The Greenhouse is Snow-Free!

Newsletter 6 – Thursday, March 27, 2014

Current Hours

Hours for our Cottage Grove location are 9am – 5pm, Monday through Saturday.

Lucy’s Story – Chapter 42

Lucy turning her back on the sun, while he begs for forgiveness
3 months in the future, the sun begs Lucy for forgiveness. She pretends not to hear.
Click for Larger Image

What?! One day earlier this week, in both the morning and afternoon, I was outside rolling in the grass. My olfactory system (yes, us dogs know big words too!) was fully awakened by a plethora of wonderfully intriguing aromas arising from the wintered grass.  Ahhh, now THAT my friends, was a slice of heaven!

Then whammo by night fall that crummy snow is back. I’ve had enough! 

I’m done hibernating! 

I’m done shoveling snow (well, I don’t exactly shovel, but I do an awful lot of supervising while my dad shovels.)

I’m done sticking my paws in a bowl of warm water after taking a walk so that yucky snow-melting-salt-stuff doesn’t hurt my feet.

I’m done banging my nose into CLOSED windows. 

I want to go outside and run the fence line with my neighbor pals. 

I want to go outside, lie on my back, and soak up the rays.

I want to go outside and roll in the grass.

Is that asking too much?  Am I being unreasonable?  When will it end?

~Lucy

A truck ran a red light, almost sideswiping our car. As my husband veered away, he threw his arm across me, protecting me from a possible collision. I was ready to plant a big kiss on my hero’s cheek when he apologized.
In his haste, he admitted, he had forgotten it was me in the front seat and not our black Labrador, Checkers.

It’s Sneak Peek Time at our Greenhouse!

By Marty Robbins

Mother Nature is teasing us once again and testing our patience.  Inside our greenhouse the early pansies and snapdragons are starting to bloom showing an array of spring colors.  Looking for something green and blooming?  Stop out and take a stroll through our greenhouse.  Our shipment of pottery and garden art are arriving daily.  It’s never too early to start envisioning your gardens or planning spring containers.  There’s something for everyone!

There was once a young man who, in his youth, professed a desire to become a “great” writer.
When asked to define “great,” he said, “I want to write stuff that the whole world will read, stuff that people will react to on a truly emotional level, stuff that will make them scream, cry, wail in pain, desperation, and anger!”
He now works for Microsoft writing error messages.

America’s Best Flowers Fundraising Program Extended to April 15

Due to several schools mentioning the fact that ‘Spring Break’ reduces the time for them to sell America’s Best Flowers gift cards we are extending the deadline to April 15 for all non-profit organizations.

Since spring 2014 is here people are beginning to think about vegetable gardens, shade trees, flowering shrubs and glorious flowers.   

What perfect timing for your non-profit organization to participate in America’s Best Flowers fundraiser program.  Non-profit organizations earn 25% of the proceeds from each gift card they sell.  For example, if your organization sells $500 of our gift cards, which are available in any denomination over $10, your organization would earn $125.   

Please contact us if your non-profit organization is in need of funds for things such as (but by no means limited to):

  • Local charities, (i.e. food pantry)
  • Church mission trips
  • New equipment or uniforms for your school sports program, or
  • New equipment or uniforms for your school band or orchestra

America’s Best Flowers gift cards are valid at both our Cottage Grove and Edgerton locations. 

If you are interested or have questions regarding our easy and profitable program, please contact Shirley at abfscimino@yahoo.com.

A man in a hurry, taking his 8-year-old son to school, made a turn at a red light where it was prohibited.
“Uh-oh, I just made an illegal turn!” the man said.
“Aw, Dad, it’s okay,” the son said. “The police car right behind us did the same thing.”

Houseplant Care for March

By Al Lunde
A variety of houseplants spread about a living room
Just like kids, houseplants eventually outgrow their clothes. Thankfully, they don’t complain about hand-me-downs!
Click for Larger Image

Now is the time to fertilize, prune and repot your houseplants.  With the longer days of spring finally here, houseplants are actively growing.  You should prune off all dead or damaged leaves and then decide if a larger pot is needed.  If you are not sure if it’s time to repot, gently tip the root ball out from the pot.  If roots are very visible, it is probably time for a larger pot.  Another indicator your plant needs a larger pot is if water no longer easily runs into the potting soil.

An easy way to fertilize is with a slow release product like Osmocote.  Actively growing plants can actually be fertilized with both a timed release and water soluble fertilizer this time of the year.

We can help with your fertilizer, potting soil and new container needs.  If you prefer, we’ll even repot houseplants for you.  Price depends on size and container choice.

My mother always used to say,
“The older you get, the better you get.
Unless you’re a banana.”

