The Dirt – Sometimes Cheating is Okay

Sometimes Cheating is Okay

I’ve been getting a little antsy for spring, so, I pushed the issue a little.

A handful of forsythia stems, a few magnolia branches, add in a couple of weeks in the house, and presto… spring blooms!

Sometimes you’ve got to cheat a little!

(Actually, one of my daughters put this arrangement together, but I harvested the stems for her… so I helped, a little!)

It’s just nice to be enjoying a little spring color… even if I had to work the system a little to make it happen.

Cameron Rees, General Manager

The good news is, the real thing will be here soon… very soon.

The first hints of flower color can already be spotted here and there. Have you noticed? And, our lawns… have you picked up on the start of new spring growth? They’re waking up, too.

Things are waking up at the garden store, too.

We had a fun time during our Spring Kick-Off Weekend. It was nice seeing the store full of friendly faces after a long, slow winter. It felt good to be talking about gardening again. The beer and the hotdogs weren’t too bad either! (Thanks again to the fine folks of the Norseman Brewing Company for coming out and being a part of things on Sunday. They are always a big hit!)

To say we’re busy getting everything in place is an understatement. New plants are arriving almost daily. Little by little, we’re bring our crops out of their overwintering houses; and as the sun brings on a fresh day, things are looking more and more like normal.

This new gardening season is definitely under way, and it feels good. It’s a fun time of the year.

So, if you need a spring fix, keep us in mind and come pay us a visit. It’s been a long winter and it’s time to catch up.

Enjoy the early spring color!

– Cameron Rees

What's New? Spring is Arriving

Still time to plant potatoes!
Time to get onions in, too!
We’ve got both onion plants and onion sets.
Creeping Phlox is starting to bloom!
Lots of cold tolerant color for early spring!
Pansies and violas make perfect early spring color, too!
Weeping Snow Fountains Weeping Cherries… stunning!
Forsythias in bloom… that just screams spring!
Spinners anyone?!

We Have Fruit Trees!

We’ve been getting a lot of questions in recent weeks about planting fruit trees. Things like “When can they be planted?” and “Do you have them in yet?”

The answer to those, “Anytime… and yes!”

Anytime you can dig a hole is a good time to plant. And, guess what? That includes now!

We have container grown trees available throughout the year, and this includes many types and varieties of fruit trees.

But for a short time, and just in the early spring…like right now…we have fruit trees available bare root, too. Bare root fruit trees are just like their potted cousins, only they don’t have any soil on their roots. That why they’re called “bare root.”

To be stored properly, they need to be kept just above freezing temperatures, and they need to be kept moist. That’s why we have a custom-built storage facility for them. One end of our building, is a large bare root storage cooler.

Most people don’t even know it’s there. It has no windows and it hides behind a thick, vault-like door. It has a dirt floor that sits several feet lower than the rest of the store. It’s dark. It’s damp. It’s cold. It’s muddy. And, honestly, it’s pretty miserable to be in. But, it’s perfect for dormant, bare root plants, and that’s why we have it.

And right now, it’s stocked with bare root fruit trees, all ready for planting. Remember bare root fruit trees are only available in the early spring, and once they’re sold out, you won’t see them again until next spring. So, don’t wait. We still have a good supply, but they are selling fast.

If you have questions, just ask. Remember, we’re always here to help.

“Thymely” Advice - Get the Red Bag Down ASAP!

Just a friendly reminder that you want to get your application of Fertilome All-Seasons Crabgrass Preventer – that’s the “Red Bag” – down soon, very soon!

Time is running out on getting an application down in time to catch the first wave of crabgrass. Ideally, you want to have things applied and watered in by early April if not a little sooner.

And remember that “watered-in” is a critical step.

Nothing you’ve applied is going to do anything until it has been watered-in. That water could be in the form of irrigation or it could be from natural rainfall. It doesn’t matter. But what does, it that you get about 1/4” of water down on things, preferably a couple times, after your application and before we reach that mid-April date.

One last reminder.

Always sweep or blow of your sidewalks, driveways, patios, porches and the street off after you spread your lawn products. That gets the product you spread (and paid for!) back into the lawn where it will do some good. It also keeps things out of the storm sewer, which keeps unwanted fertilizers and lawn products out of our creeks and rivers.

Photo: Johnson County Extension

Cleaning leftover granules from hard surfaces also eliminates unwanted stains. Some lawn products will leave stains if left in place on hard surfaces. Many will eventually fade away, but some can last for years. Not pretty!

So, remember what your mom always told you… “Clean up after yourself!”

If you need help figuring things out, just stop on by. We’ll answer questions and get you fixed up with the right stuff and the right information.

-Cameron Rees

All About Lenten Roses

How many of you are familiar with Lenten Roses? Maybe you know them as Hellebores. Maybe you haven’t heard of either of them, so I will give you a little info. 

Lenten Roses are not a rose, let’s start off with that. They are in the Buttercup family, notably because their blooms are somewhat shaped like a buttercup. Lenten Roses or Hellebores are found in shady woodland areas which makes them a great addition to any shade garden. They start to bloom super early in the Spring and sometimes even in the snow. The flowers often hang like bells and come in a wide range of pinks, whites and even black. 

Lenten Roses will add beautiful color, texture and habit to your shade garden.

Misty Brown, Lath House Manager