Monday, July 30, 2012

Landscaping 101

The Merry Weather Garden Club met on Thursday, July 26th at the home of Carla Snider on Imlac Road in Woodbury. Snider and Erma Jean Brown hosted the luncheon and meeting.
   Members thoroughly enjoyed touring the Snider’s new home and meeting guests and neighbors of Carla plus her sister who came from Haleyville, Alabama for the day. Hors d’oeuvres and refreshing lemonade and tea were enjoyed before the luncheon and gave the ladies a chance to chat and wander through the rooms that Carla has decorated herself and view her artwork that is displayed throughout the home.
   The luncheon menu featured balsamic glazed organic chicken with potato salad and vegetable pasta salad, but the unique dish that had ladies asking for the recipe was for the watermelon, avocado, and feta cheese salad. The Sniders live close to Woodbury’s famed peach orchards so Carla naturally served homemade pound cake with fresh peaches for dessert.
   The program began with guidelines from Bob Oxford from Pike County who teaches horticulture at Southern Crescent. His degree is from UGA, and he began his career working for Wight Nurseries which is today Monrovia a well known company that produces great plant varieties and products. He built the framework for Carla’s endeavor which is to landscape her yard.  He grouped the major points as Physical Layout, Desire of the Homeowner, Function, Emotion, Unity, and Maintenance. Maintenance and cost are primary considerations. Carla likes to do the work herself, but costs are always a consideration and limiting factor to an enterprise.
   Function was explained by Carla as she wants to make the area beautiful, homey and work with the existing swimming pool, pool pavilion, and granddaughter’s playground. As the Sniders entertain a lot, she needs, parking and more driveway options. She also has the AC, pool filtering equipment and tools to hide in one area plus yard and bedding areas versus pasture and pond areas to define.
   Oxford allowed Snider to spell out the problem spots she particularly needs to address and what she wants to see in those areas and so answering the Function and Desire of Homeowner categories.
   Emotion and Unity were more difficult to nail down. As the Sniders build their landscaping dream, the emotion and unity elements will be better able to be realized and decided upon. Unities of color and plant species are part of those considerations.
   The Sniders built on property that is a hayfield. Currently there are no plants other than colorful annuals and potted plants surrounding and bordering the house itself.  Snider wanted the input from the club and the ladies all had suggestions. 
   Trees and creating shade was number one in the drawings the members made on graph paper tablets Carla supplied. Fencing, the driveway and defining the garden were other areas the ladies drew to help create the “bones” of the layout plan. Favorite and dependable plant varieties and species were listed as well as ideas for initial landscaping until plants, trees, and shrubs could mature. The club passed along a variety of do-able suggestions and designs for Carla to consider as well as names of plant sources and expert contacts in the landscaping field. The club hopes each design may inspire and encourage her in her project.
   The next meeting of the Merry Weather Garden Club will be August 9th and will be hosted by Ellen McEwen and Patti Acheson. The club will tour the new Southern Living Idea House, a farmhouse restored in Senoia.