The Flower Press - - a newsletter of the Lincolnshire Garden Club
October 2011

General Meeting and Program

Thursday, October 20, 2011

“Cativating Conifers for the Landscape”

Richard and Susan Eyre of Rich’s Foxwillo Pines Nursery

 

“Conifers” are wonderfully adaptable needle evergreens that bear cones. They provide four seasons of interest with unique color, texture and form. Join these owners of the largest dwarf conifer nursery in the Midwest, with more than 25 years of experience as they present an in-depth view of working with conifers.

In the spring, Richard and Susan will offer the Club a guided tour of their fabulous nursery in Woodstock, IL.  Details will be announced in a future Newsletter

Date:          Thursday, October 20, 2011

Time:         Business meeting 9:30am – 10:15am, Program 10:30am – 11:30am

Location:    Vernon Area Public Library 300 Olde Half Day, Lincolnshire, IL 60069

 

A Message from Our President, Linda Berryman

Warm and happy autumn greetings everyone!  This is my favorite season of the year.  As a gardener you might find that a bit strange, because the growing time is really winding down.  But I just love the colorful party Mother Nature puts on in my yard this time of year, without much help from me.  This is when I think how great it is to live in this region of the country where we are truly blessed with such a glorious display of color every year.  Wow!

Speaking of wonderful displays of color, I would like to thank LGC members Rick Sanders and Janice Hand again for such a wonderful program on their trip to the Chelsey Flower Show and Kew Royal Gardens in England.  It was a fascinating program full of colorful pictures and history. Thank you as well to the hospitality committee for the delicious English breakfast, and plant educator, Joan Keyes for the charming educational take away items.  I guess you can say the LGC can put on a colorful time too!

October’s program promises to have you “pining” for more evergreens in your garden once all the color drops to the ground.  Sharon Chamberlain has smartly timed a visit from Richard and Susan Eyres, owners of the largest dwarf conifer nursery in the Midwest, Rich’s Foxwillow Pine Nursery.  I can’t wait to discover new conifers, and the way they can bring not only color but great texture and form to our gardens.  Fall is a great time to plant something new, but if you can’t decide on a choice conifer after this introduction, you can join us on a trip to this amazing nursery in Woodstock this spring to explore them all.

I hope to see you all there on the 20th, until then… I’m promising myself some time on my porch swing to sit and enjoy the delightful color show.


Look Who’s Budding Now, by Karen Kravits

This month we talk with Dana Kuchel.  Dana is a retired teacher from the Northbrook school district, while her husband, Mark, is a consultant for Hewlett-Packard.  They have two daughters.  Kristen, 27, lives in San Diego, and Kate, 25, lives here in Chicago.  And, they have an 8 year old “puppy” named Layla who could not have been less interested when we tried to take her picture.

How long have you and your family lived in Lincolnshire?

For 30 years, we love it here.

Obviously you’re happy here.  What do you love about Lincolnshire?

I like the pride that people have in their homes and properties.  They are so well maintained.

What made you decide to join the Garden Club?

The previous owner of our home got me started in gardening.  And, my neighbors talked me into joining the Club. 

Has it been what you expected it to be?

Yes, the people are very nice.

What is the biggest challenge you face in your own garden?

I tend to have overgrown flowers.  I use the survival of the fittest approach.

Has your experience with the Garden Club changed the way you look at your garden?

I am more picky when thinking about what I should do.  The Club also gives me the courage to try different plants.

Of what help could the Garden Club be to you?

I could use help in planning my garden, help in organizing it.

Who is your biggest gardening inspiration?

The Chicago Botanic Garden – it shows me what could be or should be.

What is your favorite plant?

Right now – my favorite plant is impatiens.  I also love orchids because they last and come back.

Is there one tip you can share with us on your gardening techniques?

I use lots of annuals for color after our long winters.  And, watch your garden.  You can’t ignore it.

Thank you for spending time with us.  And, stay tuned for more introductions to our new members as we take a peek into how their gardens grow.


Weed and Wine End of Year Lottery

Are you dreading the thought of all the work that needs to be done to get your gardens ready for the winter?  Well, for our last Weed and Wine of the season--Friday, October 21st--we are going to do a drawing to pick the lucky recipient.  For those of you not familiar with Weed and Wine, yard work is done from 4:00 pm to 6:00 pm and then the host provides beverages and appetizers for the workers.

The drawing is open to all members.  However, we are attaching a caveat:  all members who put their name in the drawing are expected to participate in the Weed and Wine on the 21st, whether they win or not.  Members may submit their names by sending Jeanne Top an email at thetops4@comcast.net before 5:00 pm Tuesday, October 11.  The drawing will be held on Wednesday October 12 and the winner will be announced in a follow up club-wide email.

 

Fall Goldenrod … was used for WHAT?

By Janice Hand

One of the most prolific flowers of late fall is Solidago (goldenrod). This plant is actually in the daisy family (Asteraceae) and is found all through Illinois, especially in dry open woods, woodland edges, fence rows, and roadsides. Goldenrod, often found growing in large colonies, is a perennial that grows from rhizomes, runners, or crowns. The plant blooms from July until frost.

While often blamed for hay fever, this plant pollinates via insects, not wind. While some goldenrod pollen grains may be wind-born, typically these grains are too large to generate hay fever symptoms.

