Dunnville Horticulture Society

What you can do with a Rose

This year one of our goals was to learn more about the plants that are growing in our backyard (and most likely in yours as well), and what we can do with them. And due to the fact that rose hips are in season, let’s start with the rose. Roses are a beautiful flower. There is no denying their beauty, but there is more to the rose than just its beauty. For starters, it is used as a fragrance in many products, but did you know that its fragrance can help relieve stress, negative moods, and even headaches?

From the petals of the rose, rose water or rose oil are the most commonly available products, and rose water is easy to make at home with a few roses and distilled water. But more importantly, here are some of the benefits:

  • When used as a toner it can help reduce and soothe skin irritations, redness, and acne. It may even help with eczema and rosacea.
  • It’s been said to help sooth sore throats, so make a tea or put a little rose water into a glass of water.
  • It also has antiseptic and anti-aging properties and has been known to help with healing wounds and reducing scars and fine lines.

Other things that can be made from the rose petals are tea, salads (yes, the petals are edible), potpourri, sugar scrubs, bath bombs, etc.

Then there’s the rose hip, which I’m on the hunt for. My one poor rose plant just isn’t going to give me enough rose hips to make some syrup; and why do I want to make some of this? Well, because it’s a good source of vitamin C, A, D, and E and it can be used in a variety of food and drinks to add a little sweetness. Or you can use it like maple syrup and pour it over your pancakes, waffles, yogurt, or ice cream.

How are you feeling about roses now?

If you are a gardening enthusiast, why not check out the Dunnville Horticultural Society (DHS) website at dunnvillehortandgardenclub.org or the DHS Facebook page. If you would like more information about our club, contact DHS President Deb Zynomirski at debzyn@gmail.com.

Haldimand Press DHS Update

President, DHS

To The Haldimand Press

DUNNVILLE—The “Gales of November” have lived up to their notorious reputation this year, as many of us are still cleaning up after stormy weather. Trees that have long been a fixture in family yards were blown over or snapped in two by ferocious winds. Thankfully, most gardeners took advantage of the last spell of warm weather to put their gardens to bed for the winter, so damage was minimized for many.

October 17, 2020 was a blustery and rainy day, but 21 intrepid souls braved the weather for the Dunnville Horticultural Society (DHS) Clean Up Day. Volunteers removed annuals and tidied up our public garden beds. We owe a special word of thanks to Jeff’s Outdoor, who donated equipment, vehicles, and an entire crew to assist us.

Due to the current COVID-19 restrictions, DHS was not able to hold its Annual General Meeting. However, the board of directors ensured that the business end of things was still taken care of. Despite the Ontario Horticultural Society’s decision to raise dues, DHS has elected to keep our membership fee at $10/single and $15/couple for 2021. What a bargain!

Even though we are not currently able to hold member Program Nights, your membership still provides a discount at local garden centres and is a great way to show support for your local horticultural society.

We encourage all present and past members to purchase their 2021 membership by sending a cheque to DHS, P.O. Box 274, Dunnville, Ontario N1X 2K5. Your membership will be mailed directly to your home address.

In keeping with the season, DHS will be holding a Drive By Food Drive on December 5 from 12 to 2 p.m. in the Optimist Hall parking lot. Bring your donations that day, and our Executive and Board will transfer them in a socially distanced and safe manner.

With the end of our fiscal year, I would like to thank our directors who will be continuing on in their roles in 2021: Petra Kruis-Daly (Recording Secretary), Sharon Sykes (Treasurer), Susan Emery, Nelly Engelage, Angela Latham, Wray McLean, Colleen O’Reilly, Debbie Thomas (Past President). We are saying goodbye to Gloria Hunter and Kim Christoff (past Treasurer). These ladies have devoted many years of service to DHS, taking on a lot of responsibilities during their tenure. Thank you all for your many contributions!

Finally, I would encourage you to take a walk through the Thompson Creek Eco Centre. You will see that many bluebird houses and two barn swallow habitat structures have been installed. This project continues to develop and provide a welcome spot for birds, animals, and people alike! Thank you, Debbie Thomas and Dan McKay for spearheading this project.

If you would like more information about Dunnville Horticultural Society, visit our website at dunnvillehortandgardenclub.org or contact me directly at debzyn@gmail.com.

Get Growing: Putting your garden to bed

By Brad & Susan Emery

Closing up your garden for the year is a must, although bittersweet. I love our garden, but we live in southern Ontario and we will have a winter; it’s not Florida you know. So, what to do to prepare your garden?

Start pruning back your perennial foliage, remove the dead stems, and trim finished flowers. Although to be honest we often do this one in the spring, sometimes in March, while the plant is still dormant. We do this because I’m still working on preserving our harvests and my husband is cutting wood and preparing our garden beds for winter. So if you’re busy now, pruning can be done early spring as well.

Next, don’t forget to save your summer bulbs. Best practices to store summer bulbs is to place them in a cool, dry location such as a storage room or cool basement. The optimal storage temperature is between 45 and 50 F (between 7 and 10 C); the trick is not to let them freeze. I’ve often seen bulbs stored with shredded paper.

Now, let’s add nutrition and protection for your soil. Take all those fallen leaves that litter your yard, mulch them, and add them into your garden and/or flower beds to provide protection and soil nutrition. If you have manure that needs time to break down, you can add that now too. Did you know you can use your dog’s poo in your flower beds? Don’t use in your vegetable beds, however. Start a compost pile, turn weekly, and add your dog poo to grass clippings, plant, or other organic waste, and even sawdust as a source of food for the microbes. This may be something to start now so you have a great compost for next year’s beds.

And let’s not forget the patio! Extend the lifespan of your patio furniture by taking care of it. Now is the time to clean, cover, or store your patio furniture and accessories. It’s also a good time to do the same with your gardening tools.

Lastly, protect your plants. Provide winter protection to your sensitive shrubs such as hybrid roses or azaleas.