March is Women’s History Month: A message from Celina Ratliff, Clackamas County Master Gardener

Dear Fellow Master Gardeners,

Recognizing National Women’s History Month during the month of March, I invite you to explore these articles and videos highlighting gardening and landscaping accomplishments by women. The actions of these courageous females help pave the way for us, our granddaughters, and future generations. One of my favorites, Indigenous Spirituality inside Oregon Prisons is educational, inspirational, and thought-provoking. I shared the online video with others, creating meaningful dialogue about spirituality and inclusion. I encourage you to do the same. I invite you to select at least one article or video that touches your heart and share it with others.

Lastly, for fun, check out the two videos highlighting easy yoga exercises specifically designed for us…gardeners! Happy Spring gardening!

Cheers,
Celina Ratliff
Clackamas County Master Gardener | Statewide Master Gardener DEI Taskforce member


The older I get, the greater power I seem to have to help the world; I am like a snowball – the further I am rolled the more I gain.
—Susan B. Anthony


Women Making a Difference Yesterday & Today: Celebrating Women’s History Month

Timeline of Women’s History in American Gardens 1858 – 2009↗
Browse selected moments and movements in which American women have used plants, gardens, and landscapes for power, advocacy, and change.

Eight Women to Know in Horticulture History↗
Women from all backgrounds and interests have shaped the course of American gardens. 

Garden design was a man’s world in the early 1900s. Learn how a few women landscape architects determined to practice in their chosen careers slowly made their way into the field. This short video is from Smithsonian Gardens.

Check out the #HorticultureHERstory hashtag on Smithsonian Gardens’ Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter for more tales of groundbreaking women!

Photographers Frances Benjamin Johnston (1864-1952) and Mattie Edwards Hewitt (1869-1956), separately and together as working partners, captured thousands of images of gardens and architecture around the country during the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. This video provides insight into how the Planting Fields Foundation archives are specifically informing landscape restoration plans, by showcasing a number of images by Mattie Edwards Hewitt that show the site in its prime circa 1925.

Garden Clubs of the Early 20th Century
Garden clubs of the early to mid-20th century were about more than just planting and socializing: they were an important force that brought women together to make change. Women’s clubs were one of the few means by which women could effectively exercise social power before universal suffrage.

Women’s Wartime Gardens
This collection highlights the history of how America confronted the rapid food shortages during World War I and World War II, primarily the role of women in sustaining the U.S’ food source.

Gardening for the Common Good

The Earth in Her Hands: Jamaica Kincaid in Conversation with Jennifer Jewell I New York Botanical Garden

Listen to celebrated author and avid gardener Jamaica Kincaid discuss one of her greatest loves, when she joins public radio host Jennifer Jewell for a riveting conversation about gardens, the plants that fill them, and the extraordinary women who tend them.

Landscape Architects, Two Oregon Women Laid the Groundwork for Many of the Northwest’s Enduring Gardens I OregonLive
The scenery has improved in the century since Elizabeth Lord and Edith Schryver founded the first landscape architecture firm owned and operated by women in the Pacific Northwest.

Elizabeth Lord (1887-1976) and Edith Schryver (1901-1984) formed Lord & Schryver in 1929, the First Firm of Women Landscape Architects in the Pacific Northwest. 

Indigenous Spirituality inside Oregon Prisons I OPB

In 1978 the American Indian Religious Freedom Act allowed Native Americans to practice spirituality in the open. This inspirational video highlights what female leaders are doing to enhance spirituality practices in Oregon prisons, including gathering and serving sacred foods from the earth.

Oregon Garden Yoga↗
Interview and stretching tips for gardeners.

Yoga for Gardeners↗
This all-level holistic practice is for everyone! Suited perfectly for the actual gardener, but also designed for the metaphorical gardener within each of us.

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