Hello Edward,

We work in a really cool place, with really awesome people!
 
This past Sunday, we had our annual Christmas party. Many of our seasonal staff, some who we have not seen since summer, came to the party. As each person showed up, I observed the genuine delight in seeing one another and there were hugs all around.
We had a challenging year at the garden center, yet through it all, our staff remained positive, supported each other and gave their very best effort each and every day. Our goal is to provide our customers with the experience they deserve and we have filled our organization with those people who we feel can best care for our customers.
As I observed our staff throughout the party, interacting with one another, I was reminded how very fortunate we are to have such wonderfully kind people who consider each other and our customers as friends. I can think of no better group of people to have taking care of our guests.

 

 

Their energy and enthusiasm is contagious. Combine that with the environment in which we get to spend each and every day. We feel pretty lucky to work surrounded by beautiful plants, warmth and sunshine.
Things are ramping up. The anticipation of spring weighs heavy. Despite what people think, there isn’t much “down time” at the garden center. We strive to provide superior customer service, so are constantly working on ideas to make the experience here better.

 

We have all of our new products showing up and we are working hard to get them unboxed and on display. The days are getting a little bit longer and you can feel the difference in the greenhouse. We’ve received our first cuttings for planting, geraniums, and lots of them! Spike, our Grower down in Edgerton, is rooting them out for us. Next week, we are to receive approximately 7500 plugs and with that we’ll be in full swing.
We can’t wait to show you what we have in store for 2018!
  I don’t mean to brag but …
I finished my 14-day diet in 3 hours and 20 min.  🙂 

Is your non-profit organization in need of funds?
Click on the image for more information
America’s Best Flowers’ fundraising program is in full swing and runs through April 1, 2018.  We have designed it to be quick, easy, and profitable.  In as little as 2-3 weeks or less, you can earn substantial money for your group.
For further details or questions contact Shirley at
abfscimino@yahoo.com

Wisconsin Garden Expo
FEBRUARY 9-11, 2018
fri: 12-8pm | sat: 9am-6pm | sun: 10am-4pm
Exhibition Hall, Alliant Energy Center | Madison, Wisconsin
Come see us there! Booth Numbers 523-537 & 600-605

 

 

Garden Expo is presented by Wisconsin Public Television and UW-Extension-Horticulture as a fundraiser for Wisconsin Public Television.

 

You can purchase your tickets here

What are Tradescantia?

 

Tradescantia are wonderful, easy-to-grow houseplants. They are also simple to propagate, so you can make more for yourself or to share with family or friends! If you are looking for a plant that will provide color to your world this winter, these are just the answer.
Tradescantia is the botanical name for several species of plants we grow; Purple Wandering Jew, Rainbow Wandering Jew, Bolivian Wandering Jew and Tahitian Bridal Veil. Using common names is tough because often more than one plant is known by a particular name. Besides having an unfortunate common name, all of these plants are sometimes referred to as simply Wandering Jew, so it’s hard to know exactly what plant is what. Each one, though makes a great houseplant and care for each is similar.
These plants prefer bright, indirect light. Allow the top 1″ of soil to dry out between thorough waterings. You can fertilize plants during the growing season, starting in March and discontinuing in September. Over-fertilization will cause leggy growth and can cause the color of the leaves to fade. We recommend Miracle Gro All Purpose Liquid Indoor Plant Food at ½ strength.
Grow Tradescantia at a temperature between 60 and 80 degrees. As with most houseplants, higher humidity is necessary in the winter months. Provide supplemental humidity with a room humidifier, placement near a kitchen or bath or by placing plants on pebbles in a tray of water.
The trailing nature of these plants requires them to have a “haircut” from time to time. That’s the perfect time to take those cuttings and start new plants. Cut the stems above a node (where the leaf attaches to the stem). 
 
Remove the leaves on the cutting within 2″ of the bottom. Stick the cut end in Bonide Bontone Rooting Powder and then place the cutting in moistened seed starting mix such as Purple Cow Seed Starter or Espoma Organic Seed Starting Mix. Keep the cuttings misted and the soil moist until the cuttings are rooted. You can transplant the cuttings once rooted.
 
Tradescantia have cascading foliage in various colors of purple, cream, silver and green. Tahitian Bridal Veil have a profusion of dainty, white flowers. If you are looking for an easy to care for, interesting houseplant, especially for a hanging basket, Tradescantia are a great choice.

