Howle to lead S.C. Garden Club
By Bobby Bryant, Editor
For the next two years, a Darlington resident will lead the Garden Club of South Carolina and its 4,300 members. Linda Howle was elected president of the state organization earlier this spring. The Darlington Garden Club hosted a two-hour President’s Tea at the Darlington Country Club last week to honor Howle, who will be the first person from Darlington to lead the state group. About 50 to 70 people from across the state attended the May 27 event. Howle said she has been involved in gardening for the vast majority of her life. “I grew up in North Carolina,” she said. “My family had gardens and farms. … Everybody had farms and gardens.” A floral designer and accredited flower-show judge, Howle has lived in Darlington at least 40 years and has been involved with the Darlington Garden Club for about 20 years, serving at various times as its president and vice president. She has been on the board of the statewide group for 12 years. Gardening is just good for you, Howle said. “You can read a lot about how gardening is therapeutic. It’s good for your health, mentally and physically.” And the Darlington club, Howle said, has also been a benefit socially. She’s made many friends there, with mutual interests. “We care about the environment; we care about conservation.” What will be her agenda as president of the Garden Club of South Carolina? “My thing for the next two years will be ‘Let’s Grow, South Carolina!’ ” Howle said she will focus on sharing ideas that show how people can incorporate gardening into their lives. She will also be promoting children’s gardening statewide. The 24-member Darlington Garden Club currently has no male members, Howle said, but that’s not by design. She said any man with a green thumb is welcome to join. For more about the local club, check out their Facebook page.