Saturday, May 3, 10:00 am – 1:00 pm – Insect Pests & Diseases of Apples

The University of Massachusetts Extension will sponsor a seminar in Insect Pests & Diseases of Apples – And How to Manage Them on Saturday, May 3, from 10 – 1 at Tangerini’s Spring Street Farm, 139 Spring Street in Millis. The class will be led by Dan Cooley and Jon Clements. One of the most challenging thing about growing your own fruit is knowing how to identify the insect pests and diseases that might afflict them. Learn the basics of pest and disease identification and Integrated Pest Management (IPM) in the home orchard. Hands-on, scouting, monitoring, placement of traps, etc. will be covered. $50 fee.  Register on line at Image by Jon Clements.

Friday, May 2, 6:45 pm – Flora Conservanda 2012: Changes in New England’s Rare Flora

The New England Botanical Club will meet on Friday, May 2, at 6:45 at Garden in the Woods in Framingham to hear Bill Brumback, Conservation Director of the New England Wild Flower Society speak on Flora Conservanda 2012: Changes in New England’s Rare Flora.  For complete information, visit  The meeting is open to the public.

Tuesday, September 9 – Friday, September 19 – Gardens of Normandy with Paris

Imagine days filled with vistas of the rolling French countryside, historic architecture, and exceptional horticulture. Then make this vision a reality by joining the American Horticultural Society for Gardens of Normandy with Paris. This very special tour to northwestern France will include visits to a variety of remarkable destinations, such as the famous gardens of Claude Monet at Giverny, the historic landmarks and dramatic coastline of Normandy, and of course, an abundance of wonderful gardens – both grand and intimate. In addition to experiencing many of the region’s exquisite gardens, you also will have the opportunity to meet the people behind them.

This trip will conclude with a day in Paris to see the grand gardens of the Tuileries, originally created for Catherine de Medici in the 16th century and redesigned a century later by famous French landscape architect Le Notre for King Louis XIV. We also will visit Quai Branly Museum’s spectacular vertical garden designed by Patrick Blanc. The complete brochure may be found at

Wednesday, April 30, 7:00 pm – 8:30 pm – Walden Warming: Climate Change Comes to Thoreau’s Woods

In his meticulous notes on the natural history of Concord, Massachusetts, Henry David Thoreau records the first open flowers of highbush blueberry on May 11, 1853. If he were to look for the first blueberry flowers in Concord today, mid-May would be too late. In the 160 years since Thoreau’s writings, warming temperatures have pushed blueberry flowering three weeks earlier than in Thoreau’s time. The climate around Thoreau’s beloved Walden Pond is changing, with visible ecological consequences. In his new book, Walden Warming, Richard B. Primack, PhD, Professor of Biology, Boston University,  uses Thoreau and Walden, icons of the conservation movement, to track the effects of a warming climate on Concord’s plants and animals. Under the attentive eyes of Primack, the notes that Thoreau made years ago are transformed from charming observations into scientific data sets. Primack finds that many wildflower species that Thoreau observed have declined in abundance or have disappeared from Concord. Hear how warming temperatures have altered these and other aspects of Thoreau’s Concord, from the dates when ice departs from Walden Pond in late winter, to the arrival of birds in the spring, to the populations of fish, salamanders, and butterflies that live in the woodlands, river meadows, and ponds. The Arnold Arboretum program will take place Wednesday, April 30, from 7 – 8:30 in the Hunnewell Building of the Arboretum.  Free for Arboretum members, $5 for nonmembers.  Register online at

Tuesday, April 29, 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm – Esplanade Association Annual Meeting

The 2014 Annual Meeting of The Esplanade Association will take place Tuesday, April 29, from 6:30 – 8 at The Hampshire House, 84 Beacon Street, Boston, Massachusetts.  Meet new Executive Director Kate Fichter and hear about the accomplishments of the past year  and challenges facing the organization.  If you are interested in attending, email

Kate Fichter Named New Executive Director of The Esplanade Association

The Esplanade Association is pleased to welcome Kate Fichter as its new Executive Director. Kate has extensive experience in civic design, project management, and long-term planning, having worked for both the Massachusetts House of Representatives and the Massachusetts Department of Transportation. A native Bostonian, she grew up in the Back Bay and has known the Esplanade since her childhood. She is a graduate of the
University of Chicago and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Kate will be taking over from Margo Newman, The Esplanade Association’s Executive Board Chair, who has graciously been our interim volunteer Executive Director for the past year. Kate’s duties will include direction of all the operations of the organization, including capital projects, program activities, park care, and advocacy. To read more about The Esplanade Association, visit

Thursday, April 24, 6:30 pm – 7:30 pm – The Race for Spring: How Climate Change Alters Plant Communities

Climate change research indicates that “biological spring” has shifted earlier in most parts of the world, with plants leafing and flowering approximately one week earlier than a century ago. Such work uses plant phenology—the timing of life-history events—to track responses to warming. Plant phenology is strongly linked to climate, can be easily observed, and affects important ecosystem services, thus it is one of the most reported and critical indicators of climate change. However it is also one of the most variable—showing remarkable variation across species, habitats, and time. Elizabeth Wolkovich, PhD, Assistant Professor at the Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University, (and talented photographer – see below) will speak about her research aimed at improved prediction of this variation and how temporal assembly and species attributes may interact with phenology to shape current and future plant communities. The program will be held in the Hunnewell Building of the Arboretum on Thursday, April 24, from 6:30 – 7:30. Free, but registration requested at

