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Archived Press Releases

Weston Nurseries Teams with Mass Hort for New Membership Benefit


March 14, 2012 . Wellesley, MA Massachusetts Horticultural Society in partnership with Weston Nurseries will introduce a new membership benefit at the Boston Flower and Garden Show. Beginning on March 14, 2012, new and renewing members will receive an additional benefit from Weston Nurseries: a $25 gift certificate redeemable at Weston Nurseries in Hopkinton and Chelmsford.

Membership in the Massachusetts Horticultural Society helps to support the work of the Society and its public gardens at Elm Bank. Benefits include flower show ticket (s), a $25.00 gift certificate to White Flower Farm (redeemable online, via telephone, or at the store), 10 percent discount at over 70 Massachusetts nurseries, partner program with local public gardens, twelve issues of our online newsletter, Leaflet, and two magazine subscriptions: Organic Gardening and Garden Design

"Weston Nurseries is very pleased to partner with the Massachusetts Horticultural Society to the benefit of new members and those members who renew their memberships." said Peter Mezit, President of Weston Nurseries. "Many people who are members of Mass Hort are similar to our customers. They are very interested in plants and horticulture and want to learn more. Mass Hort members who shop with us tell us that they come here for the variety, selection, size, and knowledge of plant material. By offering a $25 gift certificate, we will make an even stronger connection with their membership and give members a great experience when they come here."

"Mass Hort is very excited to partner with Weston Nurseries and offer an additional benefit to our members, noted Katherine Macdonald, President of Mass Hort, "We encourage our members to shop with nurseries that have the horticultural expertise to help with our mission of educating people about plants and the environment."

About Weston Nurseries
Weston Nurseries is located 25 miles west of Boston at 93 East Main Street (Route 135) in Hopkinton, Massachusetts. Since 1923, they have been known by homeowners and trade professionals for their exceptional trees, shrubs, and perennials, including their own introductions of azaleas and rhododendrons. Their staff offers sound horticultural advice and landscape design to help our customers beautify their landscape, enhance their lifestyle, and increase the value of their home. Last year, they opened a second garden center on 160 Pine Hill Road, Chelmsford, MA.

About the Massachusetts Horticultural Society
Founded in 1829, the Massachusetts Horticultural Society is dedicated to encouraging the science and practice of horticulture and to developing the public's enjoyment, appreciation, and understanding of plants and the environment. We deliver our mission in exhibit halls, the class room, and the Gardens at Elm Bank.

Located on 36 acres in the historic Elm Bank Reservation, our horticultural education center provides a place where people of all backgrounds can come together for inspiration and education. Our public gardens, The Gardens at Elm Bank, are a place of beauty, discovery, quiet reflection, and appreciation of garden design. Massachusetts Horticultural Society is a 501 ( c) (3) not-for-profit organization.

Contact: Katherine Macdonald , President, Massachusetts Horticultural Society,
office: 617-933-4955, cell: 781-248-4585, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Peter Mezitt, President, Weston Nurseries, Inc.,ph: 508 293 8026,
cell: 508 962 8999,This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Wellesley Farmers' Market to Open May 3, 2012

The Wellesley Farmers' Market is a program of the Massachusetts Horticultural Society and funded by a grant from Wellesley Plaza.

Wellesley, MA, February 1, 2012 A team of experienced town residents and Wellesley's Sustainable Energy Coordinator have partnered with the Massachusetts Horticultural Society to create a farmers' market in the center of Wellesley that aims to develop a more sustainable community by supporting local agriculture while providing an enticing community based market experience.

The Wellesley Farmers' Market will be a three season, centrally located market that brings together diverse local vendors in a vibrant, outdoor community setting. This long-awaited market will be opening on May 3rd at 442 Washington St (Rte 16), the parking area at Whole Foods Market, and running every Thursday from 2:00 - 6:00 pm from May 3 - November 15.

The Market will be run as a project of the Massachusetts Horticultural Society, with town volunteers on the Steering Committee, thanks to a generous grant from Wellesley Plaza, managed by Gravestar, Inc. and the support of Whole Foods Markets.

"We are pleased to support The Wellesley Farmers' Market in its goal to contribute to the success of local food growers and producers and serve the community," said Carole Montgomery, Senior Manager, Property Management for Gravestar, Inc.

"Since Whole Foods Markets got approval to have a farmers' market at the Annual Town Meeting in 2010, a great deal of thought and strategy has gone on to launch this exciting community project," said Lee B. Kane, EcoCzar/Forager of Whole Foods Market, North Atlantic Region.

