July/August 2021
Volume 8, Issue 11
Mark your calendar!


Monday, July 12,
Flower Show Committee meeting,
1 p.m. via Zoom

Tuesday, July 13,
Mt. Goliath tour with Broadmoor Garden Club,
8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.


Sunday, August 15,
eNews deadline

Monday, August 23,
Flower Show Committee meeting,
1 p.m. via Zoom

Wednesday, August 26,
Fete des Fleurs flower processing, Denver Botanic Gardens, time TBA

Thursday, August 27,
Fete des Fleurs centerpiece arranging, time TBA


Friday, September 3 -
Saturday, September 4 -
The Language of Flowers Show

Wednesday, September 15,
eNews deadline

Wednesday, September 22 - Thursday, September 23 -
GCA Shirley Meneice Conference
via Zoom
Join us for a reimagined
te des Fleurs! 

Co-Chairs Lizzy Morton and GCD member Becky Schaub will co-chair the 37th Fête des Fleurs.

The 37th annual Fête des Fleurs, Denver Botanic Gardens’ fundraising gala, will be an entirely new experience in 2021, taking place across the entire 24-acre oasis of the York Street location.

The Pantala flavescens, or globe skimmer dragonfly, is the longest distance traveler known in the insect world. They are the most widespread dragonfly on the planet, with populations ranging from the Himalayas to Easter Island. Take a cue from this globe-trotting marvel and begin your evening with a traveling cocktail hour through various internationally themed gardens, including the Japanese Bill Hosokawa Bonsai Pavilion, French Le Potager and American Oak Grove.

Select from one of seven different dining locations, each with its own unique atmosphere, special music and plated or picnic dining experience. 

Please click here for more information or to secure your table or picnic.
Where are the Hummingbirds?
By Paula Stewart
According to TheSpruce.com, there are many flowers that can attract hummingbirds, but some are better at enticing these flying jewels than others. When choosing hummingbird flowers for your garden or landscape, look for blooms with rich, bright colors (red flowers are particular hummingbird favorites), long or tapered shapes that can accommodate the hovering birds' long bills, and plentiful nectar to keep them coming back for more sips.

Native plants are always preferred because hummingbirds will be more familiar with the flowers and the plants will thrive with minimal care. Hummingbirds in the Rockies like Indian paintbrush, scarlet gilia, fireweeds, mints, columbines, larkspurs, and penstemons (beardtongues). Also, consider diverse plants with a long bloom time or repeat blooming, which will provide a reliable food source for hummingbirds for many weeks.

Some of the top plants for attracting hummingbirds are: Bee Balm, Cardinal Flower, Zinnia, Salvia, Bleeding Heart, Butterfly Bush, Trumpet Creeper, Lupine, Columbine and Petunia.

The Audubon society says that there are four main species of hummingbirds in Wyoming and Colorado: Broad-tailed (Selasphorus platycercus) and Rufous (Selasphorous rufus) Hummingbirds are the most common. Less common species are the Calliope (Selasphorus calliope) and Black-chinned (Archilochus​ alexandri) Hummingbirds.
One of the best ways to observe hummingbirds is by hanging hummingbird feeders outside your home. If you hang feeders, there are a few things to keep in mind for the health of the hummingbirds. First, be sure to maintain your feeder, cleaning it every few days. The dried sugar water that can cover feeding holes or even the sugar water in the container are excellent habitats for bacteria and mold, which can injure the birds. Second, I suggest not using store-bought sugar water mix, especially any containing dye, which may damage a hummingbird's sensitive kidneys. A simple mixture of 1 part pure white cane sugar to 4 parts water is ideal and easy to make at home. Finally, if you do hang feeders or have hummingbirds visiting your flowers, try to keep outdoor cats away they are a major threat to hummingbirds.
Enjoy attracting these wonderful birds.
Iris by Alice Hughes
GCD Photographers Shine: Heirloom Iris Portraits & A Collage of Photos
By Suellen White

The heirloom iris at Chatfield Farms did not disappoint. All 430 varieties, blooming spectacularly, presented 10 GCD photographers with a riot of color. We were captivated. Many thanks to Grace Johnson, Chatfield Farms horticulturist, for meeting us at the iris garden. She told us about the history of the collection, cultivation techniques, propagation tips, and fun facts. Did you know iris have been used in perfumery and distillery since ancient times? Iris gin perhaps?

Despite the hot sun and late morning conditions, creativity took over and many pictures were taken. See just a few below.
Iris by Mary Fowler.
The iris gardens at Chatfield Farms by Debbie Davis.
Thank you to everyone who contributed photos for the GCD Photography Committee website. Check out the collage of over 20 photos here.
Deborah and I encourage everyone to keep their cameras close at hand this summer and capture nature’s beauty. (So easy with a smart phone.)

Plan to be amazed by the photography entries at the Language of Flowers Flower Show in September.
Iris Propagation: Tips from the Pros at Chatfield Farms
by Leslie Liedtke

Ever wonder why your Iris are not blooming as prolifically as they have in the past? If so, it might be time to divide your flowers!

