The Sunnyvale Garden Club

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When Does Daylight Savings Time End in 2013?

daylight-savings-20091Daylight Saving Time ends in the United States on Sunday, Nov. 3, at 2 a.m.   You will be setting your clock back one hour, following the adage of “spring forward, fall back.” The “extra” hour gives you a chance to catch up on the sleep you lost in March when the clocks moved forward and Daylight Saving Time began.

What will your do with your extra hour?

Submitted by:  Martha Billman – Communications Committee

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Now Appearing….

nuncrackersSGC member, Johnette Russell (stage name Johnna Leigh),  has been cast as Mother Superior in the Christmas Musical “Nuncrackers” at Rockwall Community Theater  .

The show opens the Friday after Thanksgiving, Nov 29 and runs through Sunday Dec.  15,  with performances on Friday and Saturday nights at 8:00 pm and Sunday Matinees at 2:00 pm.

Tickets go on sale Oct 27th to the public,  BUT friends and family of cast members can purchase tickets “early” by calling the theatre 972-722-3399.  Leave your name and phone number and someone will call you back to get your information.

HERE  IS  THE  BEST  PART………contact the theater before Oct 27th and tell them  you are calling  for the discounted early bird tickets and mention Johnette’s stage name,  Johnna Leigh.  You will receive a $5.00 discount off each ticket purchased.  Now is that a great Christmas gift or what?

Submitted by:  Martha Billman – Communications Committee

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Pumpkin Cobbler Recipe

Just in time for the holidays.  Here is the receipe for the delicious pumpkin dessert that Deborah Stafford brought to our meeting last week.  It’s sort of like a “dump cake”.

Thanks to Deborah for sharing.

Pumpkin Cobblerpumpkin cobbler

3 eggs
1 cup sugar
1 (12 oz.) can evaporated milk
1 (16 oz.) can pumpkin  (not pumpkin pie mix)
1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
1 box yellow cake mix
¾ cup melted butter
1 cup nuts (optional)

Mix first five ingredients together and pour into the bottom of greased 9×13 pan.

Crumble dry cake mix over the top.  Drizzle the melted butter over the dry cake mix.  Sprinkle nuts over everything.

Bake 1 hour at 350 degrees.  Cool about 10-20 minutes.  Serve with vanilla ice cream or whipped topping.

Submitted by: Martha Billman – Communications Committee

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DCCCD Clean Economy Series – Water Harvesting

CES-state-logo-final-200x160Would you like to learn how to fight against drought when we are facing extreme temperatures, water restrictions and brown grass everywhere you look? The idea of using passive water harvesting and new types of landscaping is a philosophy that author and permaculture expert Nate Downey of New Mexico will share with audience members during two programs he will present on October 25th and 26th at Brookhaven college — the first feature presentation that is part of the Dallas County Community College District’s 2013-2014 Clean Economy Series.

More information about the programs and how to register can be found on the following Web page:

Submitted by:  Martha Billman – Communications Committee

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Fall Fun Facts About Herbs

Witches HerbWe are all familiar with the benefits of the herbs that we commonly grow in our  gardens today, but in ancient times and throughout the Middle Ages, herbs were thought to have magical powers and the ability to attract fairies, enhance bravery,  ward off evil spirits, and those pesky werewolves and vampires!

As we approach Halloween with its  tradition of “trick-or-treat”, costumes, pumpkins, monsters,  witches, goblins, ghosts, and scary tales,   I thought it might be fun to reflect on the folklore that surrounded herbs in ancient times.

Hope you enjoy reading the fall  herbal fun facts (PDF), but BEWARE,  it could be a very scary experience!

Have a fun, safe Halloween!

Submitted by:  Martha Billman – Communications Committee

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Turffalo Grass

At the last SGC meeting, our program speaker, Janet Smith, did a presentation on “water-wise gardening.”  During the presentation, she mentioned a lawn grass that requires “half the water and  half the mowing” of other turfgrasses.  More information about  this new  turfgrass, “Turffalo”, can be found on the following website:

Submitted by:  Martha Billman – Communications Committee

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Fun in October!

fall pumpkin 1We are finally enjoying fall weather, so it’s a perfect time to attend a local event like the Texas Veggie Fair (Oct. 20th) or Autumn at the Arboretum  (Sept. 21 – Nov. 27).   Want to do some Christmas shopping, you might find that one-of-kind gift at the Heart of Texas Arts and Crafts Show in Plano (Oct. 11, 12 & 13).

If you feel really adventuresome you could plan a day trip to see the East Texas fall foliage, attend a Harvest & Grape Stomp (Oct. 19th),  or take a winery tour on  the Piney Woods Wine Trail.  If you like  scary, then there’s the Thrillvania Haunted House Park in Terrell (Sept. 28 – Oct. 31st).    There is always something fun to do in our area!

Submitted by:  Martha Billman – Communications Committee

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Table Design Contest – Christmas Luncheon – December 10, 2013 – 11:00 a.m.

Christmas table contest 2This year’s SGC Christmas Luncheon,  scheduled on December 10th, will give members the opportunity to participate in a “Table Design Contest”.    Don’t miss out on the fun!    Please see the list below for more information!

