Alta Vista Garden Club

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Alta Vista Garden Club was organized and federated in 1951 with Ruby Wilkinson as its first president. The purpose of AVGC is to stimulate interest in and knowledge of the different forms of gardening, particularly our private gardens and general improvement of home grounds; aid in protection of native trees, plants and wildlife; and promote general civic improvement in the city and its environs.

From its beginnings, AVGC has given their time, knowledge and monetary contributions to enhance the Prescott area. AVGC has received several State, Regional and National awards for their work. In June of 2004, AVGC held its first biennial Prescott Garden Tour. This has become the club’s major fundraiser and has resulted in even larger contributions to the community.

President: Robin Borok

Vice President: Nancy Vance

Secretary: Carole Sheppard

Treasurer: Holly Bosch

Assistant Treasurer: Karen Crossley

Continuing Project Committees


Beautification Diane Benjamin
Fundraising Club members
Gardener’s Day Out Julie Lessard
Garden of Merit Miriam Carlson-Maier
Habitat for Humanity Ruth Lysak
Penny Pines Linda Smith
Membership Jane Lovely
Historian Frances Martinez and Julie Lessard
Newsletter Donna Meyer
Nominating 2024/25 TBD
Parliamentarian Carol Westfall
Program Lynne McKinney
Media Miriam Carlson-Maier, Donna Meyer, Carol Westfall
Yearbook Holly Bosch

Since it was organized and federated in 1951, the Alta Vista Garden Club has had as one of its purposes to promote general civic improvements in the city. Today, we continue to strive to encourage community beautification through a multitude of garden projects.

Community Beautification has included planting daffodils and hyacinth in Veterans Memorial Park. This park is at the entrance to the city, and the cheery blooms of the daffodils, fronting the pioneer statue commemorating Prescott as the Territorial Capitol of Arizona, greeted visitors.

Alta Vista Garden Club also collaborated with the Yavapai Regional Medical Center to develop a Healing Garden to be used by the staff for stress relief and communing with nature. Many hospital employees use this garden to take a break, eat lunch, and just relax.

Other past projects have including planting trees on Arbor Day, spreading mulch at the Smoki Museum, cleaning up planters and adding flowers at the Good Samaritan Nursing Home, and replanting the large planter box outside of the Prescott Fire Station on White Spar Road.

The club has also supported school gardens at Coyote Springs School and Mountain Oak Elementary School with donations of time, funds and supplies. Alta Vista members have demonstrated planting and pruning techniques at various schools over the years.

Garden of Merit

Members of this committee scour Prescott and the surrounding communities for outstanding gardens that are visible from the street. The purpose of this program is to encourage homeowners and businesses to beautify their landscape. Garden of Merit awards are made periodically during the Prescott growing season, June through September.

To advertise the award a sign is erected in the garden visible from the street, an article is published in the local newspaper and pictures of the garden are posted at local garden centers.

Habitat for Humanity

The club contributes plants, books and expertise to new “Habitat for Humanity” homeowners. The goal of the Habitat for Humanity Committee is to assist new Habitat homeowners in the planning and selection of landscaping materials for their new home. Since many of the Habitat homeowners have not owned a home before, the planning phase encompasses introduction to gardening in a harsh climate, waterwise and firewise plant selection and what is involved in the maintenance of the selected plants. Funding is provided to purchase the selected materials. Members also provide planting assistance.

Youth Activities

School Activities
National Garden Club Poster Contests
Alta Vista Garden Club encourages local children from first through fifth grade to participate in the annual National Garden Clubs, Inc. Poster Contest! This contest gives students the opportunity to demonstrate through original drawings of Smokey Bear or Woodsy Owl, their understanding of wildfire prevention and basic environmental conservation principles.

Smokey’s message, “Only You Can Prevent Wildfires!” encourages personal responsibility for fire prevention. Smokey Bear teaches children and adults to be careful with campfires, barbecues, trash fires, and matches.

Woodsy Owl is America’s icon for the conservation of the environment. Woodsy has helped parents and teachers inspire children to observe, explore, and care for the environment. He challenges children to “Lend a Hand, Care for the Land!” and to take an active role in caring for the land through recycling, reusing, and reducing waste, planting and caring for trees, using resources wisely, and not littering.

Alta Vista recognizes all local students who submit a poster with a Certificate of Participation and the students whose posters are selected to advance to the State competition are awarded a $10 gift card. In 2011 Alta Vista awarded 12 gift card and one of the local students won 1st place in state and regionally with their poster.

School Gardens
The club works with local schools, both public and private, to assist them with landscaping and gardening activities. Local schools have been assisted in planting native plants, firewise plants, and plants that attract bees and butterflies. Long term projects are being considered at a number of locations.

National Garden Club’s Poetry Contest
Alta Vista also encourages local youth to express & explore their creative thoughts through different types of poetry. The subject for the 2012 contest is “Colorful Fruits and Tasty Vegetables.” Eligibility: Special Education & English as a Second Language: Kindergarten through Ninth Grade. General Education: Kindergarten through Ninth Grade. Two participants in 2010 and one in 2011 was awarded the top prize at the National level. The poem at the right won National in 2011.

