Photos from Trip to Proven Winners

A handful of garden club members recently made a trip to Pleasant View Gardens — home of Proven Winners® — in Loudon, NH as part of a tour organized by Weston Nurseries. The group had a great time touring the impressive growing facility and walking through the demonstration gardens. The day also included lunch and a presentation by Kerry Ann Mendez.

(Photos courtesy of Joan Poltack)

A Visit to Wells Corner (Epsom, NH)

A group of club members and guests recently enjoyed a special tour of an Epsom, New Hampshire property called Wells Corner.  Homeowner Kyle Landt led the tour of her property that features an 18th century house with a post and beam barn. The landscape design is her own vision, and what a vision it is! The garden has been transformed in the course of thirty years from a simple landscape of vinca and tawny daylilies to one filled with deep mixed borders. The borders are comprised of small trees, shrubs, and perennials interspersed with 250 flats of annuals.

(Photos courtesy of Barbara Williams)

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Deeply influenced by the late Christopher Lloyd’s book, The Adventurous Gardener, and his gardens at Great Dixter in England, where she makes regular trips, Dr. Landt plans her own designs determining color only after considering plant texture, size, and shape. Her advice includes improving the soil before planting and topdressing annually with her own special compost mix. It is vital to give the plants a running start in this short growing climate, she advises.

Walking the natural path around the buildings, one discovers a reward at each destination such as a raised octagonal potager, a woodland walk, and a large koi pond built to look like a natural spring overflowing a horse trough.

The morning ended with the group resting on the shaded porch while Dr. Landt entertained with stories and provided much useful gardening information.

Read more about Wells Corner in the Garden Conservancy’s Open Days Program guide and a recent issue of New Hampshire Home magazine.

Wells Corner Garden Spring Soil Prep

To each wheelbarrow of good quality compost, add:

  • 1½ gallons alfalfa pellets
  • 1 gallon bone meal*
  • ½ gallon of commercial 19-19-19 fertilizer

Mix together and spread evenly to depth of 1 – 1½ inches. Fork in before planting or use as top dressing on established perennials and shrubs.

If applying to acid-loving plants, mix 50/50 with peat.

* For an animal-free alternative, try rock phosphate.

Photos from the Sunflower Festival (Lee, NH)

(Re-posting since photos were not properly linked first time.)

The Sunflower Festival at Coppal House Farm in Lee, NH is an annual event. Barbara Williams visited on July 30 and reports that it was a wonderful show — acres of sunflowers in several varieties — and ponds with cattails, too.

Each year the farm posts the prime time to visit, usually sometime in the last two weeks of July or first two weeks of August. This year’s festival runs July 28 – August 5 (see web site for details). Lee is an easy hour’s drive east of Amherst, and the sunflowers are well worth the trip!

(Photos courtesy of Barbara Williams)

Trip Report: Celia Thaxter’s Island Garden Tour

On July 20, about a dozen garden club members and their guests hopped aboard the Gulf Challenger research vessel in New Castle, NH and pushed off for an enjoyable 45-minute boat ride to Appledore Island, home of Celia Thaxter’s famous island garden.

Posted by Amherst Garden Club on Friday, July 20, 2018

The tour, run by Marine Docent volunteers and the Shoals Marine Laboratory staff — including our own Marie Nickerson, steward of Celia’s garden — included not only the garden but other sites of interest on the island, such as the graveyard where Celia Thaxter is buried.

Purely by chance, our club was there for the ribbon-cutting ceremony of the newly completed piazza (wooden porch) that once connected Celia’s cottage to her garden. Standing on this rebuilt piazza, we enjoyed breathtaking island scenery just as Celia did more than over 100 years ago.

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Jennifer Seavey, Kingsbury Executive Director, dedicates the new piazza

View from the new piazza (photo credit: Becky Stoughton)

One unexpected element of the day was that we saw seagull chicks everywhere. Appledore Island is a coastal breeding ground for gulls, and Black-backed and Herring gulls were in full protective-parenting mode, swooping down on anyone perceived to threaten a nesting site.  (For a 3.5-minute video of what we experienced, watch How Nature Works: Gull Territoriality.)

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A Black-backed gull with two chicks

Thank you to Marti Warren for organizing this unforgettable trip (including the stressful task of making sure that no one missed the boat!) and documenting the day in photos.

Marie Nickerson and Marti Warren in Celia’s garden (photo credit: Becky Stoughton)

 

Jane Martin Civic Gardens Walk

On a perfect June morning, club members took a casual stroll through the village to visit five of our civic gardens. M.J. Bachman and Barbara Williams organized the walk, with Joan O’Brien accompanying.

At the Brick School garden we ran into Sally Hooper pruning the rose bushes, with her dog “Rico,” rescued from Puerto Rico, looking on.

The tour ended with lemonade and cookies in the Library back garden. Special thanks to Marti Warren and Meg Clemens for being on hand to talk about the Library gardens.

Also thanks to Sue Batchelder for the sunflower seedlings, which we each took to plant in honor of Jane. If you’d like to plant a sunflower for Jane, contact Sue — she may have extras.

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A Sunflower for Jane

Jane was a person who comes into your life only
because of chance and being at the right place at
the right time.

When I look at a sunflower and
see the details; the stem, the petals
and seeds, these remind me of
Jane and describe her perfectly.

The stem: tall, graceful and
steady. Jane is always cheerful
and warm, since the day we met
I will always see her beautiful smile.

The Petals: the multitude of petals reflect the
many people who lives she touched. The
uncountable number of friends that surrounded
her. Jane loved wearing the color yellow.

The seeds: the mass number of seeds in one
flower, propagate and feed birds and other
wildlife and humans too! Jane’s charisma was
huge, real and always caring. She embraced
friendship and taught how to be a friend.

The round flower head with the huge smile will
forever say “Hey Jane, this sunflower is for you!”

~ MJ Bachman

Get Ready for the Plant Sale — Saturday, May 12!



Kick off spring at the annual Amherst Garden Club Plant Sale Saturday, May 12 at the Wilkins Elementary School (80 Boston Post Road, Amherst, NH). Doors open at 8:30 a.m. (line forms early) and the sale ends at 1:00 p.m.

There will be something for everyone:

Plants — This year we have over 3,000 locally grown plants — perennials, trees, shrubs, and grasses — all lovingly dug and potted by members of the garden club. We accept credit cards as well as cash and checks.
Plant Sale 2018 Inventory

 

Baked Goods — Our Bakery and Pantry will be stocked with homemade cakes, pies, tortes, cookies, bars, as well as savory dishes, such as quiche, and pantry items, such as nuts, jams, and dessert sauces. Pick up something for mom!

 

There will also be activities for kids, raffle baskets, used tools and garden treasures, advice from expert gardeners, home and garden boutique, and many garden vendors.

See you at the sale!