maypoleIt’s only natural. There’s something about this time of year that makes us want to get out in our gardens. You can get a jump-start on your spring garden projects on Friday, April 29th, 8:00am to 12:30pm, at the Annapolis Flower Mart hosted by the Four Rivers Garden Club. This annual event is anticipated by dedicated gardeners from around the region.

Where to find the Flower Mart

Look for the colorful ribbons dancing in the wind around the tall May pole at the City’s downtown center. Check out the buckets of freshly cut flowers waiting to become May Baskets. And visit the tables full of gorgeous hardy perennials that will bring years of enjoyment to your backyard. This is where you’ll find some of the town’s most dedicated plant lovers, ready to hook you on the spirit of gardening.

The spring Flower Mart takes place at Hopkins Park next to the Market House at City Dock. The Garden Club’s members sell herbs, annuals, cut flowers, and an assortment of perennials from their own gardens. There is even a Bake Sale table without price tags—select your sweet treat and then simply choose any amount you wish to donate to the Club’s green community grants projects.

Create a May Basket

four-rivers-GC-membersVisitors and locals may purchase cut flowers or order unique handmade May Baskets for their homes and businesses. One-of-a-kind May Baskets can be pre-ordered or purchased the day of the event (Large $75, Medium $50). The Club’s flower-arranging experts create these May Baskets for the community to help beautify Annapolis on May Day and to raise funds for Club service projects.

May Baskets are traditionally displayed on doors, porches, pedestals, and park benches on the first day of May. Visions of so many May Baskets spilling over with fresh flowers on colonial doorsteps draw lots of visitors to Annapolis every year. Gardeners, florists, and residents together create hundreds of May Baskets as part of the May Basket judging competition, a six-decade tradition held by another garden club, the Garden Club of Old Annapolis Towne.

On April 29th, visitors at the Flower Mart can also learn to create their own May Baskets at a $35 morning workshop (supplies included). Pre-registration for the workshop is recommended, but some walk-ups are also welcome, space available. The workshop fee is discounted to $30 for anyone with a paid registration by April 27th. See the contact information below.

Perennial Pleasures

governors-may-basketTried and true gardeners come to Flower Mart each year to check out the wide selection of perennial plants divided and dug from the Club members’ gardens. Perennials are those flowering plants that return year after year, emerging each spring and growing quickly to produce flowers and foliage. The Club works hard in preparation, hosting a member “Potting Up” day when their newly dug perennial plants are potted for sale at Flower Mart.

The proceeds of the May Mart plant sale are returned to the community. For the past ninety-two years, the Four Rivers Garden Club has worked to fulfill the Club’s mission of encouraging environmental responsibility, community planting projects, and the knowledge and love of gardening.

So stop by on April 29th and ask some of the Club’s gardeners your planting questions. Or find some hardworking perennials for that empty spot in your garden. Then choose a gorgeous ceramic pot of annuals as a gift for Mother’s Day or Teacher Appreciation Week. When you see the glorious array of colorful flowers, herbs, and plants, you just might catch the bug and walk away with a lifelong love of gardening! Get an early start, because the best plants are sought after when the sale opens at 8:00am.

Contact Info

Four Rivers Garden Club is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. To register for the workshop or to order a May Day basket, please contact the FRGC at 443-995-2993 or email Flower Mart Chair Craven Engels at

Photo credit: Ann Powell.