How does your garden grow? Bedford, Brookline, Hollis, Merrimack garden club sales can help

After the brutal winter, even non-gardeners feel the urge to go outside, dig in the dirt and create some beauty in the form of flowers and shrubs.

For the inexperienced gardener, there is a wealth of how-to information available – plenty of books and websites offering reams of information on designing gardens and planting flowers.

Maybe too much.

To simplify things and get your advice face to face, and from the person who has actually grown the flowers in their own garden – flowers that thrive in this area – the best places to go probably are community garden club sales.

Nearly every town in New Hampshire has a garden club, and their plant sales will be happening on weekends until early June. All of the events are rain or shine.

Colonial Garden Club, Hollis

This Saturday, May 9, Hollis’ Colonial Garden Club will hold its annual plant sale, offering annuals, perennials, shrubs and ground covers – about 1,500 plants, including hosta, sedum, iris, specialty day lilies, and all kinds of shade and woodland plants.

The sale is from 9 a.m.-noon at the Hollis Town Common. There will also be Mother’s Day baskets for sale.

Each member contributes at least 10 plants, and the funds are used for community projects, including plantings at the Hollis Social Library, Town Hall, the Farley Building, Always Ready Engine House, Monument Square and the war memorial.

Brookline Garden Club

The Brookline Garden Club’s spring plant sale is usually held on the first Saturday in June. This year, it’s from 8 a.m.-2 p.m. June 6 on the green space next to the parking lot at the Brookline Ball Field. Club members will be selling sturdy plants grown in their own gardens, and nothing is over $5.

The Brookline club is a small, informal group. They also have various levels of gardening experience and welcome new members. Right now there are only five, said Doris Lindgren, who is still active in the club even though she has moved to Manchester.

“We are desperate for members,” she said.

Those few members do a lot of work, caring for the flower garden in the triangle across from Town Hall, several beds around the Kildruff-Wirtanen American Legion Post and the center garden area of the school administrative building for Brookline and Hollis, which is on Bond Street in Hollis.

Anyone interested in joining can call Lindgren at 759-1139.

The club meets at 7 p.m. on the third Tuesday of the month at the Brookline Community Church. Money raised from its plant sale helps fund service projects that include the design and installation of public flower gardens it maintains throughout the year.

Brookline gardeners also hold an annual holiday evergreen wreath-making class, as well as a flower-arranging class taught by Lindgren, who owns in in-home flower shop called All-Ways Flowers.

In fall 2012, the club helped Girl Scouts plant more than 800 red tulip bulbs as part of drug and alcohol awareness, and the tulips are expected to bloom around prom time.

Merrimack Garden Club

The Merrimack Garden Club helps make the town beautiful by maintaining the grounds at St. James United Methodist Church, the Butterfly Garden at Watson Park, the library and window boxes at the post office.

Club members are helping with the Mother’s Day event at the library from 10 a.m.-noon Saturday. Children will decorate pots and plant a posy for Mother’s Day gifts. Registration is required at the library.

The club’s plant sale will be held Saturday, June 6, at St. James Church, and many club members will be on hand to help with selections.

The club meets on the fourth Tuesday of the month at St. James Church. For more information, visit

Bedford Garden Club

The Bedford Garden Club’s sale will be from 9-11 a.m. Saturday, May 16, at Town Hall. There will be a wide variety of selections from members and from local greenhouses.

Master gardeners will be on hand to answer questions about plant varieties and growing conditions.

For more information, call Donna Erhardt at 488-5632.

Kathy Cleveland can be reached at 673-3100 or