Sunday, 30 June 2013

Quota International Friendship Night

Quota International Friendship Night 

 Our Nominee Maureen who was awarded a Women of Achievement award

 The ladies who received awards at the ceremony

Club members Mary, Myles and Anne (sorry you have your eyes closed Anne)

Margaret, Maureen & Jeannine

Maureen receiving her Award.



Saturday, 29 June 2013

Tuesday, 18 June 2013

Guest Speaker on Vireya Rhododendrons

Visit here to find out where to buy Vireyas and learn more about these beautiful plants.

Our Guest Speaker for Sat 15 June, Neil Puddey is a past winner of the Spring Garden Competition and is also a local hero as far as growing Vireya Rhododendrons is concerned.

These beautiful plants in the wild are centred in the botanical region known as 'Malesia'. They are a highland tropical plant with about 170 known species. The first Vireya description was published in 1822 based on material supplied by an East India Company employee, William Jack while working in Sumatra.

Neil has successfully grown vireyas and has exported them to 12 countries - including 855 vireyas used in the beautiful Gardens by the Bay in Singapore see here about Neil and the gardens.

Neil was very generous with his knowledge on how to care for vireyas and he mentioned there is a vireya for every situation as they range from small mound-type to tall 4m high specimens, some of which are scented, mainly the pinks and whites. Neil mentioned that considered plant selection for situation was most important. Vireyas may be grown directly in the ground however, they need very good drainage and aeration. Plant on the ground and build up the bed with mulch and feed through winter with slow release fertiliser - leaves should be dark green, if they are yellow there is an iron deficiency - this should be taken care of by the application of the slow release fertiliser. Vireyas require filtered light or sun for at least half a day.

When growing in a pot do not have the pot sitting in a tray as the potting medium must be extremely well drained; Neil uses perlite in his mix (or styrofoam) to assist good drainage. When potting on do not put into a too big a pot - it is best to leave the top exposed from the old pot and build up with mulch for good drainage and aeration.

Pests - Neil says that these things won't necessarily kill the plant but will most certainly affect the appearance: lacebug, petal blight, mealy bug, mites, thrips - these can be addressed by using Confidor mixed with a penatrent which will assist with absorption.

Root rot - this is a real problem with Vireyas which are vulnerable due to poor drainage and/or aeration. This phytophthora root rot, is a fungal disease which infects fine roots and root hairs of plants and if left untreated can cause the demise of the plant. This can be treated with a suitable anti rot application like Phosacid 200 or Foli-R-Fos 200, these both have phosphorous acid as the active ingredient.

With regard to pruning Neil said with the more compact mound-type ones there wasn't any need to prune. However the more open ones require pruning to just above leaves. In tall ones that have lost their leaves, crack the stem just above where the leaf nodes are, this can be easily seen on the stem as a slight swelling or scar. This system should produce new growth in about a month during summer.

The vireya is a social plant in that it loves to have company, so best to grow a ground cover with it.

Neil provided an opportunity for members to purchase the large variety of plants he had brought to display. It was a very interesting talk and yet another wonderful speaker at our meeting.

June & July club outing details

Hi to all my fellow garden club members,

Below is information on this and next month's outings and the Programs Committee would love you to join in on these visits if you can.  It is not only interesting to visit these places but it is a wonderful opportunity to network with your fellow club members.  If you have not already let Secretary Maureen email Maureen here know, could you please email me email trish here if you would like to attend, especially for the Lemon Myrtle Farm as they are providing a free morning tea!

PERRY'S LEMON MYRTLE FARM - from their website:
The Perry family established one of the first commercial Lemon Myrtle plantations nearly 15 years ago and is situated on the Mid North Coast of NSW, Australia. This is a highly conducive region for growing Lemon Myrtle trees in their native environment and as a result we have been able to produce a very high quality of oil and are able to provide the consumer a high quality product giving the most helpful benefits available from our PURE Lemon Myrtle Oil. Benefits can only be obtained from the use of pure essential oil, thus making its use in aromatherapy products such a success. One cannot obtain unique fragrance, flavour or the helpful antiviral and antibacterial properties from an artificial product. Because of the very rich citral oil content, its soothing properties and its ability to be used in so many different industries, Lemon Myrtle Oil leads any other products in this classification.

Our special offer provides a free “Lemon Myrtle Experience” consisting of: Lemon Myrtle Tea, Lemon Myrtle Cheese Cake with fresh cream followed by a serving of Lemon Myrtle Ice Cream,  followed by the educational talk on the growing and processing of Lemon Myrtle, and the extraction of our Lemon Myrtle Oil developing it to product stage. Enjoy the samples of our Lemon Myrtle Rainforest personal care products, then visit our interesting Gallery for the purchase of our Lemon Myrtle products, jewellery and artefacts.

