The Rancho Santa Fe Garden Club has a packed year of activities in 2018. In this photo are garden club volunteers seated left to right: Laurie Peters, Caroline Fleischmann, Julie Monroe, Fran Johnson and Carolyn Wheeler. Standing left to right: Suzanne Butz, Carolyn Nelson, Mary Ann Wolf, Andrea Kessler, Shelly Hart, Monica Kason, Cindy Monaghan, Dottie Radcliffe and Liza Hellinger. Courtesy photo
Community Rancho Santa Fe

Garden Club announces year’s first field trip

RANCHO SANTA FE — Kicking off the new year, the Rancho Santa Fe Garden Club decided to have local day trip. On Jan. 22, everyone will have the chance to visit the Grand Tradition in Fallbrook.

Shelly Hart, executive director of the Garden Club, said the locale is spectacular with 18 garden acres of season-specific buds and blooms.

“This is just a beautiful place with special places of interest such as the Arbor Terrace, a Tropical Paradise Garden, a Compass Garden and other viewpoints,” Hart said. “We are going to tour the gardens and see all the beauty.”

Following the tour, the group will take a short drive to the Garden Center Café and Grill, also located in Fallbrook, where they will have a catered lunch.

Hart said more members of the club were intrigued with the idea of additional field trips in 2018. While some members prefer locations further out, others like something closer to home. Hart is balancing two types of field trips this year.

The Grand Tradition was a destination that many suggested to Hart.

“I had several members come to me and say it’s beautiful — we need to visit,” she said. “We’re doing some field trips that have nothing to do with gardens, but the first one of the year, we’re going to see a lot of garden types.”

A few spots are still available, so Hart advises to secure a seat as soon as possible.

Hart wants people to know that field trips and special events are open to all, not just garden club members.

Days later, on Feb. 5, the club is motoring to Descanso Gardens, located north of Pasadena. This trip will be by bus.

“We’re going to begin the tour with a docent-guided walking tour of the whole area and the camellias are in bloom,” she said. “The Descanso Gardens have the largest collection of camellias in North America.” 

After the tour, the group will have a picnic lunch in the gardens catered by Café Descanso.

On Feb. 8, the club is having its debut Herb Garden Workshop in partnership with the Santaluz Club. Hart said this is the first of three workshops that will happen this year.

Caitlin Kreutz, a horticultural specialist who works with the Rancho Santa Fe Association, will be leading the workshop. Hart describes these classes as a joint effort between the Garden Club, Rancho Santa Fe Association and Santaluz Club.

“In Caitlin’s herb garden class, we will have strawberry pots and she will show us how to plant mature herbs for a full potted herb garden,” Hart said. “She’ll teach us how to take care of it, know the watering schedule and how much sunlight it needs. She’s a real expert at this.”

Hart said that the Garden Club didn’t have many workshops last year, so she is adding a few more because it was of interest to the members.

There’s a lot to be excited about with the Garden Club in 2018. Hart said the club has gone through a revitalization with something special for everyone.

“It’s going to be a very packed year,” she said.

To learn more about Rancho Santa Fe Garden Club membership, field trips and workshops, visit or call (858) 756-1554.