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Saying Goodbye to Summer and Hello to Autumn

As Autumn officially arrives and we say goodbye to Summer, we can reflect on our gardens, the weather and what we did as a club over the Summer. You all know how your gardens fared, what worked and what didn't, and what changes you will make for next year. The weather, overall, was great and we are still enjoying very warm days. As a club, we enjoyed an evening picnic and plant exchange in June, a wonderful evening of touring four lovely gardens in July, and a very enjoyable bus trip to Fellowes Riverside Gardens in August. We just had our September meeting at Westlake Porter Public Library with a delicious lunch and an interesting and informative program on the "Power of Pollinators" presented by Greg Cada. Greg is a Master Gardener of Cuyahoga County and a beekeeper. Looking ahead, our October program will be on "Herbs, Teas and Medicinals" presented by Beth Schreibman-Gehring, 2nd Vice Chair of the Western Reserve Herb Society. The November program will be on the "Crooked River" presented by Elaine Marsh, Project Director of Ohio Greenways and Founding Member of Friends of the Crooked River. The December meeting is our annual Holiday Luncheon and Installation of Officers for 2018 and will be at the Westwood Country Club. In an effort to keep our club strong and make it better, we are going to make some minor changes for next year. We will no longer have a 1st and 2nd Vice President, but will have only one Vice President. Six committees are being formed that will take some of the work and pressure off the Board Members and will allow for responsibilities to be shared rather than taken on by one member. We may also start our meetings a half hour later and keep the business meeting to 1/2 hour instead of a full hour. We will try these things and if they work, great. If they do not work, we will go back to the original way or make some other change, but will keep moving forward. It was decided at the last meeting that we will again participate in GLOW at the Cleveland Botanical Garden, where we decorate a holiday tree. We will also decorate a tree at the Westlake Porter Public Library again this year. Last year it was decided to change our annual fundraiser luncheon to a bi-annual event, on the even years. We are not having a luncheon this year, but will plan the event for September 2018. When the date is set and plans are started, we will make more information available.

Westlake Garden Club 2017 Bus Trip to Fellows Riverside Gardens and Lanterman's Mill in Youngstown, OH

The Westlake Garden Club is hosting a bus trip to the beautiful Fellows Riverside Gardens and the Lanterman's Mill in Youngstown, OH on Wednesday, August 16, 2017. The bus will depart from West By Plaza, Detroit and Crocker Roads, at 8:30 a.m. and return at approximately 4:30 p.m. Lunch is included in cost and will be served at Kravitz's Garden Café at Fellows Gardens. Cost per person: $55 for WGC members; $65 for non-members. Call Marie McCarthy for more information at 216-221-6365.

2017 Mini-Garden Tour

On Wednesday, July 19 at 5 p.m., 30+ garden club members and their guests braved the heat and headed out to tour four gardens.  Last year was the first time we held a mini-garden tour and it was so popular that members requested we do it again.  The first garden was at a farmhouse in Avon Lake, home to a member of the Herb Guild.  And yes, she does have a lot of herbs in her garden. The property is interesting with a barn and other out-buildings and the garden is fabulous.  The deeper I walked into the garden, the more I had the feeling of being lost in a botanical paradise.  Around every turn is a profusion of color, texture, garden art, stone or wood borders.  There is a huge variety of flowers, herbs and shrubs and the daylilies were still blooming.  The gardener was present to share her experiences of gardening at this site for 40 years.  The garden is a delight for all of the senses.  The second garden in Avon was at the home of a garden club member who is also an artist.  This garden has neat, trim borders bursting with color and variety and islands with shrubs, flowers, bird feeders and garden art.  There is a cottage at the back of the property which is decked out with overflowing window boxes.  The homeowner/gardener invited us inside his home to see the addition which houses a stunning new master bath and closet.  With the garden and the new addition, this stop was a double treat.  The third garden in Westlake was also at the home of a garden club member.  This property is large with many trees and shrubs, a garden shed and swing.  The large, full borders were exploding with a variety color and texture.  You notice trowels in the ground around the garden because the gardener is always digging up and moving plants or placing them in small pots to share with visitors.  I have been to this garden many times and each time I feel like I have gone home to my grandmother's garden.  This garden makes me want to pour a tall glass of iced tea, grab a good book and curl up on the swing and enjoy.  The last garden has won Westlake in Bloom many times in its' category.  The homeowner/gardener very graciously invited us into his garden and to hold our reception on his deck.  The garden has colorful border plantings, shrubs and many interesting trees.  This gardener likes to plant areas of one color instead of mixing colors, which makes quite a statement.  In addition to the garden plantings, there are many containers on the deck just bursting with color.  Members and guests enjoyed wine, beer, iced tea, cheese and crackers, hummus, salsa, guacamole and chips, vegetables and dip, fruit and cookies, and as the sun went down and the twinkle lights on the deck came on, it was the end to a perfect evening.  A great big THANK YOU to the homeowners who opened their gardens for our enjoyment.  I think this may become an annual event.   Visit our Photo Galleries for pictures of the gardens on the tour.

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