EIPS Newsletter

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In This Issue: November 2008

The first meeting of 2009 will be February 28th at the home of Jeff and Kerry.

October 25, 2008

Our last regular meeting for the year was held at Rosie and Herman Michael’s home in Cedar Rapids. President, Monica Morley, opened the meeting by thanking Rosie and Herman for hosting and providing the main coarse and the members for bringing dishes to share.

Herman then talked about his pond and 4 ½ years of experiences with it. Some good and some not so good. Herman and Rosie take care of a 20,000 gal pond and extensive surrounding gardens. Herman has to admit he’s had his share of problems, but the obviously beautiful results are quite evident.

Rosie arranged for the speaker for the night. She introduced, Jim Durbin, with Gone Wild Photography. He showed us some beautiful bird pictures he took in his yard and talked to us about feeding them for the winter. We talked about providing appropriate bird habitat to encourage them to come to our yards. Jim, besides being a professional photographer and bird watcher, also collects moths. He has a very informative web site on all his hobbies. Check him out at www.insectsofiowa.com.

Regarding general club business, the minutes were approved as written and a treasurer’s report was given. We currently have $3025.56 in our combined checking and savings account.

Monica announced that Ray Kingfish, a vendor from New York, donated to the club ten bags of food and 36 bottles of bacteria which she handed out to the members.

Monica asked that members get their recipes turned in for our club cookbook and to keep them coming, that it is a group effort. She read a list of reminders, including officer elections to take place at our November 6th meeting, Monica said we have a lot of good members in this club and she can tell you personally she has enjoyed being our president this year and hopes members will volunteer for the offices. The November meeting is being catered in and members need to send their money to Monica.

She then announced the AKCA annual seminar is being held in San Diego this February 12-15.

Monica asked members to start volunteering for the pond tour committee. It is a lot of work to set up the event and it is our main event to raise funds and no one member should need to take the full responsibility on their shoulders. The more members volunteering for the committee, the easier it will be for everyone.

One of our past members has a complete pond set up available for sale, a 2400 gph pump, falls box, and skimmer are all for sale. Valued at over $600.00 he is only asking $150.00 for all of it. Got someone in your family who wants a small pond? Xmas is coming! What a great gift and cheap too. If interested call Darrell at 377-7027.

Kennedy High School is also asking for some advice regarding their pond. If you have a free minute or live close by, perhaps you would be willing to go take a look at it for them. Contact Richard Sedlacek at 558-4498 if you can help give them some direction.

V.P., Dave Bell directed our 3-P’s segment of the meeting. We talked briefly about how members were caring for their tropical lilies this winter. Dick Isard and Larry Thompson have covered their ponds for the winter. Most members have either quit feeding already or have switched to wheat based food.

Lavonne Isard was the winner of the 50/50 drawing and she took home $10.50.

Bob Geers started the drawing for the door prizes and reminded the winners to mail in the thank you cards to the vendors. Monica announced that Bob and Stephanie have volunteered for another year to contact vendors and handle the door prizes and thanked them for doing a wonderful job. The meeting was adjourned. Thank you, Rosie and Herman, for your great hospitality and thank everyone for the yummy treats.

Respectfully submitted …Jackie Allsup

Click for pictures from the October 25th meeting

November 6, 2008

The final meeting (recognition night) was held at the Community Center in Hiawatha, Iowa. A Taste Above Catering provided all the food and drinks. A wonderful meal was served and enjoyed by all.

President, Monica Morley, opened the meeting by thanking them for the great food and welcoming all the members. She thanked the recognition committee for all the wonderful decoration and their prep work for the evening.

In new business, this is the meeting where new officers are elected. Dick Isard moved that all positions should be for either 4-8 year terms, just like our US president. I believe it may have even been seconded, but all officers protested profusely and it was not passed. After the usual “silence of the lambs” and no one came forward to volunteer, the same officers all agreed to serve ONE MORE year. Hey!!! Thank you, Monica and Dave. And, you’ll have to read my ramblings one more year also, as I’ll continue to write the minutes and keep the treasury. (Unless, someone out there that didn’t attend wants to do it) In which case, they are very welcome to take over. There were a lot of laughs despite the serious nature of the elections to the prosperity of the club.