Some members of GCD’s Horticulture and Photography committees met on Friday, June 11th for a tour of the heirloom Iris collection (the oldest variety dates back to 1597) with a special photography opportunity.

Quick tips to successfully divide and transplant your Iris from the Chatfield pros:

The best time to divide your Iris is after they have finished blooming thru the summer (flower stalks should already be cut down to keep energy in the plant).

Start by lifting the entire clump out of the ground. It is ok to break very large clumps into pieces to lift out. Brush most of the dirt off, then divide to clumps. Each rhizome should have at least one fan of leaves, discard any without. Examine the rhizomes for disease or Iris borer, making sure they are firm, not soft – throw out any with these conditions.

To transplant, pick a sunny, well draining location for three clumps of rhizomes, trim the leaf fans to about six to nine inches tall, which allows the plant to develop new roots without having to support a lot of foliage. Replant three of these clumps just below ground level, spaced approximately 15 - 18 inches apart in a triangle shape, angled out so when they grow, they grow into the center. Spread out the existing roots towards the center, cover the roots and rhizomes with soil. Water well. Transplant ideally every three to five years.

Give away your extra Iris rhizome clumps, your friends will love them!
Proper spacing of Iris rhizomes fans after dividing the clump.
Photos taken at DBG Chatfield. GCD members Alice Hughes and Suellen White assist Amy Mower to capture the perfect picture.
Conservation field trip to Headwaters River Journey
By Amy Mower

I had not been to Winter Park in years. Even if it's out of the way, I would recommend the Headwaters River Journey Museum.

It’s as entertaining to our age group as a bunch of middle schoolers! The designers, Jill and Chip Isenhart from Ecos Communications did a fabulous job with the interactive exhibits while engaging you to learn more about our headwater state and how to keep as much of the water here as possible, and to conserve water.

You might wonder why a world class facility is located in tiny Winter Park, Colorado, but remember that Rocky Mountain National Park is just down the road, and the Winter Park ski slopes host many front range visitors. The educational message is really geared towards all Coloradans but especially those of us on the front range.

More than half of Fraser’s water is diverted to Metro Denver. This decreases the river water level and has an enormous ecological impact on the health of the river, its fish,
water temperature, recreational usage, and drought conditions. Once the water is diverted to the metro area, that water is lost to its original watershed. If Fraser water was only used locally for agricultural purposes for example the run off from the hayfields would end up back in the river.

According to Kirk Klanchke from Trout unLimited, “As a state, we just can’t be fighting East-Slope or West-Slope. There should be no division. We’re all Colorado and we all need water."

A delicious lunch was provided by Paula Stuart at her wonderful house overlooking the valley. We had a wonderful time and could not have been happier to be out of the Denver heat! Many thanks to Paula for a lovely afternoon.
Conservation committee members enjoying a day exploring Headwaters River Journey Museum in Winter Park, Colorado.

Learn more about the Headwaters River Journey Museum by visiting their website here.
Need help finding a

Call, email, or text Kathleen Thomas at woodberry@gmail.com or 303-898-3900. She can help you!
GCA Members’ Years of Service Awards
The following individuals received well-deserved GCD annual awards. It was an unusual year and these individuals and committees were outstanding in their efforts. 
Membership Years of Service

  • Jane Davis for 35 years of membership.

  • Ruth Hopfenbeck for 50 years of membership.

Photo: Jane Davis with President Meg Nichols. (Ruth Hopfenbeck unable to attend.)
Spirit of 2006

This award is given to a GCD committee that has performed extraordinarily well. Both the Membership committee and the Bylaws committee were instrumental in helping us navigate this unusual year.

Photo: Membership Committee, represented by Margaret Garbe & Jane Davis, and Bylaws Committee, represented by Sheilagh Hudon.
The Florence Martin Cup
The Florence Martin Cup is awarded annually to a long-serving member of the Garden Club of Denver who has demonstrated unstinting generosity in sharing of her friendship and knowledge with the Club. This year the award went to Marilyn Wilson.

Photo: Marilyn with President Meg Nichols.
The Conservation Award

The Conservation Award is presented yearly to a member or members for outstanding contributions to Conservation. The award was given to Amy Mower & Lise Woodard for keeping us active and committed this year by planning COVID friendly field trips and projects to educate and preserve our environment.

Photo: Amy Mower and Lise Woodard
Walker Tears Tureen

This tureen recognizes the outstanding work of one or more members. This award was given to Missy Eliot and Nina Sisk for all their hard work planning the Language of Flowers Flower Show.

Photo: Nina Sisk and President Meg Nichols (representing Missy Elliot who was absent.)
Floral Design
by Nina Sisk and Cora Wheeler

The Floral Design Committee was lucky enough to have an in-person demonstration of "Executing the Large Scale Arrangement" with Kitzel Ruth of the Perfect Petal. Kit is the Wedding Director at the Perfect Petal, leading a team of 25 floral designers to execute both Denver-area and Colorado destination weddings. Kit describes her style as "garden inspired." Kit is known to highlight texture and use several different color palettes.