Illinois Indians as well as pioneers used this plant for burns, intestinal disorders, lung problems and, for some species, leaves were used as a tea.  Other Indian uses were for treating fever, bee stings, and “diseases of women.”

The Meskwaki Indians burned the plant to make a smoke inhalant for someone who fainted. In early tribal medicine, these Indians also cooked goldenrod with the bone of an animal that died about the same time as a baby was born. The baby was then washed in the goldenrod liquid to insure its ability to talk and to laugh!

 

(Source: Wildflowers of Illinois Woodlands, by Sylvan Runkel & Alvin Bull.)

 

Membership News from Lisa Lewis

I want to send out a thank you to those of you who have sent in your membership forms and checks for the upcoming year.  We look forward to seeing you this month.

For those of you who have been waiting to do so, now is the time.  You can print off a membership form from the Garden Club website and drop it and a check in my mailbox. 

Fall Lawn Care

By Janice Hand

Fall is a time of decline – declining growth, declining gardens, and declining amounts of yard work. One aspect of that is lawn mowing – yea! But is there more to fall lawn care? Here are U of I Extension’s recommendations for lawn care for  September through November.

·      September – In the first two weeks, as needed, you can overseed , apply postemergent broadleaf weed control to actively growing weeds, and fertilize. In September, you can aerate while grass is actively growing.

·      October – Early in the month, apply postemergent broadleaf weed control to actively growing weeds. You can aerate in October, too, as long as the lawn is still actively growing. Apply any needed fertilizer one week before the final mowing of the year.

·      November – Mow until grass goes dormant, then make the final mow of the season shorter than usual. (Typical recommendation for grass height is a height of 2 ½ to 3 inches; for the final mowing, grass should be cut to 2 inches in height.) Also in November, you can do a late-season fertilization within one week of the final mowing of the year.

The “N-P-K” of Fertilizers

There are three numbers on fertilizer bags – (1st) Nitrogen - N, (2nd) phosphorus - P, and (3rd) potassium - K. Each number shows the percent of each component (by weight).  For example, an 18-6-12 fertilizer contains 18% nitrogen. This number is important because it helps to calculate how much fertilizer your lawn needs. 

Nitrogen is the nutrient most required by lawns, although too much nitrogen can cause excessive top growth, leading to assorted problems. In most cases, a rate of 1 pound of nitrogen per 1,000 square feet is suggested for each fertilizer application to the lawn. (If high-percentage nitrogen fertilizers are used, then less actual fertilizer product is needed to supply that one pound compared to fertilizers with low percent nitrogen.)

As to phosphorus, remember that Illinois soils are naturally phosphorus-rich, so get fertilizers with low phosphorus content.

Potassium is used all year by grasses, and is involved in heat and cold tolerance, disease resistance, and other stress tolerances. Winterizer fertilizers are typically high in potassium, and although advertised for fall application, they can be applied in spring as well. 

Recommended ratios of N-P-K for lawn fertilizers are 3:1:2 or 4:1:2. (A note: slow-release fertilizers may not work on cold soil.)

 

Estimating a Tree’s Age

By Janice Hand

There are many ways to determine the age of a tree. Here are three methods.

Method #1 is core boring, which pulls out a cylinder-shaped cross-section of the tree from its outside bark to the tree’s center. An arborist then counts the rings for an accurate age. If you don’t like that invasive (and expensive) approach, there are two other cheaper and faster methods.

Method #2 involves finding a nearby stump of the same species, with approximately the same diameter. Then you could re-cut the stump to expose the grain and count rings.

Method #3 is via calculation and is easier than either of the other approaches, but less accurate. According to the International Society of Arboriculture, you can measure your tree and multiply the circumference by a factor specific to the tree species. Here’s how that works:

·      Measure around your tree at a point 4 to 5 feet above the ground;

·      Divide the circumference by 3.14 to get the diameter of the tree in inches; then

·      Check the table below.

An example for Sugar Maples (Acer saccharum) is:

·      At 54” from the ground, the tree measures 40” around

·      40 ÷ 3.14 = 12.7

·      Per the table below, your tree is probably just over 90 years old.

Tree Ages at Different Diameters (in inches)

 

Inches

Bass-

wood

White

Ash

Sugar

Maple

Bur/
Swamp

White Oak

Red

Elm

Red

Oak

Shagbark

Hickory

White

Oak

10

60

75

75

66

73

76

102

84

12

70

87

88

79

86

89

116

100

14

79

99

100

91

99

102

129

115

16

89

110

112

104

112

115

142

129

18

98

121

124

117

124

128

155

144

20

107

131

136

129

136

141

167

159

22

116

142

147

142

148

154

179

173

24

125

152

159

154

160

116

190

187

26

133

162

170

167

172

179

202

201

28

142

172

181

179

184

191

212

215

30

150

182

192

192

196

203

223

229

31

159

191

203

204

207

215

234

243

34

169

203

216

219

221

230

246

260

35

175

210

224

229

230

239

254

271

37

184

220

235

242

241

251

264

285

39

192

229

245

254

253

263

274

298

Source: Morton Arboretum; How to Tell a Tree’s Age, by Marlin Bowles, M.S. (

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