This has been a tremendous year for the Pinecrest Garden Club. Membership has grown, the presence in the community is more visible than ever, we’ve had a full schedule of guest speakers and field trips and, thanks to the efforts of volunteers and board members, achievements have been plentiful.
Beginning late last summer after approval was received from the Village Council and Miami’s Historical Review Board, and with funds raised and donated by the Garden Club, noted local landscape artist Geoff Gordon installed a beautiful natural rock waterfall around the pond at the entrance to Pinecrest Gardens. Thanks to the Garden Club, visitors are now invited into the Garden through the gentle activity of cascading water and lush landscaping.
Along with the members of Palmetto Senior High School’s Honor Society, the Garden Club helped plant a beautiful butterfly garden behind the Pinecrest Library. We provided the plants and some of the manpower, and it is now a distinct focal point that attracts a large number of butterflies and bees.
From December through April, Garden Club volunteers could be seen every Sunday at the Farmers Market in the parking lot at Pinecrest Gardens selling green and healthy herb and vegetable plants. All of the funds raised will go toward improvements in the Garden. At the same time, docent volunteers took interested guests on personal guided tours through the Garden’s botanical points of interest. The club also purchased tables and chairs so that the market’s shoppers could have a place to rest while lunching and sampling the food.
Many of the club’s members stripped their yards of healthy plants and on two occasions they gathered at club president Pat Kyle Lawrence’s home to repot them. Other members baked a huge variety of desserts, and they all came together in March for the Backyard Festival at Pinecrest Gardens, where their tables overflowed with potted and bare root plants and sweets for sale. All proceeds will go to the Garden.
In addition, the club funded the rental of four giant heaters for the Community Garden Charitable Fund’s annual Soiree, which was held in Pinecrest Gardens on Feb. 26, one of the coldest nights of this past winter. The heaters were strategically placed throughout the meadow where the dinner and concert took place, and they added warmth and comfort to the Soiree guests.
The club also helped to decorate the Deering Estate this past Christmas, recently donated $5,165 directly to the Garden through the Village Council, taught local children about butterflies at this year’s Earth Day celebration, and donated 180 Spearmint plants to the Honeyshine workshop and the Mother’s Day brunch at Pinecrest Gardens.
All of this was in addition to the regular monthly schedule of meetings where members learned about Plants without Borders, Begonias, succulents, and orchids from various guest speakers who are experts in their particular areas of interest. Members were also enlightened about composting and hydroponic farming during field trips that took place during the year.
The Pinecrest Garden Club is comprised of women and men from diverse backgrounds and age groups who share a common love of nature and a desire to learn about native flora, to network, and to interact. It is a dynamic group that meets monthly from September through May, and membership is open to all who wish to partake and contribute to the community.