idylwood News
June 2022
A publication of Idylwood Civic Club

Chances are if you have found yourself outside after dark in the past few weeks you have encountered the ubiquitous June bug. If you have children, they are no doubt collecting them for some sort of strange insect rodeo.

In spite of the “bug” in their name, June bugs are actually beetles in the scarab family with more than 100 species found in Texas.

Although many people find June bugs unsettling, they play an important role in the ecosystem. By chowing down on grass roots, June bugs concentrate nutrients into juicy (larva) and crunchy (adult) calorie-rich packages that are consumed by many wild animals such as possums, raccoons and several bird species across all stages of their life cycle. 

With their heavy shells, these weak, clumsy fliers reach about five mph, producing only 45 wingbeats per second to, say, a mosquito’s 280 to 310. Fiercely attracted to light, June bugs fly straight forward, sometimes smashing into screens, walls or even people—who mistakenly think they’re being bitten. The good news is that they are harmless, that is until they fly into your hair and you do a funny dance for everyone.

Our next Civic Club meeting will be on Tuesday, June 21 at 7:30pm, IN PERSON at Spurlock Park! There will be no scheduled speaker, we will just enjoy each others company with some icepops to cool off. Residents of all ages are welcome! In the event of inclement weather, we will convene via Zoom as the elections committee will be selected at the June meeting. Watch on nextdoor and the Idylwood Neighborhood Exchange for day-of weather announcements.

The zoom link in case of inclement weather is:

Meeting ID: 834 0901 4075
One tap mobile
(346) 248-7799, 83409014075# US (Houston)

Our last scheduled speaker of the year will be on Tuesday, July 19, where we will hear from Metro about projects in our area. Stay tuned for location!

The results of our meeting location survey so far: 10 respondents preferred all in person meetings, 3 preferred all virtual, and 6 wanted to alternate in person and virtual. For a physical location, 7 preferred Spurlock Park, 5 voted for the Empower Computer lab at the Raul Martinez Annex, and 4 said to wait for Magnolia Multi-Service Center. If you haven't already voted, please see the survey below!

Thanks to Patricia Hattenbach and Jim McCallum for their contributions to the Garden Club and Yard Of The Month sections of the newsletter. Please also check out their new feature on Idylwood's Pets of the Month, and consider submitting your furry friend for a feature!

If you would like to contribute an article to the newsletter on a one-time or recurring basis, please contact me at

Additionally, help us all stay connected. If you have a new neighbor, please encourage them to be added to the newsletter. They can send their email to or pass it along to one of our board members or officers.


Laura Manion
Idylwood Civic Club
How would you like to have civic club meetings?
All In Person -if possible
All Virtual
Alternate In Person and Virtual- second choice
If in person, where would you be willing to travel for meetings?
Raul Martinez Annex - 1001 S Sergeant Macario Garcia Drive-Yes
Spurlock Park, weather permitting- Yes
Mason Park Gazebo
Magnolia Multi Service Center - likely not available until 2023
General Meeting Updates
Guest Speaker was Juan Sorto, Community Engagement Manager with Buffalo Bayou Partnership.
(add'l text here)
Idylwood Green
Get Yer Mind In The Gutter

Have you noticed any gutters chockfull of leaves and debris during your neighborhood walks? Hurricane season is upon us and our street drains need some care and attention they don’t normally get. Storm drains and rain gutters only work if they are clear of debris like leaves, branches or litter. Houston’s streets are designed to flood in most areas, but higher floodwaters can accumulate when storm drains are clogged.

If you have a few minutes to spare, clear 10 feet on each side of the drain before a forecasted storm hits, compost the leaves you clear from the drain or place them in compostable bags approved by the City of Houston. If you find trash clogging the drain, place it in your garbage bin for weekly pick up.

See Something - Clean Something!
East End Day Trip
Birds On The Bayou!

Just down the road from Idylwood lies an opportunity to interact with some native, taloned friends. The Houston Audubon Raptor and Education Center (HAREC) is a picturesque 1.1-acre sanctuary located in historic Park Place on the original channel of Sims Bayou. The center is home to Houston Audubon’s education department. 

HAREC is located next to Charlton Park and the Houston Botanic Garden. On January 19, 2019, the ribbon-cutting ceremony was held to mark the official transformation of the Sims Bayou Urban Nature Center to the Houston Audubon Raptor and Education Center. The sanctuary contains raptor mews (or aviaries), a log cabin, a barn, a nature store, a gazebo, gardens, and a pond with native plants. Pack a lunch and enjoy the outdoor picnic area. The seasonal wetland trails afford a unique opportunity to experience nature in a dense urban setting.

