On April 23, 1923 a number of keen gardeners in the Woodbridge area met to form the Woodbridge and District Horticultural Society with Dr. Garnet McLean as the first President. In this first year, the membership was 107. In 1930 the membership was 475 (some think that this was due to the free perennial given out when someone joined) although there was no mention of how many attended meetings on a regular basis.
The Society continued to remain active in the community and include the surrounding areas of Thistletown, Edgeley, Smithfield, Kleinburg and Nobleton. The society took advantage at every opportunity to introduce new varieties of flowers and bulbs.
The flower shows attained prominence and became one of the community’s prime social events. The shows were held in the Orange Hall on Wallace Street and the John Watson Automobile Showroom on Pine Street. There were orchestras and exceptional exhibits.
The 1939-1945 period turned the focus of the community to the war effort. During this period the Society may be seen as inactive but the OHA fees continued to be paid maintaining our OHA association. The society was reactivated by meeting in personal homes. A junior society was organized from 1951-1964 as well.
The membership in 1957 totaled 269 and the community of Nobleton formed a separate Society. On occasion joint meetings are arranged between the two societies. The Society continues to hold a fall flower show in conjunction with the Woodbridge Fall Fair. There were summer flower shows held in the 1960’s.
The Society has held regular meetings in various Woodbridge venues and we have hosted the District 15 Annual Meeting three times.
The Society contributes to the community by caring for gardens. In the past we have planted, maintained and cared for Memorial Hill, Woodbridge Post Office, Kleinburg Public School, The Historical Wallace House, Fred Armstrong Park and the Fire Hall Parkette.
In 2002 the Society celebrated its 75th anniversary.
We continue to decorate the village of Woodbridge, by planting and maintaining Armstrong Park, the gardens of the Historic Wallace House and beautifying the bridges of Woodbridge and Islington Aveune.