Wickham Market Flower Club

In Touch Community News

Meeting that took place on Thursday, 22 June

The doors opened at the Village Hall at 6.30pm and members and guests came in weary from the heat, very bothered and crotchety. Actually, that was just me. June welcomed everyone else saying what a lovely evening it was. She is a Sun-worshipper as her name suggests. Me, I’m an October lady and prefer much chillier climes. Members were told where the Fire exits were. 

There are spaces on our trip to The Southwold Flower Company on Thursday, 17 August. £5 per person, 6pm arrival using own transport. Tickets must be booked and paid in advance. Contact Sue on: 07786 942450. Unfortunately, our trip to Bentwaters Museum on 29th June had to be cancelled because of a lack of numbers.

June again put out a request for someone strong, to help put out at the beginning of each meeting, and clear at the end of the evening the tables and chairs. If you know someone able to help, please contact June on: 01394 384803. Members of our working party were asked if they wished to continue. They are invaluable members who help out with refreshments and clearing and sweeping the hall at the meetings. Please let June know before the Sept AGM. Long-term members were asked to let the committee know if they thought they were due a medal at our AGM. The results of the Practice piece were – Advance – Jan Richardson who also won the Stem of the Month. The Novice class winner was Paula.

June then introduced Matt Tanton-Brown talking about Low Maintenance Plants. Matt was an extremely knowledgeable speaker and chatted away with his slide show about plants that we should all be capable of looking after. We were told which plants liked sun/shade/sandy soil, wind tolerant, and were good for cut flowers. For example, Magnolia – Long Flowering, and the trick is to get it established with a bit of shade out of the wind and from then on care is just twice a year. Plant deep with loads of well-rotted manure. Keep cool and damp and prune only to shape. On the coldest nights protect from frost with a piece of net curtain. 

Pinus parviflora Bonnie Bergman – a dwarf conifer with a broadly conical outline. Blue-Green twisted needles and a pale silvery blue young growth. Very slow growing. Can be grown in a container. Has a sweet smell. Water early on then that’s it. No pruning necessary.

Narcissus – Common name Daffodil.  Over 50 species. Few pests and diseases. Mulch and dead heading are all that’s needed. Excellent cut flowers. 

Other Low Maintenance ideas were – Agapanthus, Alliums, Poppies, Yucca, Berberis, Crocus, Nigella, Black Sambucca, Echinops, Everlasting Sweet Peas, Fatsia Japonica, Geraniums and Foxgloves. Matt gave us an insight into the care of all these. The man certainly knows his stuff. Val Green gave the Vote of Thanks saying what an inspiration it was to have such an extensive knowledge. Thank you, Matt, for a great evening.

Our next meetings are at the Wickham Market Village Hall at 6.30 for 7pm start. Thursday 27 July – Helen Bird and Thursday our AGM is on 28 September. This is usually a fun social evening. Come along and see what we do. The first meeting is free. Bring a friend. NOTE there is no meeting in August.

Mandy Pryke

Shotley and Erwarton WI

Are supermarket premium varieties really superior? Can you taste the difference? This is what we set out to find out at our December WI  


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