Dunnville Horticulture Society

DHS Newsletter

Sue Mazi, DHS Corresponding Secretary

Nov. 2012 Well, autumn is surely here.  As I’m typing this it is pouring rain, and most of the leaves are now on the ground. Halloween is a couple of days away and most of the stores have their Christmas decorations up already.  Time simply goes by way too fast.

Looking back on 2012, the Dunnville Horticultural Society has had one of its best years ever.  Our executive and directors have been the most dynamic group ever and will continue to be in 2013. We are sad to see a couple of directors leave us but at the same time we are thrilled to see a couple of new faces.  We have been able to bring a number of undertakings to fruition.  We had a bus trip to Canada Blooms in Toronto, we participated in the Mudcat Parade, we had a great showing at the Home & Garden show, a record-breaking plant sale in May, we awarded 20 Trillium Awards again this year and our guest speakers each month have been great.  We have learned a lot about different things this year, from sweet potatoes to invasive plant and animal species in Ontario.   Last but not least we made a “blooming” great showing with our planting and tending of the town’s flowerbeds.  As always, the planting and maintaining of these beds is the focal point of our association.  Volunteers are the backbone of this organization and are needed to help with planting and weeding.  The majority of this work always seems to fall on the same small group of volunteers and we need more help.  Each year we turn to our members for assistance, and I know our members can bring a vast array of knowledge and skills to the table.  Please plan to help when called upon next spring.  High school students will be able to log their hours to qualify for their mandatory community service.  Remember: many hands make light work.

The pot luck dinner at the October general meeting was a hit.  The food was tasty and plentiful, and our guest speaker, Donna Crooks from Oakridge Garden Centre, talked to our group about putting our gardens to bed for the winter.  She also talked about plants that add pizzazz and colour for the winter. Thank you, Donna, for sharing your wisdom and enthusiasm with us.  We need to remember that our gardens can be enjoyed in all 4 seasons.  Thank you to everyone who brought food and to Julie Jurik for looking after the kitchen for us so that all of the executive and directors could sit and enjoy the meal.

Speaking of all four seasons, our photography contest will be held at the November meeting.  Hopefully you have all handed in your photos.  Christine Edwicker from Christine’s Creative Photography will be our judge.  Good luck to everyone who entered.

The general meeting this month is one week later than usual due to a scheduling conflict at the Optimist Hall.  Mark your calendar:  the date is Thursday, November 22nd.  This will be our Annual  General Meeting since our fiscal year ends October 31st.  We will read the minutes from our last AGM which was February and the Treasurer’s year-end report for 2012.  This will also be our annual Christmas celebration, and I can’t wait to have some of Debbie Thomas’s amazing hot apple cider.  Our guest speaker for the evening will be Elizabeth MacLean and she will be giving a very timely talk:  Interior Christmas Design.  There’ll be a lot going on but it should be a fun night.

We will also have installations of new and returning executive and directors at this meeting.  A representative from OHA’s District 9 will attend to officiate.  2013 promises to be another stellar year for the Dunnville Horticultural Society.

There will be no general meeting in December.  The next time that we will meet will be January 17th, 2013.  So, on behalf of the executive and directors of the DHS, I would like to wish you and yours a safe and happy Christmas and New Year.  See you in 2013.


Sue Mazi, DHS Corresponding Secretary.


Essential advice for the gardener: grow peas of mind, lettuce be thankful, squash selfishness, turnip to help thy neighbor, and always make thyme for loved ones. ~Author Unknown

DHS Monthly Program – Optimist Hall

Nov. 2012

Meeting was called to order at 7:05 p.m.

There were 47 members signed in.

50/50 draw tickets were available for purchase.

The September minutes were not voted on last month so a motion was made by Kim to have them accepted as read (they were read at the last meeting) and Barb White seconded the motion. Motion was carried.

The February Annual General Meeting minutes were read aloud by Sue Mazi. Motion to accept was made by Vel LeVatte and seconded by Debbie Thomas. Motion was carried.

