Saturday, March 9, 2019

March Guest Speaker

Fred Billings, owner of Buds and Blossoms will discuss soil preparation and landscape design at our March General Meeting, Monday, March 11th.

Monday, February 11, 2019

February General Meeting

Attendees:  Beverly Allen, Larry Allen, Bonnie Buhl, Norma Chiaramonte, Joe D’Virgilio, Wendy D’Virgilio, Sandra Gilbert, Debbie Haluch, Sandy Haumpton, Liz Hern, Ellen Jones, Mark Jones, Ian McWilliam, Nicole McWilliam, Dave Mausolf, Marcia Mausolf, Cathy Oland, Mike Owens, Kara Roberts, Mike Roberts, Ann Sansbury, Dale Smothers, Dennis O’Connor, Ellie O’Connor, Norma Islam, Cathy Bortz and Lyndi Bortz

§        Program Host - Mike Owens
§        Refreshments and Door Prize - Bonnie Buhl and Mike Owens
§        Welcome speakers: Kyle Franklin, IMS Landscaping and Joe           Sykes, President MUD 374
§         Program Topics:
Kyle gave an informative presentation on Creating Butterfly Habitats within the Urban Landscape.
       Key highlights included:  choosing the right location, establishing a foundation of healthy soil,   creating water sources for butterflies, plant choices for host and nectar plants and complementing     the garden space with annual plants for additional color. 

       Secondly, Kyle recommended 3 possible locations where we can establish additional butterfly     planting areas.  Two of the locations are on CCL property and one is on MUD property.  The group   was enthusiastic about pursuing the planting.  Kyle provided itemized quotes which have been   submitted to the POA and MUD boards for review and approval.

Location Information:  The club had suggested planting wildflowers in the field north of the lake at the main entrance on Sunny Springs and between the lake and Black Horse golf course.  Kyle suggested that the area is not ideal.  Primary reasons include: the area is very large (10,000 square feet), soil preparation and planting would be costly and most importantly the area floods.  All agreed it would not be prudent to choose this location.  The group did agree with requesting approval from POA Section 1 & 2 Board for a 400 square foot planting behind the splash pad (left of the rest rooms) at the park on Sunny Spring and Cypress Creek Lakes Drive.  The second location is a small area on Cypress North Houston.  The location for planting on a MUD property is a 220 square foot area behind the club house on Cypress Creek Bend.

      Kyle had a wide array of butterfly friendly plants on hand to provide examples.  He concluded his presentation with a plant giveaway drawing.  Everyone went home with a beautiful plant.  Thank you Kyle!

      Joe Sykes provided an update on flood concerns that are being addressed.  The developer for Town Lake has built a levy in the area of Cypress North Houston and Greenhouse Road.  The MUD board is concerned that the levy will restrict water flow from Cypress Creek Lake which poses a risk for significant flooding.  The MUD board has retained an attorney and a Hydrologist to analyze the situation. 
­         Secondly, Joe informed us that the Sheriff’s office is investigating a robbery ring that is targeting an area in Katy and Cypress Creek Lakes.  They are primarily focused on stealing items from unlocked cars.  He encouraged all to not leave valuables in your car and to keep it locked at all times. 

Kyle and Larry Allen – Spring Planting for Butterfly Garden I:  Kyle presented a layout of the planting design along with an itemized list of plants.  The spring planting will be on Saturday April 6, at 8:00 am

Door Prize drawing – Nicole McWilliam won a beautiful planted Gerber Daisy provided by Mike Owens and Ellen Jones won a Bird Feeder and food provided by Bonnie Buhl
  Meeting Agenda
§       Welcome new members and Guests: Cathie and Lindy Bortz, Kyle and Sophia Franklin, Norma Islam, Dennis and Ellie O’Connor, Kara and Mike Roberts, Joe Sykes

§        January 14, 2019 Meeting Minutes – a motion to dispense of reading the minutes was made by Norma Chiaramonte and seconded by Marcia Mausolf
§        Treasurer Report was presented by Secretary/Treasurer Bonnie Buhl and approved by all

§        Mark Jones provided an update on the plans for Butterfly Garden II in section 3.  Mark noted that Kelly Doyle, the POA President for Section 3 and Brooke Marrs with Earthcare Management, have been extremely supportive in making this project a reality.  The design plan was presented to the group.  The overall design was approved by all.  The list of recommended plants will be provided to all members for review and recommendations. Earthcare management has generously agreed to provide all soil, labor for soil preparation, plants and materials. A motion was made by Ellen Jones to approve the selection and purchase of a Stone Monument Marker similar to the one at the original Butterfly Garden.  The approval of this motion was unanimous. 

