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Oct 07, 2021

Rumson Garden Club Members Work on Partners 4 Plants Climate Change Experiment

From left: Ann Hawley, RGC President Kathryne Singleton, Jeanne Shanley, Maya Speelmans, Susan Olson, P4P project leader Sarah Fleming and Penn Branin

This Labor Day, members of the Rumson Garden Club (RGC) were hard at work in the community, particularly on their Partners 4 Plants (P4P) Climate Change Experiment. Created and financially supported by the Garden Club of America, the project’s mission is to plant southern native species both on Sandy Hook and by the Rumson waterfront and monitor their survivability in the climbing temperatures associated with global warming. 

Project leader Sarah Fleming, of Rumson, worked with environmental and agricultural experts from all over the state to identify suitable southern native species that in the past would not have survived the New Jersey winter climate to test their hardiness. 

In August, RGC partnered with the Rumson Junior Green Team, a division of the Rumson Environmental Commission which encourages high school students to support conservation and sustainability projects. They prepared the soil at the Grant Avenue Pump Station cistern adjacent to the Shrewsbury River. On Sept. 7, Garden Club members planted dozens of Aster oblongifolius (October Skies) and Asclepias verticillate, which, combined with the control group plant Rosa carolina, which was planted in fall 2019, has transformed the previously bland site into a more attractive and important location.