The Woman’s National Farm and Garden Association was organized in Pennsylvania in 1914. It brings together in a national organization those who are united by the common bond of love for gardening. Among its members are both amateur gardeners, who seek information for the improvement of home and community, as well as professional growers, landscape architects and agricultural experts.
The framework of the organization consists of a National Executive Committee and Council, elected by the general membership; the Division Executive Committee and Council which includes the Branch President in each state; and last, but most important of all, the Branches which are the basic units for the execution of the projects of the Association.
A Michigan resident, Mrs. Francis (Louisa) King of Alma, was instrumental in starting the national organization. Mrs. King was a recognized writer and lecturer on gardening and horticulture. She was inspired during her travels by an organization or country women known as the Women’s Farm and Garden Association of England. When she returned, Mrs. King played a significant role in establishing the Women’s Agricultural and Horticultural Association in America. (Later renamed to Woman’s National Farm and Garden Association) and became its first president in 1914.
Many Michigan residents participated in the Mid-West Branch from 1915 until 1926 when the Michigan Division began as the Michigan Branch at Mrs. King’s farm in Alma. Mrs. Clara (Henry) Ford of Dearborn served as national president from 1927 to 1934 and inspired rapid growth of the Michigan Branch. By 1930 the Michigan Branch had become two Divisions and in 1933 the two groups merged into the Michigan Division.
The Milford branch of the Michigan Division began its roots on February 17, 1948. Originally 20 members, their purpose was to enhance their member’s knowledge of home gardening, promote community service, and fund scholarships and selected horticultural and conservation programs. Today, with 70 members, the Milford Garden Club carries on these traditions.