Category Archives: Meeting

Tuesday, October 13, 7:30 pm – Small Carpenter Bees: What Insect Societies Tell Us

The first Cambridge Entomological Club meeting of the 2015-16 year will be held on Tuesday October 13 at 07:30 PM. Please join them in in room 101 of the Museum of Comparative Zoology, as Sandra Rehan will present a talk entitled “Comparative biology of Ceratina small carpenter bees: What early insect societies can tell us about the evolution of sociality”.

The small carpenter bees, genus Ceratina, offer important insights into the early stages of social group formation. Small carpenter bees provide a unique opportunity to study the evolution and maintenance of social behavior in a group benefitting from detailed life history studies and a well-established phylogeny. Ceratina are globally-distributed and species range from solitary to complex societies; solitary species are typically found in temperate environments and social groups are recurrent in tropical regions. Sandra’s data highlights the importance of molecular phylogeny and historical biogeography for understanding the relative roles of phylogenetic inertia and regional ecology on the evolution of social behavior. Moreover, maternal care is a key precursor for the evolution of eusociality. Maternal investment is often determined, in part, by the quality and quantity of food provided to the offspring. Such maternal manipulation of nutrients, during development in particular, can influence the activation of hormones, nutrient storage, and social interactions of offspring once development is complete. The small carpenter bee, Ceratina calcarata, is native to New England and this species is of special interest because of its prolonged maternal care and mothers who produce a special class of small daughters that help raise their siblings. Sandra examines nutritional, developmental and behavioral variation among offspring to determine the role of maternal manipulation and social environment on offspring care and worker behavior in incipient insect societies.

The meeting is free and open to the public. Snacks will be provided and you are also welcome to join them at 5:45 PM for an informal pre-meeting dinner at West Side Lounge Restaurant.

Wednesday, October 14, 10:00 am – The History of the Tulip and the Tulipmania Movement in 17th Century Netherlands

Explore the history of this wandering beauty with Ila Cox. The Garden Club of the Back Bay’s October meeting and lecture will be held Wednesday, October 14 beginning at 10 am at The College Club, 44 Commonwealth Avenue in Boston.

From its cradle in the foothills of the Himalayas, we follow the tulip’s journey over the centuries through Persia, the Ottoman Empire and Western Europe in the 16th century. In the Golden Age of 17th century Holland, the tulip takes on larger prominence as it intersects with the burgeoning Dutch economy. It becomes a principle actor in an economic drama of historic proportion. Tulipmania has direct relevance for our 21st century experience with the inflated values of certain commodities and lack of market regulations. The tulip moved west during the 17th century and was introduced to North America and other colonies. Today Dutch tulip production has become a major commercial success as the tulip is marketed to the world.

Ila Cox is a plant lover, gardener, garden traveler, and a student of garden and plant history. She studied flower arranging with Sheila McQueen, has been a church flower arranger, owner of The Potting Shed, and is a member of the Andover and Boxford Garden Clubs, former Chair of the Flower Committee of the MFA Associates, and lectures on flower arranging and horticultural topics.

Garden Club of the Back Bay members will receive written notice of this meeting. Guests are welcome. Please email if you plan to attend.

Monday, September 21, 3:00 pm – Boston City Council Hearing on Gas Leaks in Boston

There are over 3,000 gas leaks under Boston’s streets, and that’s a BIG problem because:

Leaked gas can explode
Gas leaks can aggravate asthma
Gas leaks kill trees
We’re paying for the lost gas: $90 million a year
We could heat 200,000 homes with the gas that’s escaping from leaky Boston-area pipes
Leaky old gas pipes may be Boston’s number one source of global warming gases – bigger than the emissions from all the cars and trucks in Boston!

Come out September 21st to share your concerns about gas leaks with our City Councilors! For more information and to get involved, contact

Wednesday, September 16, 10:00 am – 12:00 noon – Hydrangeas

The Garden Club of the Back Bay opens its 2015-2016 year on Wednesday, September 16, with an emphasis on Collectors and Collections, at The College Club, 44 Commonwealth Avenue, at 10:00 am, with speaker Gail Anderson on the topic of Hydrangeas.

