The Garden Club has a long history of contributing to the community through its many visible projects around town. These include all the gardens it maintains in Wilton, the wreaths and centerpieces that members make and distribute during the holiday season, and the Garden Therapy programs it hosts for the town’s senior residents. The Club also gives regularly and directly to a number of important groups in Wilton using a portion of the profits it receives from its annual Mother’s Day Plant Sale.
The Club directs its contributions to organizations that reflect and support the Club’s cornerstones of education, conservation, preservation and beautification. An annual giving plan is developed by the Philanthropy Committee and approved by the Club’s Board of Directors. For the past several years, the committee has steered most of the Club’s contributions to the following local organizations:
The Wilton Library. The Club’s donations provide for the purchase of books, magazines and other forms of horticultural and garden-related media and also help defray the cost of maintaining the library’s various gardens.
Ambler Farm. The Club is a supportive partner of Ambler Farm’s organic farming and restoration efforts.
The Norwalk River Watershed Association. The Garden Club and its members have been active supporters of NRWA’s efforts, including the recent planting of 14 trees at Allens Meadows Park as part of a year-long plan to enhance and refurbish this ecologically diverse park.
The Wilton Land Conservation Trust. The Club has long supported WLCT’s efforts to preserve and protect Wilton’s natural assets including the ongoing restoration of Schenck’s Island.
- Woodcock Nature Center. The Club provided the funds to install a sensory garden at the Woodcock Nature Center, a unique non-profit nature preserve that serves as resource for educating the community about our natural surroundings.
In addition, the Club recently established a $500 scholarship to be awarded annually to a graduating senior at Wilton High School who has shown an interest or achievement in one or more of the following: nature, horticulture, botany or ecology. This scholarship, formally titled the Marybeth Wheeler Memorial Scholarship Award, was established to honor the memory of Marybeth Wheeler, a long-time Garden Club member who championed the creation of an extensive collection of native plants, which the Club’s members meticulously pressed, mounted and systematically arranged for study. This collection, known as the Marybeth Wheeler Herbarium, is on display at the Wilton Library, where it serves as both a research tool and priceless record of the botanical history of Wilton.
Providing Community Service, Education, Horticulture,
Conservation and Artistry