The vegetable beds have been planted and the display beds are beginning to show evidence of the creativity intended by the gardeners. The vegetables are doing well in colorful grow bags and the straw bale bed.
The All-America Selection display beds have been completed by the trainees in the just completed Master Gardener Level 1 training. In a few weeks you will be able to see what is intended with the Recycle, Repurpose, and Re-imagine theme for 2019.
The Teaching and Display Garden is open for self-guided tours during day light hours daily from mid-May through mid-September. Meet Me in the Garden series starts on July 16 at 6:00 pm - we hope you plan on attending.
Author and photos by Sue Reinardy, UW-Extension Master Gardener Volunteer
New this year in the Teaching and Display Garden will be a straw bale garden display and a dahlia bed featuring 30 unique plants. We're hopeful that last week's rainy and cold weather did not rot the tubers that have been planted.
You are welcome to visit the gardens from June through September and watch the progress during our growing season. For more information on the gardens go to our Teaching & Display Garden page.
On Saturday, September 8, 2018 a group of gardeners met in the Spooner Agricultural Research Station Teaching and Display Garden for one of the last programs of the growing season. If you missed the program, here are links to the handouts and a few pictures of the morning.
2018 Upper Midwest Regional Master Gardener State Conference note highlights from Donna Amidon, MGV
Session: Pollinator Friendly Gardening. Rhonda Fleming Hayes (Author of Pollinator Friendly Gardening: Gardening for Bees, Butterflies and other Pollinators, writer for Star Tribune, Northern Gardener magazine and other publications).
There is a growing body of evidence that supports mixing native and non-native plants in designed landscapes benefits pollinators. Bees do like non-native plants in addition to natives but some cultivars may have less pollen or other changes that are less desirable to pollinators. Bees love flowers with multiple florets for foraging and then they do not have to fly around so much to collect pollen and nectar. Herb gardens can be attractive to pollinators if you let some go to flowering stage. Other beneficial insects also love the flowers.
It seems the garden season has barely begun and already plants are crowding each other. So out comes my pruning shears and by-pass pruner. Pinch and prune can refer to a variety of techniques including pruning, deadheading, pinching stems or buds, or cutting back leggy plants to shape, form and trim. It is usually species-specific and based on common sense. Don’t worry about hurting your plants by experimenting.
Now showing in the Teaching & Display Garden are the most perfect peonies. The peonies were some of the few non-native plants retained when the Garden was converted to a Monarch Way Station. In bloom now along with the peonies are Baptisia (False Indigo), Aquilegia canadensis (Columbine), Prairie Pholx, Azaleas, and Nepeta Walker’s Low (Catmint). The Baptisia, Aquilegia, and Pholx are all native plants. Bees and several Monarch butterflies were busy at the blooms. It’s an excellent time to make a visit, check out the blooming plants and see the All American Selection displays as they are being planted (#AASWinners). The common expression when people stop by is “Wow”.
We are all guilty. We buy our plants and immediately take them home and plant them. This is harsh treatment for tender seedlings who have been coddled in the greenhouse. Take an intermediate step and be rewarded with healthier plants.
Transplanting from indoors to outdoors can cause a plant to go into shock. Consider the greenhouse: steady temperatures, little to no wind, controlled watering, and filtered sunlight. Our gardens offer none of this. While the plant is dealing with the harsher outdoor conditions it can be a victim of environmental damage, diseases and pests. And while dealing with these conditions, it will not be growing much. Take the time to condition the plants for their new home by hardening them off.
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