Google+ Followers

Gourds and the beautiful items that can be made from them.

Nov. 10   Gourds, Gourds, Gourds,

Message message our President:
I hope you all enjoyed our October program on "Bees."  Buzz Swank was informative and entertaining!  This month we'll find out how to decorate using gourds.  John and Nancy Chlpka will join us.
I'm trying to get my flowerbeds cleaned up, leaves raked, and porch furniture put away!  My hanging ferns are still "hanging in" there, so they'll be up for a few more weeks.  Remember to bring a tip for the Tip Jar and an item for the Auction.

Gourd Gifts and Decorations
November 10, 2014  7:00 PM at Mercer Methodist Church
Hostesses:  Christy Hunter Hall and Maria Farrell

Bottle gourds crafted into snowmen on display at a local craft show.

We welcome John and Nancy Chlpka of Jackson Center,    Wet Dog Studios (Facebook and Etsy)  Nancy and John create lovely items from gourds.   They will give a talk on using gourds as part of holiday decor. and gifts and they will provide a door prize.

October 13 Buzz the Bee Man

Monday, October 13 at 7 PM at Mercer Methodist Church.
Our speaker will be "Buzz The Bee Man."
Hostesses are Sheila Craig and Margo Borowicz.
We will hold a Seed Exchange.  Bring seeds in ziplock bags, clearly identified.
Bring items for our auction table, which will resume this month.

Mercer Garden Club September 2014 Garden Tour

 September 8,  Garden Tour meet to car pool 5:50 at the Mercer United Methodist Church.
We will visit the gardens of Rodney Toth at 5637 West Liberty Street, (route 304) in Hubbard.  The gardens will include speciality plants and include a Mexican dahlia garden, unusual varieties of tomatoes, the Great Gourd Tunnel, a Grandchildren's Garden, a Super Sky High Sunflower Garden and The Potpourri Pole with Blue Sky Vine and Red Mandevilla.  
The photos are from our visit to Rodney's garden last fall in the rain.  This is a spectacular garden not to be missed.
Please meet at the Mercer Methodist Church at 5:50 PM to carpool.  The Garden viewing is at 6:30 PM.

Hosta Garden Tour

The Mercer Garden Club visited a spectacular hosta garden in Coolspring Twp.  Here are some pictures:

The stone walls lining the beds and driveway were much admired. This garden is amazing to see when you take into account the work these gardeners have put into to create this wonderful woodland garden.  It took years to create these walls and collect the plants. 

Here we are having our short meeting in the drive way of this lovely garden. There were about 23 people including 6 guests who we hope may decide to become members. 
Our next meeting will be in another spectacular garden at DJ's for our annual picnic.  Aug. 11, 2014

Mercer Garden Club, Summer Hosta Garden Tour July 14, 2014

July 14th Meeting and Hosta Tour
Mercer Garden Club members will tour the many Hosta gardens at the home of Jim and Sandy Ellenberger.  They are members of the Daffodil and Hosta Society of Western Pennsylvania, and sometimes show their lovely gardens to bus tours.  Over the last several years, Jim and Sandy have developed hosta gardens along the driveway, in the wooded areas, and around the yard.  All hosta beds are raised and surrounded by stone.  Also included in the tour is Sandy's rock garden and many daylilies.  Jim has a hosta nursery where he plants and grows seedlings.  Jim and Sandy are anxious to share their gardens with us.  Please wear your walking shoes.

We will meet at the church at 6:30 PM to carpool to 165 Coolspring Church Road.  There will be ample parking, but please do not park on the left side of the driveway as you will block the viewing of the hostas there.  
Garden Pallet idea and photo from Leslie

Feeding the roses

June is for Roses, and now that the pruning is done I am looking at the spring feeding.  I had 28 antique or old fashion roses. So far I think I may have lost 5 or 6 roses over the winter. The photo is of New Dawn 2013, it is an old fashion climbing rose. I pruned off about 60% of the old wood.  There is just a little bit of new green leaves starting here and there which is a good sign. I was afraid New Dawn was dead.  It is slow showing signs of life. Maybe after I feed it, I will see more leaves.  

I am trying new fertilizer again this spring. I just bought a 50lb bag of alfalfa pellets sold as horse feed at Agway. I will also use bone meal, fish emulsion, and earth worm castings and compost. I still need to buy some epison salts.

Here is a basic rule that I found on one of the rose sites I looked at tonight.

This article link:                                                  explains how to give your roses the food they need to be healthy, productive plants. But, for those of you who want a quick answer, here's the bare-bones guide to fertilizing:

  1. Give each rose 2 cups of a well-balanced, natural-based or organic granular fertilizer in the spring. Sprinkle onto the soil surface around the base of the plant. Additional amendments that can be fed include: 1/4 cup of epsom salts, 2 cups of alfalfa, 1/2 cup of rock phosphate or bone meal, and a shovelfull of compost.