Since then, a group of volunteers have worked with Molly Fairchild, Wellesley's Sustainable Energy Coordinator to develop the Market, meet town regulations and coordinate programs with the Health Department, the Council on Aging and the Food Pantry.

"This is an incredible community resource that educates and celebrates seasonal, local, sustainably grown foods." Molly Fairchild said.

Visitors to the market will enjoy specialty crops from local farms as well as other organic products at the 12 stalls.

"The Farmers' Market program takes us back to the roots of the Massachusetts Horticultural Society," said Katherine K. Macdonald, Society President.

"The Society was founded in 1829 by a group of Bostonians who wanted to improve the quality of fruits and vegetables available in the market stalls in Boston. Today Mass Hort continues this mission by supporting the local food movement through programs like Garden to Table, providing culinary education and inspiration for the community," she said, adding, "We are pleased to align our mission with Wellesley's focus on sustainability."

Opportunities to volunteer at the Farmers' Market on market day and behind the scenes are available. Please contact John Spencer at 617-933-4916 or at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for more information.

Click here for more information

Katherine Macdonald Named New Executive Director of Mass Hort

January 6th, 2011

The Massachusetts Horticultural Society announced today that it has named Katherine K. Macdonald as the organization’s new executive director. Ms. Macdonald brings a wealth of experience to her new position, including both public company and not-for-profit management experience. Macdonald was President of KMAC Marketing and, prior to that, was Vice President of Marketing for Thompson Island Outward Bound, a non-profit focused on experiential education.

“We are thrilled. Kathy is a talented strategist with experience in both the non-profit and for- profit sectors. She has a proven track record of being able to transform mission and vision into actions,” said Betsy Ridge Madsen, President of the Board of Trustees of the Massachusetts Horticultural Society. “Mass Hort has moved through some challenging times to achieve institutional stability. Because of her combination of business acumen and non-profit spirit, we are confident that Kathy’s leadership will successfully drive and expand the organization’s educational mission.”

Ms. Macdonald spent six years as Vice President of Marketing for Thompson Island Outward Bound, a not-for-profit organization focused on providing experiential education to Boston-area youth. She was responsible for generating $3 million of annual revenue that supported Thompson Island’s core mission. She also helped develop an environmental program that combined Outward Bound’s philosophy with environmental studies, to encourage teambuilding and environmental stewardship. Her business career spans more than twenty five years, and includes entrepreneurship, technology start ups, the Xerox Corporation, the hospitality industry, and non profits. Most recently, she was president of KMAC Marketing, which provides strategic planning and marketing assistance to profit- and not-for-profit organizations.

“I see an extraordinary opportunity to leverage the turnaround that is already underway at Mass Hort as a launching pad for the organization’s renaissance,” Ms. Macdonald said. “Mass Hort has been part of the environmental movement since 1829, and now is the time to make its voice heard in the contemporary conversation. My goal for Mass Hort is straightforward: to use the organization’s considerable resources to meet society’s changing needs. To that end, I believe Mass Hort must sharpen its focus on sustainability, protecting natural resources, health, and environmental stewardship.”

Wayne Mezitt, Chairman of Weston Nurseries, Hopkinton , MA , commented on the appointment. “The Massachusetts Horticultural Society has a rich history of providing services to gardeners of all levels with copious horticultural programs. Kathy’s background, energy and long-range vision will enable her to effectively lead Mass Hort and connect its mission with today’s ever-increasing cultural emphasis on the environment and sustainability.”

“Mass Hort is here today because of the hard work, perseverance and tenacity of many people,” said Ms. Macdonald. “The Society’s trustees and staff, Master Gardeners, donors, and its many volunteers have seen the organization through a difficult period. I see my job as delivering on the promise of Mass Hort on their behalf.”

Ms. Macdonald holds an MBA from Olin Graduate School of Business at Babson College and a bachelor’s degree from Central Connecticut State University. Long active in civic affairs in Wellesley, Macdonald has been an elected Town Meeting member for 24 years. She has served on multiple committees, including the Advisory/Finance Committee, the Wellesley Housing Development Corporation, and the Community Preservation Committee. She has managed several initiative campaigns including one, in 2002, for the Massachusetts League of Women Voters that focused on campaign television advertising. Macdonald and her husband Kevin have lived in Wellesley for more than 30 years. They have two adult children, Brian and Bridget.

This release has been reprinted in the following publications:

Garden Club of Back Bay
Garden Web Forum
Metrowest Daily News
Swellsley Report
Wellesley Weston Blog
Wicked Local Wellesley

Executive Director Search Launched

The Massachusetts Horticultural Society has begun a nationwide search for an Executive Director to lead the organization. Below are the criteria for the position as well as a short background of our organization. MassHort encourages qualified individuals to apply for the position. Referrals are also welcome.