Endless Summer, Snow Queen, Pinky Winky, Incrediball – There has been an explosion of trademarked hydrangea cultivars with cute and quirky names. Gail Anderson will help demystify this immensely popular genus and will include tips for choosing the right hydrangea for your garden. You’ll enjoy an instructional look at the genus brought to popular attention by such disparate personalities as Martha Stewart and renowned plantsman Michael Dirr. Topics covered will include a primer of hydrangea species, cultivars commonly available for sale, flower shape and color, including soil pH, and how to plant and prune.

Gail Anderson is a former teacher and magazine journalist. She earned a Certificate in Landscape Design and Maintenance from North Shore Community College and was certified as a Massachusetts Master Gardener. Gail worked for six years as a staff horticulturist for The Trustees of Reservations at Long Hill, an estate garden in Beverly, Massachusetts known for its woody plant collection. She has also served as a photography judge and jury member at the Boston Flower & Garden Show and has lectured at the Portland, Maine Flower Show. Gail is a member of the Ipswich Garden Club.

GCBB members will receive written notification of the meeting.  If you are not a member but wish to attend, please email  Image of Pinky Winky from

Friday, August 14 – Sunday, August 16 – NOFA Summer Conference

The Northeast Organic Farming Association (NOFA) Summer Conference takes place August 14-16, 2015 at UMass Amherst in Massachusetts.  This year’s main conference features 144 individual sessions with 27 different topic areas. Workshops address organic farming, gardening, land care, draft animals, homesteading, sustainability, nutrition, food politics, activism, and more. The theme for this year’s Conference is “Healing the Climate, Healing Ourselves: Regeneration through Microbiology”.

This year, among the five pre-conference intensives will be an all-day seminar on Friday, August 14, given by Natasha Campbell-McBride, on the healing potential of food for overcoming chronic illness. She will also give the first keynote on Friday night.

Our second keynoter, Ronnie Cummins will speak Saturday night on “Reversing Global Warming & Rural Poverty through Regenerative Organics”.

Each year, we offer educational and fun workshops designed for kids and teens where children bond with others throughout the Northeast while parents attend workshops and the plenaries.

This is an event for the whole family: Music, dance, films, games, animal rides, and meet-ups. Modest registration, inexpensive dorm rooms, camping and delicious, wholesome organic meals.  For complete details, visit

Thursday, September 17 – Monday, September 21 – American Dahlia Society Centennial Show

In celebration of the 100th anniversary of its founding in 1915, the American Dahlia Society will hold a special Centennial Show September 17 – 21 in Hempstead, New York.  Hosted by the Mid Island Dahlia Society, this event includes tours of the dahlia garden at Planting Fields Arboretum as well as tours of private gardens, dahlia competitions, and educational symposium.  Three speakers sponsored by the American Horticultural Society will present: Hanu Pappu, head of the Dahlia Research Project at Washington State University, Allan M. Armitage, and Keith Hammett, ornamental plant breeder from New Zealand.  Register at by August 1.

Tuesday, September 22 – Friday, September 25 – 2015 International Master Gardener Conference

Join International Master Gardeners for the 2015 conference, Horticultural Horizons in the Heartland, on Tuesday, September 22 through Friday, September 25, at the Mid-America Center, Council Bluffs, Iowa.  Hear three keynote speakers, J. Schwanke on A Life Arranged Around Flowers, Mark Hirsch on That Tree, and Gary Oppenheimer on Ending the Waste of Food – From the Ground Up.  Travel through Nebraska and Iowa on ten terrific tours, including Missouri to the Foothills of the Rockies, Along the Oregon Trail, Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium, Missouri to Mississippi – A ‘Cruise’ from River to River.  Learn with Extension Master Gardeners from the United States, Canada, and South Korea in 81 available workshops.  For complete information visit Please note the conference coincides with Yom Kippur.

