Tuesday, December 11, 2012

District IV Celebrates at Strathmore Mansion

North Bethesda, MD, December 11, 2012:  About 70 members of District IV clubs gathered to "shop and sip" at a late afternoon reception at the Strathmore Mansion.  For over two decades, District IV has been festooning the Georgian revival mansion for the holidays.  This year ten clubs decorated the interior and another eight clubs created double-sided wreaths for the exterior.  The reception gave members an opportunity to enjoy their work at Strathmore.

--Photos by Bill Dean and David Healy

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Holiday Arrangements at Judges Council Meeting

On November 28th at the US National Arboretum there was a Judges' Council meeting.  At that meeting Mary Ellen Alden shared some beautiful holiday arrangements.  Please enjoy and maybe they will inspire you this holiday season.
Judges' Council was affiliated with the National Capital Area Garden Clubs, Inc. in 1956. An Accredited Flower Show Judge is formally instructed in the guidelines presented in THE HANDBOOK OF FLOWER SHOWS, a National Garden Club book of standards used to judge a Standard Flower Show. Judges attend National Capital Area sponsored programs at Judges’ Council meetings on design and horticulture to stay up to date on acceptable Standard Flower Show practices as approved by the National Garden Clubs, Inc.

The Council of Accredited Judges also sponsors two very popular teaching programs.
Morning of Design programs are presented by the Judges' Council several times a year.  Floral design demonstrations assist garden club members with interpretation of the flower arranging styles listed in the HANDBOOK FOR FLOWER SHOWS.
Flower Show School is where the requirements and procedures for becoming a Flower Show Judge are taught.

For more information please email:

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

CAR Meeting in Cleveland

Greatings from Cleveland, Ohio!   Danielle Brabazon, Anne Bucher, Betty Lewis, David Healy, Sandi Piccirillo, Vickie Godwin, Shirley Nicolai, Mary Corley, Poss Tarpley, Babs McClendon and Charmane Truesdall were able to represent the NCA at the 2012 CAR Convention which took place October 28-30th.  

The Ohio hostesses did a fantastic job putting together a wonderful conference.  The Monday tour of the Rock n' Roll Hall of Fame and the Cleveland Botanical Gardens (CBG)  were quite enjoyable, even though there was plenty of rain.  Hightlights at CBG were taking in the Western Reserve Herb Society Herb Garden  (WRHSHG)
Overlooking WRHSHG
View of WRHSHG
from inside followed by a fabulous view of the Kohl Gates.  These Gates were designed by Albert Paley and totally complement the CBG collection as well as their Madagascar and Costa Rica exhibits.   The CBG very graciously opened their doors to us on a Monday and arranged to have tour guides walk us around.
Many enjoyed the famous Glasshouse that the CBG opened in 2003 featuring the spiny desert of Madagascar and the rainforest of Costa Rica.  These two rooms were fantastically planted.  The sinage was wonderful.  What a great refusge from all the rain pouring down outside.

We had tour guides that were very knowledgeable and who answered all our questions.  How wonderful that CBG has invested much time and energy into understanding to ecosystems that are threatened.  It was facinating to witness how animals and plants interact as well as to explore the different geology and climate.   Understanding our gardens is so much larger than just knowing what plants to put in the ground!

On the left one of the great signs used to explain inside the Greenhouse.
On the right, our tour guide drawing our attention to the plant.

Charmane and Vickie take a moment
to talk about the flora
The ladies of Ohio also put together a fun presentation using design to talk about the history of Cleveland.   Dottie Howatt gave a program highlighting all the fantastic ways to highlight Horticulture when organizing a flower show.  Frank Feysa showed all the great ways to use the new Oasis products.    Here is a link to the CAR summary .    In addition there were two excellent workshops on Tuesday, one featured the artwork of Pablo Picasso and was delivered by Felicia Zavarella Stadelman.  The other featured orchid cultivation and care by Edgar Stehli.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Morning of Design

The weather was a perfect suny, autumn day in Fort Washington, MD.  St. John's Episcipal Church was the perfect venue for a Morning of Design.  Tanta-Cove Garden Club did a fabulous job hosting for District 1!  Many first time attendees were wowed by the designs of Babs McClendon, Karen Lucas and Jane Goodman.  

