Monthly meetings feature a guest speaker presenting an educational lecture, and are generally held at The Gardens at Elm Bank in the Putnam Building. See directions.
Flower and Foliage Shows
Our Chapter has our biggest flower show (Main Flower Show), on Memorial weekend in May every year, in conjunction with our Plant Sale. This is a formally judged show with ribbons awarded in every class and trophies in many categories. Any person, member or not, can enter. The show is open to the public and is one of the ways we reach out to educate the public. It is always gorgeous – and also serves to demonstrate the wide variety of colors, sizes, shapes, and foliage of rhododendrons and azaleas.
We also have a foliage show at one of the fall meetings; no flowers, just the beautiful foliage that we enjoy for the 51 weeks when the plants are not in bloom. We have quite a number of classes based on rhododendron taxonomy but this show is judged by the attendees of the meeting – a popular vote. We often have a third show at our April meeting (Early Flower Show) for the earlier bloomers. These are usually the smaller flowers from the small-leaved rhododendrons (the lepidotes) that brighten our landscapes before the main season plants bloom.
All three shows are great opportunities to see excellent plants that grow well locally.
The Chapter has a big sale of member-grown and P4M plants Memorial weekend in May at Tower Hill Botanic Garden, Boylston, MA. This is a great way to buy choice or rare plants that are not readily available in nurseries. This sale, in conjunction with our Flower show, is held at the same time & place, and serves as an educational public outreach for the Chapter.
Members of the Massachusetts Chapter ARS generously open their gardens to visitors each spring, sometimes at other times of the year. Information on these gardens appears in our spring Newsletters, which you receive as a member benefit.