Plant Sale Saturday, May 13th

The Driftwood Garden Club’s annual plant sale will be held Saturday, May 13th at the Masonic Hall, Marblehead, from 8:30-11:30 AM.  The sale features perennials, annuals, ground covers, and herbs, many from local gardens. Garden Club members will be on hand to answer questions and help select plants for your garden. The Driftwood Garden Club is an all-volunteer organization. Proceeds from the sale are used to maintain and improve several gardens and other civic projects in the town of Marblehead, MA.


Fall Cocktail Party Fun

The Driftwood Garden Club of Marblehead held its annual Fall Cocktail Party on a crisp and clear evening. Members and their spouses enjoyed a fantastic assortment of hors d’oeuvres provided by members and lots of laughter and fun as members greeted each other for the first event of the 2022-2023 season. Many thanks to member Rose Gould who shared her beautiful home with us, to our hostesses Silte McLaughlin, Cheryl Miller, Andrea Popeo, and Lesley Dexter and especially to our fantastic program chairs Pat Shannon and Harriett Magee who kept it all on track. Look at all of those smiles!


And the award goes to…

The Northeast District of the Garden Club Federation of Massachusetts recognizes that every garden club includes members who step up and go above and beyond to make garden club activities enjoyable for all of the members. This year, Northeast Director Kim Edwards requested nominations for the 2021-2022 year from each garden club in the Northeast District for an award of recognition.

As we all recall, during the winter of 2021 we had to rely on virtual meetings and workshops as in person events were canceled. Planning for the next program year was extremely unpredictable, we needed some additional woman power, and asked Maureen Karwowski to help. Maureen was able to use her considerable research skills to find speakers who could present virtually, forward electronic contracts for signature, as well as work remotely with our current and future program chairs to develop the great programs we all enjoyed last year.

We wish to announce that long-time member Maureen Karwowski was nominated and has received this award for her work on the 2021-2022 DGC Program Schedule during the Covid pandemic.

Maureen was presented with this award over the summer while visiting from New York, where she currently resides.

Congratulations Maureen – we will always appreciate your help!


Art in Bloom 2022

On Friday April 29th, members of the Driftwood Garden Club of Marblehead traveled to the Museum of Fine Arts Boston to the annual Art in Bloom festival. Members Ginny von Rueden and Laurie Boggis created a fantastic flower arrangement reflecting the colors and design intricacies of this exquisite tapestry.

What a Great Job!

Other favorites are shown below – be sure to click on photo to enlarge and get the full effect!

These photos courtesy of Andrea Gregory.


Driftwood Garden Club Bookworms!

Many of our members have belonged to book clubs over the years and most still do! Reading in the garden is one of our great joys. In the garden, we can read alone, with others, and especially to our children and grandchildren. Our members have read many books about flowers, plants, insects, trees, and the wildlife our gardens provide for, so we thought it might be nice to start a reading list created by members to recommend flower or nature-themed books which have been enjoyed over time.

DGC Reading List

We welcome you to help create the Driftwood Garden Club Reading List by making book suggestions or comments. To suggest a book, click here

Let’s give it a try!

For our Gardeners

Recommended by Ginny Von Rueden

The Language of Flowers by Vanessa Diffenbaugh

“A young woman with a difficult childhood finds her only connection to the world is through flowers and their meanings. She realizes she has a gift for helping other through the flowers she chooses for them”.

The Signature of All Things by Elizabeth Gilbert

“A novel about a 19th century American woman who becomes a world-renowned botanist…travels the world meeting unforgettable characters..and explores the mysteries of evolution”

The Hidden Life of Trees by Peter Wohlleben

“One of the most beloved books of our time: an illuminating account of the forest, and the science that shows us how trees communicate, feel, and live in social networks. After reading this book a walk in the woods will never be the same again.”

Unearthing the Secret Garden by Marta McDowell

Bestselling author Marta McDowell has revealed the way that plants have inspired some of our most cherished authors, including Beatrix Potter, Emily Dickinson, and Laura Ingalls Wilder. In her latest, she shares a moving account of how gardening deeply inspired Frances Hodgson Burnett, the author of the beloved children’s classic The Secret Garden. Complementing her fascinating account with charming period photographs and illustrations, McDowell paints an unforgettable portrait of a great artist and reminds us why The Secret Garden continues to touch readers after more than a century. This deeply moving and gift-worthy book is a must-read for fans of The Secret Garden and anyone who loves the story behind the story

For our L’il Sprouts

Recommended by Barbie Saraceno

Up in the Garden and Down in the Dirt by Kate Messner

Explore the secret world beneath the dirt that brings the world of nature to life: up in the garden, the world is full of green—leaves and sprouts, growing vegetables, ripening fruit. But down in the dirt exists a busy world—earthworms dig, snakes hunt, skunks burrow—populated by all the animals that make a garden their home. With Up in the Garden and Down in the Dirt, you can explore the hidden world and many lives of a garden through the course of a year!

