by June Portnoy
Ruth Logan of Lower Makefield was inducted as new president of the Martha Washington Garden Club this past June.
“I am very lucky to have some good mentors in past presidents who are still members of this club,” says Ruth, referring to Judy Enderle, Thelma Thompson, and most recently Patricia Mutek, who served as garden club president for the past four years.
“Pat did a wonderful job and it’s going to be hard to fill her shoes,” says Ruth, who plans to continue running the club as it was run by Pat.
Ruth, who has been an active garden club member for the past six years, served as vice president the past two years. For the past four years she has served on the Annual Fall Gala Committee. She has also set up programs and tours for the club and has participated in the club’s “little shows.” These shows prior to monthly meetings give members an opportunity to display their creative side by sharing the flowers, plants and vegetables they’ve grown with club members.
Since the club holds its monthly meetings at the Lower Bucks Masonic Hall on Edgewood and Heacock Roads, Ruth makes sure to fill the hall’s outdoor planter with plants and flowers in the club’s name. She has also been instrumental in planning the club’s Annual Spring Plant Sale by organizing it and coordinating the many details with the help of other club members.
Ruth brings a lot of personal experience and knowledge to the garden club. She attributes her love of nature to growing up on her family’s farm near Bloomsburg, PA. Throughout her life, she has had an interest in gardening, and upon retiring, she finally had more time to pursue this interest. This past year she became a Master Gardner through Penn State’s Cooperative Extension Program. As a Master Gardener, she is required to volunteer 50 hours during this first year in garden-related Penn State approved projects, and then 20 years each subsequent year. She recently volunteered as a Master Gardener for Bucks Beautiful, answering questions about plants at various Doylestown homes. Also, for Bucks Beautiful she volunteered at a children’s program on vermaculture, where she taught kids how to build a compost bin.
“Kids really enjoy learning through hands-on activities,” says Ruth.
Ruth has developed a special interest in the Publick Burial Ground in Lower Makefield that in recent years has become an abandoned cemetery. Since the 1940s, the garden club has maintained the grounds here, and continues this tradition by tending the grounds twice a year. However, Ruth has taken it upon herself to come here once or twice a week during the spring and fall to care for these grounds by weeding and cleaning up all the debris so it’s at least possible to read the tombstones.
“It’s a matter of respect,” says Ruth. “There are 42 people buried here dating back to the 1700s, seven of whom were Civil War soldiers, but this cemetery is largely forgotten. To my knowledge nobody else tends to these grounds.”
Since the garden club holds no meetings during July and August, Ruth is excited to get back to business this fall with the garden club. On October 31st, the garden club will offer a Fall Wreath Workshop at the Lower Makefield Township building from 9:30am until noon. This event is open to the public.
The garden club is currently planning is Annual Fall Festive Gala to be held November 4th at the Masonic Hall from 7:00pm to 9:00pm. This event will include a floral arranger designing themed arrangements related to birthday parties, holiday parties and special events, like beach parties. In addition, a chef will combine herbs and cheeses with different floral themes.
All arrangements will be given to the highest bidders during an auction before the end of the evening. A lucky raffle winner will receive a basket of cheer. Also, a silent auction will take place during this gala event. Tickets cost $20. Proceeds from the event will benefit the club’s scholarship program, which is used to award scholarships to two students each year pursuing a horticultural, landscaping, farming or ecology-related field.
On December 5th at 9:30am, the garden club will offer a Holiday Swag and Wreath Workshop, open to the public, at the Lower Makefield Township Building.
For information about the two workshops, call Pat Mutek at 215-946-7426. For ticket information about the Fall Gala event, call Pat or Ruth at 215-493-8148.
The next garden club meeting open to the public will take place October 26th at 12:30pm at the Masonic Hall and it will include a Challenge Workshop. Attendees will be divided into several groups and will be given supplies like flowers and props. They will then be asked to make specific floral arrangements following the National Garden Club’s guidelines. The cost for non-members is just $5.
The purpose of the Martha Washington Garden Club, established in 1935, is to stimulate and encourage interest in all aspects of gardening to include horticulture, flower arranging, conservation and civic beautification.
“There’s no doubt that being a member of this club has expanded my knowledge of gardening,” says Ruth.
For more information about the garden club, visit www.marthawashingtongardenclub.org.
Also, email firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com.