Annual Plant Sale a Success for Saline Stone and Thistle Garden Club


Shoppers were lined up early on Saturday morning to find great deals at the annual Saline Stone and Thistle Garden Club Plant Sale. The sale was held in the parking lot of the Saline District Library.

“At about 7:30, people are right by plants and they want to pounce on them at 8:00,” said club member Nancy McNamara.

Plants were arranged in groups so that shoppers could pick from varieties that would do best in sun and shade, and volunteers were nearby to answer questions. Herbs and annual vegetables were also available, with boxes and wagons on hand for shoppers to take their hauls to their cars.

“This is our one and only fund raiser for the whole year,” McNamara said. “Each of the members, from their own gardens, will divide things that are getting overgrown, pot them up, and that is what we sell. They are good and healthy, thriving plants.”

Each year of the sale, the plant offerings vary depending on donations and weather conditions that spring.

“This year, things came up so late. We had a cold spring, and so there wasn’t as much to dig up.”

Proceeds from the sale are used to beautify various gardens throughout the community. Club members volunteer their time throughout the season to design, plant, and tend the gardens at the Saline District Library and the Depot Museum Trail.

“One of the member’s responsibilities is that we take turns doing the maintenance. Each member has a two week stint where they are paired up with one or two other people. That’s why these gardens look so good, because someone is tending to them almost every single day.”

The club was established in 1986, when a group of women from Silo Ridge subdivision began meeting to solve their garden dilemmas. Soon, the club opened up to any interested Saline residents who wanted to socialize while learning more about gardening.

“The club started out with ladies in the subdivision meeting. They had new homes with so many rocks and thistles, and that is how they got the name,” McNamara said.

Today, the club is affiliated with state and national garden clubs. They provide educational opportunities ranging from pollinator programs to environmentally friendly practices. Monthly meetings feature speakers who provide information on a variety of topics.

“It is a great place to learn about gardening, even if you are a new gardener,” McNamara said. “Our club ranges from very experienced gardeners to people just starting out that have never had any plants. Just learning from each other has been a source of plant education for everybody.”

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