2019 Newsletters

2019 Newsletters

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2019 Newsletter 11- See you at the Spring Open House March 30 & 31!

Posted March 18, 2019

Free weeds. U Pick ’em! Last week, I started sharing the lessons I learned during our first year of planting strawberries. Now, where were we? Two weeks after planting, I missed a spray for weeds. As a result, I spent the next three weeks on my hands and knees pulling the emerging weeds, row by row. Don’t forget, this was on three acres of strawberries! We were lucky that the soil was soft and the weeds easily popped right out. The lesson here was that it is important to do things in a timely manner. Thankfully, I was not alone in […]

2019 – Newsletter 10 – You are BERRY Special

Posted March 11, 2019

Psst – Hey there! A long time ago, in a land far, far away…just kidding, our strawberry story begins a little over 40 years ago. I was finishing up what was to be my last semester at the UW. Carol and I had decided we were going to try our hand at growing strawberries. In fact, the strawberries were ordered and everything was set to plant three acres (or so I thought). I knew so little. I received the call at the end of March that it was time to pick up my plants from Wausau. I had 32 boxes of strawberries […]

2019 Newsletter 9 – Spring is Just Around the Corner!

Posted March 4, 2019

Am I bugging you? As a famous amphibian sang: “It’s not easy being green.” It takes a lot of work to be a natural, pest control garden center. A greenhouse is the perfect environment for aphids, white flies, thrips, and mites to thrive because its warm, relatively dry conditions, and no predators from the outside.  While many other garden centers and growers try putting out a few predator insects here and there, it is very rare to totally rely on beneficial bugs, like America’s Best Flowers. It may surprise you to learn that even organic growers have approved use of insecticides, […]

2019 Newsletter 8- Don’t Treat Your Soil Like Dirt!

Posted February 25, 2019

Who’s ready to start planting seeds indoors? Today, I am into soil. Although many commercial potting mixes exist, I decided to make our own custom soil mix. I didn’t come to this decision on a whim, but as a direct result of customer feedback. We had complaints that the perlite, the little white pellets, was bad in those other mixes.. We also had other complaints that the vermiculite, the expanded stone, was not natural. Keeping those things in mind and knowing that the single best thing you can do for your soil is to add organic matter, I wanted to […]

2019 Newsletter 7 – Get Your Garden Ready for Spring!

Posted February 18, 2019

Jimmy the Groundhog predicted an early spring… Spring is coming. Looking out the window, you wouldn’t think it would be any time soon. But,Valentine’s Day and the Garden Expo have passed, and Jimmy the Groundhog in Sun Prairie didn’t see his shadow. For us, this means pedal to the metal – or “petal”, if you prefer. We crank up the engine and grow plants like crazy, filling one greenhouse after another with freshly planted annuals, perennials, vegetables, herbs, and hanging baskets. It is an amazing site to see the production line in operation! Once planted, we begin the process of […]

2019 Newsletter 6- Our full event lineup is now posted online – Check it out!

Posted February 11, 2019

And so it begins! As you know, Valentine’s Day is this Thursday. Love is on many of our minds. Did you know that in the Greek language there are four different words for the kinds of love? Unfortunately, in the English language, there is only one. Love is one of the most powerful emotions, yet so very hard to define in a single word.   For now, I want to focus on the kind of love Jesus spoke of many times: a love that is kind, gentle, caring, and expects nothing in return. It is a love that is hard to […]

2019 Newsletter 5 – See You at the Garden Expo this Weekend!

Posted February 4, 2019

Dear Friends, This past summer, Carol and I were blessed with the opportunity to attend the Perennial Plant Association meeting in Raleigh, North Carolina. One of the places we toured was Homewood Garden Center. They had an excellent display of house plants which boasted several health benefits. As a result of what we learned, we have doubled the size of the house plant area in our own greenhouse.  For example: there are some very nasty chemicals being given off by rugs, carpeting, tile floors, paint, and even the printing on paper. Formaldehyde, toluene, xylene, ammonia, and benzene are a few of the […]

2019 Newsletter 4 – It’s Snow Joke! We begin planting today!

Posted January 28, 2019

Bundle Up Everyone! As I write this,we are getting another round of snow and expecting the coldest days of the year, with 19 below zero and not even getting above zero on Wednesday! Our first major shipment of small plants came in last week and we are starting to plant them today. Some plants take more time to get ready for sale which is why the planting is spread out over a four month season. The first baskets of the season will get planted this week. The greenhouse is 65 degrees. Stop in for a visit! Just a reminder, if […]

2019 Newsletter 3 – Snow & Tell at America’s Best Flowers!

Posted January 22, 2019

Brrrrrrrrrrrrr…. I hope everyone is enjoying the snow. However, we would like a little more sun for growing plants. The geraniums I spoke of last week are growing well at our Edgerton facility. In our Cottage Grove location, our home-grown beneficial bugs are being distributed for insect control and our first small plants have started to arrive for planting – vinca vines and spikes to name a couple.   Our production line is planning to start up on January 28th here in Cottage Grove. We invite you to stop in and see how we plant your hanging baskets, annuals, vegetables,and several perennials. If […]

2019-Newsletter 2 – Seeds and Cuttings are arriving

Posted January 14, 2019

Ready? Set. PLAN! What a great week!  Our new General Manager, Bruce, is gaining expertise in his new position, which is giving me more time to concentrate on my health. Bruce, Steven, Isaac and other staff have the new steel benching installed. Now, Patty and others are trying to get the 17 pallets of spring merchandise that came in organized before the next shipment comes in. In addition, the plants have started to come in.  Just think, in two weeks or so, the planting team will start up the production line! Our first load of beneficial bugs has arrived. In the […]

2019- Newsletter 1- We resolve to have a joyful 2019!

Posted January 7, 2019

Happy New Year ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ A lot has happened since the last letter I wrote.  The New Year parties have come and gone.  The Rose Bowl parade is done for another year. Carol and I must be getting old as we went to bed at 9 PM on New Year’s Eve.   On Dec. 18th, I signed up for swimming at the UW Children’s Hospital and, other than a few days, have been swimming each day. I used to be like a fish in water, so the swimming has come back fast to me.  I also have a rebounder or as some would […]


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