‘THE SAGE’-Klein’s Online Newsletter—MARCH 2019
Klein’s Floral & Greenhouses
608/244-5661 or [email protected]
 
THIS MONTH’S HIGHLIGHTS:
Klein’s Is Voted Among Madison’s Best by Madison Magazine!
Our ‘Mad Gardener’ Is Ready for Your Questions
Ever Thought about Working at a Garden Center?….
Free Houseplant Potting Service @ Klein’s
Klein’s Favorite Seed, Bulb & Plant Sources
Seed Starting Basics for Maximum Success
Growing Fruits & Vegetables from Food Scraps
Tips for Fresh Cut Tulips and Daffodils
You Asked the Mad Gardener About Germination Issues
This Winter’s Frigid Temps Could Kill Emerald Ash Borer
Plant of the Month: The Fascinating Jack-in-the-Beanstalk Plant
Klein’s Favorite Cauliflower Recipes
Product Spotlight: Gifts from Michel Design Works
Notes from Rick’s Garden Journal—From February 2019
—Seed Buying Dos and Don’ts
—Frequent Visits from a Favorite Acrobat
—Plant Families & Their Common Threads
March in the Garden: A Planner
Gardening Events Around Town
Review Klein’s @: Yelp, Google Reviews or Facebook Reviews
Join Us on Twitter
Follow Us on Facebook
Delivery Information
Related Resources and Websites
Plants Harmful to Kids and Pets

 

KLEIN’S IS VOTED AMONG THE BEST OF MADISON according to Madison Magazine readers.

 

And for a second year in a row, Klein’s is among the Best of Madison in two categories! Klein’s Floral & Greenhouses was voted #2 Florist from among Madison’s many flower shops (Congrats to Darcy and her team!) and #3 in the Lawn, Garden & Landscape category in the 2019 Madison Magazine reader poll announced in late February. A big THANK YOU to our customers and Madison Magazine readers!

 

 

HAVE YOU MOVED IN THE LAST FEW YEARS?
If so, we ask that as we go into the new year and busy spring season, that you update your new address in association with Klein’s Rewards Program and so you continue to receive all possible benefits.

 

A couple of times each year, Klein’s sends out valuable coupons and we want to make sure you’re not missing out. In the future, we’re hoping for added mailings for even more savings; including a birthday club with added savings during the month of your birthday.

 

If your address has recently changed, please send your new information to [email protected] and please include your name and your old address as reference.

 

FREE HOUSEPLANT SERVICE POTTING @ KLEIN’S
Did you know that if you buy both a plant and it’s new pot at Klein’s, we will pot it up for free and on the spot—time and staff permitting. That means no mess or hassle at home. Let Klein’s staff make it easy for you.

 

Klein’s has an amazing assortment of houseplants ranging from the smallest plants for terrariums and dish gardens, to tropical trees, to succulents and cactus and a huge assortment of air plants. Our knowledgeable staff will help select the perfect plant for any location and occasion, offering care tips and sound advice.

 

Obviously, we are overly busy or understaffed, we may ask that you pick up your newly potted plants at a later convenient time.

 

Similarly, if your current houseplants have outgrown their pots, take advantage of Klein’s repotting services. Our repotting fees for existing plants are based on pot size and include soil and labor.

 

***Please note that this service is only available with houseplant purchases and not for seasonal bedding plant and tropical patio plant purchases where normal potting charges apply.

 

THE MAD GARDENER
“Madison’s Firsthand Source for Expert Gardening Advice”

 

Ask any of your gardening questions by e-mailing them to us at [email protected]. Klein’s in-house Mad Gardener will e-mail you with an answer as promptly as we can. We’ve also posted a link to this e-mail address on our home page for your convenience. Your question might then appear in the “You Asked” feature of our monthly newsletter. If your question is the one selected for our monthly newsletter, you’ll receive a small gift from us at Klein’s. The Mad Gardener hopes to hear from you soon!

 

Sorry, we can only answer those questions pertaining to gardening in Southern Wisconsin and we reserve the right to leave correspondence unanswered at our discretion. Please allow 2-3 days for a response.

 

Please note that our Mad Gardener is not only an expert gardener, but can answer all of your indoor plant questions as well.

