Mad Gardeners


Who We Are

Mad Gardeners, Inc. is an organization of professional horticulturists and serious home gardeners. The Corporation is formed for charitable, scientific, and education purposes, including to promote and foster the appreciation and understanding of horticulture, botany, and related environmental and ecological concerns; to conduct educational programs and forums; to promote public education, the development of students, and the improvement of professional skill in the field; to provide support to schools, arboreta and other organizations qualified under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code and conduct any other activities and perform any and all acts which may be necessary, useful, suitable, or proper for the furtherance of the foregoing purposes.


Upcoming Meetings - Latest Bulletin

Members can see the full bulletin with photos and links on the members page.

Mad Gardeners' Fall-Winter Schedule and More

From Assistant Newsletter Editor Kathleen Nelson, November 1, 2023

Expect a full newsletter in mid-January. Please send short articles, comments, pictures, questions to Newsletter Editor Kathy Diemer at kathy@agardenforall.com, copied to Assistant Editor Kathleen Nelson at knelson151@sbcglobal.net by January 12, 2024.

Schedule Summary

• November 18, Saturday—Regular meeting
• January 14, Sunday—Regular meeting
• February 3, Saturday—Annual Meeting for the Election of Directors
• March 2—Symposium, Housatonic Valley Regional High School
• April 12—Science Day, Housatonic Valley Regional High School

Meeting Details:

• Regular Meeting—November 18, Saturday at 2 PM—The Sherman Library
Come early to socialize—the room will be open by 1:30. Beverages are provided. We always appreciate cookies and other refreshments.

The Magical Gardens of Bunny Mellon: The talk  shares the innovations and garden focuses of this gifted and cutting-edge designer with 12 archival photos from Oak Spring Foundation. It sheds light on why Mrs. Mellon's work was ahead of her time and how she may well have started the landscape revolution (ecology, sustainability, beauty) which many landscape architects and designers are continuing in her footsteps today.

Speaker: Jennifer Yates, B I Arch is the owner of Jennifer Yates Landscapes in Sherman, CT.  She shares her passion for creating award-winning landscapes which nurture the environment and focus on garden beauty and magic for the client's delight. Her strongest skillset is color/architectural harmonies and creating environmental solutions. Her education includes the Rhode Island School of Design and New York Botanical Garden. She also has a NOFA Certificate. 

Directions: The Sherman Library, 1 Sherman Center, 06784 (www.shermanlibrary.org). See details below.

Questions: contact meeting organizer Angela Dimmitt, 860-355-3429, angeladimmitt@aol.com

• Regular Meeting—January 14, 2024, Sunday at 2 PM—Minor Memorial Library, Roxbury
Come early to socialize—the room will be open by 1:30. Beverages are provided. We always appreciate cookies and other refreshments.

Gardens of the World: Morikami Museum and Japanese Gardens in Florida. In the early 1900s, a group of young Japanese farmers arrived in what is now northern Boca Raton and formed an agricultural colony they called Yamato, an ancient name for Japan. The colony's farming endeavors were ultimately unsustainable, however, and almost all members of the original colony returned to Japan. In the mid 1970s, one of the last remaining settlers, George Sukeji Morikami, then in his 80s, donated his land to Palm Beach County with the wish for it to become a park to preserve the memory of the Yamato Colony.

The 16  acres that surround Morikami's two museum buildings include expansive Japanese gardens with strolling paths, resting areas, our world-class  bonsai collection and lakes teeming with koi and other wildlife. The wider 200-acre park features nature trails, pine forests and picnic areas. In 2001, Morikami completed a major garden expansion and renovation. The new gardens reflect major periods of Japanese garden design, from the eighth to the 20th century, and serve as an outdoor extension of the museum. According to the garden designer,  Hoichi Kurisu, each garden is intended to express the character and ideas of a unique counterpart in Japan without attempting to duplicate those gardens, and seamlessly flow together as one garden.

Speaker: Jonathan Chesler, Four Springs Landscape and Garden. Jonathan is the President of Mad Gardeners, Inc.

Directions: Minor Memorial Library, 23 South Street, Roxbury, CT 06783 (www.minormemoriallibrary.org). See details below.