Here are just a few pictures of such a wonderful 

Babs prepared a handout that many in the audience found very useful.  She also told a story of buying fishing equiment to give motion to a display.  

Karen displayed some of her favorite treasures which she finds out and about like pieces of driftwood.  She talked about the importance of a base not distracting from the sculpture.

Jane, as well as Karen, demonstrated how changing the background color can change the arrangement.  Here Jane is adding flowers to an arrangement with a red background and then check out the arrangement with a yellow background.
Jane also stressed the importance of depth.

Everyone had a chance to walk around and look at the arrangements after the presentations.

September NCA Fall Meeting

Evalee Ciuca Inspiration
Dr. Colleen Hefferan

What a fabulous meeting the NCA held on September 25th at the Cheverly Community Center.  President Godwin welcomed us all and then Evalee Ciuca gave a wonderful inspiration!  The meeting proceeded with informational talks by Dr. Colleen Hefferan of the USNArboretum and Scott Aker.  The importance of the 5 rain gardens, President Godwin's project, is really astonishing to help decrease financial burden on the Arboretum with their impermiable surfaces.

Pertula George-Redd and Anita Adalja
Scott Aker

In addition, all attending were given a wonderful introduction to the Common Good City Farm by Pertula George-Redd, Executive Director of Common Good City Farm along with Urban Grower,  Anita Adalja.  It is very impressive how much produce the farm grows.

President Godwin also presented a certificate to acknowledgement to  Karen O'Meara for completing all the NCA Schools!  Three Garden Club's celebrated anniversaries: Capital Hill Garden Club,  Goddard Garden Club and Mount Airy Claybreakers Garden Club.  

Each of the District Directors gave an image of the future and then there was the discussion on the changes to the Bylaws.

The featured presentation by Barbara Glickman of Acorn Garden Club was fabulous.  So many wonderful gardens and parks are in the Washington DC area.  Her book quite appropriately titled Capital Splendor is fantastic!

Mount Airy Claybreakers provided 4 beautiful centerpieces to help pull the beautiful autumn day into the community center.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

50th Anniversary Bench in Fern Valley, USNA

What a wonderful fall day to spend at the US National Arboretum (USNA).   NCA President Vickie Godwin and friends were able to enjoy the large and comfortable bench which was dedicated 2 years ago during the 50th Anniversary of Fern Valley.  What a fabulous project the National Capital Area began back in 1959 under the guidance of Edith Bittinger and Margaret Donnell.  They were able to transform an area from invasive vines and plants to a fantastic native plant garden.  The first plantings were ferns thus giving the name to this beautiful region of the USNA.
Click on Fern Valley to be redirected to the NCAGC webpage history of this fabulous garden.

Friday, August 31, 2012

National Capital Area Supports Common Good City Farm

On Wednesday, August 29th, 2012, NCA President Vickie Godwin presented Common Good City Farm in Washington, DC, with a check for $4,300.  Located between 2nd and 4th Streets on V Street in NW, the Common Good City Farm is making a difference for low-income residents of the city.   Many thanks to all the garden clubs in the four districts of the NCA that contributed to Common Good City Farm.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Presidents Trip to France

What a fabulous time was had by all who were able to partake of the 2012 Presidents Trip to France!  The French River Cruise, highlighting the Burgundy and Provence regions, by Vantage travel was a 15 day trip from July 16 - 30.  They spent 11 nights in an outside cabin on Vantage's private river ship.  The trip began in Chalon-sur-Saone and ended in Nice.  They were able to partake of 13 private tours!  Below left, Vicki and Stew Godwin enjoy a magical dinner in Paris at Le Train Bleu, a 1900 restaurant famous for the weathly Parisian guests waiting for their train to the French Rivera.

Above right, Vickie and Anne Bucher are enjoying a wine tasting tour in Southern France.  A delightful vacation for all who participated.