Wednesday, July 29 – Sunday, August 2 – Begonia Revolution New England 2015

The American Begonia Society’s 2015 Annual Convention will take place at The Verve Crowne Plaza Boston-Natick, 1360 Worcester Road in Natick, Wednesday, July 29 – Sunday, August 12.  A variety of tours will be available to participants. On Wednesday, see the Harvard Glass Flowers and Marine Life Collection at the Harvard Museum of Natural History and the greenhouses of the Lyman Estate in Waltham. Thursday, travel to Logee’s Greenhouses in Danielson, Connecticut and the Roger Williams Botanical Center in Providence.  Friday features a tour of Tower Hill Botanic Garden.  In addition to travels, hear Mike Flaherty speak on Begonias of the Rich & Famous, Drew Norris on Growing Begonias Like African Violets, Randy Montes Kerr on Species Begonias for Every Home, Pablo Jourdan on Germplasm Research Update, Mark Tebbitt on Begonias of Andean South America, and Lloyd Traven on How to Bring Begonias to Market. Of course there will be a Judged Plant Show, a Boutique, and Plant Sales in addition to Luncheons and a Seafood Bake.  Complete information on registration and programs is available at 

If you wish to stay at the hotel, there are special room rates ($115 per night, plus taxes) if you book by June 29.

Thursday, July 9 – Saturday, July 11 – 2015 National Children & Youth Garden Symposium

The 2015 National Children & Youth Garden Symposium will take place this year in Austin, Texas from July 9 – 11.  Lisa Whittlesey and Alexandra Evans will lead off with an explication of the International Junior Master Gardener Program’s Learn, Grow, Eat, & Go curriculum and research program.  Whitney Cohen, director of the nonprofit LifeLabs, dedicated to garden based learning, will discuss ways that school garden programs are changing the nature of education.  Finally, entomologist Nate Erwin will share insights from his 20-year career as manager of the O. Orkin Insect Zoo and Butterfly Pavilion at the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History in Washington, DC, which provides families with the opportunity to interact with arthropods.

Designed for educators, program coordinators, garden designers, youth group leaders, and others interested in connecting kids and plants, the NCYGS schedule also will include tours, educational sessions, and networking opportunities.  For more information visit, or call 703-768-5700, x 121.

Saturday, June 6, 10:00 am – 4:00 pm – 2nd Annual Greenovate Boston Community Summit

The Greenovate Boston Community Summit is a day-long gathering that brings together residents, businesses, and organizations to help Boston reach its climate goals by sharing best practices and connecting them to each other, to the City, and to other resources and information.  Presented by the City of Boston, the Summit will take place Saturday, June 6, from 10 – 4 at the Curry Student Center at Northeastern University.  Free and open to the public.  For more information visit Perhaps the potential impacts from the City’s Olympic bid, or the proposed zoning changes for Newbury and Boylston Streets, may be addressed.

Monday, June 1, 3:00 pm – Annual Meeting of the Friends of Wellesley Botanic Gardens

The Annual Meeting of the Friends of Wellesley Botanic Gardens will take place Monday, June 1, beginning at 3 pm with a reception, followed by a lecture at 4 entitled The (Under)story of Coffea arabicaBotany Fellow Katie Goodall discusses how farmers support biodiversity and their own livelihoods by taking advantage of coffee’s capacity to be grown in the understory of managed forests.  Explore how consumers can voice solidarity with farmer-led sustainable production efforts.  The lecture is followed by Certificate of Botanical Art and Illustration Awards Ceremony.  Free, but please call 781-283-3094, or email to let them know you will be attending.

Tuesday, May 12, 7:30 pm – Ant Plant Mutualisms

May’s meeting of the Cambridge Entomological Club will be held Tuesday May 12th at 7:30 PM in room 101 of the Museum of Comparative Zoology, Oxford Street, Cambridge. John Boyle of Harvard University and President of Cambridge Entomological Club will be presenting the 2015 Presidential Address and telling us about Ant Plant Mutualisms. Please note this is the last meeting until October.

Mutualistic symbioses between ants and plants are a common feature of the tropics. Hundreds of different plants throughout the world have evolved cavities in which ant colonies can live, and even special organs that provide food for the ants. In return, the ants protect their trees against the encroachment of other plants and against herbivores–even herbivores as large as giraffe and elephant!