  2. Optional summer feeding: One month after the first feeding, give each rose a dose (about one gallon of solution per rose) of an organic liquid fertilizer, such as fish emulsion. Apply this each month during the summer up until 6 weeks before the first frost.

  3. Don't use Miracle Grow type liquid chemical fertilizers on Rugosa roses. It burns them right up.

Paula McComb of Sweet Pea Flowers

Paula fiest puts in ferns and then some airy stems then tall flowers,  Delphinium then Larkspur, open roses( force open with fingers, Esperanto rose ,  wire the roses, take off birth petals and remove the center. Continue adding small filler flowers and finish with a Gerber Daisy.
 very beautiful.   We must vist Sweet Pea Flowers in rural Stoneboro.

Tulips planted by Mercer Garden Club

May is our most active month. We not only have our meeting but we get together and plant the summer flowers around the Courthouse and the Mercer Boro building, and beds under signs. 
May events:
Conservancy Planting
Rain date is Wednesday, May 14
At:  911 building and Shannon's

May 12th Meeting Information
7:00 PM at Mercer Methodist Church
Hostesses:  Betty Graham, Vera Filer, and Arlene Peters
Program:  Paula McComb of Sweet Peas Flowers will speak.  She is located at 2259 McComb Road, Stoneboro.  Check out her website at

Today I took pictures in the rain of the Tulips blooming up town.  Thank you to Pat and Gary and all the members that helped plant tulip bulbs last fall. They look wonderful and make our town look more friendly. I smile when I see them and hope other people are enjoying them too.

When do you prune roses in PA?

I was on the the Western PA. Component of the American Rose Society web pages to find out when and how to prune roses.  

I was surprise to learn that the rule of thumb is to wait till the forsythia bloom. Wow! Why did I miss this info, where have I been, this is so simple.

  I have 28 roses bushes some really famous or popular Heirloom varieties that I am trying to keep alive, a few are thriving and the others are just hanging in there.  I really need to learn more, I love my roses and some varieties are so much easier to keep than others.  I really want to save my Austin and Buck Roses and hope they made it through the winter; so far they look dead. I see some green looking stems near the ground so they will need serious pruning this year. 

Pictures below.  Mercer garden club members are welcome in June to see my roses.  If any Mercer Garden Club members want to talk roses please email me,,  perhaps we can arrange a rose meet up.     Nancy

April 14, Mercer Garden Club meeting

Easy Garden Bed
Learn a quick and easy way to make a new garden bed without digging.  Kathy Taylor, Lawrence County Master Gardener, will show us step by step how to do this easy project.
This is our monthly meeting held at 7:00 at the Mercer United Methodist Church on Butler St. There are usually light refreshments and a table of recycled garden Items for our auction.  Please bring whatever you can spare or wish to share.  All gardeners are welcome.  

Mercer Garden Club enjoy program on Seculants for your Garden

The program prived to be quite interresting.  There are so many diffirent kinds of seculants. We all gained knowledge an appreciation for this often overlooked type of plant.  Think of designing a terrarium or small dish garden that can be created and enjoyed on a pattio ot deck. 

We enjoyed a beautiful table of refreshments set in St Patrick's Day Theme. Thank you.  Leslie, Karen and Dorothy.

Yesterday Tom and I visited the OSWP Orchid Show in Pittsburgh here are a few pictures.

March and April Meetings of Mercer Garden Club

Marchand April meetings to be held at 7PM, at the Mercer United Methodist Church.

 March 10th:   
Gary Church will be returning  to speak for the evening  subject will be a surprise  I left it up to him : will be speaker’s choice  topic.

April 14th: 
Kathy Taylor a Master Gardener from Lawrence County  will join us to speak on planting an Easy Garden Bed.

These are pictures of the tulips blooming around the courthouse that were planted by our members.
Members of the Mercer Garden Club planted hundreds of tulips again last fall and we are anticipation a spectacular spring bloom this year.  Thank you Pat and Gary Whiting and others for this planting.

Flower Arranging Program

Monday February 10, 7 p.m. Mercer United Methodist Church. We will resume our regular meetings with a program by Debbie Thompson of Nelson's Flowers;   arranging flowers with a Valentine's Day Theme.

We wait for spring after this long cold winter. This is a picture of the tulips Gary and Pat planted in the fall of 2012. Members of our garden club planted hundreds of tulips in the fall of 2013 so spring 2014 shouls be spectacular.