The American Rhododendron Society (ARS) was founded in 1945 to encourage the culture of rhododendrons, including azaleas, and to increase the general understanding of and interest in all aspects of these plants. There are currently over fifty chapters in the U.S., as well as six overseas; these are local branches of the ARS operating within specific geographical areas. Local chapter members are full members of the ARS and receive many benefits from that membership. Check out the ARS website www.rhododendron.org.
The Massachusetts Chapter was founded in 1970. Our meetings are held between September and late spring at Elm Bank, the home of the Massachusetts Horticultural Society, in Wellesley, MA. Meetings are open to the public and we welcome non-members and potential members to all our Chapter meetings. Meetings generally include formal programs presented by speakers noted for their knowledge of rhododendron and other horticultural topics, followed by refreshments, time to socialize, and the chance to talk with the speakers. If you want to see gorgeous pictures – often travelogues of exotic places where rhododendron are found – you will not want to miss a meeting!
The benefits of membership include quarterly issues of the ARS Journal, the Chapter’s own Newsletter, free lectures and demonstrations, free cuttings, free garden tours, free seeds, free advice from experienced members, and the chance to participate in other Chapter activities. AND, new members receive a free plant at the first meeting they attend!