In John’s talk for the CEC, he will present some of the diversity of ant-plant mutualisms, and also discuss his own research into one particular ant-plant, the whistling-thorn acacia, Vachellia drepanolobium. This ant-plant is unusual in that four different ant species compete for space on the tree, and all four ant species appear to cheat on the tree in different ways: some prune off its flowers, others tend sap-sucking scale insects, and so on. He will discuss his research on the colony-level underpinnings of this wide diversity in ant behavior.The meeting is free and open to the public. Snacks will be provided and you are also welcome to join us at 6:00 pm for an informal pre-meeting dinner at Cambridge Common.  Image from

Friday, June 5, 5:00 pm – 7:00 pm, Saturday, June 6, 8:00 am – 4:00 pm, and Sunday, June 5, 9:00 am – 1:00 pm – 7 – New England Botanical Club 120th Anniversary Research Conference

Come celebrate New England Botanical Club’s 120th anniversary at this historic free research conference, to be held at Smith College in Northampton Friday – Sunday, June 5 – 7.

Botanical societies and practicing scientists enliven and advance plant science. Academic biologists and citizen-scientists generate important new discoveries about the flora. They also inspire a new generation of students who continue to expand scientific knowledge and work to conserve plants and ecosystems.

Meetings, field trips, and conferences are vital ways to infuse all botanists with new energy and visions for the future. Botanists of northeastern North America will showcase their activities and research.  Botanical societies will brainstorm on opportunities for future research and collaboration.

The weekend kicks off Friday with a reception at the Smith College Greenhouses from 5 – 7.  Registration begins Saturday at 8, followed by a morning session with talks by botanical researchers and exhibit tables on display by botanical societies.  The keynote speaker will follow the buffet lunch.  Editor in Chief of the American Journal of Botany Dr. Pamela Diggle (pictured) will address the conference.  She is also Past President of the Botanical Society of America.  An afternoon session follows the speech.  Sunday at 9, at the MacLeish Field Station, there will be a brainstorm meeting: ensuring the future of botanical societies.  Then at 11:30, take a botanical foray of the 240 acre field station (bag lunch provided.) The weekend is co-sponsored by Smith College Department of Biological Sciences.  Register at

Wednesday, April 8, 6:45 pm – 8:15 pm – Seasonal Care for Gorgeous Well-Behaved Gardens

Seasonal Care for Gorgeous, Well-Behaved Gardens with Kerry Mendez, author and self-proclaimed “passionate perennialist,” will be presented by the Evening Garden Club of West Roxbury on Wednesday, April 8. If “seasonal garden care” sounds boring, you’re in for a surprise. If — like most of us — you’ve been spending too much time caring for your garden beds, this talk is for you. You’ll learn “what to do when” and tips that span the seasons, including ways to reduce the time you devote to pruning, deadheading, fertilizing, mulching, cutting back in fall and more. Colorful slides and handouts will reinforce Kerry’s simple how-to’s. Kerry packs the hall at every speaking engagement – don’t miss this event.
Location: Elks Lodge 1 Morrell St. West Roxbury (opposite the W.Roxbury Veterans Hospital)
Cost: $10 at the door (no reservations needed)
Contact: Ann Morgan at

Thursday, May 21 – Sunday, May 24 – Second Wave of Modernism III: Leading with Landscape

Join The Cultural Landscape Foundation for a What’s Out There weekend conference in Toronto May 21 – May 24 at the Isabel Bader Theatre, University of Toronto, 93 Charles Street West in Toronto. Leading with Landscape will tackle numerous issues including those that deal with the city’s identity – what does it mean for a 21st-century city to be historic and modern at the same time? – and stewardship – what new models for public/private financing and management are emerging?

The international implications of this planning and development strategy will be to address whether a 21st-century city can be both regional and global, and whether we can we use landscape as an engine to meet market demands while cultivating a sustainable urbanism.

Participating speakers, including internationally significant private-sector practitioners working on current and proposed projects in Toronto, municipal leaders, leading critics and thinkers, and academics from Canada, the US and the Netherlands, will also examine how existing parks and open spaces are adapted to accommodate contemporary and future needs and expectations, and how innovative landscape planning and design techniques developed in Toronto apply to other cities, and vice versa – and the impact of imported ideas on local conditions.

