Sunday, July 6, 2008
Garden Memberships and Volunteerism
If I could, I probably would join every public garden in the US, if not the world! Not only do I enjoy their newsletters, plant sales, events and seed sales, but part of me always longs to visit them too. In my area alone I belong to the Portland Classical Chinese Garden, the Portland Japanese Garden, the Berry Botanic Garden and the Leach Botanical Garden. In addition, I belong to the Hardy Plant Society of Oregon and the Portland Rose Society. This just sounds crazy, but I simply cannot live without them! In a way, this all allows me to stay in touch with the world when so much of my time is spent resting on the couch or otherwise. If I could right now, I really would like to earn a Master's in landscape architecture, but my health just won't allow for this until the plasma product is available.
I am a member of the Garden Conservancy as well as the American Horticultural Society. They do so many good things, I just cannot say enough about them and they really inspire me to want more out of my own life and garden. Years ago, while visiting Alcatraz Island, I longed to see what the gardens had once looked like, and now, the Garden Conservancy is helping to make that happen. The American Horticultural Society really tries to tie our nation of gardeners together and is run out of one of George Washington's farms. Although I love this kind of tradition, being a 22-generation American on the one hand, I would love to see a bit more of the West too since that is where my heart and soul are for the time being.
The volunteering part is often the hardest part for me. I would love to be able to help them all more, but I just cannot. Things being what they are right now, I have to try to make a living as much as I can. No matter what happens, though, I will continue to renew my memberships again and again.