Sally Gracie

Twisp

BY SALLY GRACIE

The most recent incarnation of the Methow Valley Garden Club (first organized in 1937) took root just last year under the leadership of Judy Caputo. Now that they are established, they are looking for a permanent meeting place. In the meantime, its 12 members have been gathering at each other’s homes for meetings, on second Tuesdays at 1 p.m.

Members have attended a “Border to Basin” gathering with the other regional garden clubs in Tonasket, learned from guest speakers, and visited a garlic farm. At Christmas they delivered gift boxes to Jamie’s Place and Mountain View adult family homes in Winthrop.

Last Wednesday morning I met gardeners Evey Garmager, Sandy Jensen, Terry Mathis, and Judy at Jamie’s Place. The club has undertaken the garden’s maintenance as its community project. This first work party of the season found the beds rather overgrown. The gardeners were hard at work outside the garden fence, clearing the gravel of volunteer flowers and weeds.

Judy Caputo and Evey Garmager at Jamie's Place.

Judy Caputo and Evey Garmager at Jamie’s Place.

Judy is enthusiastic about getting the Jamie’s Place garden back in shape. To join the work party (or the club) contact Judy at cisycad@centurytel.net or show up at 8 a.m., Wednesdays, at Jamie’s Place. Take your own gloves and hand tools with you.

The last time I sat in Bonny Stephens’ kitchen, her mother Lois Lince (whose home it was then) stood at the stove cooking quail hash! In the kitchen this visit I tried to make friends with Bonny’s two very unusual Asian leopard hybrid cats.  Her mother’s “Lois’s Garden” sign is still out front, but the house and garden and its magnificent flowers are Bonny’s.

Bonny has the advantage of the good soil her mother had built up in the flowerbeds from 1970 until her death in 2006. In Bonny’s garden grow larkspur, Canterbury bells, monkey flowers, zinnias, an orange echinacea, Shasta daisies, a grape vine on the garden shed, clematis, bells of Ireland, stokesia, delphinium and dozens of lilies of various types. The gardens are lush and fragrant. I am inspired to try some new lilies from the Port Townsend grower where Bonny buys hers.

Recent rains have done some damage, especially to her precious lisianthus, the annuals Bonny nurtures from seed for six months, from late winter until June. Rain also battered her delphiniums.  Bonny specializes in flowers for cutting, which she arranges in vases and sells at her market stall each Saturday. She also sells pickled vegetables, handbags and dresses for little girls. Her latest creations are sundresses for women.

 

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