The Position

The Executive Director will hold full responsibility for the financial, strategic, and organizational growth and success of the MHS. Reporting the Board of Trustees, the Executive Director will lead the development of the strategic vision and planning process for a renewed organization that drives the mission into an increasingly digital and ecologically-aware world. S/he will capitalize on the past successes, expertise, and resources of the MHS to build it into a premier organization known for its mission of promoting the science, art, and practice of horticulture and dedicated to providing the public an appreciation, understanding, and enjoyment of plants and our environment.

The ED will have a leadership style that promotes collective involvement and collaboration, open and inclusive communications, is adept at managing in highly matrixed organizations, advocates and cultivates volunteer involvement, and inspires all parties to work toward a singular mission and vision. The ED will prepare all budgets and cash flow projections and in concert with the Board oversee all external audits.

The ED will shepherd the organization through a strategic and operational transition to establish the organization as a strong viable entity. Together with the Board of Trustees, s/he will spearhead a strategic planning process to identify and solidify new revenue streams that support both the mission and operating structure.

S/he will support the furthered growth and expansion of the membership base; expand and enhance development activities, nurture partnerships and collaborations; reinstate and expand the society?s activities and offerings; increase public education and public service; expand grant and donor support; and investigate other venues as advocated in an age of increasing digital technologies and communication.

The ED will serve as the chief spokesperson for the society and participate in all public and private venues and spearhead all major development activities.

The Candidate

The ideal candidate will have a strong successful track record of building mission-driven organizations that have grown to become premier respected entities within their area of expertise. S/he should be a visionary yet have solid financial and leadership skills and will be capable of meeting established deadlines and goals and in communicating progress and milestones along the way. They should exhibit a clear, open, and inclusive style of communication with the Board of Trustees, the members, staff, and volunteers of the society, all partners, stakeholders, and the public.

S/he should be adept at motivating and developing full time and volunteer staff and at leveraging institutional memory and knowledge to build stronger alliances with the public, members, partners, and potential partners. The ideal candidate will be passionately mission-driven but practical about achieving short and long term objectives and goals. A strong understanding of organizational dynamics, motivation of full time and volunteer staff, and Board inclusion and support are key.

Prior experience and success in fundraising with experience and knowledge of the full development process is required. In addition, excellent communication and presentation skills should be a given. S/he should have a working understanding and knowledge of best practices in financial management of a multi million dollar not for profit.

Other key attributes include:

Success in raising funds in a capital campaign

Demonstrated team building skills

Demonstrated understanding of the development process in a not for profit organization

History of excellent Board relations including the reporting of timely and current financial, organizational, development, and market conditions.

Prior experience preparing operating budgets and cash flows

Preferred is a strong interest in horticultural activities.

The Organization

Formed in 1829, MHS is dedicated to encouraging and improving the science and practice of horticulture and to developing the public's enjoyment, appreciation, and understanding of plants and the environment. With its library, exhibitions, education and community outreach programs, and the recent development of a hands-on education and information center at Elm Bank Reservation in Wellesley, the Society is recognized as a consistent and comprehensive resource for horticultural science and practice, serving more than 270,000 people annually. Among its finest and most widely recognized achievements has been the Society's Spring Flower Show. First produced in 1871, the Show was New England's largest indoor event, attracting nearly 90,000 people annually. MHS is one of the largest horticultural societies in the U.S., and New England is home to one of the largest and most dedicated groups of gardeners in the country.

MHS is headquartered in restored buildings on a 36-acre site in Wellesley known as Elm Bank Reservation. Bordering the Charles River, the site has excellent accessibility from Boston and its suburbs and represents an important asset for present and future expanded activities. What is now The Elm Bank Horticulture Center was secured in 1996 after a prolonged search for a facility that could house the Society?s headquarters and library, and serve its membership with working and display gardens. Elm Bank, the garden estate designed by Frederick Law Olmstead and owned by the Cheney/Baltzell family from the late19th to mid-20th centuries, currently features ten contemporary and historic gardens and a fine collection of buildings, some of which are on the National Registry of Historic Places, and which have been improved and supplemented with new greenhouses. The Center also houses the 19th and 20th century collections of the Society's renowned horticultural library. The Society's activities at Elm Bank include a thriving Master Gardener program, direct-experience educational programs for children and young people, seminars, workshops, and lectures for adults, and a popular series of spring and summer community events.

The present annual budget of approximately $1.0 million (historical revenue substantially greater) is funded from proceeds of the Flower Show, memberships, program fees, rentals, and donations from individuals, businesses, and foundations. These revenue streams need to be strongly enhanced in order for the Society to meet the needs of its various constituencies and fully utilize its important Elm Bank asset.

