Current Youth Gardening Activities




  • WGC/QPS: Tulip Test Gardens 

The Wollaston Garden Club again invited a selected group of teachers of science in the Quincy Public Schools to join with the youth committee of the garden club to participate in the international science project called Journey North – Tulip Test Gardens. Students and teachers will connect with hundreds of other schools in the Northern Hemisphere by planting “Red Emperor” tulip bulbs again this fall, and next spring by sharing local observations and tracking spring’s progress. Journey North, sponsored by the Annenberg Learner Foundation, is a global study of wildlife migration and seasonal change. This project enlists the help of students as citizen scientists to monitor seasonal change in a scientific way, using the scientific method, and to contribute valuable observations to a long-term database. Widely considered a best-practices model for education, Journey North is the nation’s premiere “citizen science” project for youth.


This fall  the Wollaston Garden Club sponsored and supported five Quincy schools (Broad Meadows MS, Lincoln-Hancock, Merrymount, Montclair and Quincy High School) in establishing tulip test gardens on their school grounds this fall. Sponsorship, which included the purchase of a classroom set of bulbs, and planting support.  


Youth chair for the garden club, Diane Hill was “impressed with all the really user-friendly teacher resources that can be found on their web site at and club president, Jan Clifford  was “happy that teachers will check out the wonderful, comprehensive materials provided by Journey North International Plant Study and participate with the garden club, or with their own school’s resources.” Teacher materials focus on National Science Educational Standards and National Geography Standards. By planting these tulip test gardens students are expected to learn how to ask questions, and explore essential questions; make predictions, make and record observations, journal, compare, and collect data. Students use math, science, geography and language arts skills while beautifying their community and school grounds.


  • Daffodil Planting at Seven Quincy Public Schools - Fall 2013

A wondeful mixture of 30 different varietiies of daffodil bulbs were planted at seven Quincy Public school s this past fall. Students, teachers and staff at Atlantic MS, Broad Meadows MS, Lincoln Hancock, Merrymount, Montclair, and Quincy High School received 100 bulbs from the garden club to plant and beautify their school grounds.



  • Childrens’ Peace Garden at Thomas Crane Library 

Under the leadership of Civic Beautification committee member, Claire Fitzmaurice, the club will work again with Ron Adams and the students of Operation Day's Work from Broad Meadows Middle School and volunteers from the Friends of the TCL to restore and up-date the Children's Peace Garden and the Atrium perennial garden. In the fall of last year students planted crocus, daffodil and red emperor tulip bulbs. In late April  and May members of the garden club's civic beautification committee prepared and readied the Atrium garden site for student planting and assisted students with proper planting and weeding techniques. The Quincy DPW again awarded the project a $500 grant another phase of the Atrium Garden, which was colpleted on Cleaner Greener Quincy Day in May.


Since then, garden club members have been planting and weeding at both sites.



  • National Essay Contest 2012: “Ways We Can Protect Aquatic Ecosystems” 

The Wollaston Garden Club is encouraging entries from high school students from Quincy for the 2012 National Garden Club’s Essay Contest on the theme of “Ways We Can Protect Aquatic Ecosystems”. Each year a $1,000 NGC Scholarship is awarded to the National Winner. A Quincy resident, Harry G. Theodore, sponsored by the Wollaston Garden Club, was the MA State Winner, and received a certificate and a check for $200.00


  • This year's 2013 theme is "Today's Choices Affect Tomorrow's World."


The essay must be between 600 – 700 words. All entries must be typed and titled. Essays are judged for content (knowledge of subject, practically of proposal, originality, well organized/clarity of presentation); composition (vocabulary and conformance to length); and manuscript (entrant’s information and neatness.) More detailed information is available at


Students should write the essay so it is suitable to be published in the NGC publication, The National Gardener; all entries become the property of National Garden Club, Inc.


Local entries must be mailed to the Wollaston Garden Club, PO Box 147, Wollaston, MA 02170 by the deadline of Tuesday, November 15, 2012. The Wollaston Garden Club will send each entrant an acknowledgement of their essay submission. Essays will then be forwarded to the state and national chairs. For more information call WGC Essay Chair, Pat Artis at 617-328-5520 or contact her at About Us/Contact Us at


Two Quincy residents, Jack Fischer and Sarah Golden, submitted well-written essays this year and were are being sponsored by the Wollaston Garden Club.Jack's essay was focused on "our fragile ecosystem" and Sarah's on "homelessness."


  •   National/State Poetry Contest: “Protecting and Conserving Our Natural Resources” 

The theme for the NGC’s Youth Activities Poetry Contest for 2013 will be: “Protecting and Conserving Our Natural Resources” based on a NGC’s major project. The contest is open to students in Kindergarten through Ninth Grade, and includes students in both Special Education and English as a Second Language programs. In 2012 year two students from Point Webster MS won First Place in Massachusetts for Grades 5 & 7; and one of those students won 2nd place nationally.


The garden club received no entries for this year's poetry contest.







  • Woodsy Owl Poster Contest/Smokey the Bear Poster Contest: A Lincoln-Hancock first grader, Angelica Anousis, won 2nd place in the First Grade Division of the Smokey The Bear Poster Contest in 2012.