Travel - meet at the Botanic Gardens at 9.30am unless prior arrangements have been made to pick you up on the way.  If you go in someone else's car, you will need to contribute towards petrol costs.
Lunch - I have been assured that the morning tea is quite filling however, we do have a couple of options for after the visit i.e. go on to the Taylor's Arm Pub with No Beer or go to the picnic area on the beautiful Nambucca River.  For those that are attending, could you please email me email trish your preference so those that want to have lunch know whether to bring it with them if we don't go to the pub.

JULY OUTING - VALLEY OF THE MIST from their website:
Valley of the Mist is a working Bush Tucker farm set in 47 hectares of beautiful bush land forest. An orchard of 10 hectares has been established which is dedicated to growing an amazing variety of native fruits and nuts using low impact sustainable farming methods. Visitors can see how we work with nature to produce the amazing Davidson plum which must be seen to be believed - as the fruit grows in huge bunches from stems which form directly on the tree trunk itself!  Valley of the Mist is located five kilometres west of Macksville.

Travel - we need 34 to hire the mini bus so please email me, email Trish asap if you would like to attend.  Bus cost is approximately $20.  Otherwise we will have same arrangements as for the lemon myrtle farm visit.
Lunch- to be advised closer to the time.


Sunday, 9 June 2013

Garden Clubs of Australia (GCA) website

image - Webmaster GCA

The GCA motto is 'Friendship through Gardens' as is the motto for the Coffs Harbour Garden Club.

This umbrella organisation for affiliated garden clubs and other kindred and like-minded societies, associations and groups throughout Australia is made up from members of these Affiliates and are all volunteers.

The website for the GCA is an excellent resource and the Gardening tips and ideas page is just one of many pages that have interesting topics. Please visit this site for the latest news from GCA.

Wednesday, 5 June 2013

Major trip for 2013

St Peters Armidale Open Garden Weekend

3 days & 2 Nights

1st to 3rd November, 2013

Total Price  $425.00    per person twin or double share

$515 .00 Single Supplement

All Costs For The Trip Are Included

     Travel by Newman’s Coaches fitted with climate controlled air conditioning  and seat belts .

Accommodation at Country Comfort Armidale with 3 Course Dinner and Full Cooked Breakfast

Visit 10 Town & Country Gardens

Friday, 1st November
Depart Coffs Harbour  7.30am and  travel to Armidale stopping on the way for Morning Tea.- Arriving at Armidale for lunch at Armidale Bowling Club-. 2 Course meal (roast, sweets and tea/coffee ). After lunch visit New England Regional Art Museum (NERAM) a purpose built Art Gallery opened in 1983 with 6 gallery spaces and the renowned Howard Hinton Collection. Then book in at the motel ready for dinner and a good night’s sleep.
Saturday, 2nd November
After a cooked breakfast depart on first part of Garden Tour.
Return to St Peter’s Cathedral for light lunch and a visit to the magnificent Floral Art Display in St Peter’s Cathedral and browse around the arts and crafts stalls.
After lunch continue tour. Dinner at the Country Comfort.
Sunday, 3rd November.
After breakfast continue Garden Tour. Morning Tea and Basket Lunch at selected gardens. Complete visit to open gardens and depart for home. Comfort stop and afternoon snack..Arrive home at Coffs Harbour at around 5.00pm            
Full Itinerary with Garden Information and times in August.
                  $100 DEPOSIT (non  refundable  after 1st July)
Can be paid in instalments at the club meetings.
             Book now and enjoy a wonderful garden experience.

Bookings to Pat 66902511 

Simon 0417 525 522 

Sunday, 2 June 2013

Which Native Bees are in Your Area?

This stingless bee 
(Tetragonula carbonaria) lives in Queensland and NSW. 

Image from

An Introductory Guide from the Australian Native Bee Research Centre lists 10 major groups of native bees that can be found in Australia on this website. It includes a location table where the bees are found and brief accounts of their nests and behaviour when you click on their links. 

A very interesting site and well worth the read. 

To quote The Coffs Coast Advocate 'The season when green thumbs really get to work'

The Coffs Coast Advocate ran a terrific article in the Sat 1 June 2013 edition about our Spring Garden Competition. It advised folk that it is now time to start planning for the competition which closes the first Friday in September. There was a lovely photo of our President, Pat Roser with beautiful flowers abounding (most probably in her own garden!). Pat is quoted as saying - 'The best thing about this garden competition is there is a section for everyone - from small patio gardens and best vegie patch or water feature to best new garden or school grounds - we cater for everyone'.

Wonderful exposure for our competition so let's hope there are plenty of new gardens for the 2013 competition.