On the QT | The Official Newsletter of GWA August-September 2016 | Page 28

Obituaries GEORGE DALBY George Dalby died at the age of 95 on Thursday May 5, 2016 at St. Catharines General Hospital in St. Catharines, Ontario, Canada after a brief illness. Born in1920, he dedicated his life to horticulture and is remembered by many for sharing his passion for gardening. At an early age, Dalby began what was to become his career in horticulture selling vegetables at a local market. He attended the Niagara Parks School of Horticulture from 1939 to 1940, but World War II interrupted his studies. Dalby served with the Royal Canadian Air Force from 1940 to 1946 and returned to the School of Horticulture, graduating in 1947. He began his horticultural career working for the Toronto General Burial Grounds at Mount Pleasant and at York Cemeteries from 1947 to 1953. He joined the Niagara Parks Commission in 1953, serving as the superintendent of horticulture until 1961 when he became superintendent of parks—the job he held until he retired in 1985. Dalby also taught landscape design at the School of Horticulture. He shared his passion for horticultural as a columnist for the Niagara Falls Review for 20 years and the Kitchener-Waterloo Record for 16 years. Dalby also hosted a weekly gardening call-in radio show for 19 years on station KCTB from St. Catharines, Ontario. After guiding horticulture tours in Holland, Dalby was responsible for the renaming of a tulip to honor the Niagara Parks’ 100th Anniversary in 1985, and oversaw the planting of more than 50,000 bulbs throughout the Parks. —Steve Biggs RYAN GAINEY Jennings Ryan Gainey, 72, died tragically on July 29, 2016 at his second home in Lexington, Georgia. Good friend and owner of Goodness Grows nursery in Lexington posted, “Ryan Gainey was in his kitchen cooking, and something caught fire. The flames spread quickly. Ryan ran out the back door of his house, grabbed a water hose, and hurried back into the conflagration to rescue his Jack Russell terriers, Leo, Jelly Bean and Baby Ruth. Sadly, today, Ryan, his beloved dogs, and his treasure-filled house are no more.” In his biography, Ryan describes himself, “Internationally-known, madly passionate, stimulating, thought-provoking, exuberant, creative, romantic, whimsical, embracing - mere words are inadequate to describe the force of nature that was Ryan Gainey. He is gardener, poet, raconteur, philosopher, mentor, verbite, visionary, designer, and showman all in one.” Add to that description a devoted dog lover. He wrote, “I share my life with many living things, but few are as precious to me as my Jack Russell terriers. They are the children I never had.” Gainey grew up in Hartsville, South Carolina and studied ornamen- 28 tal horticulture at Clemson University. He later received an honorary doctorate in letters from Coker College in his native Hartsville. Best known as a garden designer, his home in Decatur, Georgia was a living laboratory as well as a showcase for his designs. He was greatly admired for his sense of community and opening his home and gardens for innumerable tours. Over the years, his house and garden were featured in a variety of books and magazines, most recently in Southern Living Porches & Gardens: 226 Ways to Create Your Own Backyard Retreat. He designed gardens large and small—locally and around the world. He was in on the conception of Serenbe, a pioneering community outside Atlanta that espouses the intermixing of culture, housing, lifestyle and gardens (complete with an eight-acre, organic farm). Gainey authored two books: The Well-Placed Weed: The Bountiful Garden of Ryan Gainey and The Well-Set Table (with Frances Schultz) and wrote numerous magazine articles. President and CEO of the Atlanta Botanical Garden Mary Pat Matheson called Gainey a “Renaissance man.” His death is a “great loss for not only our community, but for our country because Ryan was so highly regarded as an esteemed designer and horticulturist.” To get a glimpse of Gainey’s garden—and his beloved dogs, watch this snippet of his garden by former GWA member Arlena Schott. —Cathy Wilkinson Barash