31 August 2012


                                         GROSVENOR MOWER SERVICES,
                                                74 HORCHURCH ROAD,
                                   PHONE 01708 440453 MOBIL 07837442046
                                     EMAIL GROSVENORSTORES@BTCONNECT.COM


30 August 2012

August 2012 meeting.

In August, the meeting is always a bit informal, having no outside speaker, and the judging of the fuchsia competition. It is an opportunity for Peter to speak to everybody all together for once. He welcomed the new members and also gave a short talk on products for the gardener, especially weed killers for problem areas. He explained about the newsletter, the first edition which was on sale that night. It is mainly for the members who do not have computers or Internet access, and luckily was very successful, it quickly sold out. We will do more copies for the next issue.
Earlier in the year, most of us purchased a small fuchsia plant, this time the variety was "Waltz Jubelteen", a pretty, upward facing upright variety, with instructions to bring it back "dead or alive" in August. Luckily, most of the plants came back very much alive. Here is the table with some of the plants on:

Some of the competition plants
There was a fair amount of difference in the sizes of the plants, as can be seen.
The winners were: First, Pauline Lee:
 Pauline Lee with Peter & David.
Second prize to Kath Dawes:
 Kath Dawes.
Third place to Betty Dean:
 Betty Dean.
The first place was easy to select, but David Bendall and his wife Gwen, the judges, nearly came to blows over the second and third places.
I spoke to the winners afterwards, asking what they had done to the plants in order to make them winners. Apart from feeding them a lot, there was nothing remarkable. In fact, Betty did say she kept hers in the sun most of the time, whereas  fuchsias are said to like shade. She was a bit embarrassed at winning, and had put a plant label in hers with "Grown for pleasure not prizes" on it.
The fuchsia flower in close-up.
After the excitement of the judging, Peter showed us some photos of members' gardens. This was most interesting. Gwen & Davids' garden was all in pots, others had huge plants, some had little delicate flowers, but all were beautiful in their different ways. The diversity was amazing.

 Just to go over a few points that PETER mentioned:
 Outings: Next year we will be using Chiltern coaches when avaliable for our trips, they are the  to be found to be comfortable and reliable, the coaches are 49 seater, so we will only be able to accommodate 25 members from Dagenham Greenfingers and 24 from Harold Hill Garden Friends, on a first come first served basis.

Next outing:
Our next trip will be to Hever Castle on the 15th Sept. Coach pickup times, Kidd house, Dagenham at 9am and at Harold hill at 9.20am prompt.

 Subs: If you want to send a cheque for your subs please address to Kathy 6, ELMS GARDENS, DAGENHAM, RM9 5TX, or you can give when due to Jeannette on club nights . If  you are paying yearly or half yearly subs by cash Jeannette will issue you with a reciept for payment. Cheques, your stub will be your proof of payment. 

Teatime at club
Teatime at the club falls on just two people, Richard and Andrew. They are quite happy making the teas at every meeting, and as we all know they make a jolly good cuppa !! but can we have some volunteers to give them a break so they can sit and enjoy the talks now and then?, they would be very grateful. Thank you. See Kathy if you want to help.

Trusted Tradesmen
If anybody wants to recommend trades people they have used and are known to be reliable, reasonably priced and do a good job, please contact Jeannette on club nights.

Gardening shop:
For sale, wanted, or free items
If anybody wants to sell,  give or is looking for items to do with gardening, you can advertise on the blog or in news letter. See Jeannette. 

Gardening quiz
On a lighter note, here is the quiz that was published in the August newsletter.  Answers will be provided at  next meeting:

Ten Questions about Gardening
1) By what name is Lancelot Brown more usually known?
2) Name the world famous gardens sited ten miles outside of London, close to the River Thames.
3) Which popular gardener created Barnsdale Gardens, and was the author of many books such as The Ornamental Kitchen Garden, Gardeners World, Practical Gardening Course and Paradise Gardens?
4) Which garden is considered to be among the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World?
5)  What colour is a Welsh poppy?
6)  What colour is a Himalayan poppy?
7) Name the organic gardener, almost as famous for his long blond plait as he is for his books such as Going Organic and The Gourmet Gardener, and his regular appearances on the BBC radio's Gardener's Question Time.
 8)  Give the alternative name for a Mountain Ash tree.
9)  Which kind of bulbs were once exchanged as a form of currency?
10) By which Latin name was Rosa Gallica previously known?.

