The Fred Heutte Center Online Newsletter

    The FHC Newsletter


Volume 38 Number 6

UPDATED 8/10/18

The Urban Gardener Lecture Series continues with...

The 2018
Membership Drive
Year Round


Student $7.50 | Senior Citizen Individual $15 | Individual Adult $25 | Family $35
Merit $50 | Club $50 | Honor $100 | Sponsor $250-499  
Capital Fund $ ____ | Endowment Fund $ ____ | Gift for Friend $ ____

As you know, the Fred Heutte Center newsletter is no longer prepared in print form and mailed through the postal service.  Instead, the newsletter has migrated to the Internet (visit  Therefore, our annual membership drive is now conducted via email.  If you know of people who do not use email and need a copy mailed to them, please let us know.

For over 30 years, the Fred Heutte Center - at the intersection of Westover Avenue and Botetourt Gardens in the historic Ghent community of Norfolk, Virginia - has been the focal point of the Friends of Fred Heutte Foundation. Our members work to continue Mr. Heutte's wish to enrich our community by sharing his ideals of urban beautification through horticultural education and by caring for the center gardens and the terminal building.

We continue to make great strides in providing a vibrant center where members, gardeners, horticultural speakers, instructors, as well as city, social, business, and private organizations and their guests come together.

However, we can't make it without the financial support of kind members and organizations like you! As we continue to honor Fred Heutte's wishes, membership fees and donations are vital to our efforts and their outcomes. As you have generously done so in the past, please take the time to print-out the form below and send-in your renewal or new membership. For those who have already sent in their renewals and new memberships, we thank you!  Please be advised that annual memberships have reverted to a period of one-year from the receipt of your donationFor more information, please call us at 757.441.2513.


Mail your membership to:
Fred Heutte Center
1000 Botetourt Gardens
Norfolk, Virginia 23507-1866

2017-2018 HONOR DONORS

Ann & Larry Atkinson ~ Bettie M. Cooper
Helene & Jim Haluska ~ T.W. Hubbard & Christopher Hamlin
The Estates of Dr. Ula K. Motekat and Janne Motekat ~ Vaughan Privett
Captain Douglas M. & Mrs. Sally G. Simon
Mr. &. Mrs. Richard Tabor
Hampton Roads Community Foundation
The City of Norfolk, Virginia
Ghent Square Community Association



The Board of Directors of the Friends of Fred Heutte Foundation has presented Sue Mitchell with the 2015 Volunteer Service Award on August 26th, 2015. The award - in appreciation for many years of service in the gardens and on the board - was presented by Board President Bill Smoot and Board Member Elsie Holiday.

Reminders from Fred Heutte's

© 1977

Work Schedule Checklists:

July Checklist

___We have reached the peak of our daylight spans, and believe it or not, plants react to the change from maximum photosynthesis to increasing shadows. It's time to complete pinching of chrysanthemums to develop plants with nice branches. Be sure to feed mums now.
___Raise the cutting height on your mower with a blue grass or fescue lawn. This is not necessary with Bermuda grass. We now are experiencing Bermuda weather and it's time to sow the seed or spring it as the case may be.
___While July normally is one of our wettest months, it is also the time when plants require water most. An inch of water is needed per week! [ Editor's note: Ghent Square residents can view rainfall and a variety of weather graphical trends and data from our weather station, online at: ]
___Mulching retards evaporation and can reduce your need to water beyond the normal rainfall. Did you know that ½ to 1" of mulch will also make the ground surface cooler by at least five degrees? Pine needles, ground bark, commercial mulch, peanut hulls, or any loose materials will act as an insulator for the soil.


___While most plants resent being disturbed at this time of the year, the bearded or German iris is an exception. This is the best time to work around them and reset them if necessary, including surface rhizomes. The latter should be planted flat on the surface pointing downward and half covered with soil. They must not be buried as it is necessary for them to be sun-baked to produce the maximum number of flowers. This plant should not be mulched. Despite the fallacy that irises require poor soil, they will produce better flowers if the ground is adequately prepared. Use 5-10-5 fertilizer to complete the care cycle. Set irises a foot apart. Clumps of irises will require thinning and resetting every 3 years.
___Bearded iris will produce best in full sun in well-drained land, although you may see them at the edge of tidal lands where they are occasionally flooded.


__September is an ideal time to propagate new plants from cuttings. It is simple to take the tip growth from a hybrid tea rose after snipping off the faded flower, and make a cut below a leaf bud at least ten inches long. Strip off the foliage six inches above the cut, dip the stem in a root growing compound, and insert it in a four to six inch pot full of a prepared commercial sterilzied potting and rooting compound. Make sure the rooting medium is adequately moist and well-firmed around the stem of the cutting once inserted. Water again to exclude all air-pockets that may have been left. Place the potted cuttings in the shade and cover with an inverted quart mason jar which will act as a miniature greenhouse. Normally, the cuttings will not require additional moisture until rooted, a four to six week process.
__September and October are the best times of the year to renovate lawns, especially those using fescues, blue grass, and other cool weather grasses.
__Another reminder, found under the camellia culture, is that this is the time for gibbing blooms to hasten the blooming period by several months.
__Those of us who cannot develoop delphiniums because of our early summer high temperatures, should sow its near relative, the larkspurs. By the following May, they will produce beautiful spikes in colors according to your choice. They resent transplanting, so try to sow them directly where they are to bloom. If the spring space is unavailable at this time, sow them directly in pots. Wallflowers, another biennial, can be handled the same.
__Cleaning up the perennial and other flower borders is urgent as we prepare to plant bulbs at this time. They are now generally available at the various garden centers and it is best to make your list and acquire them before they are picked-over. Most of the spring bulbs have a protective skin and the main criterion in selecting a good viable bulb is to have that skin intact, especially on the tulip bulbs. Bulbs can be held over in a cool place and planted later, up to November, which is the preferred time for the Hampton Roads horticultureal zone.
__It's time to pick the so-called annuals and perennials to be used in dried arrangements. Pick while the flower is in its prime.