In other business, Larry Thompson reported to the club that he did indeed volunteer and met with the Kennedy High School assistant principal regarding their pond situation. He reported their pond had fallen to serious disrepair. It need cleaned, the pump had failed, and it basically was need thoroughly re-worked. The club agreed to donate a pump. Larry said he will prepare a written report to the school, advising them what needed to be done and a full maintenance routine to follow after the pond was cleaned and back running again. Larry will meet with them again in the Spring and oversee its cleaning and appropriate set up. Thank you, Larry for donating your time and energy to help them.

After all the business was discussed, Monica began the program for the evening. This was a night for “Thank Yous”. Actually, way too many to mention here. Many of the gifts where hand made by pond club members to give to other pond club members, who had volunteered during the year. The shear number of these presentations is a real tribute to club members. After all the presentations where made, the drawings began. There were drawings for table centerpieces and the remainder of the door prizes for the year. Everyone definitely went home with several gifts. The year end final big door prize went to Bob Hollenbeck.

The recognition committee really did a very fine job at preparing for this meeting. They need to be recognized for the great recognition meeting!!!!

Our first meeting for 2009 will be Feb. 28th at the home of Jeff and Kerry. I think they were talking a Margarita Meeting with a Jimmy Buffet theme! Sounds like one we won’t want to miss. I’ll try to hold them to it! I’m really looking forward to 2009.

If you couldn’t make it to the last meeting, I want to personally thank you for another great year. I hope everyone will consider signing up to at least help on one committee. Have a happy and safe holiday season and I’ll see you all next year.

Respectfully submitted…Jackie Allsup

Click for pictures from Recognition Night

Even more pictures from Recognition Night

By Josh Spece

Hosta ‘Olive Bailey Langdon’

One of the most popular hostas for many years was ‘Frances Williams’. When you see a mature, perfectly grown plant, it’s easy to see why. The round, puckered, blue leaves are edged with a gold margin – beautiful! ‘Frances Williams’ and most of her look-a-likes have a flaw, though. It is called spring desiccation burn and it causes the gold edge to become marred with brown and burnt patches. Spring desiccation burn is a genetic flaw that makes the plant very sensitive to cold spring nights (just above freezing) with low humidity.

Hosta ‘Olive Bailey Langdon’ is often touted as an improved ‘Frances Williams’. Though not completely immune to spring desiccation burn, in my experience, ‘Olive Bailey Langdon’ is not affected by it as severely as ‘Frances Williams’ and other similar hostas. Aside from being less problematic, ‘Olive Bailey Langdon’ is practically identical in appearance to ‘Frances Williams’.

If you like the looks of ‘Frances Williams’ – a large mound of round, heavily dimpled leaves with a blue center and gold margin – give ‘Olive Bailey Langdon’ a try.

Many thanks go out to Josh Spece...

His dedication as a member writing a Hosta article every month for two years has been much appreciated by members. Josh has been the E.I.P.S. web master since 2004. If you have not visited our web site, check it out at www.eips.org. We are very proud of it and Josh does an outstanding job.

So, Josh, thank you for another year as our E.I.P.S. web master...You’re the best!

Here are a few highlights from a great year.