HAREC hosts unique Raptor Photography Shoots for adults, and you can even schedule a one-on-one private session (for a fee). Whether you're a professional photographer or capture images from your smartphone, in this intimate setting, you can get up close to owls, falcons, hawks, and other majestic birds. The shoots usually take place between 7:30 and 9:30 a.m. Other programs include Owl Prowls, Behind the Scenes Tours and Guided Group Tours.

For kids ages 6-11, HAREC is conducting 2 different week-long camps in July with outdoor activities, exploratory nature hikes, meaningful crafts and much more.
HAREC is located at:
3997 River Drive, Houston 77017
Phone: (713) 640-2407

Starting Jun 1 thru Aug 15, the Raptor Center is open by appointment only due to on-going summer camps.

Birds On The Bayou?
Sounds like a great way to spend a day in the East End.
Summer Fun
Houston Parks and Recreation Department will be having free skateboarding classes for youth ages 6-17 years old at the Lee and Joe Jamail Skatepark for the Summer I Session (June 20-24th).

An introductory camp designed to teach participants on the proper technique of skateboarding and to enhance their overall experience at the skatepark.

Online registration takes place June 1-13. For more info and to register, click on the axle grind image below:

Should you have questions call the HPARD at (713) 222-5500.
Kicking off a home improvement project or hiring a contractor for a remodel? Download a copy of the deed restrictions here so you know the Dos and Don'ts before you make a potentially expensive mistake.
Idylwood Community Exchange is now
Idylwood Neighborhood Exchange
The former Idylwood Community Exchange is now being hosted on Google Groups as the Idylwood Neighborhood Exchange. To request an invitation for this group, please send a request to:

Please note that like its predecessor, this group is privately maintained by a resident, and not managed by the ICC Board.
Keep in Touch with your Civic Club
Pay 2021-2022 Dues
Deed Restrictions
Historic Idylwood

Stepping Out In Idylwood !!
(A collective request as viewed from the ground up!)

For quite a while, a few of my neighborhood buddies and I have been noticing and participating in a great Idylwood pastime. Morning, noon, and night neighbors and their best friends are walking and sometimes jogging.

The abundance of the natural beauty of our haven is literally at our feet on any path we take. Tall oaks, pines, cottonwoods, river birches, winged elms, and more shade our sidewalks in addition to the big open spaces at Spurlock Park and the FEMA lots. The hike and bike trail along the bayou puts you right next to grasses, flowers, and the water's edge. The scents they emit go right to our olfactory receptors sending messages involving memory and appreciation of these sensations! Every step fills the air with so many fragrant scents as well as seeing birds, bugs, butterflies, bees, and more insects- all flitting about begging to be followed and enticing us to get a closer look and sniff.

And then, all of a sudden, on any path, we freeze in our tracks! We see the wincing and shocking look on our friend's face! Instantly, a burst of an odour most foul permeates the air and just clings... It won't go away and the delight of the walkabout abruptly ends and the brisk walk home erupts. Paradise act most foul left undone -- scooping up.......!

So, my buddies and I are reminding you to please pick up after us. You have thumbs and fingers that can grip. We have paws and claws for walking and digging. Help keep Idylwood fresh and clean. We're begging you! So, please pass it on, the request that is; and not pass on it.

With never ending, unconditional love,

Your Best Friends
New Monthly Feature !
Idylwood Pet(s) of the Month
Our 'best' friends now get their turn in the spotlight! They bring us so much love, joy, exercise, human friendships, and truthfully, higher grocery bills!! So, here we go.....
Meet Tiger!
This sweet kitty found a way into our garage during the Imelda rain storm on September 19, 2019 and was no more than 4-6 weeks old. Looking like a waif from Les Miserables, within 1-2 minutes, she convinced us to take her in. It was the act of her two front paws simultaneously patting Jim's cheeks while he held her in his palms that did the trick. Wow!

