Frank McDonough is the Arboretum’s Botanical Information Consultant. His topic was “Seven Things that Gardeners Do that Should be Banned.”
1. The use of Pre Plant Fertilizer: fertilizers are basically salts and if they are put into the hole prior to planting they dry out the roots and harm the plant or tree.
2. Using Blowers: they blow fungal spores up into the trees and on to the leaves where they can infest your plant.
3. Buying Impulse Items: people have a tendency to buy plants or trees without knowing how tall it will grow. Research before you buy. Frank, at the Arboretum, is there to answer any questions you have about any new plant, hedge or tree you are considering.
4. Topping Trees: trees should only be pruned if they absolutely need it. Nature prunes trees by the wind. The only pruning that should be necessary is to remove dead branches. Buy the proper tree and it will grow to a size that will not require pruning. Do not use “Tree Seal.” It damages the tree. Trees don’t need bandages.
5. Hardscaping up to he base of a tree: putting stones, gravel or cement up to the trunk of the tree is bad. Trees need 2/3 of the area under the canopy free from hardscaping.
6. Installing irrigation systems and leaving them on default: sprinkler systems should be reprogramed as necessary to supply moisture as needed through out the year.
7. Using Weed Block Cloth: it is not biodegradable and it is a perfect “Ant Farm.” Huge colonies of ants can live and breed under this cloth.
Frank can be contacted to answer your questions at {626) 821-3236 or at

Announcements, April 28, 2017

  1. On May 6th there will be a pancake breakfast at the Firehouse on Baldwin near Huntington. We need volunteers to man a booth where we will sell flags for the Field of Honor.
  2. The Salute to Seniors lunch will be held on May 9th. George Fasting needs volunteers to set up, serve, and clean up.
  3. The District Conference starts May 19th. For details contact Pres. Mares.
  4. The Field of Honor flag set up will be on May 20th. Mike Real and Teri Muse are in charge. Please contact them if you can help.
  5. John Wilson has an email that explains the Field of Honor and how you can purchase a flag. John will help you cut and paste his email into yours, so that you can send it to prospective buyers. So far, we have only sold 25 flags.


Recognitions – April 21, 2017

Jim Helms was first in Finemaster Bob Harbicht’s sights.  He was recently honored for his 60 year anniversary as a member of the Arcadia Elks Lodge and as First Exalted Ruler.  Jim joined the Elks in 1956 and Bob noted the numerous newspaper articles that touted Jim’s milestone and accomplishments in community service.  All this recognition earned Jim a fine of $50.

A recent new position for Sho Tay was the next recognition.  Sho was selected by the Arcadia City Council as Mayor Pro Tem.  A fine of $60 accompanied the club’s hearty congratulations.

Finally, Bill Gleason was fined $50 for incorrectly answering the question, “How many months have 30 days in them?”  The correct answer, “All except February,” was met with a collective groan.

Announcements, April 21, 2017

  1. Our Arbor Day Luncheon will be on April 28, Friday, at the Arboretum. We will be dark at the Embassy Suites on that day.
  2. On May 9 we will have our Salute to Seniors Luncheon at the Community Center. Contact George Fasching if you can help. He needs  volunteers to set up, serve, and clean up.
  3. Bob Harbicht announced new sponsors of the Field of Honor. Rusnak is a bronze sponsor, and Lee and Mickey Segal have donated $2,500. Gina Kim has a friend who donated $500 making a grand total of $50,000. The event will start on May 20th with the installation of the flags. Bob says all members should  purchase at least one flag.
  4. Teacher of the Year: The principal of Holly Avenue School, Teresa Oakland, presented the honor to Mark Renfro, an English and Technology teacher with 34 years of service,and the last 17 years in the Arcadia School District.  His wife, who was with us to honor Mark, is also a teacher in Arcadia.

Speech Contest

The theme for the 2016-17 Rotary year is “Rotary Serving Humanity” which also was the topic for this year’s Four Way Test Speech Contest. Competing in the contest were Karen Thai from Arcadia High School and Monrovia High School’s Daisy Garcia.

Karen asked us to stop seeing the world in a negative light. She urged us to stop complaining and to start doing. Being optimistic gives people a positive outlook. She decided that volunteering was her way to work together for a common goal to improve the world. Volunteering has had a positive effect on her life and she recommended it to all.

Daisy also extolled the values of volunteering. She related her experiences working with children at the Monrovia Library. She encourages other students to take up volunteering as a means to serve humanity as well as giving a person self-satisfaction.

After deliberation, the panel of judges determined Karen Thai the winner meaning she would move on to compete in the District Contest in Palm Springs later this year.

Easter Memories

Our own Jim Helms took the podium and reminded us that he was a PK. What is a PK you ask? It means Preachers Kid and as the son of a preacher, Jim experienced many Easter Services, especially Sunrise Service. Jim recalled visiting an area of Arizona known as Window Rock, commonly referred to as the Navajo Nation. It’s an area his father visited back in 1935 during the Great Depression to bring the Word to the Navajo people. Don’t forget, it was the Navajo who helped us win WWII by sharing their language (Code) with our armed forces, that code, was never broken by the enemy.

Jim still remembered, as a young PK, an Easter Sunrise Service at Window Rock with an altar and organ set-up at the opening, while he watched the glorious Sunrise.

Mimi Hennessy remembered wearing matching Easter dresses with her sister, Easter baskets and dying Easter eggs and don’t forget the Jelly Bellies she has shared. Her most enduring Easter memory was of the Ramos Gin Fizz, playing Messiah and celebrating the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. She recalled while in colonial Taxco, Mexico, with its cobblestone streets, there were endless parades depicting Jesus carrying the cross, people carrying chains and walking on their knees all through the Plaza Borda (the main square). There is an elaborate landmark 18th century rose-colored church named Iglesias de Santa Prisca where Easter services continue for as many as eight hours.

In Greece, Easter services conclude around midnight, at that point all stand, holding candles and sing “Christ has Risen”. The faithful then break the Lenten fast with feasts of lamb and fish and of course red dyed eggs.

Board Member Frank Hall, a past President of Palm Springs Rotary Club in 1972, coordinated a memorable Rotary Easter egg Hunt, together with the Palm Springs Chamber of Commerce. It was suppose to be a unique venue at the top of the Palm Springs Tramway. Volunteers met the day before to hide the Easter eggs along with a select few special eggs that contained a gift card for a Mc Donalds hamburger. Unexpectedly, it snowed that night and by the time the event started the eggs were buried under snow. Franks daughter was lucky enough to find one of the special eggs with a gift card but when she opened another egg in the car, it had not become “hard boiled”, still had its yoke due to the altitude and boiling temps. Needless to say Frank had to pull over and clean up the Easter mess.

Thanks to our three speakers for their great Easter memories.

(Pat Dolphin)


The Greatest Rotary Club in the World!