After explaining the Annual Treasurer’s Report, Balance sheet and Audit process to the members, Kim read the Annual Treasurer’s report aloud. She explained the various expenses and incomes and the final balance sheet as well.

Mary McKinney moved to have the report accepted as read and Gwen VanNatter seconded the motion. Motion was carried.

Barb White and Cindy Huitema graciously volunteered to audit our books this year. Everything was found to be in order. Thank you both for taking the time to do this.

Debbie Thomas spoke about Haldimand County’s Volunteer Recognition Night. This year was the 12th annual event, held in Fisherville. Rob Maracle and Debbie Thomas attended. The Dunnville Horticultural Society was nominated for the Community Project Award, which was won by the Caledonia Cenotaph Restoration group. Congratulations to them for winning and to us for being nominated. Ceremony attendees were given beautiful commemorative Haldimand County/Queen’s Diamond Jubilee wine glasses and each of our 2012 directors received one as well.


Lori Maracle introduced 2012’s executive to the members and congratulated everyone for a banner year.


Lori also presented Judy Jeffery with a bouquet of roses and a gift to thank her for all of her hard work in the past. Judy has been a member of the executive of the DHS for a total of 8 years, with the last 3 being our president. She is stepping down this year and the torch has been handed to Lori Maracle. Don Davis was also presented with a gift, as he is stepping down as a DHS director after many years of working hard for the DHS.


Susan Lusted, District 9 Director, swore in the new and returning directors and executive for 2013. 2013’s executive officers are as follows: President: Lori Maracle, Past President: Judy Jeffery, 1st Vice-president: Debbie Thomas, 2nd Vice-President: Betty Ballanger, Secretary: Sue Mazi, Treasurer: Kim Christoff. Directors are: Pam Blanchard, Pauline Bradford, Maura Cooper, Janice Croft, Mary-Lou Johnston, Jan Loots, Vel LeVatte, Rob Maracle, Marilyn Stavinga, Ian Steel and Debbie Wilson.


Welcome to all the new directors, and welcome back to the ones returning. 2013 is going to be a great year!


Maura Cooper thanked the volunteers who helped her in the kitchen for the past year. She presented a sign-up sheet for 2013. Because the society has grown she has asked for 3 volunteers at each general meeting (help is needed at 8 meetings per year).



Lori Maracle read “A Visit from St. Nicholas” and when she was finished Santa Claus appeared! He handed out candy canes and grape hyacinth bulbs and wished everyone a Merry Christmas.


Refreshments were set out. There were various sandwiches and desserts that were delicious, and Debbie Thomas’s hot apple cider was a hit again this year. Looks like it’s becoming a DHS tradition.


Congratulations to Dorothy Minor for winning the 50/50 draw. Her share was $97.50 and of course our share was $97.50. Thank you to Betty Ballanger and Debbie Wilson for selling the tickets.


Our guest speaker for this evening was Elizabeth MacLean. She is a local interior decorator, and she spoke about design and decorating with an emphasis on Christmas.


Our first annual photography contest was judged by Christine Edwicker of Christine’s Creative Photography (she was our guest speaker in February 2012) and Elizabeth MacLean. There were numerous photos entered and they were all spectacular. The 4 winners were:


Winter: Rob Maracle

Spring: Miranda Bucsis

Summer: Miranda Bucsis

Fall: Doris Thompson


Each winner was awarded a 16 gig flash drive to store their photos on, especially the ones they will be taking for next year’s contest.


Thank you to Canadian Tire who donated 3 garden tool sets and to Sub Venture, Super Video and A&W for donating prizes. Judy Jeffery graciously donated the beautiful poinsettias. All of these were awarded as door prizes. I think almost everyone went home with something. Congratulations to all.


Our next meeting will be Thursday, January 17, 2013.


Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to everyone.


Thank you to all the volunteers who helped to make tonight’s meeting the success that it was.


Meeting was adjourned at 9:05 p.m.


Sue Mazi, Secretary.