Wednesday, November 16, 2011

A Great Opportunity for A Gardening Field Trip!

How about visiting the Iowa Arboretum  this coming Saturday, November 19, 2011?  From 9:00 A.M. to 4:00 P.M., they're hosting a Holiday Gift Shop Sale.  This is the first of several Holiday activities in which you might choose to participate.  Click on these words to visit their official site.

What about trekking to Ames' Reiman Gardens Thursday, December 1 or Saturday, December 3 to participate in a Wreath-making workshop with Reiman staff?  You would have to pre-register.  There are also several other December activities in which you may be interested.  Click on these words to visit Reiman Garden's site.

Perhaps you'd like to stay in your home and read some very interesting articles on the ISU Extension site:

Houseplants (click these words)

Using and Composting Fallen Leaves (click on these words)

Mulching Strawberry Beds (click here)

And perhaps you'd like to travel all around the state, viewing twelve of Iowa's lovely public gardens, while still in the comfort of your own home?  A description of the 2012 Calendar can be found here (click these words), and the calendar itself is available at our local Extension Office!

Monday, November 14, 2011

Maasdam Garden Update - Fall 2011

Work has begun.  This previous post (click these words)showed the "untouched" layout of the area.  The photos below show the work that has begun.

 Along the outside edge of the sidewalk is an area that is being planted with tulips
in honor of the Maasdam family's Dutch heritage.

 Hostas have been planted on the inside edge of the sidewalk.

 The area in and around the trees will be planted this Spring (2012).

Friday, November 11, 2011

Final 2011 Update on JCHC Garden

Everything's Coming up "Roses!"
Not, really.  No roses here . . .

The following photos record the last work on the garden for 2011.  Enjoy!

October 7, 2011
(First batch of edgers.  Note the front of the edgers provide a place for mower wheels.)

October 9, 2011
(Second batch of edgers)

November 2, 2011
(Final batches of edgers)

November 11, 2011
(Look for the dark spots in the following photos.
Daffodil, Tulip and Allium bulbs were planted today!)

November - Gardening is Good for You!

According to the Iowa State Extension Service 2011 Calendar:

Gardening is GOOD for you because it's Sustainable!

Gardening offers numerous opportunities to be environmentally friendly.  Start  by cutting back on pesticides and commercial fertilizers in your yard and garden.  Select pest-resistant plants and use cultural practices like mulching, spacing plants appropriately, and removing diseased plants to help control insect and disease pests.  To reduce storm water runoff, collect water in rain barrels or divert water into rain gardens.  To improve your soil, try composting garden debris and kitchen scraps and incorporating the compost into garden areas.

These first few weeks, thoroughly water newly planted evergreens before the ground freezes, and plant a windowsill herb garden.  Take time to winterize your lawn mowers and clean your garden tools.

Indoors, rotate your houseplants to prevent one-sided growth. 

By next week, you might think about purchasing 3-foot-high fencing for rabbit protection, should they be a nuisance, and, if you have strawberries, mulch the bed with three to five inches of straw.

Before Thanksgiving, you might want to cover the bottom portions of hybrid tea roses with soil, and mulch newly planted perennials to prevent frost heaving.

Thanksgiving guests coming to your home?  Create a vegetable centerpiece for your table.

Happy Thanksgiving!