 

EVER THOUGHT ABOUT WORKING AT A GARDEN CENTER?
Now is the time to stop in and ask for an application or fill one out at Employee Application. We’re primarily looking for seasonal, part-time retail help. Responsibilities include customer service, stocking, etc. Retail experience and computer skills are a plus. Benefits include our generous discount and a hands-on opportunity in a horticultural setting. Hours can be flexible. If possible, we’re seeking people with 20 or more hours availability per week. Some weekend and evening shifts are expected.

 

MARCH STORE HOURS:
Monday thru Friday : 8:00-6:00
Saturday: 9:00-5:00
Sunday: 10:00-4:00

 

CALENDAR OF EVENTS:
March 5—Mardi Gras

 

March 6—Ash Wednesday

 

March 8—International Women’s Day

 

March 9Kokedama Workshop, 12:00 p.m.—Plant your own Kokedama creation at Klein’s! Kokedama is a ball of soil, covered with moss, in which an ornamental plant grows. Come and enjoy our new greenhouse while you learn about this beautiful Japanese art. Each participant will construct and take home their own Kokedama project. All materials provided. $30 per person including materials and instruction. Registration required by calling the store at 608-244-5661 or by emailing John at [email protected].

 

March 10–Daylight Saving Time Begins.

 

March 17–St. Patrick’s Day. From shamrocks to green carnations–we have it!

 

March 20–First Day of Spring!!!! It’s still too early to plant, but you’ll notice spring bulbs peeking through the cold soil, trees buds bulging and maybe even that first robin. Keep in mind that Madison’s average last frost date is May 10 so there’s usually still lots of cold and snow to come.

 

March 20–Full Moon

 

March 30Succulent Workshop, 12:00 p.m. Join us for a succulent workshop at Klein’s and build your own custom creation. Green thumb not required! Our workshop starts with a discussion of cactus and succulents including care, planting tips, growth patterns, and the importance of using the correct soil. Everything you need will be available. Price: $30 and up, depending on materials used. Registration required by calling the store at 608-244-5661 or by emailing John at [email protected].

 

April 1–April Fool’s Day

 

‘THE FLOWER SHOPPE’:

 

I wandered lonely as a cloud
That floats on high o’er vales and hills,
When all at once I saw a crowd,
A host, of golden daffodils…
  • William Wordsworth

 

Before you know it, our gardens will be bursting with the first heralds of spring–first the snowdrops and early crocus and in short order, the daffodils and tulips. Already at Klein’s, fresh cut tulips and daffodils fill our coolers and mixed bulb gardens are in high demand. By early March our customers long for spring.

 

Tulips and daffodils are some of our most desirable cut flowers in the springtime–whether purchased at a flower shop, from the local supermarket or picked from one’s own garden. Here are a few important tips when using both tulips and daffodils in fresh arrangements.

 

Cut Tulips:
Tulips are best purchased or cut from the garden when the flower bud is showing color but still closed. Harvested earlier, the color won’t fully develop. Purchasing or harvesting later reduces the life in the vase.

 

Once ready for the vase, line up the tops of the tulips and cut off the stems so all tulips are the same length. Bunch the tulips upright and place in a tall vase or bucket of very cold water for at least 30 minutes to rehydrate. It’s important that the stems are kept straight during this step. Tulip stems will assume whatever shape the stems are in during the rehydration process.

 

Once placed in a vase on their own or mixed with other cut flowers, tulips will continue to grow and elongate; creating a dramatic and ever changing display. Unlike most cut flowers, tulips should not be placed in a floral preservative. A tulip arrangement will last much longer if placed in a cold (but not freezing) location during the night.

 

Cut Daffodils:
Fresh cut daffodils exude a sticky sap that is toxic to most other cut flowers. To eliminate this problem, simply place your fresh cut garden daffodils alone in a vase or bucket of cold water in a cool location for at least 24 hours. After this time, the daffodils can be safely arranged with other flowers. Daffodils purchased at flower shops or at the supermarket have already been conditioned so this step can be skipped.

