March 2020

April meeting – ‘Epimediums‘ - Simon & Jay from Hedgehog Nursery
7.30 pm Village Hall Thurs. 9th. April 2020

March meeting
Julian Ives of Dragonfli was unable to attend but Jenny was able to book the popular Dr. Ian Bedford & he duly arrived on time to follow AGM. Ian, now retired, was head of entomology at the renowned John Innes Research Centre, Norwich for over 40 years, His subject was ‘ Slugs all you need to Know’ In the world there are over 5000 species and Ian introduced us to both the nasties and the good. The latter is a slug that thrives in our compost bins and helps the worms do their work. The Spanish slug is top of the gardeners’ hit list! A fun and educational evening in the true Ian Bedford style for the near full house of members. Knowing Ian this may have been a leg pull, but he had one slide of slug stew served up in Hugh FW ‘s restaurant. If so it may explain why the restaurant has recently closed! I have eaten snails in France but slugs? , a step too far.

The club’s AGM preceded the March talk. Chairman Brian reported a full programme of talks and evening visits for 2019, all well attended, plus garden party , summer day outing to RHS Wisley and a special Christmas evening with Nick Bailey from BBC GW. Brian thanked Jenny for arranging another successful year of events and Maxine for organising refreshments. Sheila presented audited accounts for 2019 showing membership at 82 and a healthy balance sheet. She confirmed the club’s aim to book the best speakers which means membership for 2021 will be £15 due to ever increasing speakers’ fees – approved by AGM. The club now runs a raffle and produce stall , with good results thanks to Malcolm. Sheila also thanked Eric Maule our auditor and Martin RH for maintaining the club’s web pages. Brian thanked officers and committee for their work. Election -Brian chair, Sheila treasurer, jenny secretary and Debbie H and John to the committee. On behalf of those present Sandra thanked the officers and committee for their work in 2019. AGM closed at 20.55.

April meeting
Simon and Jay from Hedgehog Plants & Gardens Risby. This is another first for the club, when we welcome the award winning husband and wife duo Simon and Jay talking on their garden and nursery which specialises in unusual plants, shrubs and perennials. and which featured on BBC TV’s Gardeners’ World in May 2019. Be there early as we expect a full house, 7.30pm Thurs. 9th. April.

Summer outing
Sat. 20th. June , Capel Manor gardens – tickets £25 now on sale at the club or from Jenny on 448571.

Encouraged by a successful first year and a strong membership the committee were given a further boost early in 2003 when the BBC came to town with their Gardeners’ Question Time programme, another full house and a first for the village hall! In the same year on the way home from a summer visit to RHS Wisley, Jo and Alma, perhaps having spent too much time in the hot sun, came up with the idea of a visit to Monet’s garden in France . Despite doubters the idea caught on and a small sub committee was formed and 10 seats were booked with Ledger tours but such was the interest raised that we quickly had a full coach with a waiting list. In May 2004 we set off for Calais where we were joined by Legers’ Belgian guide Johan. There followed a memorable weekend in France with guided visits to Monet’s, Versailles, Fontainbleau, and Vaux le Vicomte. Such was the success that in 2007 when Legers decided to cease guided tours we employed Johan direct and there followed ten tours to France and Belgium before migrant problems in the Calais area called a halt. Every trip was fully booked with a waiting list and who will forget Johan’s handkerchief song!

Summer Garden Party
Saturday 8th. August at the Methodist Church gardens , book the date, details to follow.

Produce stall
I hope to be running a produce stall at the April meeting which will be the last before our summer visits. If you have any spare seeds, plants or gardening items bring them along – all proceeds for club funds.

Malcolm will be running the club draw and would welcome any prizes.

The club is still open to new members , just come along to club night with £10 for the year and it is still not too late to benefit from Dobies seeds discounts.

Roy Mallett 616

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