June 2012

News Archive

Betty Nostrand, Editor
Ann Rivenes, Publisher

Co-President's Letter

Another year has come to a successful end and we will have the summer off for gardening, vacations, and to be with loved ones. Remember to renew your membership, doing so now makes you have a spot in our yearbook which goes to print in August.

Thanks to all who bought San Francisco Garden Show tickets, we received two dollars per ticket sold and a check for $100 was sent to our club.

June is my last month as your Co-President and I want to express what an honor it has been to serve the club over these last two plus years. Having Co-Presidents really makes sense with such a large club. I want to thank Tina Higashi for being such a good partner this past year. I am fully confident that her new Co-President, Karen Abbruscato will serve her and the club well. I also want to thank our VP's, Sandy Yamaoda, Connie Archer, and Nancy Cowan for their support this past year. Many thanks also to the chairs of all the committees for their hard work. They did some extraordinary things. As we come together this June to socialize with each other during our potluck dinner remember to thank them all for their commitment to the club. Think also how you can contribute to making this club great. Our new VP's, Sandy Yamaoda, Debra Howell, and Erma McCue still need position chairs filled.

Have a great summer and best wishes to all.

Sondra Bierre, Co-President

Misc. Items of Interest

...Thanks to Lori Martin, the final revenue amount for the plant sale was $6,203.70. That was $868.05 more than our total revenue for last year's plant sale of $5,335.65. We budgeted $3,500.00, so we exceeded the budgeted amount by $2,703.70. Well done everyone! Marti

...Congratulations to Mary Goroff who was one of two honorees for the "Gardener of the Year" award from the Diablo Foothills District. It was given out by Buzz Bertolero at the District lunch in May.

...Meeting of the outgoing and incoming Boards on Thursday, June 21st from 7-9 pm at Pleasanton Gardens meeting room. RSVP to Tina Higashi at 449-3970 or tinahig@comcast.net.

...in case you are in need of some knowledgeable help in your garden - Garden Helpers -Two very fine, young ladies who have been working with Barbara Stott are looking for some extra gardening work. They charge $20 an hour and can weed, dead head, plant etc. If you are interested, please contact Leah Helae at (510) 541 5619.

JUNE GYRATIONS ........in the garden

.........the garden club year ends in June so there will be no newsletters in July and August but in early Sept. you will get news of the coming year and the month's activities.

.........this seems to be a great year for iris both in Calif. and Colorado. If you still have them in bloom and they seem a bit crowded or aren't blooming profusely and you want to divide them, you might write on one of the leaves near the base what color the bloom was so that when you do divide them later this summer you will remember what color they were. If you just planted them this year or late last fall they might just need another year to burst forth in bloom, but otherwise they may be too crowded or not getting enough sun if they aren't blooming well. When you do divide them, dig up the corms and break off the dead part and break them apart with a leaf point on each section. Plant just so the top of the corm is showing (another reason for not blooming is if they are planted too deep). Iris are very hardy plants and you can actually divide them about any time that is convenient but they may sulk for a year if you don't get them replanted before fall.

.........different idea for planting pots is to use tea bags (new or old - good way to dispose of that tea you didn't really like anyway) in the bottom of the pot over the screen or other hole barrier. The tea bags will gradually dissolve and will hold some water and give some acidic feed to the plant while they are composting.

.........if your back or side fence needs painting, consider using black since it will make the fence line sort of disappear and your garden look larger.

.........Quarryhill Botanical Garden is celebrating its 25th Anniversary this year and so is giving free admission on the 25th of each month. Located at 12841 Sonoma Highway 4 in Glen Ellen, the garden features the flora of Asia and many plants rarely seen in this county - now fully grown. I remember when our club went there when it was new!! Learn more about the place at www.quarryhillbg.org

.........if you want to attract butterflies to your garden this is a good time to plant flowers with a variety of shapes since butterflies differ in what they prefer. They also need a source of water and will just love it if you have a muddy area for them to drink up needed minerals. Just remember that butterflies start out as caterpillars so you need to provide the kind of plant that they lay their eggs in and usually completely devour - and don't smush all the caterpillars!

.........if you still have daffodil foliage (so you can see where they were) and they seem to be crowded or need dividing, this is a good time to dig them up, separate them, and replant them in bare spring spots for next year.

.........by personal experience I have learned that if you are planting roses to cover an arbor and have a different kind on each side, be sure they bloom at the same time or you never really get a full show. Yes, the bloom time is longer but only on a half at a time. Better to plant clematis or another vine with the rose so that it will bloom at a later time and extend the bloom and show that way. Two roses on each side with different bloom times might be too much for most arbors.

.........it may be almost too late but don't forget about staking or providing some sort of structure that plants can grow into so they don't flop over when fully grown. If you put the support in now when the plant is low, it will grow up into it and you won't be trying to force the thing in among the tall stems. There are any number of designs that you get through catalogues or at local nurseries or you can make them with twig prunings. Cuttings from Rose of Sharon are particularly good to form into curved structures because they retain their flexibility long after cutting. Things like grape vine cuttings need to be shaped very soon after cutting or they are stiff and hard to work with. Stiff cuttings can be spread like a tipi and tied at the top with twine. Tomato cages, upside or downside up, aren't just for tomatoes either.

.........I hope all of you enjoy your summer and take time to enjoy your garden. Maybe this means sitting and reading (see next page) or fiddling around deadheading or weeding or watering. Whatever it is that makes you love to be out in the garden. Enjoy!! See you next Fall.

Livermore Valley Garden Club (LAVGC) serving the Tri-Valley: Dublin, Livermore, Pleasanton, Sunol, and San Ramon