  1. Contact Rachel Doyle to sign up to set a table for the Table Design Contest.
  2. The deadline for signing up to set a table is December 2.  The deadline to purchase a ticket for the Christmas Luncheon is December 1.
  3. Tables are 72” round tables.  A plain ivory 108” round tablecloth will be provided for each table.  Contestants may use other tablecloths on top of this cloth, if they desire, but that is not required.
  4. Tables should be set for 6 or 8 people  (depending on how many people sign up for the contest and how many people purchase tickets to the luncheon).  Rachel will let you know how many places should be set.
  5. Tables must be set and “ready to go” by 10:30 a.m. on December 10th.  Doors will be open for set up by 9:30 a.m.
  6. Each contestant will bring her own dishes.  Food will be served on clear plastic plates that will be set upon the contestant’s plate.  Each contestant will decide if she wants to bring her own silverware or glassware or napkins.  If the contestant does not choose to bring her silverware, then plastic ware will be provided.  If the contestant does not choose to bring her own glasses, then clear plastic cups will be provided.   Coffee cups – bring own (which could be used) or disposable cups will be provided.  If the contestant does not choose to bring her own napkins, then plain white paper napkins will be provided.  (Keep in mind, however, that use of plastic and paper items may have an impact on the number of votes received.) If you bring your own silverware, glassware, coffee cups – know that they will be used and you will be taking them home “dirty.”  Likewise, they should start out clean for people to use.  Plastic plates with food will be placed on your plates, so your plates should be relatively clean to take home.
  7. Pack your dishes carefully; the Club will not be responsible for any broken dishes, glassware or other damage or loss or theft.  (If you choose to bring your finest Sterling Silver, you bear the risk of loss.  Our advice: don’t bring it.)  Each contestant is responsible for setting up and clearing her assigned table.
  8. Contestants are not required to use “Christmas dishes” but the table settings should be festive for the holiday season.
  9. Each table must have at least one “design element.”  A “design element” is an arrangement of live cut or dried flowers and/or live plant.  This could be one floral centerpiece, or several little arrangements with flowers or plants.   Silk or plastic flowers are not allowed, but artificial greenery (as in a garland) or artificial fruit is allowed.  If a table does not have at least one real flower or plant, it is disqualified for receiving a prize.  A table is not disqualified for the popular vote if it uses an artificial garland that may also have some artificial flowers – so long as real flowers or live plant are used elsewhere. (However, it might be disqualified for judging based on Flower Show Standards.  See below.)
  10. Centerpieces and designs should be low enough to allow guests on one side of the table to see guests on the other side of the table.
  11. The chairs may or may not be decorated – designer’s choice.
  12. Attendees at the Christmas Luncheon will cast three paper ballots for their favorite tables.  Ballots must be cast by 11:30 a.m.  The table with the most number of votes will receive the First Prize of $100.  The table with the second most number of votes will receive the Second Prize of $75.  The table with the third most number of votes will receive the Third Prize of $50.  (We wish we could keep the name of the table designer secret, but we realize that will be too difficult to accomplish.  However, we will not put the name of the designer on the table.  Each table will be numbered for purposes of balloting.)
  13. Flower Show Judges in our Club (or guests who are also Flower Show Judges) will also judge the tables based on Flower Show standards and will announce their First, Second and Third choices and prizes will be awarded.  These winners may or may not be the same as those that received the most number of popular votes.  To learn more about Flower Show standards for table settings, please contact Madalyn Hernandez, Janet Nevil, Mary Ann Moreland, Gail Wilson, Georgeann Moss or Marilyn Fitzner.
  14.  Contestants may choose to “assign seating” for friends to sit at their tables, but this is not required.  In fact, we encourage people to sit at tables with people they don’t know very well – and make new friends.
  15. May one person enter more than one table?    That depends on the number of people who sign up to set tables and the number of people who buy tickets for the luncheon.  We hope that we will have at least 8 different persons to sign up for the contest.  If we do not, we may allow some persons to enter more than one table.  The maximum number of tables is ten (unless we sell more than 80 tickets for the luncheon).

Christmas Table Contest









Submitted by:  Martha Billman – Communications Committee

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Sunnyvale Garden Club Meeting – 10/08/13

Date/Time:  Tuesday, October 8, 2013 – 10AM

Location:  (NEW)

  • Sunnyvale Community Center (formerly the old Sunnyvale Elementary School)
  • Board Room
  • 417 E. Tripp Road
  • Sunnyvale, Texas 75182

The SGC has a new home at the old Sunnyvale Elementary School.  Please park in the lot that is east of the building.

There are three entrances to the building.  The entrance closest to the parking lot is through the Cafetorium.  Do not use this entrance.  The west one is through a covered walkway.  That’s not it.  Go to the next entrance to the east – the middle entrance.

We will have our “Home of Sunnyvale Garden Club” sign erected by the sidewalk at this entrance.  The “Board Room” is immediately to your right as you come in this entrance.

Program:     “Water-Wise Gardening”water wise garden

Program Speaker:

Janet Smith* Dallas County Master Gardner

This is very appropriate as we continue through the drought.

*authoritative Speaker

Business:  Call to Order, President’s Welcome, Inspirational, Pledge of Allegiance, Officer and Committee Reports, Old and New Business, Announcements, Invocation.


  • You may purchase tickets for our Christmas Luncheon on December 10th.  The price of the tickets is $30.
  • Sign up to Design a Festive Table for the Christmas Luncheon – it’s a contest!

Submitted by Martha Billman – SGC Communications Committee