So, she has grown into this fun cat that likes to play laser tag, lounges wherever she pleases inside and outside, safely observes all walkers and their dogs passing by, and will wake you by 6:00-6:30 am for breakfast. So much for a leisurely retirement! She currently tolerates Woody and really just rules the roost!
Meet Woody
A rescue dog from the Brazoria SPCA, this English Lab was not chipped or tagged and needed a home. After getting checked off on the key points: kennel trained, house broken, some knowledge of commands, and big enough to not slip through the fence, he had a new home. At just 2-ish years old with some puppy energy still in him, he is ready to venture everywhere in the neighborhood: explore, smell, and taste almost every bush, visit other K-9's along their fences, and soak your hand with love. He did name himself by daily collecting anything related to wood- a leaf, a twig with leaves, a medium to large fallen branch, and logs off the firewood pile- all nicely displayed in a circle to show off his collection for the day!
Morning Bliss
Deep breathing and silent meditation before they begin the morning's Sun Salutation!!

If only they were always this serene!!

Submitted by Patricia Hattenbach and Jim McCallum

Neighbors: Submit your pet(s) to be featured in the upcoming newsletters by sending a 1-3 photos with a short story about your best friend(s) to :
with subject line: Pet(s) of the month.
Garden Club News

Please watch for email updates for the September meeting from
(See more photos at the end of this section for a look at our fabulous winery tour!)
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Sunflowers Strut Their Stuff Along the Bayou Trail !!

In only a 5-10 minute walk from your house down to the bayou trail, you will be greeted by the prolific display of tall and cheery sunflowers, waving to you as the wind blows! Stroll down the trail in both directions and the bright yellow show does not stop! Idylwood is just amazing!

In the Chronicle's Star section on Saturday, May 28, 2022, Jessica Damiano, Master Gardener and educator with a newsletter called The Weekly Dirt, has a delightful article on the annual sunflower.

Learn about its history dating from 1,000 B.C. when Native Americans used them for many purposes in North America , then they were brought to Europe, and then beyond to the present day. Sunflower images are used for many reasons, but learn of their special connections with Ukraine. Ms. Damiano explains how to grow them, to cultivate their seeds, and much more. Just click on the following link to read the article! It will make your day a whole lot brighter!!


Summer Break for the Garden Club

Well, it's that time again when we take a break to enjoy sleeping late on the first Saturday mornings of the month. Or you might be considering taking some vacation time to: hike or ride along our bayou trails, tour our Texas Parks, chill in the Frio River, sail the waters of St. Vincent and The Grenadines, escape to exotic lands like Tahiti and Taha'a, hike in El Yunque, meander in magical
Madagascar ......!!! Oh, you better wake up from this day dream or you'll need a few more credits cards!! Just click on the names and enjoy the sites from the comfort of your favorite chair with your feet propped up!! It may not be as much fun but at least it's easier on the budget!!

In other words, the Garden Club will not have Saturday meetings in June, July and August. We will resume September 10, 2022 - the second Saturday since Labor Day weekend falls on the first Saturday. Have a happy, fun, and safe summer!!! See you in September and tell us your summer tales!!

A Reminder To Homeowners
That Received New Sidewalks And Curbs:
Please Water The New Grass

Along with the new sidewalks and curbs, the installations included new St. Augustine sod to replace the grass that was removed during construction. In talking with one of the supervisors of the project, he explained that it will be the responsibility of the homeowner to water the new grass. It has been fairly dry lately and the showers we have had were light and not much help. To give your grass a chance to settle in and thrive, give it a good soaking at least once a week. If it gets too stressed, it may not survive. The Garden Club has been watering the new grass at the corner of Idylwood and Park by the Spurlock Park sign. Hopefully, we will get weekly spring showers and your new sod will do just fine!


YOM Recognition

Let's welcome our YOM neighbors at our meetings. This year we will award a free 2021-2022 membership to each YOM recipient! Thanks to you all for helping keep Idylwood beautiful!!


Meeting Dates for 2022-2023
First Saturdays from 10 am-noon
(except for September;
Speakers and locations TBD)
September 10,2022
October 1, 2022
-Begin Annual Poinsettia Fundraiser:Oct.1-24; only $10 each
November 5, 2022
December 3, 2022
-Annual Holiday Lunch and Fun Gift Exchange ($15 or less)
January 7, 2023
February 4, 2023
March 4, 2023
April 1, 2023
-Election of Officers
May 6, 2023
June, July, August: summer break

For more information, contact the Garden Club President:
Patricia Hattenbach, at or at 713-724-9608. 


