Thursday, April 15, 2010

Lunch At The Garden Club

The fun garden club has gone back to lunch meetings.  The no lunch situation just began in September and it was not popular.  Wow, what a difference, we could hardly fit everyone in our host home.  I was on the lunch committee today so I was very busy being a hostess.  Many people came out of the woodwork when they heard "lunch."  It was at a beautiful home build in the late 1880's, lots of remodeling, but retaining the original character of the home.

The driveway and the patio brick was from a past era, and the gardens looked true to the original time period of the home.  Our lunch was a wonderful salad of tortellini on a bed of lettuce with bread sticks and salami gorgonzola biscuits with chive butter.  The deserts were yummy, carmel brownies and homemade chocolate chip cookies.

This was a very active crowd who could barely stop talking to hear the presenter.  It is amazing what food will do!  Our speaker was a Botany major in school and has a business as a garden designer and coach.  She spoke on roses, their requirements, culture, pruning and her favorites for our area.  She demonstrated pruning techniques on a real rose bush and answered questions on fertilizing, coffee grounds (not a proponent of using coffee grounds) and protection for the winter (mulch - not rose cones).  She recommended compost as a first course when planting and then the Bayer Systemic throughout the season until August.

I am showing some of her recommendations for our (zone 5) area, but I am sure many will do well in several zones.  There were many more listed, but I just picked out one in each category.  I have had problems with the original cherry colored Knockout, but I agree with our speaker that it is still the most desirable.  The doubles grow smaller and do not have the same spreading habit as the original.  I would say the Rainbow Knockout, even though the flowers are smaller, has a similar spreading growth habit to the original Knockout.


Lisa said...

What, exactly, is a garden coach!

I imagine someone in workout gear, shouting "You grow, girl!"

Becca's Dirt said...

That Apple Blossom Rose is stunning. I am drooling all over myself now.

Gatsbys Gardens said...

Hi Lisa ans Robb,

A garden coach is someone who doesn't do a to-scale landscape design, may take photos and make a simple sketch. Most of all, it is more like a consult on what would work in certain areas of the garden.

A coach usually does not purchase or put in the plant material. It is a low cost way of getting a professional looking garden.


Gatsbys Gardens said...

Hi Becca,

I had a carpet rose at my other home, but is was so pale. This would have been stunning and supposedly will hold the soil on an incline.


Anonymous said...

Dear Eileen, I so enjoyed reading this posting which I found delightfully amusing. The garden club lunches sound very jolly and are clearly becoming more and more popular. The talk on roses sounds to have been very informative - always useful to hear from an expert.

Gatsbys Gardens said...

I am not always sure what is "expert" advice. I think we all have to do what works for us. It is great to be exposed to lots of information.

Do you grow the David Austin English roses. I just wonder if they would survive in the heat we get during the summer?


Phillip Oliver said...

All of these rose photos are getting me so excited for May! I can't wait.

joey said...

Delighted to hear you are in a garden club too, Eileen. Ours meets the 2nd Wed of each month (board meetings on the 1st Thurs). Most lunches include each member bringing a salad ingredient ... hostesses provide the greens, breads/muffins, etc., drinks and dessert. Several times a year we have a lovely luncheon. I have been swamped since in charge of a $20,000 budget from the Trustees (plus our garden club pays for most of the flowers) ... it's been a delight planning our Village Gardens. And, of course, I have my own to juggle ... lovin' spring!

Gatsbys Gardens said...

Joey, your lunch routine sounds great with each person bringing something. I actually belong to two groups, this post being about the fun group. I actually see community involvement being the difference between the two groups.

The more serious group does a lot of community projects (such as plantings around our historical house, donating a sprinkler system, etc.) The fun group donates flowers to the hospital. Both worthy causes but different.