NORTHERN SHENANDOAH VALLEY MASTER GARDENER ASSOCIATION NEWS
UPCOMING MONTHLY MEETING
- Sunday July 17, 4-6pm, Shenandoah County Government Center, Woodstock. John Eckman, Executive Director of the Friends of the North Fork of the Shenandoah River, will present topics of importance for VCE-MGS as we interact with the public:
1) options for “green infrastructure,” from rain barrels to landscape conservation
2) mimicking natural hydrology through environmental site design, using the Edinburg Mill rain garden as an example
3) best practices for stream management and riparian buffer restoration
4) living with legacy pollution such as that from nitrates in groundwater to industrial leftovers
5) agencies and resources that work cooperatively to conserve, preserve, and protect our streams, watersheds, and rivers.
Directions: From I-81, take Woodstock exit #283 and go east on Route 42 (Reservoir Road) through 2-3 lights to Rt. 11 (Main Street). Turn left (north) on Rt. 11 (Main Street). Go through four traffic lights, pass the Woodstock Shopping Center on your right and the Shenandoah County Government Center is the next complex on your right. Go in the main entrance which faces Rt. 11 (Main Street). From Front Royal or Strasburg, take Route 11 South out of Strasburg toward Woodstock. Just after you enter the town limits and start down the hill, you will see the Government Center on the left.
- Thursday, July 7 at 2pm 2017 Training Class Planning, Shenandoah County Government Building kitchen
- Saturday, August 27, 10am-4pm, Museum of the Shenandoah Valley’s Taste Fest, 901 Amherst Street, Winchester. The Shenandoah and Potomac Iris Society will sell Irises at their booth. For more information, contact Sheryl Campbell at (540) 868-2123 or email@example.com. In addition to the Iris sale, there will be a variety of gardening booths and cooking demonstrations.
COORDINATOR REPORT by Mary Flagg
I love to watch the fireflies light up my yard on hot summer nights. Fireflies are very mysterious and magical. Spotting and catching them was always the best part of my summer. As I turned around when I was finishing up weeding the other night, I was amazed at how many fireflies I saw. My whole yard seemed lit up.
I remember my children’s excitement as they ran around and tried to catch as many as they could before they disappeared.
According to the Wikipedia, the Lampyridae are a family of insects in the beetle order Coleoptera. They are winged beetles, and commonly called fireflies or lightning bugs for their conspicuous use of bioluminescence during twilight to attract mates or prey. Fireflies produce a “cold light”, with no infrared or ultraviolet frequencies. This chemically produced light from the lower abdomen may be yellow, green, or pale red.
So as we settle into the dog days of summer, enjoy the fireflies, enjoy the little things in life.
FROM THE PRESIDENT by Susan Garrett
The plot of a recent book called The Language of Flowers involves a young woman’s passion for flowers and how her use of flowers helps her to communicate with others. The picture below is of my sisters doing their yearly flower planting at my grandparents’ graves in a very old cemetery near Kent, Connecticut.
My sisters show their love for family members who have been significant in their lives by planting flowers. Flowers help us express other emotions or intentions. Many of us plant flowers around our homes to bring joy to ourselves and those who visit us–or even just to those who drive past.
Flowers shared with new neighbors say welcome or, with the recently bereaved, convey our sympathy.
Flowers speak for and to us in lots of wonderful ways. Something attacking our flowers, insects or diseases, is really upsetting! One of the great things we have to offer as MGs is research-based information for our friends, neighbors, and the public about how flowers can be kept healthy and well. Then the flowers can speak.
Another great privilege for us as MGs.
SHENANDOAH COUNTY REPORT by Sharon Bradshaw
All projects are on-going. Green Help Line volunteers are doing a great job covering emails and walk-in office hours. Farmers’ market information tables are attracting a good number of folks with gardening questions. We received a report that the weeds in the New Market Rain Garden are very healthy, even though they are having a short life span! Corhaven Graveyard continues to thrive, with more donated mulch added in recent weeks. Our volunteers have enjoyed the activities as much as the campers at the three 4-H Day Camps this summer. We are looking forward to the Fair in August.
FREDERICK COUNTY REPORT by John Kummer
Congratulations to Bob Gail and Mary Turner, the first interns from the 2016 Master Gardener training class to complete the fifty service hour requirement to attain full Master Gardener status. Both Bob and Mary have been seen sporting our collared dark green shirt with the official NSVMGA logo at recent events.