The opening reception takes place Thursday May 21 at the Gardiner Museum, 111 Queen’s Park. This event will launch the conference, What’s Out There Weekend Toronto, and the What’s Out There Toronto Guide. The evening will also honor the tremendous efforts by students and faculty at Ryerson University, who have done extensive research and produced entries for the What’s Out There database, the inaugural site outside of the US. Finally, the evening will culminate in the presentation of TCLF’s Stewardship Excellence Award to an individual, group and/or organization that embodies and promotes sound stewardship of the city’s landscape legacy.

Toronto – recently ranked by the Economist magazine as “the best place to live” and North America’s fourth largest city – is the center of world-class landscape architecture projects, the world’s largest ravine system and a substantial legacy of extant parks. These will all be the focus of a daylong conference, and other events including What’s Out There Weekend Toronto, featuring two days of free, expert-led tours, and the launch of a free, online What’s Out There Toronto City Guide.

Much of the new activity, which is leading an unprecedented period of the city’s growth, is occurring along the Don River where parks by internationally significant practitioners that incorporate ecology, culture and design excellence have been built to the highest standards. Stewardship of these parks, designed and currently maintained by private enterprise, will eventually fall to the city.

Second Wave of Modernism III: Leading with Landscape will tackle numerous issues including those that deal with the city’s identity – what does it mean for a 21st century city to be historic and modern at the same time? – and stewardship – what new models for public/private financing and management are emerging?

The international implications of this planning and development strategy will address whether a 21st century city can be both regional and global, and whether we can use landscape as an engine to meet market demands while cultivating a sustainable urbanism.

Participating speakers, including internationally significant private sector practitioners working on current and proposed projects in Toronto, municipal leaders, leading critics and thinkers, and academics from Canada, the US and the Netherlands, will also examine how existing parks and open spaces are adapted to accommodate contemporary and future needs and expectations, and how innovative landscape planning and design techniques developed in Toronto apply to other cities, and vice versa – and the impact of imported ideas on local conditions.

On Friday, May 22 from 6:30 – 11, a Toronto the Good Reception at The Fermented Cellar, Historic Distiller District, 28 Distillery Lane, will be a highlight. In its eleventh year, Toronto the Good, an annual party hosted by ERA Architects, will take place at The Fermenting Cellar in the historic Distillery District. The restored red brick, Victorian-era complex that once housed the Gooderham & Worts whiskey distillery is now an exciting destination with more than 70 cultural and retail operations. Join us for free hors d’oeuvre, cash bar, and a lively crowd of people passionate about design and democracy in Toronto. Admission is free but registration is required.

Saturday, May 23, from 6 – 9, join us for a late afternoon tour and twilight reception – featuring creative, local cuisine paired with Ontario’s top wines and craft beers – in the BMO Atrium at Evergreen Brick Works, 550 Bayview Avenue. The former Don Valley Pressed Brick Works Company (see below,) which produced bricks that built many of Toronto’s landmark buildings, is now a global showcase for green design and urban sustainability – and it was named one of the world’s Top Ten geotourism sites by National Geographic.

Speakers include Jane Amidon of Northeastern University, Paul J. Bedford, Charles A. Birnbaum, Geoff Cape, Claude Cormier, Adriaan Geuze, Jennifer Keesmaat, Bruce Kuwabara, Nina-Marie Lister, Janet Rosenberg, Marc Ryan, Elizabeth Silver, Brendan Steward, Mayor John Tory, and Thomas L. Woltz.  An early bird rate is available until April 1. Register at

Friday, April 10, 6:45 pm – Mutants in Our Midst: Darwin, Horticulture, and Evolution

The New England Botanical Club is pleased to announce that NEBC Distinguished Speaker Dr. Ned Friedman, Director of the Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University, will speak on Friday, April 10, beginning at 6:45 pm in the Haller Lecture Hall, Room 102, Geological Museum, 24 Oxford Street in Cambridge, on the topic Mutants in Our Midst: Darwin, Horticulture, and Evolution.  This lecture was sold out when presented by Dr. Friedman as part of the Arnold Arboretum Director’s Lecture Series, and this presentation is free and open to the public.  For more information visit