Saturday, April 26 – Sunday, April 27, 10:00 am – 5:00 pm – Bay State African Violet Show and Sale

The Bay State African Violet Society puts on another spectacular show at Tower Hill Botanic Garden April 26 – 27 featuring America’s favorite houseplant, the African Violet (Saintpaulia sp.). All are welcome to enter their own plants and floral designs for judging to win ribbons and prizes. Participate in workshops on African Violet care. Start your own collection at the sale, where commercially grown plants and supplies are sold, along with plants grown by members.

Schedule of Events:

Saturday April 26, 2014

11:30am and 1:30pm
Lecture Demonstration
How to repot a violet: guidelines for when to repot, demonstration of how to repot, potting down a neck, removing old leaves and suckers. Propagation of African violets: how to leaf propagate, timetable for growth, and separating baby plantlets. This workshop will also include general care of African violets: identifying types, soil and fertilizer, watering, lights, schedule for repotting.

3pm – Guided Walk-through of the Show
Commentary on African violets, how they are judged, what denotes an award winning violet, discussion of the different sizes and types of violets; overview of the designs, including the hows and whys of flower design using African violets.

Sunday April 27, 2014

11:00am and 1:30pm
Lecture Demonstration
How to repot a violet: guidelines for when to repot, demonstration of how to repot, potting down a neck, removing old leaves and suckers. Propagation of African violets: how to leaf propagate, timetable for growth, and separating baby plantlets. This workshop will also include general care of African violets: identifying types, soil and fertilizer, watering, lights, schedule for repotting.

Guided Walk-through of the Show
Commentary on the African violets, how they are judged, what denotes an award winning violet, discussion of the different sizes and types of violets; overview of the designs, including the hows and whys of flower design using African violets.

Educational Display
A member will be available at the Educational Table to answer questions and give more informal demonstrations to smaller groups of people.

African Violet Basic Care Video will be played in the workshop/education room.

Cost: Included with admission to Tower Hill.  For more information visit

Tuesday, April 22, 10:00 am – Earth Day Restoration with the New England Wild Flower Society

Celebrate Earth Day by joining a group of New England Wild Flower Society volunteers to restore Arthur Morency Woods, a 15-acre parcel of conservation land in Framingham. These “habitat islands” in densely populated areas are of great importance to wildlife. Meet at the Arthur Street Extension in Framingham at 10 AM. Plenty of parking at the entrance on Arthur Street. For more information visit, or call 508-877-7630.


Sunday, May 4 – Prince River Preserve Bioblitz

East Quabbin Land Trust ( will be hosting an ecological inventory day on its Prince River Preserve property in Barre, Massachusetts on Sunday, May 4, 2014. Stewardship Coordinator Caren Caljouw welcomes participation by any who might be interested. Expertise in other areas such as herpetology, mammalogy, ornithology, botany, etc. would be very helpful, too. Located to the east of Old Reservoir, off Flaherty Road, the property is 690 acres of hilly terrain dominated by mixed hardwood and conifer forest interspersed with wooded swamps. The date suggests that you’ll be encountering early invertebrates, amphibians and reptiles, spring ephemeral plants, and migrating birds. Habitats include moist woods and lake shoreline. Visit the website for additional details.

Tuesday, April 29, 5:00 pm – 44th Annual Meeting of the Friends of the Public Garden

You are cordially invited to the 44th Annual Meeting of the Friends of the Public Garden on Tuesday, April 29, at 5 pm, at First Church in Boston, 66 Marlborough Street, Boston.  The featured speaker will be Bill Walczak, Vice President of External Relations at Shawmut Design and Construction, and a member of the Friends Council.  His topic is Opportunities for Parks in Boston’s New Political Environment.  He is a long-time parks advocate and was a candidate for Mayor of Boston in 2013.  Reception to follow. Kindly respond by April 22 to 617-723-8144, or email

Tuesday, April 22, 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm – The Balance of Nature: Ecology’s Enduring Myth

The idea of a balance of nature has been a dominant part of Western philosophy since before Aristotle, and it persists in the public imagination and even among some ecologists today. In his lively and thought-provoking book, The Balance of Nature: Ecology’s Enduring Myth, John Kricher, Professor of Biology at Wheaton College demonstrates that nature in fact is not in balance, nor has it ever been at any stage in Earth’s history. John will explain how and why this notion of a natural world in balance has endured for so long, and show why, in these times of extraordinary human influence on the planet’s ecosystems, it is critical that we accept and understand that nature is constantly in flux, and, in effect, quite naturally out of balance.