Vegetable Garden Planting Dates Chart

Do you want to know exactly when to plant vegetables and herbs in your garden? Check out the web link to Texas A&M University's yearly planting calendar for Harris County below! You may want to print this out for future use. Select:
“Vegetable Garden Planting Dates for Harris County"

Happy gardening!

Remember: COH Tree Trash Gets Turned Into Mulch
When Picked Up on The First Tuesdays of Odd # Months!
Keep in mind that trimmings from trees, shrubs and bushes can be placed on your curb for the city's Tree Trash pick-up on the first Tuesday of odd months.

Thanks for your membership and love of nature! 
Let's keep Idylwood beautiful and safe!
Kind regards,
Patricia Hattenbach

Welcome the 2022-2023 Officers:
President: Patricia Hattenbach
Vice President: Hugo Banda
Secretary: Richard Vela
Treasurer: Nicole Wood

Thanks again to Jim McCallum for providing the Yard of the Month write-ups and photos. It's wonderful to learn more about our great neighbors!
Tour of the Messina Hof Estate Winery and Resort
Highlights of the May 7 Meeting/Trip:
Tour of the Messina Hof Estate Winery and Resort

On the road again...!!!

(photos courtesy of the Idylwood Photography Club)

The May 7, 2022 meeting was a well deserved fieldtrip for our members and neighbors! We traveled via limo bus to the Messina Hof Bryan Estate Winery located in Bryan, Tx. And, Garden Club member, Monique Studak, an expert on everything "wine" related, provided us with a colorful history of the wine industry, plants in the vineyard, the winemaking process, and other fun facts on the two hour ride to the winery.

Our day included a tour and history of the estate, the processing areas, the vineyards, a multi-wine tasting session, and a delightful lunch in the lovely restaurant. As the second generation, Paul Mitchell (pictured with his daughter who hopes to be the third generation to lead the way) and wife Karen Bonarrigo, now continue his parent's legacy of Messina Hof's wineries. The photos will tell the spirited story of a wonderful day in the country with friends!

Click here for a more in-depth look at the winery. Click on the following link:

Special thanks to members of the Idylwood Photography Club for submitting photographs of the tour: Nicole Wood, Chris Galvan, Suzy Harrington, and Patricia Hattenbach. If you'd like to join us, send a message to ,
with the subject line "Idylwood Photography Club".
June 2022 Yard of the Month
The Idylwood Garden Club’s Yard of the Month for June 2022 goes to Peter and Jennifer Silva at 1715 Idylwood Drive
(Notes by Jennifer Silva, photos by James McCallum.)
Peter and Jennifer Silva have lived in Idylwood for over 25 years and have been lifelong residents of the area. They have two daughters, Carissa and Catie, and have always loved the neighborhood for its residents, strong sense of community and culture of the East End. 
“I have always loved flowers, blooming and unusual plants, and inherited the past time from both my mother and grandmother,” said Jennifer. “My mother Rose also lives in Idylwood and has always had a lovely garden. Both my husband’s family and mine love sharing clippings and gardening.”  
Our house gets a lot of sun, and we wanted our watering to yield primarily flowers instead of grass. We made a large flower bed in the front yard and added hearty sun loving plants that would thrive in Houston’s heat, look good and attract bees, birds, and butterflies.  The garden has evolved over the years and we are happy to see that most of the plants grew back again after the freeze of last year.  
We enjoy visiting nurseries and have bought Drift Roses from the Rose Emporium in Brenham, the Loropetalum that we let grow into a tree, along with Agapanthus and Lilies from Maas Nursery in Seabrook, and have clusters of Liriope, Spider Lilies, Fortnight Lily, Amaryllis, Mexican Petunia, and Pride of Barbados in the garden. We also have a Vitex tree that has these great blue cone blooms.
In the front bed near the street, we wanted a groundcover that would bloom while being heat and drought tolerant. We planted clippings of the Wedelia. The perennial ground cover forms roots on stems that trail along the ground surface. The daisy like flower heads are produced almost year round. It was a perfect blooming solution for this area, and we can keep it contained.  
The garden includes Butterfly Bush, Shrimp Plant, Yellow Lantana, and Periwinkles. Many of the plants are natives and grow well in our climate.

click link above for for access to the website

June Gardening Tips

Responsible Gardening
Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of fluids, wear protective sun gear, use mosquito repellents and granules for protection from bites.

Raise lawn mower blades to cut 3 inches high to retain moisture and prevent diseases and pests.

Keep up with weeding in early morning hours. Make sure areas are mulched properly to reduce amount of sprouting weeds.

