A local group for every gardener


By LINDA BRANDT,  Correspondent

Garden clubs and plant societies are recognized for their flower shows, teas, tours and public green spaces.

But the No. 1 reason they exist is members’ enjoyment of plants and their enthusiasm for sharing and nourishing that enjoyment through workshops, websites, lending libraries, meetings and links to product sources and resources.

Members answer questions and identify plants for other gardeners, maintain scenic green areas in the community and raise money for scholarships — in addition to hosting sales, shows, open houses and tours.

Garden clubs are nonprofit and their members are volunteers. And meetings feature educational programs by club members and industry experts. Some maintain clubhouses and reference or lending libraries. Most of all, they have camaraderie and enthusiastically welcome anyone with an inkling of interest in plants. Besides the groups listed here, there are those devoted to cycads, bamboo, herbs, ferns, ginger, daylilies, bonsai, nature printing, community gardening, butterflies, hibiscus, roses and more.


At the Succulent Society, the cactus garden features a new cactus sales house, open any Monday from 9-noon and the third Saturday of the month. subber: A bounty of bromeliads

The Sarasota Bromeliad Society, meets the second Monday of the month, 7:30 p.m., at Marie Selby Botanical Gardens.

Mo' Peppa Please, Red Waif, Fireball, Dyckia Snaggletooth and Night Spot are names of a few of the winning entries from the Sarasota Bromeliad Society's previous shows and on display at the 2013 show, “Bedazzled Bromeliads," Sept. 27 - 29 at Marie Selby Botanical Gardens.

Sarasota Bromeliad Society president Theresa Bert refers to her hobby as “bromeliads run amok."

Bert welcomes visitors to meetings in hopes that the bromeliad bug will bite them as well. Members frequently bring in well-established unusual specimens for the monthly raffle. subber: Native or not?

Gardeners who believe in the aesthetic, economic and environmental value of native Florida plants and work to preserve, restore and repopulate them, are active in 37 chapters of the Florida Native Plant Society.

Serenoa (Sarasota, Manatee, DeSoto and Hardee) and Mangrove (South Sarasota County, and Charlotte County) are the local chapters.

Serenoa meets the third Monday of the month, 7 p.m., at Marie Selby Gardens, 811 S. Palm Avenue.

Mangrove meets the second Tuesday of the month, 7 p.m., at Lemon Bay Park, 570 Bay Park Boulevard, Englewood.


Last modified: September 19, 2013
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