§        Liz proposed a planning meeting for the Junior Gardening Event to be held on Saturday May 4.  It will take place at her home at 7:00 pm on Wednesday February 27.  All are invited

§        Yard of the Month – Kara Roberts graciously volunteered to be the YOM Chairperson.  The next judging will be for April and there will be an award for Sections 1 and 2, and one for Section 3.  Larry Allen will order a second sign.

§        Committee Chair Updates
­   Brick Fundraiser –new member Cathie Bortz, Realtor BHGRE Gary Greene presented an improved order form.  Cathie is sponsoring the printing of the form and has arranged for the Key Club to distribute the forms throughout CCL.  This should be very helpful in raising awareness and increasing brick sales.Thank you Cathie, Your support is greatly appreciated!
­   Social Gatherings – Norma Chiaramonte suggested a social outing.  Mike and Kara Roberts offered to host a dinner gathering in conjunction with the April meeting at their home.  The group readily welcomed the idea.  Kara will let everyone know at our next meeting what they can bring to the dinner on Monday April 8 at 7:00 pm.  Their home is at 20203 Nicholas Point Court

§        Monthly Meetings: 
March 11, 2019
­   Program Host, Refreshments and Door Prize - Norma Chiaramonte
­   Program Topic – TBD
­   Nomination and Election of new officers - Nominating Committee: Larry Allen, Debbie Haluch and Mike Owens
April 8, 2019
­   Program Host – Kara and Mike Roberts
­   Program – “Field Trip” -to see the butterfly habitat created by Kara and Mike followed by a sunset dinner.   
­   Refreshments and Door Prize:  Dave and Marsha Mausolf
            May 13, 2019
­   Program Host – all
­   Program Topic Share Table - Each member is asked to bring a gardening topic to discuss and share.  Examples: a unique plant (indoor or outdoor), a gardening problem you have resolved or need help in solving, landscape design, etc. 
­   Door Prize and Refreshments – Ian McWilliam
­   Installation of new officers

§          Gardening Tips for February - Zone 9 (
­   Sow seeds for hardy spring-blooming annuals
­   Sow seeds of warm-season annuals indoors
­   Plant summer-flowering bulbs
­   Re-pot cacti and succulents, if essential, once they have finished blooming
­   Plant bare-root fruit trees
­   Apply dormant spray to fruit trees
­   Spray for peach leaf curl, peach leaf blight, and canker
­   Plant citrus
­   Repair or plant lawns
­   Plant or transplant frost-tolerant perennials outdoors
­   Sow seeds for tender perennials indoors
­   Plant bare-root roses
­   Plant bare-root trees, shrubs, and vines
­   Prune deciduous trees
­   Prune winter-flowering shrubs and vines just after bloom
­   Plant bare-root perennial vegetables
­   Plant seedlings of cool-season or winter vegetables
­   Sow seeds for cool-season or winter vegetables
­   Sow seeds for warm-season vegetables indoors

The meeting was adjourned at 9:15

Monday, January 14, 2019

January Meeting

Attendees:  Bonnie Buhl, Sandra Gilbert, Debbie Haluch, Sandy Haumpton, Ellen Jones, Mark Jones, Mike Owens, Ann Sansbury, Dale Smothers and Mike Roberts

Welcome:  New member Mike Roberts.  Mike is an avid gardener who has had great success in creating a habitat to attract many varieties of butterflies.  He and his wife Kara released over 300 butterflies last year including Monarchs and Pipeline Swallow Tails.  Mike shared that the movie, Flight of the Butterflies, is what stirred his interest in butterflies.  Welcome Mike!


§       Ellen Jones made the recommendation for all Garden Club member to attain Butterfly Garden Certification through the North America Butterfly Association (NABA).  Garden Club member, Ann Sansbury, has attained this certification.  The requirements are very basic: a non-pesticide environment with 3 different native caterpillar food plants and 3 native nectar plants.  Members agreed that in addition to creating a butterfly habitat, we can promote the program to others by example.  With certification, you receive a customized NABA Butterfly Garden and Habitat certificate along with a recent issue of NABA’s publication, Butterfly Gardner.  Weatherproof signs to place in your garden are available for $25.  For more information and to apply on line, visit

