North Suffolk Garden Club
Minutes of the Meeting
Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Present were: Jennifer, Martha, Kathy, Barbara, Libby, Jane, Robin, Nancy, Sharon, Leighton, Dale, Priscilla, Sheila,
Kathleen & Chris.

Jennifer Lawrence brought the meeting to order at 3 p.m. in the Meeting Room at the Carriage Museum.  She thanked the members for the outpouring of ideas and enthusiasm that resulted from the September brainstorming session.  She also brought a sample of the drought tolerant coastal shrub in flower (Baccharis) that was covered at Robin’s propagation workshop earlier this month.  Jennifer and Libby will be attending a Zone III President’s meeting at GCA HQ on October 15th hosted by Cindy Willis, Zone III Chair.

The minutes from the August 5th meeting were approved on a motion by Libby, seconded by Jane.

Membership Chairs Sharon and Leighton covered several items beginning with a short discussion on reducing the provisional period from two years to one.  After several thoughts were presented, Libby proposed to reduce the provisional status to one year on a pilot program basis.  Robin formalized the proposal which was 2nd by Chris.  It was further decided to make it retroactive which enabled Sheila Doyle to become a full member having completed her one year provisional.  Sharon and Leighton will develop the details of what should be accomplished during the new provisional period.

Sharon also announced that Olga has completed her two-year provisional and the board unanimously voted her into full membership.  A new member, Hiroe Buchet, was proposed by Robin, and seconded by Jennifer Smith Huntley and Joan Rockwell-Gifford.  Hiroe has attended several NSGC events and has shown interest in conservation matters.  The board voted to accept her as a provisional member. 

Jennifer led a discussion on the work done by her, Martha and Kathy to develop future budget structuring.  She first presented what our budget would look like based on our expenses from last year vs. our income.  This highlighted the fact that without the Howind stream of income, we would have to seriously revisit fundraising efforts to maintain the level of programs and participation with meetings that we have come to enjoy.  A very detailed summary of monies expended from the Howind funds in 2015 and anticipated in 2016 was distributed.  We now have $8825 to dispense for community projects after commitments to the Howind garden and other smaller efforts, for 2016.  Revisiting the former vote to grant $10,000 to the Farmingdale Conservatory Restoration Project, it was decided that our budget allows a $5000 grant instead.  Jennifer will issue a letter to Dr. Iversen along with our restricted $5000 grant for benches which will be recognized with a plaque.

A few items on the draft budget were discussed further.  Jennifer requested feedback on attendance at the NAL Conference in Washington D.C. attended by Barbara and Chris last year.  They concurred that it was very worthwhile and should remain a top priority.  An alternative plan of rotating the Meneice Conference with NAL was also considered. 

Kathy presented the Treasurer’s report.  Savings account balance is $6936.95 and Checking account balance is $3568.66 leaving us with a total balance of $10505.61.  This balance reflects the fact that we have not tapped into the Howind money earning interest, instead drawing from the operating account to cover expenditures allotted from that fund with a formula of 15% education, 50% community, 10% scholarship and 25% carry over.  The goal is to maximize potential to grow our assets. Jennifer reported the UBS balance as of August 31st is $81,665.10.  Although the market has taken a downturn, we are still ahead slightly. 

Committee Chair reports:

Conservation:   Kathleen announced the Nov. 16th Beekeeper lecture at Emma Clark Library at 10 a.m.  Judy also alerted members of another oyster reseeding on Oct. 31st.

Flower Show:  A reminder – club show will take place on May 26, 2016, possibly at the Three Village Inn.

GCA Liaison:  Libby will be attending meetings next week at GCA Headquarters in her new capacity of Visiting Gardens Zone Rep.

Horticulture:  Robin reported on Hort’s plans for the Museum wall garden.

Photography:  Jane reported that they are working on a future workshop led by Bruce Lawrence in the technical use of cameras. 

Programs:  Barbara and Priscilla announced the holiday party will be held on December 9th at Bliss Restaurant.  A beautiful menu was presented and the cost will be $55 all inclusive.

Membership:  Sharon & Leighton requested that all members try to propose at least one new member to stimulate our membership drive.

Under new business, Jennifer requested anyone wishing to serve on the by-laws review committee is welcome.  Libby has volunteered to chair that committee.  Kathy announced acknowledgment had been received from Cornell University regarding our donation in Bette Sneed’s memory.

In closing, Jennifer thanked Sheila and Dale for providing refreshments.  The meeting ended shortly after 5 p.m.  Our next board meeting will be held October 26th at 3 p.m. at Mills Hall, followed by a 4 p.m. general meeting with a report on the Meneice Conference by Robin & Judy.

Respectfully submitted,


Christa Amato, Acting Secretary