Gardening and Landscaping
Wollaston Garden Club held the first in-person meeting of 2022 on St Patrick's Day, March 17. Beautiful and seasonal floral arrangements were done by Pam McIsaac and Kathy Mitchell, and the festive hospitality table was created by Elaine Sullivan and her team.
The featured presenter was Warren Leach, owner of Tranquil Lakes Nursery in Rehobeth. Warren's powerpoint presentation featured many of the plants that do well with little water, ad how they can be effectively worked into the landscaping of properties to cut down or eliminate the need for in-ground watering systems. Attached is a list of all the plants discussed during an hour that went by quickly.
The club has scheduled a field trip to Tranquil Lakes during the summer to experience its well known day lily gardens.
February 2022 - Heirloom Gardening
Our recent speaker, John Forti, for the February 17, 2022 was an award-winning garden historian, nationally recognized lecturer, ethnobotanist and author. He is currently the Executive Director of Bedrock Gardens in Lee, NH.
In the presentation, The Heirloom Gardener--Traditional Plants and Skills, John drew from his latest book and focused on native and heirloom plants, their history and current application.
We enjoyed a lively and interesting program and learned so much important information. To find out more about John and his work, visit his website, JForti.com.
January 2022 - Quincy Trees
Our presenter for the January 20, 2022 meeting was Chris Hayward, Tree Warden for the City of Quincy. Chris told the membership about the city's first tree inventory and work order system with a geographic information system. In this project, Chris uses an IPAD and GIS software to locate and begin to label the estimated 25,000 city trees. Since it is labor intensive, he is working to design a more user-friendly version that could become an app that volunteers, such as students and garden club members, could use to participate. Anyone interested in volunteering can email Chris directly to be alerted when this project is up and ready.
He also told us that Mike Casinelli, Project Manager for the Dept. of Forestry is a contact for members interested in a tree planting in their yard. To request trees be planted on your land fill out this form.
Chris also shared a link to an educational tool, "My Tree", which allows you to explore the individual benefits provided by the trees near you.
There may be other opportunities arising that would allow volunteers to work with Chris and his department, and we will keep you posted.
December 2021 - Holiday Greens Sale
This year's greens sale was the most succesful we've ever had. We are so grateful to our volunteers who worked countless hours harvesting, organizing and then making these amazing creations. Many people were eagerly waiting at the door to get in fast and secure the perfect one. The first hour was something akin to the "Running of The Brides" but with the holiday spirit.
Tree Planting Ceremony in honor of Harry A. Johnson
On Sunday, November 7, 2021, members of the Wollaston Garden Club were invited to join Anneli Johnson, widow of Harry A. Johnson, at a Tree Planting ceremony at the Faith Lutheran Church. The club has a long history with the church and its beautiful garden, another of Quincy's hidden gems. The club meant a lot to Harry and we were happy to contribute to the purchase of a Japanese cut leaf dwarf red maple in his memory.
Photos of club members attending and a short video appear below.
October 2021 - Wrapping Up Your Garden
Betty Sanders, the first in person speaker in a year and a half, got us off to a good start with her Do's and Don'ts for "Wrapping Up Your Garden". About 38 members were in attendance, all masked except when eating or speaking to the group. The business meeting was conducted by co-presidents Kathy Ceurvels and Ann Foresman, who updated the club on GCFM programs available via Zoom, the Gardening Angels program, and what we could do to get an early start on preparing plants for the spring sale.
A beautiful buffet floral arrangement was done by Susan Lynch, with colorful and creative table arrangements by Mary Cassidy, all of which were part of the opportunity drawing. Refreshments were individually wrapped (and delicious) desserts provided by hostess Kathy Ryan and her committee. The mild weather recently has caused the fall blooming plants to flourish, as evidenced by the wonderful array of horticulture exhibits brought by our members.
See the following photos for more about the meeting, and to see a copy of Betty Sanders' useful handout.
Do's and Don'ts for "Wrapping Up Your Garden"
Betty Sanders Handout.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [236.6 KB]
May 2021 - Virtual Meeting
Michele Frank Schuckel presented "Name that Weed" Michele virtually returns to Wollaston Garden Club to help members determine pesky plants and how to deal with them. Michele is a Certified Master Gardener who has consulted for Boston's Esplanade Association, has designed for Art in Bloom at the MFA and is a certified Home Compost instructor for Mass. Department of Environmental Protection.
May 2021 - Plant Sale
Back again and in person, Wollaston Garden Club came together as a team for this years Spring Plant Sale. Members of the community were lined up early to buy the hundreds of plants, flowers, herbs, and vegetables. Lots of native plants were on offer too.
Thanks to everyone who helped make this years sale a success.
The plant sale this year offered many native plants for sale.
Virtual Interview - QATV
Ann Foresman and Kathy Ceurvels interviewed by Joe Catalano at QATV about the Wollaston Garden Plant Sale May 15th 2021.
April 2021 - Virtual Meeting
Wollaston Garden Club Master Gardener Carol Fischer presented "Perennials - A New Look." Carol offered her expertise in getting your garden ready for spring. Carol shared the Perennials of the Year based on a list selected by the Perennial Plant Association.
The Perennial Plant of the Year program began in 1990 to showcase a perennial that is a standout among its competitors. Perennials chosen are suitable for a wide range of growing climates, require low maintenance, have multiple-season interest and are relatively pest/disease free.
The scientific new look at perennials gives the best success rate categorized by shade/part shade and sun.
Perennial Plant Association https://perennialplant.org/
March 2021 - Virtual Meeting
Julie Sullivan of Quincy Parks Department of Natural Resources gave an update on various natural resource initiatives in the city. The Commonwealth's mission to protect the city's wetland resources, our waterways and how the community can support their health was presented. The Montclair/Wollaston Bog, Black's Creek, Town Brook and 209 acres of salt marshed were highlighted as well as the MA Department of Conservation and Recreations work to plant trees to clean the air, retain water during storms, and protect from wind and sun.
One of Julie's recent project was documenting the City's trails. To learn more https://city-of-quincy-trails-quincy.hub.arcgis.com
If you have additional questions, please contact Julie at firstname.lastname@example.org or at (617) 376-1287
February 2021 - Virtual Meeting
Thomas Mickey presented "The History of Growing and Selling Dahlias". Thomas is a scholar, author, retired professor and a Master Gardener. He discussed the history of dahlias and how they became such a popular garden flower. Dahlias came into fashioin in the mid 1880's, went out of fashion for a long while and back into fashion a year later. Thomas's research studies at the Smithsonian Istitute formed the foundation of his book "America's Romance with the English Garden".
About Thomas Mickey http://americangardening.net/biography/
January 2021 - Virtual Meeting
Lisa Oberholzer Gee presented A Journey into Floral Art with techniques from Germany and Belgium.
Lisa, who lived in Switzeralnd for 10 years, fell in love with floral boutiques and the surrounding mountains and nature. After returning to the US, Lisa continues to explore floral designs from Germany and Belgium.
Lisa's virtual presentation included new ideas and design techiques learned from years abroad.