Instructor of Pilates
at the Fred Heutte Center
Click here for info.

Daughter of Fred & Florence Heutte
Tucker, Georgia

Dr. Ula K. Motekat
Former Board Director
Friends of Fred Heutte Foundation

Click image above to enlarge.

- from Good Tidings Spring 2017 - The Hampton Roads Community Foundation
Dr. Ula Motekat was a brilliant accounting professor whose charitable gifts to the Hampton Roads Community Foundation will forever benefit eight area nonprofits that meant so much to her.

“Ula was a force of nature,” says Laurie Henry, a colleague at Old Dominion University of Motekat, who passed away in 2016 at age 90. “When Ula decided to do something she was going to do it.” That commitment guided everything Motekat did, including her philanthropy.

Born in Germany in 1926, Motekat learned English from Canadian soldiers after World War II. Moving to the United States in 1952 she earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees in business from the University of Denver and a Ph.D. in accounting from the University of Colorado. She was the first female in Colorado to make the top score on the Certified Public Accounting exam. Honored at a club that didn’t allow females, Motekat never forgot having to take the freight elevator to the ceremony.

As a pioneering educator, Motekat was the first female business professor at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst and at Drexel University in Philadelphia. She also was the first female accounting professor at ODU where she taught from 1980 until retiring in 2000. A member of Mensa, the high IQ society, Motekat was a straight talker who demanded excellence. “Students were scared of her but appreciated everything she did,” says Henry.

“Ula’s major love outside work was classical music,” says Ann Swartz-Miller, an ODU business school colleague. She used her accounting skills as treasurer of the Feldman Chamber Music Society and other organizations. Motekat and her younger sister Janne were regulars at concerts and museums. Classical music from WHRO was always playing in their home where they doted on their cats.

In 2006 Motekat was devastated when Janne, her only living relative, passed away. Motekat “had to rethink everything” regarding her estate, she said in an interview. She connected with her community foundation because of her experience as the Feldman treasurer. Each year like clockwork the community foundation sent a grant check to the Feldman. It came from a fund started by Alice Jaffe, who had served with Motekat on the Feldman board and arranged for a charitable bequest to benefit the Feldman through her community foundation.

“I thought if Alice Jaffe can set up that kind of thing, why can’t I?” Motekat said. In 2006 she used a tax-deductible Individual Retirement Account distribution to create the Ula Motekat Fund. She designated the Feldman, Chrysler Museum of Art, Virginia Opera and WHRO to forever receive annual grants.

Motekat also arranged for a charitable bequest to start after her death. In 2016 her estate gift created the Ula and Janne Motekat Fund at the community foundation. Each year it provides grants to the organizations Motekat designated – the Chrysler Museum of Art, Fred Heutte Center, Norfolk Botanical Garden, Norfolk SPCA, Virginia Beach SPCA, Virginia Opera and WHRO.

Motekat’s generosity guarantees that her favorite organizations will always remember her and Janne and know that the sisters’ lives were enriched by music, art, animals and nature.

Former Member, Board of Directors
Friends of Fred Heutte Foundation


Garden Volunteers from the Old Dominion University
Service and Civic Engagement

Volunteers and Montessori School Students
Clearing Late Winter Garden



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In the Spirit of Volunteerism!

Volunteer Vaughan Privett and his "Youth For Work" summer crew, which consisted of two of his grandsons and three other Norfolk Christian students and their friends, have pitched in from time to time to help take care of the grounds at the Fred Heutte Center. His and the mothers of the crew objectives included providing the students summer opportunities to learn and helping them appreciate things they have learned at the Huette Center. Vaughan enjoyed teaching them on tools, beds, trees, and general tasks in the garden. They all worked with cooperative spirits!

Our Center is a drop off point for the
Food Bank of Southeastern Virginia

We glady accept food and monetary donations on the Bank's behalf!
Please call ahead 441-2513 to schedule your drop off!

The FHC Webcam

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Planting your garden? Check out the CoCoRaHS "Climate Resources Guide for Master Gardeners"

Last summer, CoCoRaHS released an on-line guide for our master gardeners  ( out there. The HTML version of this guide( ) introduces elements of large scale and local climate important to gardeners. An overview of climate patterns and differences are shown. Links to local climate information are provided. Topics include: Climate & Gardening, Sunshine, Temperature, Humidity and Dew Point, Precipitation, Wind, Evapotranspiration, Climate Resources, Climate Change and CoCoRaHS.

We hope that you'll take a look at it, use it for your own gardening needs and pass along the URL link to other gardeners you know who may be interested in gaining a better understanding of climate and how climate might effect their local gardening efforts . . . and watch out putting out your tender plants in those areas where frost could still show up in May!

The Hampton Roads Community Foundation ~

To join our foundation, print-out your membership form by clicking here!


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The Ghent Square Community Association

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