Betty White on “The Golden Girls”

Employment Opportunities

Cash Register

Are you looking for a short-term seasonal job?   Do you enjoy people, flowers and dirt?  If so, we may have the perfect job for you.  We are looking for a few good people to perform cashier duties.  Don’t be afraid!  We have a great team that would train you on the register.

This job opportunity would be from approximately mid-April thru mid-June.  We are in need of candidates who can work every Saturday and Sunday and a few hours during the week.  The total number of hours per week could be between 24 – 30 hours. Other job duties could consist of stocking and cleaning plants, sweeping floors, corralling run away shopping carts.  If interested please give us a call at 608-222-2269.

Have you ever wondered how all our flower pots get planted?

Well, stop in anytime between 10:00am and 4:00pm, Monday through Friday and watch as our production staff gets busy. 

When you look at the thousands and thousands of plants we have at our greenhouse it’s pretty amazing to think that our staff planted them all.

Upcoming Events

Sat, Apr 12 – Sun, Apr 13
Spring Flower Show

We have your all-time favorite plants plus a few new ones for the season. We also have a HUGE selection of new pottery.

Sat, Apr 12 – Sun, Apr 13
Herb, Terrarium & Miniature Garden Container Workshop

10am-4pm – FREE soil and assistance. Create your own herb container garden, terrarium or miniature garden. Bring in your own containers or buy some of ours.

Sat, Apr 12 – Sun, Apr 13
Universal Saw & Tool Sharpening

10am-4pm – Get those tools ready for easier gardening.

Sat, Apr 19
Community Egg Hunt

10am-2pm – Rain or Shine! FREE candy! Children 6 and under. Bring your camera and have your picture taken with the Easter Bunny. Accepting items for the Cottage Grove Food Pantry.

Sat, Apr 26
Earth Day Celebration

10am-2pm – FREE children’s activities 10am-2pm. Bring a white T-shirt to paint, make seed balls, plant cat grass, and more.

Sat, Apr 26 – Sun, Apr 27
Arbor Day Celebration

Receive a FREE Black Hills Spruce with purchase, while supplies last. Limit 1 per family.

Our Kitchen

When I was growing up on our farm in Iowa, my mom baked every single day.  With three kids and an always hungry farmer to feed, she never once considered doing anything else.  And besides that, she loved it. Worries about sugar and fat and calories didn’t exist back in those wonderful days of leftover chocolate cake with homemade fudge icing for breakfast.  What sweet, sweet memories!

The days of baking for the sheer joy of it are almost gone. Today most of us need a reason to bake, sometimes a really, really good reason.  We deny ourselves the joy of baking by truly believing that we shouldn’t eat the results. But what do we do with all those wonderful recipes?

Last week Diane treated all of us by making one she had been wanting to try. What a great excuse for baking yummy, chocolaty, too-full-of-calories-to-leave-at-home goodies.  When you divide a 9×13 pan among 20 hard-working people, there’s no way the calories can be an issue for anyone.

Diane found the following recipe in the July/August 2004 Taste of Home Magazine.  Hope you enjoy it as much as we did!

Best-Loved Chocolate Bars

  • 1 pkg (18.25 oz) chocolate cake mix
  • 1 C graham cracker crumbs (about 16 squares)
  • ½ C creamy peanut butter, do not use reduced fat
  • 1 egg
  • 3 T half and half
  • 1 pkg (8 oz) cream cheese, softened
  • 1 jar (11.75 oz) hot fudge ice cream topping
  • 1 pkg (11.5 oz) milk chocolate chips
  • 1 c salted peanuts
Directions

In a bowl combine the dry cake mix and cracker crumbs.  Cut in peanut butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs.  In another bowl, whisk the egg and cream.  Add to the crumb mixture just until moistened.  Set aside ¾ c for topping.  Press the remaining crumb mixture into a greased 9 x13 pan. 

In a mixing bowl, beat cream cheese until smooth.  Add fudge topping and mix well.  Spread over the crust.  Sprinkle with chocolate chips, peanuts and reserved crumb mixture.  Bake at 350 for 25-30 minutes or until set.  Cool on a wire rack.  Cover and refrigerate at least 4 hours.  Cut into bars.  Refrigerate leftovers. 

SEE YOU SOON!!!
Carol and Ed Knapton, owners of Americas's Best Flowers You’ll Love Your Garden … It’s Our Promise! May the Holy Spirit Guide You! God Bless
Edward Knapton says Keep on Smiling!
Sec – Treasurer Berry Hill Farms, Inc.
DBA Americas Best Flowers Garden Center
4311 Vilas Hope Road
Cottage Grove, WI 53527
608-222-2269 Fax 608-222-1234 Cell 608-698-5627