Pictou Garden Club celebrates 80th year

Community Featured

Anne MacIsaac-Gratton says she is amazed at how the Pictou Garden Club has remained the same for 80 years.

MacIsaac-Gratton is president of the club which celebrated its 80th anniversary with a garden party on Saturday.

“The Pictou Garden Club started circa 1939,” she said. “Its purpose was the same then as it is now.”

MacIsaac-Gratton said members had to combine their resources to gather information on the history of the club so that it could be shared with others. The result is several formal sources, such as a link provided by the Pictou-Antigonish Regional Library and the former Nova Scotia Agricultural College, but it began with conversation among members, she said.

“Nobody could find out the information, so you had to get together and pick each other’s brains, then networking to share information on plants and materials,” she said.

MacIsaac-Gratton can trace her first time with the club to when she attended the former Dawson School 50 years ago and cited two members in particular.

The club organized a tree planting that took place on Canada Day to honour the memory of valued members Sylvia MacDonald and Ruth MacKinnon.

“They’re the reason I joined.”

The club meets monthly on the fourth Wednesday from September to May. It has about 45 members and a core group of 30, MacIsaac-Gratton said.

“You can count on them to do anything — host pot lucks, or plant a garden,” she said.

Projects include planting the Scammell Garden in honour of club member Helen Scammell where Denoon, Church and Coleraine streets intersect.

There is also an annual spring plant sale at the Market Square gazebo and planting done at the deCoste Performing Arts Centre and the Northumberland Veterans Unit.

The club also has a goal to assemble a time capsule.

Coun. Darla MacKeil presented the club with a certificate of recognition on behalf of the Municipality of Pictou County recognizing the club’s 80 years “dedicated to fostering good friends, good gardens and good community by helping our neighbourhoods to flourish with flora for all to enjoy.”

Pictou Garden Club president Anne MacIsaac-Gratton accepts a Municipality of Pictou County certificate of recognition on the club’s behalf from Coun. Darla MacKeil. (Goodwin photo)