May Meeting Plans by eYhL5doH


MASTER GARDENERS NEWSLETTER                         September 2009
Wapello County Extension Office, 214 E. Main, Ottumwa, IA 52501                  (641) 682-5491
The September meeting is a potluck and plant exchange at Jean Dell’s house on September 14th at 6:00
p.m. Bring a covered dish, lawn chair and tableservice.

Directions to Jean Dell’s house: The address is 10328 90th Street
From the north side, go out either Alta Vista or Pennsylvania to the 63 Bypass. Get off the bypass at Exit
191. (1/2M. from Pennsylvania Ave.) Turn left,crossing traffic. Go straight ahead (east), off the
pavement onto the gravel. Our home is 1/2 mile east on the gravel, on the right side of the road as you go
up the hill.

From the South side, go east to the round about on 34, past Excel to the lights where E.Main intersects
with 34; keep going straight ahead, do not turn at any of the exit roads but go straight onto the gravel and
to our house , 1/2 mile east on the gravel, on the right side as you go up the hill.

The regular meeting of the Wapello County Master Gardeners was held Monday, August 3, 2009 at the
IHCC Campus.
The meeting was called to order at 7:15pm by President, Sue Richardson.

Lynn Schulte narrated at video presentation from The Iowa Gardener on Growing Roses in Iowa.

We had 27 members present.
Minutes were approved as printed.

Old business: Ruth Brown reported that the Quilt Garden Tours had a very good response and everyone
enjoyed seeing both quilted items and the gardens.

New business: The next meeting will be September 14th at Jean Dell's home with a pot luck and plant
exchange. Remember to bring chairs, tableservice and something good to eat.

Gary Twedt reported that the expo will be in Ottumwa again next year on March 19 & 20, 2010.

Green's Keeper Report: June 30, 2009 we had $987.09 and on July 31, 2009 we had $1087.09

Door Prize winners: Judy Rhynas a garden book
                    Marg Caster a garden trowel

Richard Klodt reported that he has not seen many young bagworms emerging and is hoping that the cold
winter did kill a lot of them off. Evergreen trees are dying from excess moisture that caused their root
systems to rot and unable to deliver water to the trees.

Meeting was adjourned at 7:40pm.

Submitted by Judy Rhynas, secretary
Some of you who know me best are familiar with my passion for new ideas, new plants, new designs.
That doesn’t necessarily mean I implement them, or buy them, but daydreaming does pass the time, you
know. So, I am doing a lot of reading, page by page, of the new Wayside Garden catalog. Soon it will be
followed by the White Flower Farm catalog. Those of you who have never been exposed to such
wonderful photography should make the opportunity to BE exposed. Afterall, what it gardening if you
can’t wish a lot – or a little.

Submitted by President, Sue Richardson

It is official. The average daily temperature In Iowa for July of 2009 was 68.2 degrees, which was 5.6
degrees below normal levels, and the coldest July since 1891 (about 118 years ago). Iowa was warmer
in June of 2009 than it was in July of 2009. This occurred only 9 times during the summer season in 137
years, according to Iowa State Climatologist Harry Hillaker. He added that Iowa’s temperatures have
been cooling for the last several years based on 138 official reporting stations.

It was inevitable though, we just had to have a short period of nice warm, humid August weather with
some 90 plus temperatures. At the time that I write this, our “hot” spell should not last long. Portions of
southeastern Canada and interior New England have shivered through one of the coolest summer seasons
since 1816. There are reports that people in Vermont say their gardens are a whole month behind in
maturity due to the cool weather, plus they have had twice the normal amount of rainfall as usual. Due to
the cool and wet spring in Iowa, the crops were planted late and have matured slowly, in some places
they are three weeks behind schedule as heat units lag into mid August. Eastern parts of the Dakotas,
Minnesota and Wisconsin will lose millions of acres of crops if the frost does not hold off until early

Cliff Harris mentioned that the oldest, most famous national park in the U.S. sits squarely atop one of the
biggest volcanoes on Earth, the SUPERVOLCANO in Yellowstone National Park. If it were to blow, it
would be at least 1,000 times the force of the May 18, 1980 eruption of Mount St. Helen’s in Washington
State. It’s not the case of “IF” it will erupt, just WHEN. And, that’s anyone’s guess. Harris doubts
that it will be during our lifetimes.

