"Community Beautification Project Keeps Growing"
Fall of 2015 brought about another endeavor of the Spade & Trowel Garden Club--planting the historic Ross Mansion. New corner gates were placed on the property and the club wanted to see that some horticulture was added to beautify the gates. Each received a tree and several bushes along with a variety of pansies. In addition, while doing that, the club planted all the containers on the property with a variety of cabbages and pansies.
Once again the downtown hospital & railroad bridges received fall/winter plantings as did the participating businesses and chamber of commerce.
S&T Club Completes Plantings on the RR Bridge"
With the cooperation of the Railroad, the city of Seaford and the Spade and Trowel Garden Club, both bridges in downtown Seaford host beautiful baskets of flowers and irrigation. The first bridge passes over an inlet off of the Nanticoke by the hospital. The second bridge passes over the railroad as you leave High Street onto Pennsylvania Avenue. The S&T's next challenge is how to attach baskets to the drawbridge that leads over the Nanticoke into Blades.
The bridge by the hospital decorated for summer.
2 Bettys Receive the "Perennial Bloom Award"
Many members of The Spade & Trowel Garden Club gathered at the Manor House Sept. 25 to honor Betty Daudt, seated left, and Betty Gast, standing right, for their long years of service to the club. A camellia and a hydrangea were planted on the Manor House grounds in their honor.
How many 91-year-olds are still active in a garden club? The Spade & Trowel Garden Club of Seaford, Del. boasts two such members, both named Betty. Both Betty Daudt and Betty Gast were honored recently with the “Perennial Bloom Award,” designating them as members who have made the club grow and bloom with their continuous support. Rain precluded a planting ceremony on Sept. 25 at the Manor House in Seaford, but could not dampen the spirits of some 25 club members and dozens of Manor House residents who gathered for a reception in honor of the two ladies. A camellia was added the next day to Daudt's collection on the Manor House grounds and a hydrangea was planted in Gast's honor.
For more than 40 years, Daudt, has been an active club member. She was a member of one of 10 garden clubs in Aiken, S.C., for 10 years before that. Not long after moving to Seaford, she became a Nationally Accredited Flower Show Judge.
She has been active on committees and has entered and won ribbons in several flowers shows. She served as president of The Spade & Trowel Club from 1982 to 1984. In 2013 she shared her floral design skills with The Spade & Trowel Kids Garden Club, which meets at the Western Sussex Boys & Girls Club. She has also worked with patients closer to her age at Lofland Park. For the last 42 years, she also has been an accredited Camellia Flower Judge of the American Camellia Society. She and her late husband, Louis, belonged to camellia clubs in Baltimore and in Washington, D.C.
At the reception, Anne Spicer described how she had been called upon to decorate the Manor House decades ago and has shared the bounty of her garden with residents there every since.
Daudt is always cheerful and willing to lend a helping hand. She has been a perennial asset to The Spade & Trowel Garden Club.
Betty Gast has been a member almost since the club started. Her name and photographs are found throughout the club’s scrapbooks — cutting greens for the annual Greens Sale, decorating Ross Mansion, being inaugurated as an officer, landscaping the Post Office downtown (way before it became a museum!) She has won numerous ribbons in flower shows and served on many committees, mostly recently the nominating committee. Betty has encouraged new members to attend and always has a smile to share. The club has been lucky to have her as a member.
The Spade & Trowel Garden Club Contributes $1,000 to the Seaford Library's "Burn the Mortgage" campaign.
Below, club president Carol Gould Johnson presents the check to Jerry Keiser the director of the Seaford Library and Cultural Center. The $1,000 check will be matched by the Longwood Foundation. This donation continues the long support the club has provided to the library. The club previously donated and installed the patio garden.
Seaford "Beautification Project" Blooms
By Carol Kinsley
If you've driven west on Middleford Road lately, past the hospital, you may have noticed baskets of flowers hanging from both sides of the bridge, and large containers of colorful plants at each end of the bridge. The plantings were done by The Spade & Trowel Garden Club in cooperation with Mayor David Genshaw and the City of Seaford.
Mayor Genshaw approached the club in the early spring asking for help in "beautifying" the downtown area. The club agreed to plantings so long as the city would keep the containers watered. With careful planning and the cooperation of Jay Windsor of Lakeside Gardens and the folks at the Tractor Supply Store, the club was able to fill 12 hanging baskets and four huge containers with an abundance of color for about $1,200.