Field Of Daffodils
by Tiffany W

The picture perfect view
Oh, the beauty of this place
They have their gorgeous smiles on
Full of joy and grace

A beautiful field of daffodils

They’re swaying in the wind
In each in every way
The winds blows them hour by hour ever single day

A beautiful field of daffodils

Colors, joined by the breeze
They’re a rainbow in a blur
You wonder where they’ll go
And maybe where they were

A beautiful field of daffodils

Their seeds will fly away
And land some other place
To grow another flower
And smile to a face

A beautiful field of daffodils

I enjoy the moment while it lasts
My happiness in a chime
But if I had it my way,
I’d be there all the time

In this beautiful field of daffodils

Additional Projects and Activities

Ongoing projects/activities of club members include:

  • A donation is made to the Prescott Public Library in memory of deceased members.
  • A tree is planted at a public space somewhere in the area each Arbor Day.
  • Food and contributions are made to the Yavapai Food Bank and “Open Door” Project and every Christmas, members collect donations of food and money for the Prescott Community Cupboard.
  • Pennies are contributed to National Garden Club’s reforestation & forest education programs (Penny Pines).
  • Gardener’s Day Out is a day each month that we visit a location associated with gardening as a fun way to discover new Arizona locales and socialize with other members.
  • Vision of Beauty calendars are sold annually

Alta Vista Garden Club was organized and became a Federated Garden Club in 1951. The stated purpose of the Club was to:

Stimulate interest in and knowledge of the different forms of gardening, particularly our private gardens and general improvement of home grounds,
Aid in the protection of native trees, plants and wildlife
Promote general civic improvements in the city and its environs.
Over the years the Alta Vista Garden Club, which limits its membership to forty-four has contributed more than $60,000 for projects to enhance and beautify Prescott. Projects supported include:

  • The Sharlot Hall Museum Rose Garden
  • Landscaping at Love Field, Acker Park, Miller Valley School, Yavapai County complex at the rodeo grounds, the pond of the Yavapai Regional Medical Center, Yavapai Guidance Center,
  • Prescott Fine Arts Association Gardens, Yavapai College Sculpture Gardens, Heritage Park Zoo, the YMCA building
  • Planting trees at every public school in the Prescott area as well as the Salvation Army Worship Center, the VA Hospital, Memorial Park, and the Pioneer Home
  • Planting specimen trees along Haisley Road to promote the use of Sunburst Locust
  • “Operation Wildflower”, Lady Bird Johnson’s national roadway beautification program, was initiated in Arizona by member Mildred Lee and the club continued their donations of wildflower seeds to the Arizona Department of Transportation for many years
  • Provide plants and gardening advice to new Habitat for Humanity homeowners
  • Donating books about gardening, horticulture and flower arranging to the Prescott Public Library in memory of deceased members.
  • Working with school children, help in planting vegetable gardens, providing tools and support and teaching how to cook and preserve these foods.

All these projects are made possible by the fundraising activities sponsored by the Alta Vista Garden Club. Our current major fundraising project is The Prescott Garden Tour which will be held next in June 2020. For more information or to order tickets, click Garden Tour.

Past Projects
Working with Coyote Springs Elementary School pruning fruit trees with 4th graders
Discuss herbs and make dill pickles
Prune roses at the Yavapai College Sculpture Garden
Garden Tools donated to Mountain Oaks Elementary and Coyote Springs Elementary Schools
Dedicated Blue Star Memorial Marker at the Prescott Senior Center
Donated two trees to the Arizona Pioneer Home’s Secret Garden
Donated to Highland Center Discovery Garden
Planted perennials, bushes and climbing clematis at the Prescott Fire Station #1 and planted the “Firefighter Rose” at the Memorial statue for the fallen Hotshots
Cared and pruned the rose garden at the Yavapai College Sculpture Garden
Donated perennials to the Yavapai College Sculpture Garden
Added Abelias and Daffodils to the Yavapai College Sculpture Garden
Donated plants and bushes to several Habitat for Humanity homes
Donation of benches to Miller Valley School Habitat
Planted daffodils in Veterans Memorial Park
Planted redbud tree at Arizona Pioneers Home
Planted Flame Maple tree at Prescott Public Library for Centennial
Donation to Highland Center for Natural History Children’s Camp
Donated & planted containers at Yavapai Regional Medical Center’s Therapy Garden
Donated to Prescott Creeks
Donated to Yavapai College Plant-A-Vine Program
Donated to Highlands Center Juniper Fund
Donated to Arizona Pioneer Home and Pruned their rose garden
Replanted entrance to the YMCA

Donated trees – VA Hospital, Salvation Army & City of Prescott
Contributions to Highlands Center for Natural History
Contributions to Sharlot Hall Museum to improve the rose garden
Landscaping at Rodeo Grounds
Donation for Prescott Library landscaping
Donation to the Student Conservation Association
Donation for Smoki Museum Native Plant Garden

Donated plants to AZ Pioneer Home
Landscaping at Prescott Fine Arts
Contribution for trees at Four Corners
Donated 2 trees – Courthouse Square
Contribution to Sculpture Garden – YCC
Planted Sunburst Locust at Sharlot Hall Museum

Donated fund to the County Courthouse
Donated to the Lighting & Main Street Project
Landscaped Yavapai Guidance Center
Landscaped Hillside Substance Abuse Center
Donation to landscape of Yavapai Community College entrance

Donated tree to Sharlot Hall Museum
Donated bench to Sharlot Hall Museum
Landscaped patio of Yavapai Regional Medical Center
Contribution to Rest Stop Bench
Contribution for the gazebo at Sharlot Hall Museum
Anti-Litter project in the schools
Landscaping at County Building
Contribution to Garden Therapy Program at VA Hospital
Contribution to National Veterans’ Cemetery
Contribution to Sharlot Hall Museum Rose Garden
Donated tree at Prescott Fine Arts
Landscaping at Granite Creek Park entrance

Landscaping at Love Field (Prescott Airport)
Landscaping at Honor Park
Landscaping at Acker Park
Planted a tree at every school in the Prescott area