  • Koi Classes taught by Jackie Allsup, Greg Bickal, and Larry Thompson.
  • A road trip to Dry Creek Hosta’s.
  • Social picnic at Noelridge park.
  • “Under the Stars” night-time pond tour and progressive dinner with proceeds going to the flood recovery.
  • Donation of koi from Taro Kodama from Hawaii.
  • New addition to the Pond Tour: vendors at the plant sale.
  • Great meetings, including potlucks with great food.
  • Adding 50/50 drawing to each meeting.
  • Bob Geers created a thank you card for members to send to the vendors when they win prizes.
  • 3rd Annual Photo Contest.
  • Addition to the meetings 3 ”P’s” Plants, Problems and Products
  • Pond Tour article featured in City Revealed magazine
  • Ad for the 2009 Pond Tour in Cedar Rapids Discovery came out September 21, 2008 funded by a E.I.P.S. member

What a night to remember, Recognition Night. I’ve got to give it up to Dick Isard for being one of the fastest talkers, trying to convince me to take the presidency for a 9 year term. Nice try, Dick, but for myself and my Vice President, Dave Bell, we agreed for one more year.

I started out the night by thanking our Recognition Committee, Kathi Allbrecht, Erma Thompson, Bob & Cecilia Bisenius, Elena Murillo, Maria Hamilton and Gil Morley. Special thanks to Elena Murillo, Erma Thompson, Kathi Albrecht, and Maria Hamilton for a great job in creating the table decorations.

Then the fun started. First, 1, personally recognized Erma Thompson, Kathi Albrecht and Maria Hamilton for Outstanding Volunteers, who without hesitation have supported and volunteered for many new and old projects. With their positive attitudes, it is a pleasure to work with them. Each received a prism shaped in a shell.

Moving on, I presented baseball hats with different sayings to Dave Bell for being Vice President and conducting the 3”P”s, to Jackie Allsup for being Secretary/treasurer, to Bob Bisenius for creating pond tour maps and to Larry Jayne for helping at Brucemore and packing up the club table and pitching in to help In The Country pack their booth.

Dorothy Helms, Pat Beuter, Jackie Allsup were recognized for being members for at least 10 yrs. Each were given a denim bag with artwork created by Erma Thompson.

My big question of the night “Who attended the most meetings”…….Kerry Shaner attended 11 meetings and was presented with a glass bowl with a candle inside. Koi were painted on the outside of the bowl by Jackie Allsup. Larry Thompson, Jeff Garner and Hugh Albrecht followed by attending 10 meetings.

Jim Milden was recognized for arranging the publicity for the pond tour. And Larry Thompson was recognized for his willingness to share his knowledge of koi with members. Also, as a speaker at the meetings and speaking at the koi classes. Both were given a journal with a koi on the cover.

Stephanie & Bob Geers were thanked for taking care of the prizes and contacting the vendors. They received a picture frame. The following received a big poster size picture of their ponds: Jeff Garner and Kerry Shaner for setting up the “Under the Stars” progressive dinner and donating to the flood relief. Larry Thompson for quarantining the koi donated from Kodama. Jackie Allsup for teaching the koi class. There were many other members to thank that were not present. Please know that E.I.P.S does recognize and thank you all for your time and effort volunteering.

Maria Hamilton and I were recognized for our work on the newsletter with beautiful wall hangings created by Erma Thompson.

I personally thank Rose Milden for her kind and thoughtful words of appreciation for my serving as the club president and thanks to the other members voicing their appreciation.

I am looking forward to a new year with new projects. I am very proud of the members who have started off the year 2009 by signing up for every committee during Recognition night. “Thumbs Up” to you all. If you want something added to the meetings or ideas you want to try, please get in touch with me. As you know, I love to try new ideas to keep the club on the move to educate and keep it exciting for the members.

Thanks everyone, I have enjoyed visiting and learning with each one of you during the year.

Your club President, Monica Morley

Not able to attend the meetings this year or volunteer for the 2008 Pond Tour? Well, here is your chance to volunteer for a club project and not even leave your home. All you need to do is write down your favorite recipes and mail them to:

Monica Morley
6702 Spring Cove CT NE
Cedar Rapids, IA 52402

or mespringcove@aol.com

Send in 2 or more in any category. See October’s Newsletter

Be a part of the EIPS Cookbook

Thanks to all the members who have already sent us their recipes.

10% Discounts

see April’s Newsletter or the Commercial Supporters page.

