President's Letter - Winter 2022
Dear Fellow AHS Members,
We may still be living in a world with COVID in year 2022, however, the American Hydrangea Society (AHS) continues to strive to bring you quality information and experiences. Our February 28, 2022 Zoom meeting will be just that. Mal Condon, Curator of Hydrangeas at the Heritage Museums and Gardens in Sandwich, Massachusetts, will be our speaker. His talk for the evening is titled "Hydrangea Success Special Pruning Strategies".
A few of the AHS Board Members had the amazing experience of visiting Mal and Mary Kay Condon’s gorgeous hydrangea-filled garden along with the Heritage Gardens last summer in Cape Cod. Mal has been exploring and perfecting the art of pruning hydrangeas for a number of years. As we all know, for most hydrangea gardeners, that is the number one dilemma. When and how to prune? If you have not been using the hydrangea pinch pruning method, it is something you will want to learn and practice in your own garden.
This year’s Cape Cod Hydrangea Festival is scheduled for July 8-17, 2022. If you cannot attend the festival, the Heritage Museum and Gardens in Sandwich, MA opening day will be April 23rd. The North American Hydrangea Test Garden and The Cape Cod Hydrangea Society’s Display Garden are spectacular. I hope each of you can add it to your bucket list to visit soon.
Our own AHS Garden Tour is scheduled for Saturday, June 11, 2022. There will be five lovely gardens for you to explore. If all goes well with COVID, we plan to hold the pre-tour party for the garden hosts and volunteers on Sunday, June 5, 2022. As always, the Friday before the tour, only volunteers and garden hosts may tour the gardens from 10 am until 2 pm. Please email our new Volunteer Chair, Michael Knee, firstname.lastname@example.org to volunteer for the tour. Helping with the tour is such a delightful and fun experience shared with gardening friends.
We also are hoping in the upcoming months to return to volunteering in the gardens of the Atlanta History Center, (AHC). More information will be sent regarding the AHC volunteer days once we have specific dates. COVID protocols continue at the AHC. Michael Knee will be coordinating the AHC volunteers. Please contact him if you would like to be a part of this dedicated and helpful group.
I would like to thank Dr. Michael Dirr and his partners at Premier Introductions, Inc. (PII), Mark Griffith, and Jeff Beasley, for their continued support of our organization. Because of their generosity we will be holding a hydrangea plant sale in early February. Information for the upcoming sale will be emailed soon. Soil3TM organic compost mini cubes will also be available during the sale to help your hydrangeas get off to a great start. All hydrangeas and compost must be picked up at your location choice on February 12th.
For those of you living in GA, NC, SC and TN Soil3TM has provided a discount code which will give you a discount of $5 for use all of year 2022 on each Big Yellow Bag (BYB) you order. Please use the discount code AHS2022 when you order your Soil3TM. They also currently have a sale going on which is $30 off the BYB. Order before February 28, 2022 and you may combine that with the AHS discount to give you $35 off the BYB.
Hopefully April will find us once again holding our Spring meeting at the Atlanta History Center. Our speaker on April 25, 2022 will be Dr. Michael Dirr. He has a new book The Hydrangea Book: The Authoritative Guide. More information will be sent closer to the meeting date concerning the book-signing portion of the meeting.
In early 2022 we are implementing the Membership Toolkit software for our members. Members will be able to enter and update their own contact information, pay their dues, see the AHS calendar, sign up to volunteer and be able to see communication from AHS. Thank you for your patience as we initially get the software working which we hope is soon.
So as you can see we have a lot going on in 2022. Thank you for your continued support of the American Hydrangea Society. We hope you are enjoying your experiences with AHS and encourage you to share it with your friends. If you have any suggestions, please let us know.
Eva Kinney, AHS President