§       Ellen Jones provided an update on the location designated by CCL POA, Section 3 for the new Butterfly Garden.  Kelly Doyle, POA President for CCL Section 3 has designated a location for the garden. The location is an existing garden along both sides of the sidewalk leading to the playground at the park on Brazos Sage.  There was discussion and agreement among the group which included the decisions to:
o   Design the garden in the shape of a butterfly similar to that of the existing Butterfly Garden
o   Place the memorial bricks perpendicular to the sidewalk on both sides of the existing sidewalk
o   The importance of rich soil and organic undyed mulch was emphasized.  Ann Sansbury volunteered to provide compost for the gardens
o   In addition to planting milkweed, specific butterfly host and nectar plants to consider include cone flower, mist flower, lantana, may night salvia, parsley
o   A stone marker will be the keystone for the garden – similar to the one in the existing garden
o   A recommendation was made to include a small-scale tree such as Vitex on each side of the garden to provide a place for caterpillars to form a chrysalis
o   Members want to fully participate in the preparation and planting of the garden

Next steps include a meeting with the Kelly Doyle and the landscape developer to provide input and determine roles, cost and timeline.  Ellen will provide an update at the meeting on February 11, 2019

Business Meeting Results
§      November 12, 2018 Meeting Minutes – a recommendation to dispense of reading of the minutes was made by Mike Owens and seconded by Mark Jones

§      Bonnie Buhl, Secretary/Treasurer, presented the Year End/Monthly Treasurer Report.  It was approved by all

§       As a result of consensus of all members, a Memorial for CCL Garden Club Member, C. O. “Doc” Stokley has been made:
­   Butterfly Garden Memorial Brick
­   In lieu of flowers, $200 donation to Tennessee Technical University, Electrical Engineering Dept

§       Officer Nomination Committee Volunteers:  Larry Allen, Debbie Haluch and Mike Owens advised they will present their recommendation for Nomination of Officers for 2019 at the meeting on March 11, 2019

§        Monthly Meetings: 
­   February Program Host, Mike Owens, Refreshments and Door Prize, Bonnie Buhl
­   February 11 speakers – Kyle Franklin, IMS Landscaping and Joe Sykes, President MUD 374
­   February 11 Program Topic – discussion of feasibility of enhancing field north of main entrance on Fry Road between lake and Black Horse Golf Course
­   March Program Host, Refreshments and Door Prize - Norma Chiaramonte
­   March Program Topic – TBD
­   April 8 – Program Topic is Share Table.  Each member is asked to bring a gardening topic to discuss and share.  Examples include a unique plant (indoor or outdoor), a gardening problem you have resolved or need help in solving, landscape design, etc.  Mike Roberts has offered to host the meeting at his home.  In doing so, Mike will be able to share the butterfly habitat he has created and provide information on his pond.  Dave and Marsha Mausolf will provide the refreshments and door prize
­   May 13 – Program Topic TBD, Ian McWilliam will provide Door Prize and Refreshments

Committee Chair Updates

§       Brick Fundraiser – Mike Owen – special thanks to Cathie Bortz for sponsoring the printing of Memorial Brick forms
§       Field Trip and Events – the Bluebonnet Flower Club Annual Flower Show will be Thursday, March 28, 2019 from 11:00 am – 1:00 pm.  It is a seated brunch in Barnhill Center at Historic Simon Theater in downtown Brenham.  Cost is $25 per person.  If you would like to attend, please contact Marsha Mausolf and she will coordinate
§       Social Media – it has been brought to our attention that the CCL Garden Club account on Facebook needs to be updated on a more consistent basis.  It was acknowledged that the promotion of meetings and events from this account has a greater impact than that from individual garden club member accounts.  Ellen agreed to provide timely updates (i.e. program speakers and events) to the site administrator, Debbie Haluch
      YOM Volunteer for Chair Positions needed - Next judging for YOM is April

Gardening Tips for January
§       PLANT TREES!!!
      Prune established trees as well as start fertilizing established trees and shrubs using balanced synthetic fertilizer 13-13-13.  *Note: Use organic fertilizers only on newly planted trees (< 2 years old in the landscape)

Saturday, November 17, 2018

Acknowledgement for Butterfly Garden

Thank you Kyle and Crew!

Our Garden Club is super appreciative of the support received from Kyle Franklin and IMS Landscaping.  They assisted in the butterfly garden location in 2009 and have continued to support the club every year in seasonal plant selections, design layout and soil preparation.

They are responsible for landscape beds in CCL section 1 and 2.