  • National/State College Scholarships 

Applications will be available for the Garden Club Federation of Massachusetts, Inc (GCFM) annual college scholarship program in December/January. There are eleven scholarships available. The program is for high school seniors, undergraduates and graduates students who plan to major in horticulture, floriculture, landscape design, conservation, forestry, city planning, environmental studies, landscape management, botany, biology and allied subjects.


            Eligible students must be residents of Massachusetts, have a minimum of “B” average (3.0 on a 4.0 scale), be of good character and demonstrate financial need. Students must be attending or planning to attend an accredited college or university. Applications are due by March 1, 2013. Applications may be found on the GCFM web site 

 or specifically at

or from the guidance departments at both Quincy and North Quincy High Schools.


“The most successful applicants will be those who have organized and led an important well-documented environmental, conservation, or landscaping project or done significant scientific/environmental research,” said Wollaston Garden Club past president Pat Artis.


“A prize winning science project, or an Eagle Scout or Community Service project that relates to the goals of the state garden club would put an applicant in solid contention,” added Jane McGilvery, Wollaston Garden Club Youth Gardening Committee member.


Students planning careers in these fields are welcome to contact the Wollaston Garden Club at for more suggestions about local community projects.






  • WGC/QPS Tulip Test Gardens & Daffodil Plantings. See above activity.


  • WGC/QPS Hardy Perennials Plant Give-Away - Middle and High Schools


The Wollaston Garden Club will be providing for a third year hardy perennials at “no cost” to a representative, designated by the principal, from each of the city’s middle and high schools at the end of their annual Plant Sale on Saturday, May 18 (10 am to noon). A knowledgeable garden club member will be assigned to each school representative to advise them in plant selection. The garden club seeks to support schools that wish to beautify their school grounds..


Information packets, including a “voucher for free plants” will be delivered to each principal during the first week of May, asking them to choose a staff member, club coordinator, or PTO member, to select plants for their schools. Schools included this past year were: Broad Meadows, Central, Point Webster, Sterling and Quincy High School. No one came from either Atlantic MS or North Quincy HS.


            Over the past four years, the Wollaston Garden Club has supported nine elementary schools in beautifying their school grounds (Beechwood, Bernazanni, Clifford Marshall, Lincoln-Hancock, Merrymount, Montclair, Parker, Wollaston, and Snug Harbor). Garden club past president, Pat Artis commented that “we are encouraged by the really beautiful school grounds that now border our city’s elementary schools. Beautiful school yards show the pride that principals, staff, parents and students have for their school community, neighborhood, and their city.” In the past two years: Atlantic MS, Broad Meadows MS, Central MS, Point Webster MS, Sterling MS & Quincy HS   Horticulture programhave participated.


            Wollaston Garden Club is a member since 1931 of the Garden Club Federation of Massachusetts and the National Garden Club, Inc.







 *Woodsy Owl Poster Exhibit and Contest at the Lincoln Hancock School (2011)


More than 250 students at the Lincoln-HancockSchool participated recently in the Woodsy Owl, conservation Poster Contest and Art Exhibit sponsored by the Lincoln Hancock School PTO and the Wollaston Garden Club. The students with the assistance of their art teacher, Nicole Oliver, and their homeroom teachers, created posters using the U.SForest Service’s Woodsy Owl icon, portraying re-cycling activities and using the slogan “Lend a Hand – CareFortheLand”.


Posters were judged for their exact use of the Forest Service’s icon and slogan, and the student’s creativity and skill in portraying the natural world and conservation and re-cycling activities. The contest judges from the garden club were Pat Artis, Jo Costello and Colleen Lawlor. The judges were excited about the “wonderful over-all quality of the posters and how well so many students showed their understanding of both the beauty in nature, and how ordinary people can help to preserve the environment”.


 Winning entries were presented with ribbons for first, second and third place winners from grades 1-4. Winning posters were sent along to the Garden Club Federation of Massachusetts Woodsy Owl Poster Contest Committee. All of the students will receive a Certificate of Participation and a small gift from the U.S. Forestry Service. WGC Youth Chair, Diane Hill said “The success of the event was due in large part to Nicole Oliver, the LH art teacher. Mrs. Oliver engaged the children to express themselves artistically while educating them about conservation and recycling”.


 The artwork can be viewed on YouTube under:


The winning entries from Grade 1 were:


1st Place – Anya Brenner    


2nd Place – Nivetha Srinivasan            


3rd Place – William Rafti          


The winning entries from Grade 2 were:


1st Place – Niamh Gallell                


2nd Place – Kailey Ross        


3rd Place Alexandria Monterio                            


The winning entries from Grade 3 were:


1st Place – Susan Hoare                  


2nd Place – Isabella Hanley


3rd Place – Kristen Mahoney


The winning entries from Grade 4 were:


1st Place – Kayla Vu            


2nd Place – Michalina Weglarzy                  


3rd Place – John Valenzuela   




Wollaston Garden Club is pleased to work collaboratively with these organizations to present opportunities for youth to learn more about plants and gardening through the programs listed here:

Native Plants Patch for Girl Scouts

Woodsy Owl Program

Poetry Contest

High School Essay Contest Scholarship