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October 2018

Page history last edited by Ruth 1 year, 10 months ago

Upper Valley Seed Savers

October 11, 2018

Susan's house in Lyme

Present: Susan, Sylvia D., Sylvia S., Margaret, Stuart, Dixie, Kye, Ruth

Notes: Ruth

Photos: Susan


It was a very rainy day, but Susan welcomed us heartily, and the rain let up as we toured her meandering gardens with Grant Brook rushing in the background.

Susan has a variety of garden sites all around her house with overhanging trees,  wood chip paths, and delicious piles of compost. Since we haven't had a frost yet, there were still tomatoes on vines that looked as healthy as July, a few yellow, fall-bearing Queen Anne raspberries, and lots of flowers, including delphiniums blooming for the second time and her favorite, a fragrant, fall-blooming white iris. We all had a good sniff. Her castor beans were gorgeously tropical but weren't really doing their job of keeping voles away. Like many of us, Susan has had lots of visits from deer, voles, mice, slugs, and even a bear. This year she used Sluggo which was quite effective against the slugs. An old bicycle is sometimes effective in keeping deer from snacking at one corner. She has volunteer Red Russian kale from last year's plants that went to seed. Another volunteer was a Delicata squash that produced an abundance of good-sized squash. Susan also planted Long Island Cheese Pumpkin (or squash) and Butternuts, both of which produced many gorgeous big squash.


Giant Zittau, the onions Susan was growing as first year seed onions, didn't do very well. They never sized up. We figured this was most likely due to lack of water early in the summer. They were in a raised bed and the early summer was dry. The Red Barons she grew for food were not in a raised bed and are large, uniform, and beautiful.


Susan's fruits and nuts include a Nanking cherry, five black walnuts that are just beginning to really take off, several apple trees, a very productive yellow plum, elderberries, lots of blackberries that have enthusiastically  established themselves throughout the backyard without taking over completely, red raspberries, blueberries that the birds love, and gorgeous red rhubarb with enormous leaves. There are several beds of flowers and herbs, often mixed in with the vegetables. Susan leaves many of her flowers and herbs to go to seed for the birds to enjoy.


After our tour, we had a family-style potluck, passing all the dishes around Susan's nice, big dining table with herbs drying in the loft overhead. Once again, we enjoyed a phenomenal feast and good conversation.


After we ate, we admired the impressive squash harvest displayed on salvaged wooden shelves perfect for the job. We had a quick onion project update and a discussion to plan our November meeting at the UV Co-op and to distribute a few jobs (SEE BELOW).

Kye generously shared the bounty from her Chinese chestnut trees, and many of us went home with a big handful of chestnuts to plant or to eat.



Reserve Co-op space and pay for 6 months - Kye (received money from Dixie, Susan, Margaret, Sylvia D., and Sylvia S.)

November meeting reminder - Stuart will do this one last time

Facilitator - Kye, who will create an agenda and share with us before the meeting. Let her know if you have an agenda item for November.

Note taker - Dixie

Time keeper - Sylvia S.







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