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The Stonington Garden Club has partnered with community leaders for nearly a century to positively impact the town and residents with lasting contributions through education, beautification, and environmental programs.

A legacy of Giving

projects

Projects & Gifts
Funded by the SGC

The club has had a long history in which members have had rewarding and pleasurable times working together. From 1985 to the present, the following projects have been funded. Many are ongoing. In addition, the club has made numerous charitable donations to a variety of local, state, and national organizations.

PROJECTS THE SGC HAS FUNDED IN FULL

  • NatureScapes, a natural science program that funds curriculum and an annual field trip to the Denison Pequotsepos Nature Center for every third grade class in the town of Stonington (private, public, parochial)
  • Quiambaug Fire Station pocket garden
  • Scholarships for 2 high school students to attend Project Oceanology at the University of Connecticut’s local facility
  • Stonington Cemetery Inc. – Daffodil bulb planting and beautification
  • Stonington High School: speakers on careers in agriculture

PUBLICATIONS

  • “Earth Friendly Alternatives,” a 60 page award winning book on alternatives to pesticides (2nd edition)
  • "What's Up Outside," a 56-page teacher's workbook based on the NatureScapes curriculum and published in 1998, was developed and funded by the club as a gift to third-grade classrooms in Connecticut

Additionally, members have volunteered their skills and energy towards the following projects:

  • Reclaiming wetlands at the Stonington Community Center with the DEEP
  • La Grua Center – Children’s Greens Workshop
  • Floral centerpieces for Salt Marsh Opera, NESS, Stonington Free Library, the COMO, and Stonington Historical Society fundraisers
  • Stonington Free Library - garden book donation
  • Winter Wreaths for the Stonington Free Library, COMO, Lighthouse, and Captain Nathaniel Palmer House

PROJECTS THE SGC HAS FUNDED IN PARTNERSHIP

  • Climate Change - sponsored the public forum to discuss plans to mitigate the impact of Climate Change with the Town of Stonington's Town Planner and Town Engineer
  • Comfort Station in Stonington Borough - Pledge to fund the environmentally sustainable features of the future public comfort station. This includes (3) areas:
    • services of a Landscape Architect and Horticulturalist
    • purchase and installation of the plants associated with the environmental features
    • public signage highlighting educational aspects of environmentally sustainable features
  • The Cottage at Avalon/Stonington Community Classroom 
  • Dean's Mill School
    • entrance garden
    • after-school Garden and Junior Garden Clubs
  • Denison Pequotsepos Nature Center - major funding toward the purchase of the Coogan Farm Giving Garden
  • duBois Beach seagrass
  • F.R.E.S.H. vegetable garden project in New London
  • Donahue Park (Pawcatuck) signage
  • Mystic River Boathouse Park - funded Horticulture Consultant to work with Town of Stonington to identify recommended native plants
  • The Nature Conservancy's public Programs on Climate Change
  • North Main Street tree and daffodil planting
  • Paffard Woods Project by the Avalonia Land Conservancy (redirected to Copps Brook Project)
  • Stonington Borough Fire Department landscaping
  • Stonington Free Library landscaping
  • Stonington High School
    • additions to the courtyard
    • teaching garden
  • Stonington High School & Middle School - purchase of mobile science carts, science books, tapes and CD-roms
  • Stonington Historical Society’:
    • major funding for the creation of a grape arbor and perennial beds on the grounds of the Captain Nathaniel Palmer House
    • supporting public open space at Lighthouse Museum and Captain Nathaniel Palmer House Museum
  • Stonington Land Trust - Centennial Tree Project (22 trees)
  • Wadawanuck Square planting of the Norway Spruce in collaboration with the Stonington Village Improvement Association
  • Wayland’s Wharf gazebo start-up funding
  • West Vine Street School outdoor classroom garden​​

The SGC has also made charitable donations to the following organizations:

  • American Horticulture Society
  • Avalonia Land Conservancy
  • Clean Up Sound & Harbor (CUSH)
  • Connecticut College Arboretum
  • Connecticut Trust for Historic Preservation
  • CT Adopt-A-Road Program North Main Street
  • Eastern Connecticut Conservation District
  • Federated Garden Clubs of Connecticut
  • Friends of Wadawanuck Square
  • Garden Club of America
  • GCA Student Conservation Scholarship Fund
  • Native Plant Trust
  • Pawcatuck Neighborhood Center – supporting Community Garden, Holiday Toy Drive, Food Drive
  • Save the Sound
  • Stonington Beautification Committee
  • Wood-Pawcatuck Watershed Association

Gardens by the Sea

Since 1993, Gardens by the Sea has been the club’s major fundraiser, offering a walking tour of gardens in Stonington Borough. The SGC uses the money raised by the Garden Tour to fund its community projects, scholarships, and grant programs. The tour is well known throughout New England and draws several thousand visitors to Stonington over two days. In addition to the gardens, the event has featured a Marketplace for vendors selling garden related items women clothing, jewelry, and decorative items. Recent tours have also included a Preview Party, a Celebrity Speaker, and local artists painting in the gardens.

Save the Date: June 12 & 13, 2026