In the Country Garden & Gifts
Iowa City Landscaping & Garden Center
Earl May, NE side only
Home & Garden Metal Art by A.J.

Fun (Pond) Fact

Toads like to spend the winter close to the Pond! Don't clean up too good around the Pond, leave a brush pile or two for them to dig into and hide!


November Birthdays

Larry Thompson - 4th
Larry Jayne - 11th
Dick Isard - 14th
Bob Kontz - 14th
Robert Hollenbeck - 29th

If you would like your birthday printed in the newsletter, email us at mespringcove@aol.com or sign in with the Hospitality Committee: Elena Murillo or Gil Morley.

Well, another year has passed by and we look forward to another successful year for the club. Since there were no volunteers for the officers for 2009, we have all agreed to one more year.

2009 EIPS Officers

from www.pondmarket.com

Pond Fish can be moved safely as long as the water temperature is 50 degrees Fahrenheit or above, but care must be taken to adjust the temperature of their current environment to their future one (let the fish bag float for 10 - 15 minutes for example).

From The Pondguy Blog

Q: I had someone ask me a fantastic question regarding winter aeration and how it can “super-cool” your pond in the winter and possibly cause harm to your fish. I had one of our expert Fisheries Biologists, Justin McLeod, answer this question. Below are some easy solutions that he suggests to ensure a fish-safe winter for you pond owners in the coldest climates.

A: Winter aeration can be a tricky topic in the far northern regions of our continent. Along the Northern US border and into Canada, mid-winter temperatures dip well below freezing for prolonged amounts of time. This can put your fish into jeopardy if the pond is not managed properly. Extremely cold surface temperatures cause ponds to stratify in the opposite way of the summer. Because water is most dense at 39 degrees Fahrenheit, the water beneath the winter thermocline stays around that 39 degree mark while the water above the thermocline drops down near the 32 degree mark. This may seem like a small difference, but it’s life and death to a fish.

A “super-cooled” condition is created when a pond is aerated in the winter, and the colder water on the top is circulated to the bottom leaving no warmer water refuge for the fish. Folks aerating with electric aerators in these cold northern climates still have some options. It is best if the aerator runs year-round, so try these tips:

The easiest solution if you have multiple diffuser plates is to shut one or more of the plates down. Even though the mixing power of the one operational plate will be increased, it should allow enough of a refuge for your fish to survive.

When installing the system, make sure that your plates are not set at the deepest point in your pond. Leaving a 3-4 foot buffer on the bottom will allow a pocket of warmer water to sit under the plates.

If you truly feel your fish are in jeopardy, shut the system off during periods of extremely cold weather. This is a last resort, as shutting the system off could allow the oxygen levels to fall below lethal values. Cycle the aerator on during the day when temperatures are at their warmest to vent toxic gasses and replenish oxygen. Try not to leave the system off for more than a day or two at a time.

From The Pondguy Blog


There are two factors you have to consider when adding an aerator to your pond: Circulation & Aeration.

Circulation: Circulation is ensuring that the whole body of water is continuously moving and allows the temperature throughout the pond to be relatively the same (eliminating the therocline). The aerator must be continuously running 24 hours/day in order for this to happen. Usually this can be take up to 72 hours of continuous aeration before the whole body of water is circulating.

Aeration: The windmill is adding some aeration, but if it is not continuous, it unfortunately is not being saturated throughout the entire pond. Windmills are great if there are no other options available because they are definitely better than nothing at all, but an electric aeration system is still way more efficient at pumping that air into the water as well as circulating it.

Remember that an electric aeration system can sit as far as 1,000 from the pond’s edge. That’s almost 1/5 mile away!

Testing for Oxygen: You can test for oxygen, using an oxygen test kit. It is very important to test different spots throughout the body of water. In a large body of water such as yours, the oxygen readings will differ in the different spots. In your case, since the windmill aerator is not continuously running, the oxygen levels towards the bottom of your pond are much lower than those at the surface.

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