Meerkerk August Update

Three Great Bands Entertained a Full Garden Crowd

The Bluegrass in the Gardens is an event that draws both on and off-Islanders who make an annual pilgrimage to Meerkerk Gardens to enjoy an afternoon with banjos, guitars, and good friends. 

"It was a perfect day in a perfect setting to relax and enjoy myself", said one participant. Board President Don Lee commented, "We like to see new visitors coming to the Gardens for the first time. They get to have an intimate musical experience within the Gardens and hopefully will want to return again and again."

Special thanks to the volunteers who make the event such a success: Lisa Bjork, Mike & Lori Simmons, Martha and Ed Hollis, Jim and Kathy Rogers, Mitchell Huff, Wendy Lai, Kathryn Carson, Harriet and Tim Arnold, Lynda McCormick, Brenda Tracy, and Barry and Kathy Rix (great sound engineering!).

Sept 3 & 4  
 9:00 - 3:00 pm
The Meerkerk Nursery is offering its annual 50% Off Inventory Sale. Sale items include one-of-a-kind hybrids created by Meerkerk for foliage and fragrance as well as species such as R. mallotum, R. racemosu, and R. elegantulum.

Additional offerings include larger plants like "Walloper", "R. augustinii", and  "Pink Prelude" and m iniatures like "Ginny Gee", early bloomers (cilpinence), and "Teddy Bear" with dark indumentum.

For those that are Frank Fujioka fans, the Nursery still has his hybrids of "Spring Fragrance", "Whisper White",  and "Chemainus".

Nursery Manager says that "We still have several fragrant plants that always seems to be in demand - come this weekend and enjoy some great deals on rhodies."

Water Drainage Work In Progress

Work continues to improve our water drainage management within the Gardens. The Garden Staff have been cleaning out swales and replacing underground drainage lines to improve the runoff flow of water around the lower pump house along the easy walking loop. For the next couple of weeks, visitors may see some "caution" tape in this area while we locate drainage pipes, upgrade the swales, and install larger drain pipes. 

"This work will keep the natural drainage flow towards the volunteer cottage and new propagation house from causing erosion damage during the winter season. The estimated amount of water that flows through Meerkerk during the heavy drainage season is in excess of a million gallons. Therefore, it is crucial for the water drainage infrastructure to be updated to handle this quantity of water", says Executive Director, Kathryn Hurtley.

Wine & Rhodies Gala Event
May 20, 2017

Hospitality Barn at Dancing Fish Vineyard
"We are so excited about next year's gala event," says Wine & Rhodies Gala Chair, Pat Sasson. 

"We have reserved the Hospitality Barn at the Dancing Fish Vineyard which will be a perfect venue for next year's Gala gathering on May 20th."

According to the Dancing Fish website:
The Hospitality Barn is an exceptional work of craftsmanship, preservation, and restoration. This historic dairy barn structure was built by well-known Island Felix Gabelein, in 1943. It is a stick-framed construction with traditional drop siding and a magnificent open ceiling showcasing the rafters and reclaimed and reused wood from the barn's old walls. The old hayloft and milking parlor have been replaced by a 40 x 40 heated gathering space, commercial kitchen, and two bathrooms. Two patios adjoin the barn; one on either side.

Delectable Cheescakes by Lynda McCormick
The Gala Evening will include silent and live auctions, entertainment, delicious food, yummy desserts, and of course, wine. Silent auction will offer bidding opportunities to compete against and outbid friends for beautiful rhodies, elegant planters, and garden accents.

Stay tuned for more info about the event as the Gala committee finalizes details. Tickets will go on sale in March.

The Dancing Fish Vineyard is located at 1953 Newman Road and their website is www.dancingfishvineyards.com. 



As the summer season comes to a close - so does the weddin g season. "We love having weddings in the Garden,  it's a great venue with a  spectac ular  backdrop for the wedding couple and their families," says Executive Director, Kathryn Hurtley.

The available weekends for the summer wedding season are already starting to fill in for 2017.

If interested in renting the Gardens, visit the Meerkerk website (www.meerkerkgardens.org) and download the application. Or call the Admin Office and talk with us about your event needs for a wedding, family reunion, or special gathering here at Meerkerk. 


There are always a few items that seem to either be hard to find or a little bit out of reach of our operating budget. We thought we would send out our "Wish List" to our members and see if anyone has items that they would be willing to donate. 

  • Mulch (yards and yards of the stuff)
  • Arborist Chips
  • New Garden Hoses
  • Weed Cloth
  • 20 yards of soil for nursery beds
  • 1 x 4 lumber (6 ft length) [24 linear feet]
  • 2 x 10 lumber (6 ft length) [24 linear feet]
  • 6 ml Plastic Visqueen for covering nursery hoop house (48 ft x 30 ft)
  • 6 ft x 8 ft (new) tarps
  • PVC Schedule 40 Pipe (1 inch diameter)
  • Utility Shelves for file storage
  • Utility trailer for lawn tractor
  • 4-drawer fire proof office file cabinets (at least 2)
  • 2-drawer lockable (with a key) file cabinet [24 inches in length]
  • Track Lighting for improving office lighting.
Thanks to all our Generous Friends of Meerkerk!

The summer night is like a  perfection of thought. 

--Wallace Stevens "The House was Quiet, and the World was Calm."