The Merry Weather Garden Club met on Thursday, June 12th, 2014 at the home of Sallie Mabon. Co-hosting with Mabon were Helen Claussen, Diana Norris, and Mary Anne Harman.
Members met on the Mabon’s deck overlooking their garden water feature and enjoyed chatting during a social hour and getting to meet guests Ute Whatley, of German background and who is Toots Hobson’s new neighbor; Brenda Fernander, guest of Linda Wilburn, who is the new resident in Greenville in the house beside the Methodist Church; and also Shae Rossetti, the eldest granddaughter of Sherry Carothers.
Because Greenville has enjoyed four very special weddings this summer that have involved many garden club members, Sallie Mabon presented a program about the historical use of flowers in weddings plus some fun wedding trivia.
Most garden club members married in the time period when a wedding was a simple church affair and the reception meant a cake, mints, nuts, and punch in the church fellowship hall. Today, Mabon said the average wedding costs $29,700 and annually $72 billion is spent on the event. Encouraging to note, forty percent of married couples paid for their weddings themselves.
The amount spent on flowers, corsages, and bouquets run minimally at $700. Flower prices vary according to the varieties chosen, the time of year, and if they are locally grown. The most requested flower is the rose followed by tulips, calla lilies, lily of the valley, hydrangea, peonies, ranunculus, stephanotis, sweet pea, and gardenia. Overall, the most expensive flower is the orchid.
Wedding trivia questions were fun with members learning that wedding dress costs at the low end run $200 and high end $2-5000. In Eastern cultures, white is the color for mourning so wedding dresses are never white but usually colorful. The veil, symbolizing youth and virginity, hid the bride from the “evil eye” and in centuries past was red, blue, or yellow with white becoming popular in the Victorian period for those wealthy enough to have a veil. The veil was also handy in arranged marriages so the groom did not see the face of his betrothed until it was too late!
The club learned there is no law requiring a woman to take her husband’s name. The wedding vow “til death do us part” was not part of a slaves’ wedding vow because ownership allowed the couples to be split apart and sold. Mabon explained the tradition of “jumping the broom” which was like the earlier Roman groom carrying the bride across the threshold to signify they were married. In the 1500s, the Council of Trent proclaimed marriage a sacrament of the church.
In club news and business, Carla Snider reported on the Keep America Beautiful meetings. The club voted to donate $100 to our local county litter campaign led by Jane Fryer.
Linda Wilburn gave a report on the status of the streetscapes and the process of getting the design approved which has taken much longer than anticipated. Wilburn also arranges for the landscaper to cut, maintain, and pick up the litter on the islands around court square and the club contributed $250 to that effort. Yearly costs total $700 so more donations are needed to keep our county seat beautiful.
Gail Coffee reported on the Animal Shelter as needing a good weeding and trimming as well as more shade for the dog runs. Trustee help is not available like it used to be so members of the club volunteered their help and to purchase shade trees for the site
The next garden club meeting will be July 10th with Marilyn Austin and Lynda Woodall hosting. The club will meet at Larkspur Antiques in Woodland and tour the day lilies there.
The club members enjoyed a delicious salad luncheon with each bringing a different type of salad with the menu varying from fresh greens to congealed salads to stuffed shells.