The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgsen Burnett

One of the most delightful and enduring classics of children’s literature, The Secret Garden by Victorian author Frances Hodgson Burnett has remained a firm favorite with children the world over ever since it made its first appearance. Initially published as a serial story in 1910 in The American Magazine, it was brought out in novel form in 1911.

Well Loved Gardening Reference Books

Recommended by Harriett Magee

The Well-Tended Perennial Garden by Tracy DiSabato-Aust

This is an encyclopedic guide to planting and pruning techniques, detailing differences among deadheading, cutting back, disbudding, thinning and when/what season and how to apply these techniques. Author also covers design, pests and diseases, staking, and dividing. This 415-page book is well organized, easy to use, and beautifully illustrated with photos.

To suggest a book, click here


Residential Design: Try This at Home

At the beginning of the design or redesign of the landscape around your house, take pictures. They will give you a far more accurate perspective of your site than studying it in real time. At the end, keep and catalogue the tags from the plant material installed so you won’t have to guess when adding material to foundation plantings in the future. These were just two of Laura Bibler’s many suggestions for the Driftwood Garden Club of Marblehead members attending the February 17 program, Residential Design: Try This at Home.

All Residential Design photos courtesy of Laura Bibler of In the Garden.

Bibler, who started her West Newbury-based business, In the Garden, 22 years ago, attracted 32 attendees to her presentation, including 5 members from the public. A write-up in the print edition of The Marblehead Reporter and a flyer posted by Abbot Library in their foyer likely also helped boost attendance, in addition to ongoing social media postings.

A running theme of the evening was getting a fresh perspective on the existing area and devising a concept, plan, and installation approach that harmonized with the context and physical characteristics of surrounding landscape. For example, the front, back, and two end areas of a typical house will require plants with differing sun and shade tolerance.

President Susan Smith announced to the membership that the upcoming March 14 program, Healthy Gardeners: Mindfulness in the Garden, will be presented live at the library as well as on Zoom. Good news!


Winter Wow at the Abbot Library!

Members of the Driftwood Garden Club of Marblehead returned to the Abbot Library for our first indoor event since March 2020. Library Director Kim Grad enthusiastically welcomed over 50 DGC members and guests back to the library meeting room. Members enjoyed a lovely assortment of treats provided by hostesses Pal Bickford, Pinar Gokce, and Silte McGlaughlin as everyone chatted and reconnected.

President Susan Smith announced to the membership that Charlene Carpenter, a longtime member of the DGC has been made an Honorary Member for her many contributions to the club. Charlene is our third honorary member. Congratulations Charlene!

Members who could not attend in person were given the option of Zooming in to the presentation part of the meeting, thanks to Kim who helped us use a new piece of library equipment. Six members zoomed in from as far away as New York!

Deborah Trickett from the Captured Garden presented a fabulous talk aptly named “Winter Wow: Beautiful Containers for the Winter Months”. The timing was perfect as Deborah showed slides of some gorgeous containers – just in time for the holidays!

Some of Deborah’s tips include:

  • Try using a theme for your creations: silver and white look amazing!
  • Consider whether your containers will be viewed from afar or close up: here the red twig dogwood branches are arranged close together for impact.
  • Use fresh greens that will last from December till March: noble fir, boxwood, cedar and arborvitae are good choices.
  • Don’t be afraid of accenting with artificial berries or fruit: the birds won’t eat them!

All photos courtesy of Deborah Trinkett at The Captured Garden.


Decorating the King Hooper for the Holidays

The garden clubs of Marblehead decorated the King Hooper Mansion for the holidays. The theme this year is America the Beautiful and the Driftwood Garden Club decorated the Beth Hendricks Room in a Woodland theme.

As always, designers Laurie Boggis, Sue McMullen, and Ginny von Rueden made the trip into Jacobson’s in South Boston in late October to scout out supplies for the new design. Members gathered cedar, arborvitae, japanese holly, boxwood, pinecones, birch bark and rose hips from around town, and then with instruction from Laurie and Ginny spent a fun morning making some very beautiful and surprise decorations. Four new members, Silte McLaughlin, Rose Gould, Cheryl Miller, and Jeanne Robertson joined Barbara Day, Linda Duvel, Judy Conner, Barbie Saraceno, Nancy Davidge and Susan Smith in cutting, arranging, wiring, and gluing everything in place.

Our Woodlands creations were then installed just before Christmas Walk Weekend by our seasoned team: Barbara Day, Linda Duvel, Laurie Boggis, Ginny von Rueden, Susan Smith, Barbie Saraceno, Valerie Evans and Marie Doughman. New to the team this year was Pat Shannon and Silte McGloughlin who both jumped right in. We are so lucky to have this opportunity to show off our skills every year at the Hooper!