 

Echeveria Succulents

 

 

This group of succulents is one of the most interesting, diverse and unique. If you are looking for a plant that’s unusual, why not take a look at these!
Echeveria can be grown indoors and outdoors in containers or can be planted outside as a groundcover. They are diverse in color, with leaves of pink, white, green, blue and red. There’s even a variety that has blackish leaves! Their fleshy leaves grow in small rosettes. They make a stunning display when planted in masses together.
As with all succulents, Echeveria prefer bright, indirect light. They are happiest when they have warm, dry days and cooler nights, but can tolerate temperature extremes of near freezing to over 90 degrees.

 

 

Overwatering is sure to kill these, so only water when the soil has thoroughly dried. Take care to avoid getting water in the rosette, as the standing water can cause rotting and disease issues. Fertilize during the summer and only at one-half strength.  We recommend Miracle Gro Succulent Plant Food or Bonide Cactus Plant Food, which can also be used for succulents.
If you are going to grow your Echeveria in containers, terracotta clay pots are the best choice. The unglazed interior of these pots gives the roots something to cling to and the porous clay allows water to evaporate, helping to keep the plants dry.
Whether you are caught in the succulent craze or just a beginner, these little gems are a must for your collection!

 

Floral notes
from Cottage Grove 

 

We had a fun time at our centerpiece workshop last weekend! Our ladies were excited to bring a touch of Spring into their homes. Each of our participants created a unique arrangement for themselves with their own color combinations and style. Great job ladies!

 

 

 

If you would like to design an arrangement of your own at home, we have a wide selection of Spring flowers for you to choose from in our floral shop. You can also call us to order an arrangement created by our floral designers for delivery to your door or delivered to someone special to bring them some cheer. Tulips, daisies, carnations, lilies and roses combine to bring a breath of Spring indoors during this cold Winter! 

 

Edgerton 
Cottage Grove

Employment Opportunities
Do you enjoy helping people? How about working with flowers and in the dirt? If so, we may have the perfect job for you. We are looking for a few good people to join our team.
Positions are seasonal; full time or part time. This job opportunity would be from approximately mid-April thru mid-June. We are in need of candidates who can work weekends and a few hours during the week.
Job duties could consist of working on the production line, assisting customers, working on the cash register and/or watering, stocking and cleaning plants. If you would like to take the opportunity, please give us a call at 608-222- 2269.
How do trees get on the Internet?
They log in!
Upcoming Events 2018- Mark your Calendars!!!
 
2018 will be full of new workshops and informational classes for you to attend. 
Like our Facebook page to keep up to date with the latest!
Paint-A-Pallet Party!
Instructor: Rowena K.
Saturday, January 20, 2018, 1pm-3pm 
Pre-registration and Pre-payment is required
Limited spaces available.
Cost $35.00 (one side)
          $50.00 (both sides)

 

It’s time to unleash your creativity as you paint your way through this workshop.
You don’t have to be an artist to attend this fun and creative event; you just have to hold a paint brush and have some fun!

 

You will be creating a decorative pallet you can add to your Valentine decor. If you choose to paint both sides, the other side will be something you can use for Spring! 

 

Make a Terrarium Garden
Instructors: Margaret & Kayla
Saturday, January 27, 2018, 1pm-3pm
Pre-registration is appreciated 

 

 

Choose from a selection of terrariums as you design your miniature world.

A variety of miniature plants and accessories will be available. Price will depend on materials chosen for your terrarium.
Create a Log Succulent Planter
Instructor: Chris B.
Saturday, February 3, 2018, 1pm-3pm
Pre-registration is appreciated 
 
Work with succulents as you create this fun and decorative living piece of art.
Prices depend on materials you choose.
Pictured  approx. 10 1/2  x  5 1/2  log planter w/ succulents $39.99
 
All classes are only available at our Cottage Grove location.
To reserve your spot please call (608) 222-2269 to register.

   To Die For Blueberry Muffins

 

 

Ingredients:
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup white sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 egg
1/3  cup milk 
1  cup fresh blueberries
1/2 cup white sugar
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup butter, cubed
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

 

Directions:

 

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F
Grease muffin cups or line with muffin liners.
Combine 1 1/2 cups flour, 3/4 cup sugar, salt and baking powder.
Place vegetable oil into a 1 cup measuring cup; add the egg and enough milk to fill the cup. Mix this with flour mixture. Fold in blueberries.
 
Fill muffin cups right to the top and sprinkle with crumb topping mixture.

 

To Make Crumb Topping:

 

Mix together 1/2 cup sugar, 1/3 cup flour, 1/4 cup butter, and 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon. Mix with fork and sprinkle over muffins before baking.
Bake for 20 to 25 minutes in the preheated oven, or until done.

SEE YOU SOON!!!