National Garden Clubs | President's Projects

President's Projects

A Letter From President Linda Nelson

Garden Clubs are Making a World of Difference

During these next two years, my focus will be to show how garden clubs are making a world of difference and to lead our members and organization to understand that our choices matter because they have a direct impact on the environment and the health of our planet earth.

I'm proud to report that garden clubs have always been at the forefront of recycling efforts; providing tens of millions of dollars in donated time and resources. Additionally, we have donated nationwide to Penny Pines, Green the Gulf, Running Waters, the Fallen Hero Memorial, Hurricane Katrina, and to the east coast clean up after Hurricane Sandy. We give with our time, money, hearts and hands to make things better.

Gardeners are a special kind of people that we want and need in our communities. Gardeners clean, grow and beautify our public and private places with tapestries of native plants. We bring design and landscaping concepts to life and help save blighted areas with an intention of serving each other, as well as the cities and towns in which we live.

"A hug a day, the garden club way"

We share "a hug a day, the garden club way" and we make a world of difference because we care. Beyond giving our time and resources, we constantly strive to better understand and better manage our impact on the environment.

Our Conservation Pledge states: "I pledge to protect and conserve the natural resources of the planet earth and promise to promote education so we may become better caretakers of our air, water, forest, land, and wildlife."

But, we all sometimes unwittingly do things that harm our natural resources. I believe we all want to use good judgment and do the best job we can to care for this earth. Good judgment comes from experience, and experience comes from, well, learning from those times we could have used better judgment! One of the big benefits of our special projects is they are learning experiences that can help us make better choices regarding our planting, gardening and environmental activities. I encourage everyone to ask questions, seek solutions and find answers that will both guide our actions and also preserve our natural resources.

Making a World of Difference: Choices Matter

As a way to inspire and encourage this initiative, I have launched a special, top level project with the name "Making a World of Difference: Choices Matter". My intention with this project is to open new doors for in-depth, creative learning, educational opportunities and positive actions that are centered and focused on better managing the natural resources of our planet earth.

I invite all States and Clubs to participate in this project.

  • Participation by States is focused on promoting education through workshops, speakers, seminars etc.
  • Participation by Clubs is focused on planning and completing a project related to a local concern.

In the end, we will present outstanding State and Club projects with monetary awards and certificates of recognition. Click here to learn more.

Keep the "pledge" in the "project"

Whether as part of our special project "Making a World of Difference", or as regular ongoing activity, I encourage all of our Clubs to continue to build on existing projects or establish new projects. Keep pushing forward with Penny Pines, Plant It Pink Gardens, School Gardens. But when doing so, consider how to keep with our Conservation Pledge. Think about using muscle power instead of reaching for small motor power. Research the right plant for the right spot. Car pool to our meetings and projects. Give composting a try! Be diligent in how much water is applied to lawns and gardens.

Do some investigation and learn which chemicals damage our wildlife habitats. Develop or restore wildlife habitats, especially for our pollinators. Get involved in our special project partnering with Crown Bees to support BeeGAP: The Mason Bee Project. Through this project we're learning more about Mason bees and how we can encourage them in our gardens. They are non-aggressive and excellent pollinators. If we do not have pollinators, we may not have much food in the future!

Our projects are some of cornerstone hallmark activities of National Garden Clubs, Inc. I fully encourage, support and sponsor our Clubs in their efforts to develop and engage in projects that demonstrate our organization's care for the resources of our plant. Because, through our activities, we can spread interest and awareness across our communities and help everyone understand how their Choices Matter and how each person can Make a World of Difference.

Happy Gardening!

Linda G. Nelson
President 2013-2015
National Garden Clubs, Inc.