Answers will be given at the next meeting.

29 August 2012

jean marshall commented

Hi Kath and Peter,very impressed with your garden,we saw the trumpet vine in many places in France,but think it would'nt grow here as its cooler,than Essex.??? Gt.you have got in the yellow book,well done. xx on Peter's Open Garden.

20 August 2012

Peter's Open Garden.

Peter Railton, the founder of Greenfingers Garden Club in Dagenham, opened his garden to visitors on Friday 17th August 2012. The day dawned rather dull, but became beautifully hot and clear in the afternoon. It was a great success, raising £620 to be shared between the Salvation Army and the gardening club. There were plants for sale and  refreshments, as well as the beautiful garden to enjoy.

The front garden path.
The front garden gave a clue as to what was to come, there were vibrant colours and different textures everywhere and the most had been made of all available space, even the fence.

Interesting use of drainpipes on the fence.
Peter had grown some plants for sale and also purchased others, they were arranged along the side entrance. Richard was seated at the end, collecting the entrance money.

Ann and Janette, with list of plants.

Richard ready to collect entrance fees.
The garden was splendid, below are some parts of it:

Pretty planting.

The fish pond.

Trumpet Vine.

Original use of a "Henry" vacuum cleaner.

A huge Magnolia Grandiflora.
The people from the National Garden Scheme, aka the "Yellow Book", were especially interested in the magnolia tree, as not many people grow them. Next year, Peter's garden will be included in that famous little book. This is the letter he received from them:

Letter confirming entrance to the NGS.
I spoke to Nigel Schultz, the CO at Barking Salvation Army, as half of the monies raised will go to them. He was really delighted with the garden, but as a Christian, says he does not covet it. 
The church needs to raise £6000 a month to keep going. They do a lot of youth work, and although the young people raise some money themselves, also paying a nominal subscription, it is not enough to provide everything needed. Therefore, all donations are extremely welcomed.  Judith, his wife, is a member of the gardening club. She visited the garden too. Here is a photo of them with Kathy & Peter:
Nigel, Judith, Kathy and Peter.
Kathy had been really busy baking her delicious cakes for the occasion, and they were much appreciated by everybody. There was a real hive of activity in the kitchen where the tea and coffee, cold drinks and cakes were being served.

Carrot cake, Madeira cake, coffee & walnut, Victoria sponge, coconut & lemon, banana  & walnut, fruit cake & lavender scones. Yum Yum!
There were shady, as well as sunny spots in the garden. Here are some visitors enjoying the shade:

Happy visitors.
There was also another sort of visitor to the garden, a winged variety:

A visiting butterfly enjoying a flower.
At 5pm people started taking their leave and Peter and helpers  relaxed in the cool of the house when they had all gone. Everybody eventually left, leaving Kathy & Peter to reflect on the day (after counting the takings).

17 August 2012

Jeanette's new craft club. By Hilda.

Jeanette, the lady who takes the subs at Greenfingers Garden Club, has just started a craft club (she has hidden talents). The first meeting was on Thursday 16th August.  Six of us met up for craft, tea and a chat, it was a very pleasant afternoon. Here is the poster advertising it, notice all the different arts covered.

Poster advertising the club.
I took along my knitting, but all the other ladies were doing card making, scrapbooking and  embroidery. There was a great pool of talent there, ready to share their expertise with others. Next week I am going to try quilling, it looks fascinating.

Crafters busy at work.
In case you didn't see all the details from the poster, here they are again:
The club meets every Thursday, from 12.30 to 2.30pm, at Fanshawe Community Centre, Halbutt Street, Dagenham. RM9 5AR.  

The cost is £3.00 including refreshments.  New members welcome. 

Some of the other crafts covered are crochet, teabag folding, embossing, stamping, decoupage, altered art and beading, amongst others. It's even worth coming along just to see what some of these mean.
Jeanette's contact number is: 0788 2034 795.