The Frederick County Greenline continues to handle all inquiries with the usual aplomb. To help with this community service (and learn a lot doing so) simply sign up on the VMS. It is every Friday morning, 9am to noon, through summer to early fall. An experienced associate will always be on hand.
On June 23, the community garden at Timbrook Park near downtown Winchester was provided with a sign courtesy of the Lord Fairfax Health District, Virginia Dept. of Health. Many of the garden participants, Health District representatives, and associated friends gathered for the occasion.
This is the third year for the garden, at which our association has maintained a plot, with produce going to local food banks.
Our plot is being worked by children from the nearby Fremont Street Nursery this year, with capable mentoring from Mary Turner, Bob Gail, Nina Hale, and other assorted MGs.
The harvest will go mainly to the Highland Food Pantry, supporting the aims of healthy eating.
CLARKE COUNTY HIGH SCHOOL TREE PLANTING AND MULCHING by Suzanne Boaz
On May 16 MGs Suzanne Boag, Rose Fairman, Bob Gail, Janet Keithley, Ann Levi, Ginny Smith, and Russ Watkins provided tree planting and mulching guidance (as well as some elbow grease) to 40 CCHS students, two teachers, and Alison Teetor, the Clarke County Natural Resource Planner at CCHS, which is located in Berryville.
Sixteen cherry and viburnum trees were planted and mulched in six hours.
Teachers were given four VCE publications on tree planting, tree care, and mulching to hand out to the participating students.
Project follow-up involved the installation and filling of water bags, recently accomplished by Ginny and Suzanne. What a great way to come together and get something positive done in our community! The trees and water bags were donated by Casey Trees.
BARN SERIES CLASS 3 “THYME FOR HERBS” by Lynn Hoffmann
Belle Grove had a full house to hear how to use herbs in butters, oils and dips. MG and Chef Larry Haun entertained and instructed over 20 people with his culinary talents on June 15.
Larry showed how to prepare all the condiments and the attendees then sampled the herb dishes on homemade crackers and bread that Larry had made. He included lavender in his shortbread cookies. Everything was excellent! He had information on all his dishes and also made herbed tea and lemonade.
The attendees all went home with a goody bag filled with basil plants, basil leaves, a bottle of herbed oil or vinegar and a container of herb butter.
The Winchester Star was in attendance, and Chef Haun will be in the Food Section of the paper the month of June.
The class was concluded with a tour of the Belle Grove Teaching Garden showing all the herbs that are grown for the manor house.
Thanks to the MG staff that helped Larry with his class: Ginny Smith, Barb Haller, Alice Findler, Lynn Hoffmann and Helen Lake.
Larry has been asked to do a repeat performance at the Wine and Herb Festival being held at Belle Grove on August 27. It is listed in the Upcoming Events section above.
NEXT YEAR’S TRAINING PLANNING by Sharon Bradshaw
The Class of 2017 Management Team has had a couple of organizing and housekeeping meetings and is ready for a meeting of all Master Gardeners who are interested in being involved in helping with the Class of 2017. There are many ‘behind the scenes’ volunteers whose work is essential to a successful experience for the trainees.
If you are interested in helping, please attend our first full meeting on Thursday, July 7 at 2:00 PM in the Shenandoah County Government Building kitchen. We will be going over the basics of the class structure and recruiting volunteers for all committees.
If you are interested but cannot be at the meeting, please notify one of the Management Team: Sharon Bradshaw, Bob Carlton, Rich Howell, Stacey Smith.
from Lynn Hoffmann
I found a Luna Moth (Actias luna) on the side of my house.
EDITORS CORNER by Richard Stromberg
I manned the Virginia Native Plant Society Piedmont Chapter booth at Gardenfest. I walked around and took pictures of booths and from the VNPS booth. The booth was next to a large Kentucky Coffee tree with large conks on it and beside the Hill House Farm native plant booth.
At one point Janet Davis of Hill House Farm came running over to tell me that a Spicebush Swallowtail butterfly was laying eggs on a Spicebush she had sold and was holding for pickup.
I couldn’t get a picture of the flitting butterfly, but got a picture of an egg on the back of a leaf.
WE ALSO CAUGHT NUMEROUS OTHER SCENES FROM GARDEN FEST 2016.