Questions: contact meeting organizer Gay Vincent-Canal, gevcanal@charter.net

• Annual Meeting—February 3, Saturday at 2 PM—New Milford Public Library
Come early to socialize—the room will be open by 1:30. Beverages are provided. We always appreciate cookies and other refreshments.

Annual General Meeting for the Election of Directors

Program: Tom and Laura's First Gardens. In February of 2011, Kathleen presented "Gardening for My Son, or How to Close a Nursery in Three Easy Weekends". The talk ended with Laura and Kathleen planting perennials in the dark by torchlight. This talk will follow the story to a mature landscape enjoyed by family, friends, and lots of little kids.

Speakers: Tom and Kathleen Nelson. Of this mother-son team, Tom has the eye for the site, mom has more plant experience. It has been great fun!

Directions: New Milford Public Library, 24 Main Street, New Milford, CT 06776 (newmilfordlibrary.org). See details below.

Questions: contact meeting organizer Kathleen, knelson151@sbcglobal.net, 860-355-1547.

Directions To Meeting Locations

Directions to The Sherman Library, 1 Sherman Center, 06784 (www.shermanlibrary.org).
From the bridge in New Milford—go north on Rte 7 towards Kent for 2.8 miles and turn left at the flashing light onto Rte. 37 to Sherman. Go 3 miles, and in the village at Giddings Garage and the School, continue straight on for two hundred yards and turn left at the library then into the parking lot. 
From Kent at the traffic light—drive south on Rte 7 for 6.5 miles and turn right on Rte.55 in Gaylordsville.  In 1.0 mile, turn left (caution: traffic comes fast) onto Rte 39 to Sherman; at the end, turn right and go 200 yards to library on left as above.   
From New York State on Route 22—at the traffic light in Pawling, turn onto Quaker Hill Road/Rte 67. At the end (3.2 miles), turn right then just past the stone library, turn left onto Kirby Hill Road/Rte 67. At the end (2.5 miles), turn left onto Rte. 37, go 2.0 miles and at the Old Store, turn right onto Sawmill Rd and almost immediately turn left into the Library parking lot.

Directions to Minor Memorial Library, 23 South Street, Roxbury, CT 06783
From New Milford at the junction of Rtes 202 from the north and 67—head east on Rte 67 towards Bridgewater/Roxbury. At 5.3 miles, turn right on Wellers Bridge Road. Go 1.3 miles to stop sign and turn right on South St – the library is 0.2 mile on right.
From Woodbury on Rte 6—at the traffic light take Rte 317/Sycamore Avenue west to Roxbury for 6.1 miles. Rte 317 becomes Rte 67 in Roxbury and where 67 turns right, keep straight to stop sign (church on right) and turn left on South St as above.

Directions to New Milford Public Library, 24 Main Street, New Milford, CT 06776
From Litchfield—head south on Route 202. In New Milford, turn right onto Bridge St then turn right onto Main St. The library is on the right.
From Bridgewater—head north on Route 67. In New Milford, turn left onto Bridge St then turn right onto Main St. The library is on the right.
From Kent or Danbury—follow Route 7 to New Milford and continue onto Bridge St. Cross the bridge and turn left onto Main St. The library is on the right.

Beyond Meetings:

Time To Renew! Expect your Mad Gardeners renewal form to arrive in November.

• Interested in rock gardening with natives? The North American Rock Gardening Society is presenting a Zoom meeting on this topic at noon on November 11. Fee: $25 (plus membership fee). More info and registration at www.nargs.org/nargs-rocks-natives-buy-ticket

SAVE THE DATE! The 2024 Mad Gardeners Symposium will be held on Saturday, March 2nd at Housatonic Valley Regional High School in Falls Village, CT. Mark your calendars for this always interesting and informative event.



Our websitewww.madgardeners.org, is an excellent site. It is hard to decide what to explore next. Access to the main pages does not require a password, but you need the password to access pages containing members-only information. You can even view the complete newsletter on the website. There is a ton of educational information as well. If you have trouble logging into the website, please contact MadGardener@madgardeners.org.  Remember to check events of interest to gardeners and job listings.