Whenever that enormous eruption does occur, however, it should be “a blast of exceptional violence and
volume, according to the U.S. Geological Survey. A “supervolcano” is capable of ejecting more than
1,000 cubic kilometers (240 cubic miles) of pumice and ash in a single eruption. This would be an event
at least 50 times the size of the infamous Krakatau eruption of 1883, which killed more than 36,400
people, literally “blowing the island off the map.” It also produced the loudest nose in recorded history.
It was heard 2,000 miles away in Australia.

It is possible that a massive eruption of the Yellowstone volcano could change the climate of the entire
planet. Whole species of plants and animals would likely become extinct, especially if temperatures
cooled worldwide by as much as 6-10 degrees Fahrenheit due to the huge amounts of dust and ash poured
into the atmosphere. Remember, we only cooled by around 1 degree Fahrenheit in late 1991 and early
1992 following the massive eruption in June of 1991 of Mount Pinatubo in the Phillippines. Some 800
people died as the result of that eruption.
The odds of a full-blown major eruption of Yellowstone occurring anytime soon are very low, probably 1
or 2 percent. But, as Harris says, someday it will happen plunging our planet into a catastrophic
VOLCANIC WINTER scenario. Millions of people will die from starvation as crops will fail on a global
scale. It would be “the end of Camelot” as we know it.

Many people wonder if the Old Farmer’s Almanac is as “on the money” as they claim. They still use
mathematical formulas to forecast the weather that were developed in the 1800’s. The publication was
first developed in 1772 and continues to provide weather outlooks up to several years in advance.
In Cliff Harris’s opinion, the Almanac’s forecasting methods on a seasonable basis are neither
conventional nor well-documented.

The Almanac’s annual publication carries this statement: “Our forecasts are determined by both the use
of a secret weather forecasting formula derived by the founder , Robert B. Thomas, in 1792 and by the
most modern scientific calculations based on solar activity, sunspots, etc.” According to a 5 year study
conducted by two research meteorologists from the University of Illinois in the 1980’s, they concluded
that the almanac was approximately 51 percent accurate for temperature and 52 percent correct as far as
precipitation was concerned. The study also showed that the National Weather Service averaged about
60% accuracy rating in “seasonal” outlooks published in advance. The private long-range
prognosticators, including our long-range weather service, believe it or not, received the highest accuracy
ratings at near 70%. Harris concludes his report by saying that he gives the Almanac credit for
predicting the current colder global temperature cycle that our “silent sun” has given us.

Did you ever notice: The Roman Numerals for forty (40) are “XL”.

Nothing ever stays the same.

Your weatherman,
Richard Klodt

Tri-State Local Food Conference
Fairfield Arts and Convention Center
Friday September 4th, 10:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m.
For more information call: 641-472-6177 or visit


                                     Plants for Autumn Color
Sedum (varieties such as ‘Autumn Joy’ and ‘Matrona’)
Canadian burnet
Boltonia asteroids
Black Cohosh (aka snakeroot or bugbane)
Geranium ‘Rozanne’
Ornamental Grasses
Pennisetum ‘Hameln’
Miscanthus sinensis (‘Silberfeder’, ‘Purpurascens’, ‘Morning Light’, ‘Zebrinus’)
Bonteloua gracillis ‘Blue Grama’
Chasmanthium latifolium ‘Wild Oats’

Virginia Creeper
Boston Ivy
American bittersweet (NOT the invasive Oriental bittersweet)

Virginia sweetspire (Itea virginica) ‘Henry’s Garnet’
Fothergilla ‘Blue Mist’
Beauty berry (Callicarpa)
Winterberry holly
Dogwood (red twig and yellow twig)

I have seen one, a “new” bagworm on one of my spruce trees, and so far, just that one. I try to look every
time I mow (which has been a lot this summer). My garden is starting to fade out, the Profusion zinnias
are still looking great and the asters are just starting to bloom. I have tried to cut them back this year so
they don’t get so floppy before they start to bloom, it seems they have that tendency after the first year.

I have been trying to keep up with the abundance of poison ivy this year, but I can’t seem to get ahead of
it. I have decided that not all glyphosate is created equal—I seem to have better luck with Roundup (or
maybe it’s all in my head).

Quote of the month: “The greatest gift of the garden is the restoration of the five senses.”
                                                                                     ~Hanna Rion

Hope to see everyone at the potluck and plant exchange at Jean Dell’s on the 14th of September.

                                                      Carol Geib, Newsletter Editor

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