Garden club talks sprinklers

Staff report

SIDNEY — As speaker for the August meeting of the Rainbow Gardeners of Shelby County, John Biggs was introduced as co-owner of Seam-Tech, a trenchless lawn and garden sprinkler system.

Biggs began his business when his wife suggested looking at sprinkling systems for their own property. As it turned out, the couple designed and installed their own system. As friends and neighbors visited the Biggses’ garden, what began as an experiment in gardening turned out to be an in-demand service. To date, the couple have installed more than 70 irrigation systems.

Biggs said that by using pop-up heads and tall heads, gardeners can direct water to reach a wide swath of lawn or jump over obstacles, such as air conditioners. A backflow preventer is used to prevent used water from backing up into the system. Rain sensors and remote controls can be added to systems to allow flexibility and prevent unnecessary watering when it is raining.

Following the meeting, members toured Alfrieda Francis’s garden. In addition to colorful annuals, perennials, hostas, and shrubs surrounding her home, there are two vegetable gardens in the back yard. Francis uses many of the large leaves in her garden to cast cement garden art. Her husband, Maynard, is a stained glass artist who creates everything from lamps to outdoor benches to mosaic globes.

Nancy Morgan suggested the following August gardening tips:

• Dead head as necessary and tie up floppy stems.

• Take notes as to what needs to be changed in the garden, what needs to be removed or replaced, and what needs to be added next year.

• Collect materials that can be dried for holiday decorating.

• Divide and replant irises.

• Plan ahead for fall bulb planting.

Staff report