Sunday, May 3, 2009

NARGS interest groups

A message from the National President of NARGS via Billie Jean Isbell, chair.

I am pleased to announce an idea that has the potential to increase NARGS membership.  The idea was suggested at a NARGS board meeting a few years ago.
The suggestion is to establish NARGS interest groups, which would be dedicated to particular genus of plant, a specific type of gardening or a pastime related to rock gardening. This could include, for example, Campanula, Fritillaria, or Helleborus sections. Other groups could be dedicated to  woodland rock garden or gardening in troughs and other containers. There might be a place for plant photography.
The NARGS member who has agreed to take charge of interest groups is Tony Reznicek.
How would it work? There were two scenarios written on the subject and these are attached. The original proposal came from the Rock Garden Quarterly editor, Jane McGary, and was based on the Alpine Garden Society's (Great Britain) structure.  Later, past president Dick Bartlett wrote a supporting opinion and included a potential list of societies to approach.
A lot of creative  thinking will have to go into the project.  Clearly, the first thing to do would be to ask the AGS how they handled it. To that end, Tony Reznicek and I are going to talk to Malcolm McGregor, of the Scottish Rock Garden Club, who  is also an active member of the AGS saxifrage group. Malcolm is scheduled to speak at the Great Lakes Chapter "Spring Gala",  Saturday May 16 -  Sunday 17.
Once in place, the interest groups could have an impact on NARGS and its activities, most notably the Quarterly, the Web site and the Seed Exchange. There is a lot we can gain from these groups. You will hear more about the project as the work progresses.

Would you like to help with this project?  Volunteers are needed; please contact Tony or me
Grazyna Grauer,
NARGS President

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