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DALTON GARDEN CLUB: Members ‘log’ tree info at meeting

Betty Crouser’s creative “Nod to 2020” arrangement was complete with bathroom and paper towel tubes and paper. PHOTO PROVIDED

Club secretary

The Dalton Garden Club enjoyed meeting recently at Dalton Presbyterian Church – even if they were talking through masks.

The January business highlighted December gift giving to Dalton High School clothes closet, Christian Children’s Home’s girls’ teen cottage residents, and Shady Lawn Nursing Facility. Underwear and socks went to the high school, pillows, journals, coloring books and colored pencils added to donations received from other organizations for the cottage residents, and homemade Christmas cards were delivered to Shady Lawn for distribution to its residents. Industrious member Judy Decker made 300 Christmas cards this past holiday and delivered 200 to two nursing homes.

The December Christmas luncheon meeting was at Quince in Kidron. Marie Septer made table favors and decorated the table. Thanks to the Geisers, the club enjoyed good service, delicious soup, salad and a beautiful assortment of baked desserts.

Davida Hamsher shared an interesting email message from a lady inquiring about the Dalton/Wartburg Garden Club. She was missing the address so went to the Internet to find Dalton Garden Club. After a bit of research, Davida suspected that the email came from South Africa. Responding to Ms Johnson, she did confirm that she lived there, had an English garden, and a cat kennel. She lives on the east coast about 100 miles from Durbin. Looking at a map, that’s west of Madagascar! It’s a small world!

Betty Crouser created a linear design of mini-pink and white carnations and arbor-vitae for January’s horticulture project. She interpreted her title “A Nod to 2020” complete with bathroom and paper towel tubes and paper.

January’s program’s theme was trees and featured guest was retired tree expert Dave Sword, who is well-known locally. He spoke extensively on pruning trees saying, “do not top older trees.” According to a handout, “it is an unnecessary stress and increased risk to the tree’s health.” Utility companies have out of necessity to protect the lines and stress on utility poles have caused ugly trees and unhealthy pruning. One solution is burying utility lines, which is an expensive endeavor.

Dave emphasized “do your homework” when planning for trees. Know the root spread. Beautiful trees like silver maple and all varieties of willow (including the one that weeps) have very long root systems that track down water, including one’s underground piping systems.

Several members chose blue spruce as their favorite tree, but Dave warned the blue spruce has become susceptible to disease. His favorite trees are red oak and crimson king maple.

A heating value table showed that shagbark hickory, black locust, ironwood and apple have the highest BTU’s while aspen, white pine, basswood, and balsam fir have the lowest. Wood is heavy. A one-foot length of apple wood with a 10-inch diameter weighs about 36 pounds! To test whether a tree is healthy, hit the trunk with an axe. If it makes a ringing sound it’s healthy and if it makes a thud-like sound it is not. Just be careful with the axe!

Members logged information including hiring a reputable tree service that practices healthy tree management and is insured.

February’s meeting, being close to Valentine’s Day, will have a chocolate theme. Buckeyes (the chocolate/ peanut butter ones) will be demonstrated.

For more information, contact Marie Septer at 330-828-2170 or Davida Hamsher at

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