Mayor David Genshaw, who asked the garden club to help beautify the downtown area, met with a committee in early spring on the bridge near Nanticoke Memorial Hospital.
As Phase II of the Seaford Beautification project, the club has offered to help businesses in Seaford beautify their doorways. Planters of appropriate size and shape will be put in place and filled with flowers for the cost of $100. Businesses may arrange replanting for fall or next spring. Owners agree to keep the containers watered. Contact Patricia Villani at
More beautification of downtown Seaford included the planting of the large planters next to city hall in front of the GMB building.
Spade and Trowel Garden Club On-Going Projects
Audubon of Florida Stamp Program
Throughout the year the club saves stamps to send to "Audubon of Florida."
Once a month two members visit the Barnes Woods Nature Trail and report fallen trees, etc. to the superintendent of Trap Pond State Park. This is a civic project.
During "National Garden Week" in order to promote community interest in gardening and encourage new memberships, the club holds a "Garden Day" at the Ross Mansion. The 2014 theme coordinates with the "Tractor Show."
Decorate Governor Ross Mansion
The club decorates the historic Ross Mansion during the month of December. All members
enjoy creating designs which bring beauty and the holiday spirit to the visitors of this Seaford
historical building. In the spring the planters are filled with flowers for community
Habitat For Humanity Planter
The club plants a container for a "Habitat Home" in our community. We obtain the project from the Habitat Partner of DFGC.
Garden Therapy (Lofland Nursing Home)
Six times a year members provide instruction, plant material and supplies for residents of the Lofland Nursing Home to make arrangements or plantings. We usually have 12-15 participants. The members that participate in Garden Therapy bring cuttings from their own gardens on most occasions. The Christmas project is scheduled so that we use greens from the club's green sale.
National Garden Week
During the first week in June our club designs and installs a window display at the Seaford Chamber of Commerce Building to promote garden clubs in Delaware and the Nation.
The Spade and Trowel garden club provides up to two $1,000 scholarships per year to students interested in horticulture and/or agriculture related fields. The procedure for awarding this scholarship has changed from the past. Scholarship awards will be made to Delaware Technical and Community College students based on their residence in the Laurel, Seaford or Woodbridge school districts, financial need and interest in the horticulture or agriculture fields. Recipients will be selected by the college's scholarship committee.
Students interested in applying for this scholarship should contact:
Jason Bentley, Director of Development, Delaware Technical Community College, 21179 College Dr , Georgetown, DE 19947,
Garden Courses (Delaware Tech., Georgetown)
A series of four gardening programs have been offered at The Owens Campus of Delaware Tech. in Georgetown through the club.
Seaford Library Patio Garden
The club plants and for several years has maintained the patio garden at the Seaford Library. The club designed and planted this garden starting in the spring of 2011. This is the first year (2014) in which the club will plant the garden and the library will maintain it. This project gives service to the community and promotes the love of gardening. The club receives numerous inquiries about our plantings and garden questions from the public as we work in the garden at the library.
Monthly Flower Show (Membership Flower Show)
The club continues to "Cultivate Gardens with Friendship," by holding a monthly membership flower show with a designated design and horticulture entry. The designs and horticulture are judged by a panel of judges and the total points accumulated during the year result in awards.
The club, along with the city of Seaford, will place hanging baskets along the bridge leading into the city and large planters at either end of the bridge as well as large containers in front of select businesses. The club will do the planting of these containers.
Spade & Trowel Youth Garden Club (Seaford Boys & Girls Club)
The Youth Garden Club is coordinated with the Seaford Boys and Girls Club and is a favorite with 12 students participating in the monthly projects. The participants care for raised garden beds, weeding and planting flowers and vegetables. A surprise for one mother when picking up her children was watching them eating thinly sliced turnips served with apple cider vinegar and then asking for seconds. - "Mom, you should learn to cook like this" said her son.
Seaford Middle School Life Skills Class (6x per year)
Instruction and materials are provided to the Middle School Life Skills Class six times a year to encourage youth interest in gardening. The class also participates in the Youth division of our "Journey Through Time Flower Show."