The Dirt: Behind the Scenes at Landis

By Wendy Kass

It takes many helping hands to make things happen at the Arboretum. Here’s the latest “dirt” on some of what’s happening:

Communications Committee

The committee brainstormed for the summer issue of the newsletter and conducted other business. The morning ended with a light lunch, with contributions by members, another of Nolan’s great soups, and Anne's amazing whiskey cake. The committee meets again in July – hopefully followed by a picnic lunch on the deck!

Landis Garden Club Meeting

Dave Laraway, aka The Pickle Man, imparted some of his vast knowledge about pickling, fermenting, and gardening. The Garden Club was invited to visit his gardens in August. No one will want to miss this event! Of course, the homemade goodies by Dave and club members were delicious!

The Greenhouse Team

Steve Perog and Jim Murphy constructed the wooden frame last fall. Then the team of Jim Paley, Jeff Schworm, and Joel Caraher, along with three hardworking AMERICORPS participants, put in 12 TONS of stone for the new floor. After that Jeff, Joel, and Jim installed the new polycarbonate roof.

Cindy King and her team of volunteers, Florence Grimm, Susannah Hunter, Wendy Kass, Nolan Marciniec, Gus and Louise Polli, and Ann and Ed Radle, performed their magic getting plants propagated and potted up for the Spring Plant Sale. What a feat! And they do it every year! It's an interesting day helping out – and the conversation is lively. It sure feels good to get your hands in dirt so early in the spring.

Human Resources, or Just Call Her Anne

Anne Donnelly has just pulled off scheduling volunteers for the HVCC Garden Show and the Landis Spring Plant Sale. Anne's army of helpers logged in 1,050 hours! 505 hours of those were logged in by the Landis Boy Scout Troop 501! We had some wonderful weather for the spring sale this year. The sale started off with an enjoyable Pick of the Pots for Landis Arboretum members. The evening included wine, wonderful appetizers provided by the Board of Trustees, lots of socializing -- and plant mania of course.

Arts and Entertainment

Come see our new sculpture, "Watusi Wind," on the patio of the Meeting House.

The Full Moon Music Series has booked the bands for June, July, August and September. The must-hear concert of the season is Hair of the Dog on September 8th at 7 PM. We will have food and beverages for that event.

“Lessons from Sweetgrass” on August 19th at 3:00 promises to be a very special event. Dr. Robin Kimmerer will speak about the flora of the Adirondacks and its cultural significance to the Native American tribes and will explore the lessons these plants and people can teach us about our environmental responsibilities. The event is free and open to the public. We encourage you to bring a donation of non-perishable food items for the Johnstown Council of Churches Food Pantry.

Buildings and Grounds

We will have the barn painted this year! Yay!

Marketing Committee

For the second year in a row, Landis Arboretum has been featured on Ann Parillo's cable TV show, “Schenectady Today.” The video can be viewed on You Tube.

Our marvelous new Landis video by Gavin Leach, is now on our website. Check it out. Another is in the works.

Volunteering does wonders – for Landis and for you. Information about volunteering is available on our website,, or by emailing or Volunteer Coordinator at or by calling us at 518-875-6935. Join the Landis family!

Summer 2017

Volume 35 , Number 3

Share this

The Latest from Landis

Jun 19, 2024

Don't Miss These Upcoming Activities at Landis!

Our calendar is well stocked with great things to do this year, but we wanted... read more

Jun 19, 2024 | Sam McClary

The Arboretum’s Battle Against Invasive Species

Invasive plants are defined as plants that are not native to an environment that, once... read more

Jun 19, 2024 | Fred Breglia

From the Director’s Desk: Where to See a Big Tree -- Locally! (Part 1)

So you want to see a “Big Tree” but aren’t sure where to start? As... read more

Jun 19, 2024 | Anita Sanchez

A Close Encounter of the Wasp Kind

​​​​​​​​One bright morning last summer, after an hour of pottering in the garden, I decided... read more

Jun 19, 2024 | Erin McKenna Breglia

From the Garden: The Ever Popular, Low Maintenance Iris

Derived from the Greek word for “rainbow“ and a frequent subject of artist Vincent Van... read more

Jun 19, 2024 | Shayne Mitchell

News and Muse from the Bluebird Trail

Nest box monitoring began on March 12 and has continued weekly. I found that the... read more

News Archive