There are approximately twenty-five full and part-time staff positions of which only seven are currently filled. Key positions include the Director of Education, the Director of Horticulture, the Director of Development and Membership, the Director of Facilities, and the Director of Finance. The Board of Trustees currently stands at fifteen members.


The position offers a competitive base and bonus.

For further information please contact Jeanne Leszczynski at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Simon Malls Extends Venues and Days for BLOOMS!


Three malls provide added space for large-scale landscapes and garden exhibits from March 12 – 22, 2009; Mall at Chestnut Hill hosts an afternoon of “Florals & Tea” on Sunday, March 15th from 2-4 p.m.

BOSTON, MA (February 17, 2009) — Three of Boston’s favorite upscale shopping centers, Copley Place, Mall at Chestnut Hill and Atrium Mall, announced today a partnership with the Massachusetts Horticultural Society’s spring flower exhibit, “BLOOMS!”

As a departure from the traditional, large scale landscaping vignettes of other flower shows, BLOOMS! will more offer intimate displays, enhanced by the magnificent architecture of the lobbies of three financial district properties. The event will take place a t two office complexes and a hotel, all abutting the Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy Greenway. One International Place, 125 High Street, and the InterContinental Boston have all made their exceptional public spaces available for the show. For three days, March 13-15, 2009, they'll be filled with color and the scents of impending spring.

Simon Property Group malls, Copley Place, Mall at Chestnut Hill and Atrium Mall, have agreed to provide additional venues as an extension of “BLOOMS!” where the public is welcome to experience a variety of landscape and garden exhibits in common areas throughout the malls. These special satellite venues provide additional space for large-scale landscape and exceptional garden vignettes. Most of the large-scale exhibits will be displayed throughout the Mall at Chestnut Hill, with smaller flower displays at Copley Place and Atrium Mall. The three malls will also allow “BLOOMS!” to extend its run to a total of eleven days, from March 12th through March 22nd.

On Sunday, March 15th, the Mall at Chestnut Hill will host a special event, “Florals & Tea,” from 2-4 p.m., where shoppers will be able to enjoy florals with a Sunday afternoon tea. Special tea stations will be set up throughout the exhibits, and the mall invites the public to peruse the flower and landscape displays while sipping a cup of tea.

“We are excited to partner with MassHort to promote their new exhibit and pleased to offer additional space for landscapers and gardeners looking to showcase large-scale designs,” said Debora Konig, Area Director of Mall Marketing for Copley Place, Mall at Chestnut Hill and Atrium Mall. “We all need a little reminder that Spring is on the way, and we encourage the public to visit “BLOOMS!” in the buildings adjacent to The Greenway as well as in our centers.”

Flower and landscape exhibits will be on display at Simon properties beginning Thursday, March 12th through Sunday, March 22nd. For more information, visit www.simon.com or www.masshort.org.

About “BLOOMS!”
“BLOOMS!” will be held in Boston March 12th-15th in the marble lobbies of International Place, 125 High Street and The InterContinental Boston, in the buildings abutting The Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy Greenway, “BLOOMS!” will introduce the public to this new Boston neighborhood. There will be no charge to visit these exhibits.

About the Massachusetts Horticultural Society
Founded in 1829, the Massachusetts Horticultural Society is dedicated to encouraging the science and practice of horticulture and developing the public's enjoyment, appreciation, and understanding of plants and the environment. In addition to its 8,000 members and headquarters at the 36-acre Elm Bank Horticulture Center, Mass Hort, known for its annual New England Spring Flower Show--the largest indoor event in New England and, after 136 years, the longest-running of its kind in the United States, will be presenting a new event “BLOOMS!”

About Simon Property Group
Simon Property Group, Inc. is an S&P 500 company and the largest public U.S. real estate company. Simon is a fully integrated real estate company which operates from five retail real estate platforms: regional malls, Premium Outlet Centers®, The Mills®, community/lifestyle centers and international properties. It currently owns or has an interest in 386 properties comprising 263 million square feet of gross leasable area in North America, Europe and Asia. The Company is headquartered in Indianapolis, Indiana and employs more than 5,000 people worldwide. Simon Property Group, Inc. is publicly traded on the NYSE under the symbol SPG. For further information, visit the Company's website at www.simon.com.

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About the Massachusetts Horticultural Society

Mass Hort logo newFounded in 1829, the Massachusetts Horticultural Society is dedicated to encouraging the science and practice of horticulture and developing the public's enjoyment, appreciation, and understanding of plants and the environment.

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