This Arnold Arboretum lecture will take place Tuesday, April 22 at 6:30 pm in the Hunnewell Building of the Arboretum. Free for Arboretum members, $10 for nommembers. Register online at

Thursday, May 15, 9:00 am – 5:00 pm – Hidden Gardens of Beacon Hill


The Beacon Hill Garden Club invites you to join them to celebrate their annual Hidden Gardens tour, always held on the third Thursday of May. You will be part of their most important and enduring tradition that through the years has raised significant funds for environmental, horticultural and conservation organizations across Boston, Massachusetts, and the United States.

The 2014 Tour will be held on Thursday, May 15th, 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., rain or shine. Tickets may be purchased at $35.00 in advance and $45.00 day of event, any of three ways: online (click here), by mail (click here), or at select retail and business locations beginning mid-March. Tickets may be purchased at $45 per ticket the day of the tour at Information Tables on Charles Street on Beacon Hill.

On Tour Day, select member gardens and ribbon gardens will be open to the public.  Direct any questions to them at


Tuesday, April 29, 10:00 am – Boston Committee Spring Lecture and Luncheon

The Boston Committee of the Garden Club of America will hold its Spring 2014 Lecture and Luncheon on Tuesday, April 29, at The Country Club, 191 Clyde Street, Brookline.  Guest speaker Catie Marron, co-chair of the board of directors of Friends of the High Line, and Vogue magazine editor, is the author of the recently released book City Parks: Public Places, Private Thoughts.  “We live in our parks, and our parks live in us.  Parks are where we make loose appointments with friends, where we smooth out our nerves, where we introduce our babies to the outside world.  Parks are of the earth, they are of the people, and they are first and foremost, free.”  Catie will escort us on a literary and photographic journey focused on the gift of Parks in our lives.

Registration and coffee will begin at 10:00 am, and the lecture begins at 10:30 am.  An optional luncheon will follow the lecture.  Garden Club of the Back Bay members will receive a written invitation and a car pool notice in the mail.  For others who wish to attend, email$feed$

Sunday, May 11, 10:30 am – Duckling Day

Join in this beloved Mother’s Day tradition! The Duckling Day Parade celebrates Make Way for Ducklings, the classic children’s book by Robert McCloskey. Every year, over a thousand children dress as their favorite characters from the story and gather on Boston Common to enjoy face painting, a puppet show, and other entertainment before marching through the Common behind the famous Harvard Band to the Public Garden.

New for 2014: the new mayor of Boston, Martin J. Walsh will continue the tradition of welcoming the ducklings in attendance. Plus – the Knucklebones team will bring their wonderful play equipment to encourage duckling frolicking…while Joint Ventures Physical Therapy will be offering free mini-massages for moms to take a moment to relax.  Event will be held rain or shine, and there are no refunds. Register online ($35 per family, $40 on event day) at  Online registration ends May 10 at 8:00 pm.

Bumble Bee Watch – Calling Citizen Scientists

As the season warms up, take time not just to smell the roses, but to photograph the bees on the roses. Bumble Bee Watch is looking for citizen scientists across the U.S. to record sightings of bumble bees, those heavy lifters of pollination, and their nests. Set up an account now, and you’ll be ready to submit photos from your digital camera or cell phone as soon as you spot your first bee. Go to for lots more information.  Photo from

Wednesday, April 16, 6:00 pm – The Arnold Arboretum: An Urban Gem of Landscape and Diversity

William Friedman, PhD, Arnold Arboretum and Arnold Professor of Organismic and Evolutionary Biology, Harvard University, will speak on America’s oldest public arboretum and discuss new initiatives in collections development, botanical and horticultural research, and programs for the public. From mapping an urban wild with drones to climate change studies to Tree Mobs and sophisticated GIS-based collections management, come learn what old trees and new thinking are up to in the heart of Boston and the Emerald Necklace. Wednesday, April 16, 6:00pm refreshments; 6:30pm lecture at the Hunnewell Building of the Arnold Arboretum, the Arborway, Boston.Free for Arnold Arboretum and BSLA members, $10 nonmembers. Offered with the Boston Society of Landscape Architects.  Register on line at$daE2N3K4ZzOUsqbU5sYu_9vNggBDnTE_7Fe8mz2xvWCsjLu883Ygn4B49Lvm9bPe2QeMKQdVeZmXF$9l$4uCZ8QDXhaHEp3rvzXRJFdy0KqPHLoMevcTLo3h8xh70Y6N_U_CryOsw6FTOdKL_jpQ-&CONTENTTYPE=image/jpeg

Saturday, April 26, 10:00 am – 2:00 pm – The 100 Square Foot, 25 Tree, 5 Variety Backyard Apple Orchard Fruiting Wall

The University of Massachusetts Extension has a fabulous class and hands on seminar scheduled for Saturday, April 26, from 10 – 2, with Jon Clements at Wards Berry Farm, 614 South Main Street in Sharon. Your fruiting wall will produce two bushels each of five apple varieties in just 3 years from planting using just over 100 square feet of backyard! We will spend some time indoors talking about site, variety, rootstock selection, planting, and annual care (including pest management) of your fruiting apple wall. Then, we will go outdoors and actually plant the orchard from start to finish including site preparation, fertilization, pruning, and tree support. Voila! Instant orchard. There will be a break for participants to enjoy a BYO lunch. $85 fee.  Register at

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