Friday, February 28, 2014

Canadian Peony Presidents Message

By David Maltby

We certainly are in a grip of a cold, snowy, wet and freezing winter at this time. Hopefully, the peonies will come through okay.  But by the time you receive this newsletter, there will be a few short weeks until spring starts to makes its way across the country. The days are getting longer even now.  Another year has concluded and I have to thank the people who do most of the work in our society including, Blaine Marchand, our newsletter editor, Marvin Belfour, our financial secretary, Reiner Jakubowski, for keeping track of our membership and providing sage advice, Margaret Sequeira, for organizing and coordinating the root sale and the CPS Blog, Bill Wegman, for organizing and packaging the seed exchange each year, Lana Taylor-Mills who maintains our website, and all the members who contribute to the newsletter, to the annual shows, and to the website Our director’s position for Quebec is vacant at this time. If there is any member who would wish to take on that responsibility, please make yourself known or if any members would like to
put forward someone else’s name that would be most welcome.  I am looking forward to attending
our show and Annual General Meeting in Winnipeg at the Assiniboine Park Conservatory this June. Assiniboine Park has many attractions and is well worth the visit. Their perennial gardens are fantastic. In fact, the peony collection at the Park has a close link with the CPS.  Mary Ann Robinson and June Brett, who was originally from Winnipeg, donated peonies from their private collection to honour June’s family connection to the city. Their donation was increased by donations from Joe and Hazel Cook, Lindsay D’Aoust, Judi and Michael Denny, Brian Porter and Mary Pratte. The garden was most welcoming of this
gift and the intent was to hold the CPS show in Winnipeg this year.  Each year, the Assiniboine Park
Conservatory chooses a theme or event to celebrate Canadian Gardening Day. It is on June 13 this year and they have chosen the CPS show and peonies as the event to mark it. There will be extra media attention for peonies and our show, which will be in the foyer of the Conservatory and will spill out into the floral display area. Gerald Dieleman, the Director of Horticulture, at the Assiniboine Park Conservancy, is fully committed to ensuring our show is a well-attended success.  Hopefully, many members from across Canada will attend. We have only a few members in Manitoba but this will be an opportunity to expand our Society’s membership and exposure in the province, and for CPS members to explore the city and nearby countryside
and enjoy the many gardens. Winnipeg is a beautiful city.
Hope to see you there.

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