To Join Mad Gardeners: Membership renewal forms are mailed to members every fall. Membership applications for new members are available 1) on-line on our website, 2) by email from moebius122@optonline.net, or 3) by sending a request for an application with a stamped self-addressed business-sized envelope to the membership coordinator, Margaret Moebius, 122 Ridge Road, Clinton Corners, NY 12514-2549. People requesting membership applications after 9/1/2023 will receive the 2024 membership application when it is ready.

Donations: Mad Gardeners members have always been generous when we have been in need of money. Dues cover our basic expenses. Please continue your generosity. Your tax-deductible donations have allowed us to cover increased costs, organize educational programs, provide student scholarships and launch the Mile-a-Minute Control Project. Thank you!


Early Career Award for Horticulturists

The Early Career Award has been developed for professionals to further develop their desire to become more knowledgeable in their field. The purpose of this award is to provide a platform for new horticulturists to advance their work and reputation.

This opportunity is available to established professional gardeners, growers, landscape designers within the first 2 to 4 years of their current position to attend classes or meetings. It may also be awarded to qualifying second-year Horticultural and Environmental Science College students.

A one-time stipend not to exceed $2,000.00 will be offered.

Each participant will be required to submit details of the costs of the proposed program and an expanded 500-word letter detailing and explaining the entire learning program and how the learning opportunity will benefit them and the local community.

The applications will be judged by the Scholarship committee based on the following criteria:
• Applicants must be a member of Mad Gardeners and/or other professional Horticultural Organization.
• Scholarly Content: Description of the desired program is original, relevant, and presented clearly.
• Writing is concise, informative and effectively conveys knowledge. The story about the applicant's need is clear.
• Importance to Horticulture: The value and contribution to the horticultural science profession is substantiated.

Application may be submitted at any time.

For questions or to submit your application, please contact Robert Gambino, Chairman, Mad Gardeners' Scholarship Committee, 4 Old Mill Road, New Milford, CT 06776 • Telephone: 860 354-3319

The award will be announced as needed.



JOIN / RENEW Mad Gardeners Membership—Download the Mad Gardeners Membership Application HERE. Visit the About Us page to learn about the benefits of joining.

Do not hesitate to recommend us to anyone who might benefit from the networking and educational opportunities we provide. As always, any donation sent in with your membership is greatly appreciated!

OUR WEBSITE—Our website is now open to the public, so it is much easier for our members to spread the word about our organization. Feel free to share the website link with prospective members. The Members section of the site remains private, however, and requires use of our password.

AREA EVENTS—Noteworthy events and announcements are listed. It is a frequently updated resource for garden-related events in the area, and is a page we recommend you visit regularly. Events open only to MG members will be listed in the Members section of the site and accessible by password.

HOW TO SHARE NEWS & EVENTS—How to spread the word about your non-profit organization’s event through us: We are an informal group. Our 3 mailed newsletters are published fall, winter and spring.

Some events are included in the newsletter, but all are forwarded to our webmaster for possible posting. Note: notices emailed to members are restricted to business-related information and meeting reminders, with other events occasionally tacked on. They are sent infrequently so we recommend that you regularly check this website for area news and events.


2021 Virtual Lecture:

Thank you to Douglas Tallamy for his talk "Plant It And They Will Come" and thank you to all who attended! The video is posted below.

Douglas Tallamy: Plant It And They Will Come
sponsored by Mad Gardeners

a non-profit organization of professional and non-professional gardeners dedicated to promoting "appreciation and cultivation of plants, and the creation, conservation and maintenance of gardens and suitable habitats for such plants through educational programs and meetings.

LINKS—Here are some links from Douglas Tallamy's talk:
• Homegrown National Park—https://homegrownnationalpark.org/
• Native Plant Finder—https://www.nwf.org/NativePlantFinder/


Contact Mad Gardeners

Email  Email:   MadGardener@MadGardeners.org

mail  Mailing Address:   PO Box 146, Sherman, CT 06784-0146

Copyright © 2021  Mad Gardeners. All rights reserved.