Garden Club of Virginia

The Garden Club of Virginia’s (GCV) relationship with Historic Christ Church began over a half century ago. In 1965 the GCV selected Christ Church for its annual historic landscape restoration project. Under the direction of landscape architect Ralph E. Griswold, the GCV created the cedar allée, circular driveway and modern burying ground to the west of Christ Church. (Learn more here: Modern Burying Ground Turns 50 page 7) 

In 2020 the GCV celebrated its centennial anniversary. To commemorate this milestone, the GCV selected sites around Virginia for a service day with Barlett Tree Experts. That April, Brandon Frazier and his team from Barlett’s Northern Neck office spent a day at Christ Church, pruning the large oaks in the churchyard and other trees that needed attention. GCV Restoration Committee liaison Dianne Spence and Foundation for Historic Christ (FHCC) Horticulture Committee chair Mary Hoerneman worked closely with Brandon. The FHCC Board of Directors passed a resolution that recognized the GCV’s anniversary and its numerous contributions to the grounds at Historic Christ Church since 1965. The GCV’s Centennial project included work at Wilton, Kenmore, and other sites as well as an exhibition at the Virginia Museum of History & Culture, which houses the GCV’s Restoration Committee papers and photographs.

Read the FHCC Board of Directors Resolution on the Garden Club of Virginia

The Garden Club of Virginia’s Restoration Committee Papers at the Virginia Museum of History & Culture


Northern Neck Master Gardeners

The Foundation for Historic Christ Church (FHCC) also maintains a relationship with the Northern Neck Master Gardeners. In the fall of 2019, FHCC volunteer Val Verburg formed a partnership with the Northern Neck Master Gardeners (NNMG) to maintain the herb garden on the campus of Historic Christ Church. Conceived in 1983 and completed in 1986-87, the herb garden welcomes guests as they approach the museum and offices from the visitor parking lot south of the church. In the spring of 2020, a group of master gardeners led by Marge Gibson and Sally Beard and supported by volunteers at Historic Christ Church began to rebuild the herb garden. The team removed rotted wood that outlined the herb garden’s four sections (biblical, fragrant, medicinal and culinary) and installed new brick borders. A year later, supported by a generous grant from the Garden Club of the Northern Neck, the group, which also included NNMGs Helen Johnson, Jo Ann Perkins, Leslie Damon, Fran Westbrook and Cindy Dullea, removed and replaced the diseased boxwoods that frame the herb garden with new boxwoods. See images of this work here: Herb Garden Rebuild at Historic Christ Church.