FITCHBURG — The Laurelwood Garden Club will hold its first meeting of the new year from 9:30 a.m. until noon Friday, Feb. 10, at the Fitchburg Art Museum, 185 Elm St.
A slide presentation titled “Soil for a Healthy Planet” will be presented by Ralph Baker, PhD., an environmental scientist.
“I will speak on the importance of the carbon cycle in the soil, and what we can do to make a difference in how plants and soil interact to help the environment,” said Dr. Baker. “Our gardens, and our landscaping can play a part in helping to address climate change and the loss of biodiversity, both of which are challenging the stability of natural systems we depend on both where we live and globally.
Baker believes that understanding soils and how they vary on the landscape right here can enable us to improve the health of our gardens.
“I believe they can also help strengthen our communities,” he said.
Baker earned his degree in soil physics from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst in 1989. During his career he was an international leader in carrying out hazardous waste cleanup projects.
He is a resident of Fitchburg and is currently involved in many local non-profit environmental organizations, serving on the City of Fitchburg Conservation Commission, the board vice president of the Nashua River Watershed Association, and has spent many years being extensively involved in the Fitchburg Tails Vision Plans.
“Soil and it’s amendments are the root of all successful growth and as beginners and on-going gardeners this program will help us improve our gardens to look their best and protect our environment,” said Julie Palioca, Laurelwood Garden Club’s public relations chairperson.
Refreshments for this meeting will be provided by Joyce Candella and Mary Ed Cain, with a floral arrangement by Palioca.
The Laurelwood Garden Club will hold their next meeting in March, featuring Dr. David Ammerman who will discuss some of the more commonly used medicinal herbs and the evidence behind the claims. This meeting will be held on Friday, March 10.
The annual Scholarship Tea will be held from 11:30 a.m. until 2:30 p.m. Saturday, March 25, at the Fitchburg Art Museum.
“Members and guests will be seated at a themed tablescape reflecting the l920s era that will fill the center of each table, along with unique items and tableware that reflect the theme,” said Palioca, “Each of the tea tables will be created and outfitted by members of the Laurelwood Garden Club. Guests will be served with a flurry of savories and sweets along with a flow of Irish Breakfast Tea.”
Advance ticket purchase of $25 is required.
Each year, the Laurelwood Garden Club offers a scholarship to a high school senior who will pursue an education in Agricultural, Horticultural, Landscaping Design or Architecture, Conservation, Forestry, Agronomy, City Planning, Land Management, Botany, Biology and Environmental Studies. Students should contact their high school’s guidance counselor or the club’s scholarship chairperson, Barbara Reynolds, at 978-582-1662
The Laurelwood Garden Club will once again partner with the Fitchburg Art Museum in the 25th Annual Art in Bloom event to be held Thursday, April 27 through Sunday, April 30, at the Fitchburg Art Museum.
“There is expected to be 40 pieces of artwork available to interpret from the permanent collections and upcoming exhibitions,” Palioca said. “We invite our members, local garden clubs, and aspirants to interpret for Art in Bloom, as well as floral shops to participate.”
Interested participants to interpret can visit the Fitchburg Art Museum Wednesdays through Sundays from noon until 3 p.m. beginning Feb. 22 through April 2, to select an artwork and complete the Interpreters Kit.
Interpreters have free admission and a complimentary ticket to the Friday night Champagne Reception.
For more information and assistance in the selection process, contact Rebecca Wright at the Fitchburg Art Museum, 978-345-4207 or Palioca at 978-537-7630.
Floral designer, Thelma Shoneman, will create floral arrangements and provide members and guests with design tips on interpreting artwork at the Friday, April 14 meeting.
The Laurelwood Garden Club was organized in l965 and is affiliated with National Garden Clubs Incorporated (New England Region) and the Garden Club Federation of Mass, Inc. within the Central North District.
Its monthly meeting place is at the Fitchburg Art Museum on the second Friday of the month from September through June. Meetings are open to those interested in garden related programs.
For more information on club membership, contact Julie Palioca, 978-537-7630 or visit laurelwoodgardenclub.org.