A Brief History of the McMinnville Garden Club
The McMinnville Garden Club began in 1926 when a Garden interest group was formed within the McMinnville Civic Club. In 1928 they left the Civic Club and created their own by-laws to incorporate as the McMinnville Garden Club.
Throughout the years the Club has dedicated their efforts to enhancing the city’s plantings, educating its citizens about the beauty and benefits of gardening, and by giving horticultural scholarships to Yamhill County residents
In 1996 we gave a $500 scholarship. Currently we are giving $3000 in scholarships to deserving students. (Link to scholarship information and application)
Here are some of our current activities
- Purchasing 2 hanging baskets each for the West Entrance and Joe Dancer Park annually and 3 hanging baskets for the Cancer Treatment Center at Willamette Valley Medical Center biannually.
- Providing maintenance at the West Entrance and the Post Office with cleaning, trimming, plantings and bark dust as necessary.
- For over 25 years doing an annual Spring Cleanup of Third Street including trimming the ivy and adding bark dust.
- Caring for the indoor plants at the McMinnville Public Library by watering and replacement as necessary.
- Donate to the Community Garden which grows food for the food bank at YCAP.
- Donate to the Yamhill County Fair for prizes for the 4-H winners.
- We are still an active garden club helping our community to be a vibrant, wonderful place to live!
The following are some of our Historical contributions to the beautification of McMinnville.
Children’s Community Garden Sponsorship & Donation
Sponsored a Children’s Community Garden at the Community Garden. Donated to the Community Garden to help fund an irrigation system and for seed purchases.
Downtown Association’s Scarecrow Contest Winner!
Gertie, the Club’s entry in the Downtown Association’s scarecrow contest won first prize.
Established the West End Welcome Project
Developed and installed the West End Welcome project at Highways 99W & 18
McMinnville Public Library Centennial Celebration
Paid for a brick in the courtyard of the McMinnville Public Library as part of their centennial celebration.
Third Street Planter
Paid for a concrete planter on Third Street in honor of Rose Marie Caughran who cared for the trees on Third Street.
McMinnville Public Library Memorial
Donated a bench at the McMinnville Public Library in memory of Janice Hudson.
Third Street Kiosks
Paid for the renovation including a new cooper roof of one of the kiosks on Third Street.
McMinnville Police Department
Donated a public bench in front of the McMinnville Police Department.
Designed the yard of a Habitat family after working with the family to learn their wants. Donated some of the supplies and helped with the planting.
Sunshine Morning Rotary Club
Helped the Sunshine Morning Rotary Club plant native plants and trees in the wetland at Joe Dancer Park.
Third Street, Cozine House & Joe Dancer Park
Erected a lamppost on Third Street plus a post for two hanging baskets in front of Cozine House A plaque was attached to the post at the entrance to Joe Dancer Park. The Club paid for the baskets at Cozine House until the city took over.
Yamhill Valley Heritage Center
Helped landscape the newly opened Yamhill Valley Heritage Center and donated $2500 for future plantings.
McMinnville Garden Fair Begins!
The Garden Fair was added in conjunction with the Garden Tour showcasing area vendors with plants and garden themed products.
Read more about the McMinnville Garden Faire
Donated money to the Salvation Army to help with the cost of water at their community garden.
Evergreen Aviation Museum
Erected a Blue Star Marker at Evergreen Aviation Museum.
Library Planting Donation
Donated $800 towards labor for tilling and planting a wildflower lot by the library at 2nd and Adams.
McMinnville Garden Tour Begins!
Began the annual Garden Tour to raise funds. Four or five private homeowners share their unique garden styles with the public.
Read more about the McMinnville Garden Tour
Tree planting project
Worked with Trees for McMinnville planting trees at 60 private schools and nursing homes.
Began taking care of the indoor plants at the McMinnville Library.
Juliette’s House’s center for abused children opened. The Club donated labor and $2000 for irrigation, landscape planting and hanging baskets.
Nursing Home Gardening Enablement
Helped provide 3-foot high planter boxes at two nursing homes so wheelchair and elderly residents could garden.
Maintained the patio and indoor plants at the Gallery Theater
Minthorn House in Newberg
Recreated the herb garden of Dr John Minthorn at the Hoover-Minthorn House in Newberg.
Yamhill County Fairgrounds
Cleaned up and added plantings and irrigation at the Yamhill County Fairgrounds.
Joe Dancer Park, Azaleas & Men’s Garden Club
Erected a lamppost with two hanging baskets at the entrance of Joe Dancer Park. As more buildings went up, sidewalks were installed and the azaleas were removed.
The men’s garden club merged with the McMinnville Garden Club.
City Park and Public Library tree classification project
Researched the trees in the City Park and gave each tree a number and a marker. They then created a brochure with the botanical and common name of each tree for the Public Library. This involved about 90 trees. Voted to donate up to $300 to pay for perennials, annuals, and flowering shrubs to enhance the beauty of the upper park.
Jenkins Estate Restoration
Began working with the Tualatin Hills Park and Recreation District, the Oregon Rhododendron Society and other clubs in the Pioneer District to restore the Jenkins Estate.
McMinnville School District curriculum book donation
Presented a set of books about People and Their Environment (PATE) to the McMinnville School District for placement in every school library and to be included in school curricula.
Committee on Redevelopment (COR) parking and beautification
Participated in the planning and implementation of the Committee on Redevelopment (COR) parking and beautification plan for Third Street. The Club donated $500 for the purchase of larger trees.
Christmas Wreath Fundraiser
Made and sold Christmas wreaths, swags and centerpiece as a fundraiser. The Christmas Tree Show was discontinued.
Yamhill County Historical Society beautification
Landscaped and beautified the grounds of the Yamhill County Historical Society in Lafayette.
The Christmas Show moves again
Christmas Show moves to the Presbyterian Church.
The May Day Queens are no more
May Day activities were discontinued by the college
The May Day Queens
Rhododendrons were planted annually for the May Day Queens.
Began garden workshops for the public.
The Christmas Show Moved
The Christmas Show needed more space so was moved to the Armory.
The Christmas Tree Show
The Christmas Tree Show began at the Library. The public was invited and a silver tea was served.
Pink Dogwood Grove
A bronze marker was place at the north end of the Pink Dogwood Grove
Men’s Garden Club
The Men’s Garden Club was formed. While they were active the Men’s Club planted over 500 azaleas and shrubs at the Post Office, the Courthouse and along the Highways around town.
Linfield College Campus
Established a Pink Dogwood Grove on the Linfield College Campus honoring all past May Queens. In 1953 the 50th anniversary of May Day, the fiftieth tree was planted. The club also made bouquets for the 12-14 member court and served a tea for the Queen in the student lounge. In 1966 the Grove could not hold any more trees and the planting was discontinued.
Began decorating Christmas trees for the public library.
City Park and Chamber Meetings
Planted 5 shrubs and many zinnias in City Park and presented monthly exhibitions of flowers downtown and made weekly flower arrangements for Chamber meetings.
Began Spring and Fall Flower Shows.