By Terry Duffy
Ransomville Garden Club members marked the club’s 50th anniversary last Saturday with its annual planting of spring flowers. The event took place on the “four corners” in the hamlet where club members formally dedicated four new concrete planters that were installed last summer.
“The Ransomville Garden Club has been taking care of the 22 planters throughout the town for many years,” said Mary Jane Lisman, club president.
She said this year’s varieties were selected with guidance from the experts at area nurseries such as Melissa Skorik of Faery’s Nursery and Wendy O’Connor of O’Connor’s Greenhouse. “Melissa and Wendy have been generous in sharing their expertise as well as their kind pricing throughout the years,” she said.
Lisman said the plantings and tendering of the flowers has become a true labor of love for club members in the Ransomville community.
The planters were prepared with fresh soil amendments donated by Michael Stevenson of Stevenson’s Hardware in the hamlet. “Throughout the summer months you can find volunteers like Paul Bills from the Ransomville Volunteer Fire Co. watering the flowers. You will also find the garden club members tending to the plants, helping to keep them looking neat and tidy. In the fall club members donate their time to clean out the planters and replace the flowers with evergreen boughs and colorful ribbons.”
Lisman said this effort extends throughout the community. “A few years ago it was noted that a few of the planters were beginning to show wear and deterioration,” she said. With assistance provided by 1st District Niagara County Clyde L. Burmaster, Jennifer Martin of the Ransomville Business and Professional Association and the Town of Porter the upgrades commenced.
“The county legislator’s office was able to provide the funds for the purchase of the four new concrete planters, and the Ransomville Business Association was able to cover the cost of the shipping,” Lisman said. “The Highway Department was also very instrumental in receiving the new planters and storing them until the weather broke last spring. They also removed the old planters and set up the new ones to be highlighted at the four corners.”
Lisman said Ransomville Garden Club members take pride on their efforts to beautify the hamlet. “Besides enjoying the beauty of the flowers along the streets of the town you can also visit the Ransomville Heirloom Garden that us sponsored and cared for by the club. This special garden is located behind the library at the entrance to the Historical Society.”
She invites visitors to check out the Ransomville Garden Club at this year’s Ransomville Community Faire, taking place on Saturday, June 8 in the hamlet.
“This is where the club hosts their annual Plant Sale fundraiser. Dozens of varieties of perennials and annuals can be purchased for very reasonable prices,” Lisman said.
She said the proceeds from the sale go to cover club expense as well as fund the club’s scholarship awards. Each year Ransomville Garden Club accepts applications from Wilson High School graduates seeking assistance with the cost of their tuition for higher education. The awards are given to students looking to study agriculture, forestry or other botanical related fields.
“The Ransomville Garden Club is looking forward to the 2019 season. They are celebrating their 50th year as a club dedicated to beautification, preservation and education through gardening,” Lisman said.
She said the club welcomes new members. For more information on the club and how to become a member, call Gerry at 791-4075.