The Columbine

Newsletter of Gardening Kingston

December 2022


President's Message

I was quite teed off several weeks ago when marauding deer came rampaging through my garden – well in truth, maybe just one juvenile that was meandering. So many lush plants, showing off their fall colours, were eaten to the ground! The weather in the first half of November had been so lovely that you could still really enjoy being in the garden, basking in all the fall colour. Once the first hard frost hit, looking back at the carnage in the following weeks, it occurred to me that, hey, I don’t have to cut back all that withered hosta foliage. Job done! It’s all a matter of perspective.

At November’s AGM we had the pleasure of welcoming a new board member to our team, Tana Clarke. Serving along with me, we also have Rebecca Kelly continuing as secretary and treasurer, as well as Miranda Miller and Denise Owsianicki as directors, and Suzanne Maranda as past president. Unfortunately, no one stepped forward to fill the role as vice president so our current board consists of six members even though our by-laws make provision for eleven. On the one hand, the lack of volunteers for board positions can be quite disheartening – we must have new members to ensure continuity as existing members move on – but really, how many voices do we actually need to make sound decisions? Eleven voices rather that six would not necessarily lead to better decisions. We will just need to work smarter. Again, it’s all a matter of perspective.

It occurs to me that our situation on the board is not unlike the labour shortage being experienced across the country in so many sectors. With fewer workers we will have to do things more efficiently if we want to get the same work done. Where that’s not possible, we may have to settle for less, and when that’s not acceptable, we’ll simply have to request more help. Heads up! Volunteers for committees will be in high demand.

David Kelly

December Zoom-only Meeting

Thursday, December 8 at 7:30 p.m.

Gardening with Wildlife 
Presented by Rebecca Last
This talk addresses the characteristics of plants and garden design that will help you create a wildlife-friendly garden, with strategies for including food, shelter, and water, and practices that will encourage birds and beneficial insects to make their home in your garden. 

Winter Membership Meetings from the Comfort of Home!

We look forward to seeing members who have not been comfortable meeting in person.
For those with internet access issues, phone number access will also be provided.

Registration is required by Wednesday, December 7th

Learn. Grow. Share.

Register Here

AGM Highlights

The last two AGMs - 2020 and 2021 - were conducted by Zoom, and the board had to reinvent the wheel in order to make the voting work. This had unexpected benefits, as the attendees can attest to, by streamlining and shortening the business portion. This year was back to in-person, and we adopted the same voting procedures which we used in the Zoom AGMs. Basically, we only called for "No" and "Abstain" votes, so we had very few votes to count. All the elements of the business portion of the AGM (even the "Year in Review" presentation) are mandated by the OHA. Although we don't have many motions to vote on, even the few we must vote on can make the evening dry and, dare I say it, boring.

Twenty three members attended, and the board thanks those members for coming and providing the quorum necessary.  For the benefit of those members who could not attend this year's AGM, please find a draft copy of the minutes below. The final version will be presented at next year's AGM for approval. We are off to a good start, and we are hoping to make the next AGM even more attractive, and keep the business portion to a minimum, if you have any ideas on how we might achieve that, please contact us at

Rebecca Kelly
AGM Minutes (Draft)

AGM 2022 Awards

President’s Award
One award is presented annually in recognition of outstanding contribution to society activities.
Veronica Butler and her award
Veronica Butler is the 2022 recipient. In addition to contributing to the maintenance of the Paterson Garden, meeting gardeners weekly from spring to fall, Veronica volunteered at the Year of the Garden (YoG) events and at the plant sale, for many years. She has been compiling the volunteer hours for us. She also designed and built the beautiful Little Library for gardening books and seeds, located at the Lakeside Community Garden. 
Golden Trowel Award
This award recognizes the diggers and workers of our society.
For 2022, we recognize Miranda Miller and Katherine Romba, who both contributed to our YoG events and plant sale. Of note, Katherine made the two Little Seed Libraries at our community gardens and Miranda planned the plant sale and prepared signage for the sale and the YoG events.

Congratulations and thank you for your participation!

Suzanne Maranda
Kingston Horticulture Society logo

2022 Volunteer Hours Deadline

Submit your volunteer hours to Veronica Butler by December 15.
The form to complete is on our website under the Membership tab or click below to download a copy now.
Volunteer Hours Form - Word version
Volunteer Hours Form - PDF version
Garden Ontario Logo

News from Garden Ontario

Interested in seeing what other horticulture societies in the province are doing? Follow the link to find the Trillium newsletter archive and the rest of the latest news from Garden Ontario.
The Arboretuem at the University of Guelph logo

Virtual Workshops at the Arboretum

The Arboretum offers workshops all year round covering a wide variety of topics from birds to mushrooms to gardening to art. Virtual programs are offered live on Zoom, and recordings are made available for registrants to access for a limited time. Details on registration policies can be found on our Registration Information page. 

View a complete list of The Arboretum's programs on our Workshop Descriptions page.
Toronto Master Gardeners logo

Toronto Master Gardeners Virtual Technical Update 2023 - Registration Now Open!

Date: Saturday January 14, 2023
Topic: Ecological Gardening Part 2 - Digging deeper into our changing relationship with the garden

If you enjoyed last year's Technical Update on Ecological Gardening, we hope you will join us for this upcoming event that will build on the same theme. We're bringing you another excellent roster of speakers who are sure to get you thinking even more about your relationship with your garden, whatever form and size that might take.

Click here for more details and registration link.

North American Native Plant Society logo
NANPS is committed to preserving native plant habitat in wild areas and restoring indigenous flora to developed areas. View the webinar list... click here.

Gardener's Journal

Gardening Kingston Members share their stories.
Learn along with them.
Weigela  x ‘Maroon Swoon’
Rebecca's Favourite Shrub
Ornamental Sumac
Denise's Favourite Tree
Heavily pruned elderberry
Julie's Favourite Shrub

Journal Topic Suggestions

January Newsletter
your houseplant tips
Deadline December 15

February Newsletter
sowing seeds
Deadline January 26, 2023

March Newsletter
less common native plants
Deadline February 23, 2023

Send your images and stories to the Editor. Please provide captions for the images, credit, and written permission for newsletter use if you were not the photographer. 

A reminder regarding photographs of members: The OHA has advised us that, prior to publishing any photo likenesses of our members, we should obtain their written consent with a photo waiver form. To view our policy click here
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