Monday, November 12, 2018

November Monthly Meeting

Returning Members: Beverly and Larry Allen, Bonnie Buhl, Norma Chiaramonte, Joe and Wendy D’Virgilio, Sandra Gilbert, Sandy Haumpton, Liz Hearn, Ellen Jones, Mark Jones, Marcia Mausolf, Cathy Oland, Mike Owens, Ann Sansbury and Dale Smothers
Guests:  Cathie Bortz, Norma Islam

CCL POA Presidents:  Rob Melloy, Sections 1 & 2 and Kelly Doyle, Section 3

Refreshments and Door Prize:
Refreshments were provided by Beverly Allen and the Door Prize was provided by Ellen Jones and awarded to Mike Owens

Meeting Minutes:
Highlights of discussions with Rob Melloy and Kelly Doyle include:
·       With the creation of a board for Section 3 it was discussed that although the boards operate independently on business matters, they do collaborate on general issues to unify the CCL community.  An example of this is the new uniform Holiday Decorations in sections 1, 2 and 3.
·       Kelly Doyle advised that we need to select the best site for the Butterfly Garden on Brazos Sage.  The location that was originally selected does not tie into the existing irrigation system and it would be too costly to establish.  Therefore, we will choose an alternate site.  Norma, Ellen and Kelly will meet within the next few weeks to select a location.
·       Rob advised that Joe D’Virgilio is the chairperson for Section 1 & 2 Community Enhancement Committee.  Garden Club members on this committee include Larry Allen, Norma Chiaramonte, and Ellen Jones.  Joe will organize a meeting to discuss a plan.

Following a break for refreshments:
·       There was a motion made by Norma Chiaramonte to dispense of reading of the October Meeting Minutes.  Marcia Mausolf seconded the motion.
·       Secretary/Treasurer, Bonnie Buhl provided the current Treasurer Report

Monthly Meetings:
·       Holiday Party Friday, December 7, 7 pm at the Jones’.  A sign-up sheet was circulated for sides and desserts.  The Jones’ will serve ham and turkey
·       January meeting speaker – Mark Jones will attain a speaker to discuss Growing Succulents

Butterfly Garden planting:
·       Saturday November 10, 2018.  IMS Landscape Services prepared the garden bed and provided the plants.  Larry Allen and Kyle Franklin, IMS collaborated on slight improvements in the design since our last planting.  Essentially, taller butterfly plants were moved to the back of the garden for a better placement and effect.  Special thanks to Larry for organizing the event and providing refreshments.  Participants included:  Larry Allen, Bonnie Buhl, Norma Chiaramonte, Joe D’Virgilio, Sandra Gilbert, Debbie Haluch, Ellen and Mark Jones, and Ann Sansbury

Brick Fundraiser Improvements:
·       Mike Owens has updated the form to include meeting details.  Larry Allen and Mike have added a plexiglass box for these forms to the sign located at the Butterfly Garden.  This effort should result in increased awareness and increased sales!
Yard of the Month:
·       Although the By Laws state that 2 YOM selections should be awarded; one in Sections 1 & 2 and one in Section 3, to date this has not been the case.  There was some issue with the Management company regarding instituting the award in Section 3 that has since been resolved.  It was discussed that we will begin to award a YOM in both sections beginning with the next judging in April 2019. 
·       Volunteer chairs for YOM are needed.  Bev Allen informed the group of the responsibilities and we agreed that we will nominate and vote to establish 2 Chair persons at the January meeting.

Butterfly Garden Certification:
·       Congratulations to Member, Ann Sansbury for attaining Butterfly Certification for her garden.  Ann advised that the process is fairly simple and requires establishing 3 butterfly host plants and 3 nectar plants.  The group discussed and agreed that we will encourage all members to attain this certification.  Through this group effort we can promote the environmental benefits and encourage the community at large to do so as well.  This may also be an opportunity to work with the Community Enhancement Committee to incorporate in the neighborhood landscaping.  This will be discussed further at the January meeting.

Committee Chair Updates:
·       Field Trips and Events:  Marcia advised that the annual Holiday Luncheon at Brookwood Community was attended by club members Beverly Allen, Bonnie Buhl, Ellen Jones, Cathy Oland, and Marcia Mausolf and guest.  A great time was had by all!
·       Outreach:  Norma proposed adopting a family for our Holiday Project.  It was agreed unanimously that we will collect gifts to provide for a family of four.  Norma will organize and provide details.

Note: due to a scheduling conflict the meeting could not be held at the Community Center on Cypress Creek Bend. The meeting was therefore held at the Jones residence.

The meeting was adjourned at 9:00

Saturday, November 10, 2018

Fall Butterfly Garden Planting

It was a cool, crisp morning for CCL Butterfly Garden Planting. Planting was completed before the light rain began.

Thank you to Larry, Mark, Ellen, Bonnie, Ann, Debbie, Sandra and Norma for planting and mulching the fall garden.  We did see a butterfly this morning warming wings on the plants.