Kit started with a fluted stem-length vase, utilizing coated chicken wire to stabilize the mechanics without the use of a floral frog. Kit reminded us that the final arrangement should be about 2.5x the height of the vase. Create your color palette with gorgeous product using what is in season. To start, Kit utilized large scale flowers and branches for structure. Kit encouraged us to use groupings of 3 of the same flower together, or any odd number.

Kit shared a few tricks with us: taping a short bloom onto a longer stem, and utilizing floral tubes for water source when height is needed. Kit certainly made putting together a large scale arrangement look easy. She encouraged us to keep practicing and have fun utilizing ingredients from our personal gardens.

Flower Recipe:

Crab Apple Blossom, Spirea (Dutch), White Allium, White Hybrid Delphinium, Yellow Bearded Iris, Eremerus, Foxglove, Chocolate Lace, Festiva Maxima Peony, Kumquats on the stem, Gevillea Flowers, Dahlia, White and Fama Scabiosa, Strawflower.

Kit Ruth offered information on Local Flower Farms:

For flower CSA's check out She Grows Farms: Click here for more information on Flower CSA's and here for info on Pick Your Own Flowers events.

In the Cherry Hills area, check out Village Farm Colorado. Susan Ward, the owner, has an unbelievable 9-acre property that is landscaped with formal gardens and a small farm area in the back. Kit was not sure what the retail offerings were, but check out her website here.

In Denver, explore Rowdy Poppy, and those in Lakewood should visit FloraBee. Kit also graciously offered a 20% "Friends and Family Garden Club" discount on flowers at her store. If you want to take advantage, please email her at kit@theperfectpetal.com.
by Jane Davis and Margaret Garbe

Welcome to our new Apprentice Members: Suzanne MacKenzie, Kelly Stava and Stephanie Tryba.

And congratulations to last year’s Apprentices who have become Active members: Sarah Alijani, Lynn Dolven and Becky Schaub.

We are also happy to announce that the following Affiliate members have chosen to go Active. They are Amy Dadmun, Dodie Jackson, Paula Stuart and Tish Szurek.

Other news: Megan Mahnke is taking a year’s leave of absence. Sarah Young is returning to the Broadmoor Garden Club as she has moved back to Colorado Springs; she will be greatly missed!
Apprentice member Stephanie Tryba.
Apprentice member Kelly Stava.
Apprentice member Suzanne MacKenzie.

DBG Summer Arrangements
by Debbie Davis

The Garden Club of Denver has partnered with Denver Botanic Gardens for many decades to plant and maintain a garden. Our current project is Lanie’s Cutting Garden, named in honor of our long-time member and friend, Lainie Jackson. She designed the garden and we helped her plant it each spring. When it moved to its current location, our membership raised funds to name the garden after Lanie. Sign up to volunteer here.
Amazing Amaryllis Sale
Thank you so much for all your Amaryllis bulb orders! This sale is a first for our club and we couldn’t be happier with the results so far. We hope to make the sale an annual tradition. All proceeds will go towards the Garden Club of Denver Civic Fund and we have some worthy beneficiaries targeted already.

With brisk sales so far from within our garden club, now it’s time to open up sales to the general public. Please share the Cheddar Up link (https://gcd-amaryllis-bulb-sale.cheddarup.com) to send to friends and family who might be interested in ordering.
If there’s interest, we can offer a fall members-only workshop. We will have everything you need to create your own personalized holiday gifts.

This amazing sale won’t last much longer. Once we run out of bulbs, our sale is done, so please get the word out now and place your orders soon.

For more information, please contact Leslie Liedtke at leliedtke@gmail.com or Alice Hughes at ahughes521@msn.com.
Don't forget to follow Garden Club of America
GCD Board and Committees

Executive Committee
President: Meg Nichols
Vice President: Cindy Scott
Corresponding Secretary: Bar Chadwick
Recording Secretary: Alice Hughes
Treasurer: Maureen Barker
Director: Missy Eliot

Committee Chairmen

Admissions & Membership-elected:
Jane Davis & Margaret Garbe

Awards & Founders Fund:
Sally Obregon

Bulletin & Communications:
Sarah Young

Conservation National Affairs and Legislation:
Lisë Woodard & Amy Mower

Denver Botanic Gardens Committees:

Cutting Garden:
Genie Waters & Linda Zinn

Fete Liaisons:
Debbie Davis & Nan Procknow

Flower Arranging:
Debbie Davis

Holiday Décor:
Lisa Duke & Ann Ellis

Directory (Roster):
Amy Slothower & Megan Mahncke

Floral Design:
Nina Sisk & Cora Wheeler

Committee Chairmen (Continued)

2021 GCA Flower Show:
Missy Eliot & Nina Sisk

Fund Development:
Liza Grant

Garden History & Design:
Holley Sanford

Muffie Dahlberg

Leslie Liedtke & Nancy Schotters

Nancy Jones & Martha Veldkamp

Hope Connors

Marianne Sulser & Mary Talbot

Missy Eliot

Suellen White & Deborah Foy

Caroline Rassenfoss & Tish Szurek

Ann Crammond

Visiting Gardens:
Lindsay Dodge

Kathleen Woodberry
& Elizabeth Weigand