Debbie Thomas, DHS President
The Dunnville Horticultural Society held their early bird membership draw, with the winner receiving a twenty five dollar gift certificate donated from Hausers Pharmacy. Guest speaker for the night was Theresa Forte a past Canada Blooms speaker. Her talk ” If you plant it they will come” along with a beautiful slide show of plant choices from her own gardens that entice, protect and feed Bees, Butterflies and Birds.
Marlene Link, a DHS member, shared pictures with the group of a unique phenomena that occurs in nature, when a mutation on a tree or shrub forms in very specific way, and often only a keen observer like Marlene may notice it and know exactly what it really is. Some may assume it to be a squirrel or bird nest, or just a bundle of twigs.
In medieval times, mysterious and unexplained occurrences were often blamed on witchcraft, and brooms during this time were made of bundled twigs. Hence the name “witches broom” has stuck ever since. In horticulture its now understood that a number of stresses, both biological and environmental can lead to the formation of witches broom. Organisms such as fungi, mites, and aphids can cause abnormal growth when they attack a tree host.
Environmental stresses that injure the growing points of the branches can also trigger the formation of shoots with short internodes that resemble a bundle of twigs. Some may look like a ball shaped dwarf plant, growing in the tree. Its believed that many of our dwarf varieties today originated from this type of mutation.
The picture Marlene provided was taken at Grandview Lodge in Dunnville, and can be viewed from Maple Grove Place.
DHS members are a friendly group always eager to share their gardening knowledge, tips, passion and even blunders.
Next program is on Thursday March 17 with Guest Speaker Adam Koziol owner/grower from Earthgen. His topic is “Native Tree Planting With Fast Results.”As always All Are Welcome, membership not required. Doors open at 6:30pm and the program begins at 7pm.
The DHS meets at the Dunnville Optimist Club, located on the corner of Main and Cedar St. For information contact DHS President Debbie Thomas at (905) 774-3064.