Pinch tips of coleus to avoid flowering and encourage bushier and compact growth. Remove spent blooms on spring and summer annuals to promote new blooms. Dead head young vitex trees to encourage repeat blooms. Remove any diseased or insect damaged foliage on plants.

Deep root watering on trees, lawns and shrubs is best. It encourages roots to move down into the soil where they will be less susceptible to moisture changes. Avoid frequent short periods of watering. Keep your azaleas well watered as this is the time of year they are setting next years blooms. We have a variety of soaker hoses, sprinklers and gatorbags to help out with watering,

Keep an eye out for pests as well as beneficial insects in your vegetable garden. Pick off pests by hand. Check for snails and slugs early in the morning, when they are active. Pests are very active this time of year, so check your garden daily!

Fertilize containers and vegetable beds with slow release organic fertilizers such as microlife or with a liquid fertilizer such as Ocean Harvest.

Use larger containers to avoid frequent watering. Plant summer blooming perennials and annuals. Keep hanging baskets out of hot afternoon sun.

Enjoy your harvest of tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers, etc. You can still plant eggplants, squash, and pumpkins from seed. Keep an eye out for pests. Especially leaf-footed bugs on tomatoes. Provide water for birds nearby, as they sometime peck your fruit and vegetables seeking out moisture.

Don’t let roots dry out on orchids outside. Shady spots with filtered sunlight are best. Fertilize with a weak liquid solution for orchids.

Change water regularly in bird baths and keep them full.

Keep eyes out for your neighbors!
If going out of town, tell your neighbors but do not post on social media. Please keep an eye out for unusual activity and report to HPD (911) and (713) 884-3131 and the Constable's office (713) 274-3400. Please keep your home and cars locked at all times. Report any incidents to ALL authorities;
more reports = more patrols.

HPD is moving to a National Incident Based Reporting System (NIBRS). To view crimes reported to HPD from Jan-Mar 2022, please go to HPD's website and download the excel file here and sort by zip code or beat. Our beat is 11H10, which includes several zip codes.

A screenshot of last month's crime map is below. To interact with this map, including date ranges and area, go to Community Crime Map.
Jake Goldstein and Steve Palmer co-chair our patrol group and report the group’s collective 30 patrol hours per month to HPD. Please contact Jake if you are interested in volunteering with our citizens patrol group.

Having a patrol presence in the neighborhood is a crime deterrent and a great way to give back to our community.

Please join us! More information on HPD's Volunteer Citizen Patrol is available here.
Upcoming Dates to Remember
  • 06/06/2022: Heavy Trash
  • 06/12/2022: Recycling
  • 06/21/2022: Idylwood Civic Club Meeting: 7:30pm @ Spurlock Park
  • 06/29/2022: Recycling
  • 07/04/2022: Tree Limbs & Yard Waste
Stay Informed!
Check out info about the neighborhood, including downloading a copy of the deed restrictions here.

Report a pothole, get your trash bin repaired or replaced, report a problem with a traffic signal, missed trash pickup, and more.

Call the East End District at 713.928.9916 during business hours with the tagged address, intersection, and colors.

Stay Connected!
Great way to connect with East End residents. It’s a great place to report or look for a missing pet, announce a garage sales, put out a crime alert, etc. This site is endorsed and its use encouraged by HPD. Sign up here


Google Email Group - Idylwood Neighborhood Exchange
If you are not currently a member and would like to join, please send an invitation request to
Post Office Box 9225
Houston, TX 77261-9225
If you have notes about Idylwood that you would like to submit for the newsletter, please submit to
Idylwood Officers and Directors 2021-2022
PRESIDENT: Laura Manion (Meadowlawn)
VICE PRESIDENT: Doug Lawson (Merry)
TREASURER: Nicole Wood (Idylwood)
SECRETARY: Kimberly Vincent (Park)
Directors: Class A (two-year terms ending in August 2023):
Keith Hamm (Meadowlawn); Patricia Hattenbach (North MacGregor Way);
Irma Niño (Meadowlawn); Charlie Storer (Fairfield); Richard Vela (Lindy)
Directors: Class B (two-year terms ending in August 2022):
Lawrence Curry (Meadowlawn); Amy Dinn (Sylvan); Joshua Espinedo (Meadowlawn);
Jeff Klemm (Merry); Paul Leggett (Merry); Jennifer Silva (Sylvan)