Tag Archive | Yuletide Fair

Happenings – Holiday Edition

We have so many photos to share of our many recent activities that a special Happenings edition became necessary. Let’s begin with a recent and festive event – our annual Holiday Luncheon, held at the warm & welcoming Wentworth Country Club. Our very talented photographer, Ann H., documented the special day…

A big Thank You to our Hospitality Chair, Nancy D. and her committee, for organizing this special celebration!

Doing EAGC’s part to decorate the towns of Exeter and Stratham for the holidays, our Civic Beautification committee worked on wreaths and pots for the Exeter Historical Society and a special arrangement for the Stratham Municipal Center entrance. Jan C. and her crew whipped up some beautiful decorations for the Historical Society and Linda S., Lee C. and Ellen J. (with the assistance of her daughter) created a very charming montage for the Municipal Center. Also in Stratham, Linda S.’s committee prepared the Veterans Garden for the winter.

There have been so many activities lately that it’s easy to forget about our very successful Yuletide Fair fundraiser in November. Thanks to the participation of many members, under the leadership of Johann S. and Lee C., EAGC sold lots of holiday-themed arrangements, wreaths, and decorations – pleasing fair attendees and providing funding for our programs going forward.

In November, our Membership committee tried something new – a New Member brunch. Chairs Nickky J. and Jane J. organized a lovely get-together for new garden club members at LuAnn F.’s home. Also invited were some “seasoned” members, in the hope of making our new members feel welcomed and to acquaint them with others in the club. Judging by the enthusiastic response, this was an inspirational idea that will be repeated in the future.

There’s one more holiday event that always results in some interesting (and sometimes questionable) photos. That, of course, is Betsy V.’s Swap Shop Party. I’m saving those for next month’s Happenings, just to let the anticipation build. Don’t miss it! In the meantime…

September Happenings

EAGC has kicked off its new club season with the exciting results of a new Environment & Conservation project – the beginnings of a Pollinator Pathway through Exeter and Stratham, courtesy of a new approach to our Mini-Grant program. The 2023 mini-grants were awarded specifically to encourage the creation of pollinator gardens, and the recipients’ results were on display at our September general meeting.

Eight grants were awarded to gardeners who were either expanding their pollinator gardens or starting one from scratch. E&C committee members who toured the resulting gardens were encouraged by the pollinator plants established this summer, knowing that these plants will multiply in future years – providing sustenance and habitat for our local pollinators.

At our meeting, E&C chairs Linda V. and Betsy V. assembled a detailed display of the gardens – along with descriptions of each gardener’s plans – so members could better appreciate how the mini-grant funds were used.

More detailed information about the Mini-Grant gardens can be found on the website, on the Community Service Page.

Many of our members have been gearing up for our second annual participation in the GFWC Yuletide Fair on November 18, at the Cooperative Middle School in Stratham. Workshops are underway for making our sales items and volunteers are being recruited for all phases of the fundraiser. Johann S. and Lee C. are the organizers and they will be signing up helpers at our October 19 meeting. Last fall many of our members enjoyed gathering to work on projects or to design arrangements – these workshops were perfect opportunities to get to know one another better and to be creative. This year’s biggest workshop will be on November 17, the day before the sale, when the fresh arrangements will be assembled and preparations will be finalized.

Our Awards Committee will be presenting the 2023 Awards for Outstanding Gardens at the Oct. 19 meeting. In addition to residential and commercial awards, a third new award category will be announced. Those attending the meeting will have an opportunity to meet the recipients and learn about their gardening efforts. In addition, our meeting will include the usual Hort Moment and a short E&C presentation, as well as a discussion about a new direction for our Spring Auction and Luncheon.

Linda S. took this photo of our club’s display at the entrance to the Stratham Municipal Center offices. The Civic Beautification committee maintains a display here year-round.


Keep up with the EAGC Board Meetings – the minutes are always posted on the website under Members Only, on the Minutes page.

The Rye Driftwood Garden Club will be hosting Jana Millbocker on Tuesday, Oct. 17 at 9:30 at the Rye Congregational Church. Jana will be presenting “Deck the Halls.” More info can be found here.

Have you ever used an app on your phone to identify a plant? Some results can be questionable. Here’s a review of the apps, according to Michigan State Extension. The top performing app in their 2021 evaluation was PictureThis, with 67% of the suggested identifications being correct. Following this, there was a cluster of three apps with about 50% accuracy: PlantNet, Plant Story and LeafSnap. iNaturalist, came in fifth place with about 30% accuracy.

Fall has traditionally been garden clean-up time. But did you know that about 30% of New England’s native bees build nests above ground? The Tufts Pollinator Initiative says a great way to support these above-ground nesting bees is to leave dead plant stems standing in gardens for at least two years. Read the full article, “The right way to leave stems for native bees” here.