This article originally appeared in the July/August 2016 issue of Northern Gardener.
The Daffodil Garden Club is a perfect example of multiple generations of gardeners benefiting from each others’ strengths. When Kristen Estrada, one of the youngest members of the club, moved to the Walden neighborhood in the southern suburb of Burnsville, she had no clue what to do with her garden.
“A club member, my neighbor, helped me assess my site and identify plants,” she recalls. “Of course, now there’s an app for that, which I introduced to club members recently; they thought it was so cool, and I was happy that I could teach them something for a change!”
Gardening has become important to Kristen in part because of her daughter. “I want to teach her about nature and wildlife—about preserving water quality, taking care of the world and helping pollinators. Plus, I like having a beautiful garden,” she says.
Led by the club, volunteers do all the garden maintenance for the neighborhood association. Together, they convinced the Burnsville City Council to correct a toxic pond in the neighborhood, and now the pond is a test study to restore toxic ponds. Proceeds from the club’s annual plant sale benefit local charities such as 360 Communities, Brainpower in a Backpack and the local food shelf.
“I feel so grateful that this truly philanthropic club exists for us younger and newer neighbors to become involved in and continue the legacy,” says Kristen.
“Getting to know members of a different generation has not only taught me so much about plants and gardening, but broadened me as a person too,” she says. “We have to figure out how we can continue that with future generations.”
Want to find or start a garden club? Visit the garden club page on our website.