Category: Meeting News and Recaps

Nasturtium News, July 2020

July 2020 Newsletter

Hello Garden Club Members!

We hope you all saw the nice article in the Wednesday Journal, June 24th featuring the Garden Walks that we co-sponsor with the Friends of the Oak Park Conservatory. Since we could not hold it this year they featured one of the garden owners and the 27 year history of the Garden Walk. The article is available online at Oak Park.Com. Also see Dan Haley’s

The Oak Park Art League was to be on the Garden Walk this year showcasing our 3 year club project. We received a thank you from OPAL Executive Director Jill Kramer Goldstein and Board President Kim Robinson for “funding and planting foliage and shrubbery in our Carriage House Gallery.” OPAL is to maintain the garden. Then during the June 26th storm, lightning struck two trees on the property to the west and they fell across the entire front court yard. The trees have been removed and Elaine Allen, co-chair of Civic Beautification has been in contact with them concerning insurance replacement. The most damage was done to a Hemlock, Magnolia and three Quick Fire Hydrangeas. Elaine had documented the entire project in a book of photography and plant material care.

The club gave two $3,000 scholarships to Oak Park River Forest High School graduating students, Elise Beile and Geneva Domantay. Elise will be going to The University of California Santa Cruz and is planning on majoring in environmental studies and sustainability. Geneva will be going to Eckerd College in St. Petersburg, Florida and will be studying marine biology and environmental science. They wrote informative thank you notes to the club. Cherie Fedota is our Scholarship Chair.

Gina Sennello, Cherie Fedota and Kathy English have been working this summer on a logo/shield for our club to use as a signature design. Look for it on our Membership Directory in September.

Website – Dori Bernstein has been busy working on our Website, adding more information about the club.

Membership Chair, Joan Figatner reported that we had 9 new members after the Wednesday Journal article and a comment on the FaceBook group by Katrina Spears.

Mosquito alert! River Forest has mosquitoes that have tested positive for West Nile virus. So please, be sure to spray repellent before gardening and eliminate any standing water.

PLANTCEDES: If you are interested in being notified when a neighbor has extra plants to share, or if you occasionally have extra plants yourself, please directly contact Gloria Backman at to join her email list.

The September meeting has not as yet been planned. We have had a Zoom meeting with other Garden Club presidents as to how to maneuver under the new COVID-19 guidelines. The board will be meeting this month to discuss our programs going forward.

Stay safe and enjoy your gardens!
Mary Ellen Warner & Lisa Cederoth, co-presidents

Birds in the Garden and Beyond, March 11, 2020

This event was canceled due to the 2020 Coronavirus

12:00 PM at the Cheney Mansion, 220 N. Euclid Avenue, Oak Park, Illinois. Free parking is available on the street.

Presenters: Jette Wulff & Tony Castro  

Our presenters travel the world to watch birds but also study them in their own backyard. They will share their secrets and photos of hummingbirds and other favorite birds and what attracts them locally. Join us March 11 at the Cheney Mansion. The presentation begins at 1:00 PM. Don’t miss this presentation and the beautiful pictures. Come at noon for tea, light refreshments, and socializing. See their website: for more information.

The meeting starts at 12:00 PM with light refreshments including tea and decaffeinated coffee. Members volunteer to set up the centerpieces and refreshments. A short business meeting precedes a one hour garden related presentation at 1:00 PM. The meetings are free and open to the public; guests are always welcome.

Members that would like to volunteer to use their creativity to design and set up the centerpieces and refreshments should contact Kathy English of the Hospitality Committee,

Please direct questions and speaker recommendations to Joan Meister,

House Plants for Clean Air, January 26, 2020

Sunday, January 26th, 2020

2-4pm at the River Forest Library
735 Lathrop, River Forest, Illinois

The topic, “House Plants for Clean Air”, will be presented by Regan Cronin of the Good Earth Greenhouse in River Forest, Illinois. As our houses get sealed tightly for energy efficiency, indoor air quality can become an issue. Come and learn how the right house plants can help improve the air you breathe. Come with friends or by yourself. All are welcome.

Good Earth Greenhouse is a local source of native plants, ecofriendly soil & garden décor, with a café and classes on site.

Free parking is available.

Holiday Gathering and Boutique, December 11, 2019

Decenber 11, 2019

Join us for a festive Holiday Gathering and Boutique featuring items made by members and suitable for a hostess gift, Secret Santa exchange, or little something for friends and neighbors. We will begin at 11:00 AM to allow more time to socialize and of course shop the holiday boutique.

The holiday boutique is a special part of the Garden Club of Oak Park and River Forest December program. The holiday boutique sells holiday gift items made by members. The gift items include: garden coasters. soup mix, cookies in a jar, Boxwood Trees, Christmas aprons, ornaments, Yule Logs, homemade candies and cookies on serving dishes, bird seed wreaths, vanilla, and vinegars.

Refreshments will come out at noon including tea and decaffeinated coffee. Members volunteer to design and set up the centerpieces in the dining room and on the tables. Members that would like to volunteer to use their creativity to design and make the centerpieces should contact Kathy English of the Hospitality Committee,

Presenter : Andrew Pavarrano. Andrew of Andrew’s Garden in historic downtown Wheaton will demonstrate unique European floral designs, The presentation will begin at 1:00 PM. Four floral arrangements will be raffled off. More information about Andrew can be found on the Speaker Biography page.

Please direct future speaker recommendations to Joan Meister,

Join us and bring friends for a lovely afternoon.