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Friends of the Garden
PO Box 8566
Springfield, MO 65801
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Major and Marthe Close accept a Leader's Honor Roll aware from MU Extension, presented by Gaylord Moore, retired horticulture specialist.SPRINGFIELD, MO – The Greene County Extension Council honored three individuals Feb. 27 during its annual meeting by adding their names to the University of Missouri Extension’s “Leader’s Honor Roll.”
Among the honorees were Major and Marthe Close, driving forces behind the creation of the Springfield-Greene County Botanical Center and the headquarters for Greene County Extension.
“Due to a very special gentleman named Major Close, we can be thankful for the construction of this great landmark and an extraordinary beautiful place to house Extension. Major and Martha, you are truly friends to Extension whom I highly admire and respect for all you have done and continue to do for this community,” said Gaylord Moore, a retired horticulture specialist with Greene County Extension during his introduction of the Closes.
Just as flowers bloom, trees grow taller and shrubs denser, the Friends of the Garden has grown to include more than 1,000 members and has created more gardens for the public to enjoy at Nathanael Greene/Close Memorial Park.
In 2009 when George Deatz began the first of three terms as president of Friends of the Garden, the volunteer organization had 250 members. “People make an organization strong,” said Deatz. “The more members we have, the more gardens we can create, build and maintain.” The count stood at 800 last fall and recently crossed the thousand-plus milestone, a portion of that increase due to the merger of the Botanical Society of Southwest Missouri into the Friends of the Garden.
The mission of the Botanical Society was to help maintain the Mizumoto Japanese Stroll Garden, located in the northeast corner of the public park and arboretum at 2400 S. Scenic Ave. Now, members will incorporate that mission under the umbrella of the Friends of the Garden.
Peter Longley, Horticultural Interpreter, The Springfield-Greene County Botanical Center & Gardens, will be presenting a series of ten demonstrations of Tablescapes on a seasonal theme throughout the spring, summer, fall, and winter of 2012. These will feature topical, intimate, casual, formal, and seasonal designs, and will embrace a lot more than just the table setting.
This popular series, continued for a second year and co-sponsored by Friends of the Garden, will show the creation of appropriate floral table arrangements for each presentation, explain the china, glassware, and silverware used, and will be accompanied with anecdotes and a poetic or otherwise appropriate seasonal reading.
Peter was the Estate Manager of Tullamaine Castle , in County Tipperary in Ireland from 1966-77. During that time, apart from running a 250 acre farm and re-designing and maintaining some 25 acres of gardens and grounds, as Estate Manager, he trained and supervised the domestic staff from butlers to houseboys and serving maids. Later, as Cruise Director, he was the third senior hotel officer on board the Cunard ocean liner Queen Elizabeth 2, then the world’s most prestigious passenger ship. After retiring from life at sea, Peter ran a guesthouse in the Ozarks in conjunction with a retreat center at Alpha Meadows a few miles from Seymour , and supervised gourmet dining events and concerts in the noted English gardens that he created there.
There is a fee of $8.00 per session and light refreshments appropriate to the theme will be served. Seating is limited and you will need to register in advance, please call 417.891.1515 (You can register for one event at a time and do not have to commit to the whole series).
by George Deatz
A member's important question: Please, tell me more about the Friends of the Garden volunteers. I am curious what your thoughts are about this subject.
Answer: My thoughts in a "nut shell" on volunteers. There is always a percentage of people that are members of a group that will actually "volunteer hands on". There are many things a volunteer can do to contribute to a group's success and community mission. The amount of time is not important, it's the quality of time that counts.
by Peter Longley
Several local artists are now featured in our growing collection of art at the Springfield-Greene County Botanical Center and Gardens. Our latest addition is a fine wood carving Praying Mantis by Jim Stewart of The Sculptured Gourd.
Jim’s giant sculpture was created out of one log that includes the fine details of antennae and legs. The Praying Mantis is captured sitting among lily blooms also carved from wood. The piece is exhibited in the Atrium at the Botanical Center and is quite a talking point. Jim Stewart is retired and at sixty-five years young has loved creating from mediums all his life. He had no formal training, but obviously has a great eye for detail. As he says: “The good Lord blessed me with natural talents and skills. I carve, paint—watercolor and pastel, create gourd lifelike pieces as well as vases, pitchers, bowls and centerpieces, plus much more.” He also custom builds furniture and repairs antique items. He is a juried member of The Sculptured Gourd in two categories: Wood and Specialty. Examples of his other work can be found at www.bestofmissourihands.com/sculpturedgourd.htm#S
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Get news, updates and information from Friends of the Garden about our events and programs as well as what's going on at the Botanical Center.
Friends of the Garden, Inc. PO Box 8566 Springfield, MO 65801 417.891.1515 | EMAIL
The Springfield-Greene County Botanical Center2400 S. Scenic AveSpringfield, MO 65807
The Friends of the Garden mission is to "inspire the discovery, understanding and appreciation of nature by creating and maintaining gardens at the Springfield Botanical Gardens and by supporting the mission of the Springfield-Greene County Botanical Center and Park Board."