Wednesday, April 8, 5:00 pm – 45th Annual Meeting of the Friends of the Public Garden

Join the Friends of the Public Garden on Wednesday, April 8 for an update on parks projects and hear featured speaker Boston Parks Commissioner Chris Cook at this year’s annual meeting. The event will begin at 5 pm at the First Church in Boston, 66 Marlborough Street. RSVP by April 1 by calling 617-723-8144, or email

Wednesday, April 22, 10:30 am – 1:00 pm – Metro District Annual Meeting and Luncheon

The Metro District of the Garden Club Federation of Massachusetts, Inc. will hold its Annual Meeting and Luncheon on Wednesday, April 22, from 10:30 – 1:00 at the Wellesley College Club, 727 Washington Street (Route 16 West), Wellesley.  The featured speaker is Noah Wilson-Rich, Ph.D, Founder and Chief Scientific Officer of The Best Bees Company, LLC.  Parking is available adjacent to the Club, just inside the College’s rear entrance off Route 16.  Additional parking is available in the lot across Route 16, and elevators are available to the 2nd floor dining room.

Noah Wilson-Rich founded Best Bees Company in his Boston apartment while getting his Ph.D. at Tufts University. Best Bees supplies gardeners and any other interested parties in the Boston area with beehives, as well as the resources, materials and appropriate consultation for their upkeep. This service is a nontraditional means of raising money for research to improve honey bee health. Profits from installing and managing these honey beehives goes to fund Wilson-Rich’s research into bee diseases.

Dr. Rich will speak at 10:30, followed by lunch at noon.  The menu is butternut squash bisque, chicken Caesar salad, sorbet with fresh fruit, coffee and tea.  $38 per person.  Reservations are due by Wednesday, April 1.  Please make check payable to Garden Club Federation of Massachusetts (GCFM) and mail to Jean McCarthy, 24 Tubwreck Drive, Dover, Massachusetts 02030.  Please note the name of your Garden Club on the check.

Monday, March 30, 6:00 pm – Boston Preservation Alliance Annual Meeting

The Boston Preservation Alliance is proud to announce the guest speaker for its Annual Meeting, to be held Monday, March 30, beginning at 6 pm at District Hall, 75 Northern Avenue in Boston. Renowned photographer Peter Vanderwarker will share a collection of his amazing images of Boston’s unique places and spaces.

After the presentation and a short business meeting, our members will be invited to a reception. This is the perfect occasion to network with others who are passionate about the city’s character, meet other Alliance members, the Board and staff, and discuss the upcoming year and the preservation challenges and opportunities.

This event will be for members only, so now is the time to join or renew your membership with the Alliance and be a part of Boston’s leading advocacy nonprofit for historic preservation. Consider your membership as your ticket purchase to see amazing imagery from across Boston.

To RSVP for this event, please email

Thursday, March 26, 5:30 pm – Emerald Necklace Conservancy Annual Meeting and Lecture

Please join the Emerald Necklace Conservancy on Thursday, March 26 at the African Meeting House, 46 Joy Street in Beacon Hill, for the 2015 Annual Meeting and Lecture, featuring Dr. Carolyn Finney speaking on Radical Presence: Black Faces, White Spaces and Stories of Possibility.

Dr. Finney will explore the relationship of African Americans to the environment and to the environmental movement. Drawing on “green” conversations with black people from around the country, Dr. Finney considers the power of resistance and resilience in the emergence of creative responses to environmental and social challenges in our cities and beyond. Dr. Finney’s love of environment was inspired by a backpacking trip around the world and numerous years living in Nepal. She is an assistant professor in environmental science, policy and management at the University of California Berkeley, and a member of the U.S. National Parks Advisory Board. As such, she works with the National Park Service to respond to America’s changing demographics and diversify the ranks of visitors and employees.

The Annual Meeting begins at 5:30, followed by a reception at 6 and lecture at 6:45. The evening concludes with book signing and dessert. There is no cost for this event but space is limited, Pre-register by calling 617-522-2700, or sign up on line at

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