Monday, June 4, 2012

District IV Club receives a surprise

photo submitted by David Healy

During District IV’s Presidents’ Luncheon on June 1, 2012 at Strathmore Hall, members of the Bethesda Community Garden Club were surprised to learn that the club received first place and a $300 check from National Garden Clubs, Inc., for Shirley Nicolai’s President’s Project Award.  The award was announced May 19, 2012 at the National Garden Club’s annual convention in Buffalo, NY.  The President’s Project is gardening in public spaces with an emphasis on edibles, container gardening and trees and shrubs.  The Bethesda Community Garden Club project was the installation of planters with seasonal plantings in the concrete area between the parking lot and entrance of the Bethesda Library on Arlington Road.

Pictured from the left:  Holly Joseph, President of Bethesda Community Garden Club, District IV Director Bette Lewis, Vickie Bailey, awards chairman for the Bethesda Community, Judith Graef, past president of Bethesda Community, and Anna Mae Kobbe, District IV awards chairman.
Submitted to NCA Blog by David Healy, NCA 1st Vice President

NGC Convention in Buffalo

Vickie Godwin, iphone
Another great NGC Convention!  So many from the NCA were able to travel to Buffalo, NY during the weekend on May 19th.   Can you believe it has only been a year since NCA hosted the 2011 Convention when Shirley Nicolai was installed as President of NGC and there was dancing in the street!
Attendees from the NCA shown with Vickie Godwin, President of NCA, are Poss Tapley, Dale DeFeo, Estelle Woodcock, Ellen Spencer, Anne Bucher, Libby Coffey, Jo Sellers, Babs McClendon, M'Ellen Alsen and Jeannette Vaughn.
There is always so many faces to see and so much to learn at these annual conventions.  Consider attending the 2013 National Garden Club Convention which will be in Seattle, Washington May 24-26, 2013.
Check out these additional National Garden Club photos posted on flickr.  There are some really great miniature designs!

Springtime! A Special Floral Event

Jeanne T. Nelson with Shirley Nicolai and Vickie Godwin
                                          photo from The Capital Gardener

The National Capital Area hosted a fabulous floral event in April!  Special presentor, Jeanne T. Nelson, CAR President, dazzeled with her floral designs using interesting containers and spectacular flowers.  Also present were NGC President Shirley Nicolai and NCA President Vickie Godwin.

Monday, May 7, 2012

Harlin Turner Award

The NCA has created a new award to honor the memory of Harlin Turner, a much loved member of the NCA.  The Harlin G. Turner for the most innovative design is a rosette of fuchsia ribbon. The intent is to recognize a design that incorporates its’ imaginative manipulation of components. It may be offered to the most innovative exhibit scoring 85 points or above in the Design Division provided all the other general design award requirements are met. An exhibit may have been awarded another topic exhibitor award and is still eligible for this award. Exhibits in both Standard and Small Standard Flower Shows in both creative and traditional styles are eligible. Only one award may be offered per show.

photo taken by Vickie Godwin iphone

NCAGC Awards Meeting

On Thursday, March 29th, the National Capital Area met at the City of Fairfax Regional Library for the annual Awards Meeting.  Vickie Godwin, President and Jo Sellers, 2nd Vice-President (Awards Chairperson) ran a fabulously attended meeting.    Arlene Stewart (DII - Centennial) was the NCA Award of Honor recipient.  Congratulations to Arlene!  The NCA and DII is grateful for all your work and dedication!

District I Awardees
District II Awardees

District IV Awardees
District III Awardees

Jo Sellers presented clubs individually with awards while Vickie Godwin congratulated.   How nice to see that many clubs in the four districts were honored!  The annual Awards meeting is a great time to catch up on all the great works that the different clubs are participating in throughout Washington, DC, Northern Virginia and Montgomery and Prince Georges Counties in Maryland.

Photos by Marge Stembel

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

District II Goes to Philadelphia Flower Show

Aloha!  What a great time the members of District II had at the Philadelphia Flower Show!  How nice to sit back and enjoy the ride on the District II bus trip on March 6th, 2012.   The ladies from Dominion Valley Garden Club shine beautifully next to one of the many fabulous displays!