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Garden Club hears of growing wildflowers in backyard flowerbeds
COURTEYS PHOTO Garden Club member Carol Woodmansee holds views of cone flower bouquets taken from her flower beds shown during her program on Wildflower Gardens at a recent meeting.

Nine members of Great Bend Garden Club welcomed a new member, Clara Niedens, at their November meeting. Hostess, Jana Reed, served a delicious array of donuts. President Nancy Williams led the business meeting where future plans for the new Great Bend Cemetery Rose Garden which will be constructed and planted next spring. Plans for Garden Club’s contributions to this new garden were discussed.

The morning’s program on wildflower gardens was given by Carol Woodmansee, who first described a wildflower garden as a happy jumble of colorful loosely organized wildflowers which can be added to a flower garden in several ways – by accident because they just show up, transplanted from another site by digging them up and moving them, purchasing them at greenhouses or by scattering seeds. When choosing seed packets, it was highly recommended to read labels carefully and remember that you get what you pay for, so usually the more expensive packets produce the best results.  

Wildflowers are defined as a flower that grows with little or no human intervention. The first couple of years may require a little more attention by keeping the ground moist and pulling weeds and removing dead foliage at the end of the growing season or by simply mowing the flowers down in the fall if there is a full yard of wildflowers. The mowing helps re-scatter the seeds. 

A list of wildflowers that are common to our Kansas area was shared with the members, many of which Carol has grown in her own flower beds throughout the past years. Wildflowers of the Midwest include asters, bee balm, black-eyed Susan, blanket flower (gallairdia), butterfly milkweed, coreopsis, flanders poppy, lupine, purple coneflower, yarrow,  sunflowers, hollyhocks, day lilies, and four- o’clocks. Carol then shared photos of her “backyard bouquets” which had bloomed in her backyard over the years. 

The next meeting of Garden Club will be at 10 a.m. on Dec. 15 in the meeting room of the Great Bend Senior Center, Teresa Bachand will provide the program and Fern Thompkins will serve refreshments. Visitors are welcome.