 

Daffodils will continue to open so long as the flower buds are showing good color and are about to crack open. Harvested too early, they may not open fully. Unlike tulips, daffodils will last longer if a floral preservative is used in the vased arrangement. Placing the arrangement in a very cool (but not freezing) location at night can double the lifespan of your bouquet.

 

YOU ASKED THE MAD GARDENER . . .
I’m trying to start my tomatoes, beans, and onions indoors under grow lights in my basement. I’m using seeds that I’ve had for many years now, but it’s been over a week and nothing has come up yet. I’m wondering how long seeds will last? And how should I store them to try and make them last longer? Jane

 

Hi Jane,
It’s a little too early to start tomatoes (question from 2/24), so you still have time to get them going again (using fresh seed if necessary). You can also wait a few weeks on the onions. Beans are best planted directly in the garden in May.

 

The key to get seeds to germinate indoors is using a seed starting heating mat available at Klein’s and all garden centers. They usually run from $25-$40 for a 10″ x 20″ mat, but the investment is worth it. The majority of the vegetable and annual seeds we start indoors for our gardens require a constant 65º-75º temperature for germination. A humidity dome (or a plastic bag) to keep the starting medium moist is also important until germination occurs. All the seeds you started should have been up in just a few days. It’s also important to read the seed packets. Many seeds have specific requirements for proper germination. Once the seeds germinate, they can be removed from the mat.

 

I start a lot of my own annuals and vegetables in my own basement under grow lights and although it’s best to use fresh seed for optimum germination, you can keep seed for years as long as they’re kept cool and dry. I use an old Tupperware and keep the seed in the basement in my growing area. If you feel you haven’t stored your seed correctly, it’s probably best to start fresh this year. We have an excellent seed assortment available at Klein’s from Seed Savers, Botanical Interests, Livingston and Olds Garden Seeds.

 

Thanks for your question,
Klein’s Mad Gardener

 

DID YOU KNOW. . .
. . . that this year’s frigid winter temps could have an upside?

 

Experts: Wisconsin’s Extreme Cold Can Kill Emerald Ash Borer
Source: The Wisconsin State Journal (madison.com) and Wisconsin Public Radio (www.wpr.org)

 

The bitter cold temperatures that gripped Wisconsin could also have a chilling effect on an invasive insect species that threatens the state’s ash trees, according to recent findings.

 

U.S. Forest Service research biologist Rob Venette co-authored a study that found temperatures around 20 degrees below zero can reduce emerald ash borer populations by half. Venette told Wisconsin Public Radio that last month’s extreme cold will likely kill up to 80 percent of the invasive Asian beetles in Wisconsin.

 

The invasive pest was discovered in Wisconsin in 2008 and has spread to more than half of its counties. Emerald ash borer are responsible for killing tens of millions of ash trees across the U.S.

 

Venette and other researchers studied ash borer larvae in Minnesota during the last polar vortex in 2014 to measure how much cold it takes to kill them, he said. They recorded up to 70 percent mortality when temperatures reached 23 degrees below zero.

 

“Because it’s been so much colder this go around, we’re expecting much more mortality,” he said.

 

Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources official Andrea Diss-Torrance said the recent polar vortex won’t cause the insect to go extinct, but could buy landowners time to treat ash trees that haven’t been infected yet.

 

“Or even kill it out if the infestation has just started and the population in that tree is still pretty low,” she said.

 

Venette said the challenge will be preventing the few insects that survive the extreme cold from re-establishing their populations.

 

“Within a year or two, unless it’s cold again, we expect those populations to be back where they are about now,” he said.

 

PRODUCT SPOTLIGHTEach month we spotlight some product that we already carry or one that we’ve taken note of and plan to carry in the near future. Likewise, if you would like to see Klein’s to carry a product that we don’t currently, please let us know. Our goal is to be responsive to the marketplace and to our loyal clientele. If a product fits into our profile, we will make every effort to get it into our store. In addition, we may be able to special order an item for you, whether plant or hard good, given enough time.

 

‘Bath & Body’ and Home Decor from Michel Design Works
“For Every Room in the House”

 

New to Klein’s in 2019 comes a collection sense-stimulating gift items from Michel Design Works. All beautifully packaged, we are carrying a nice selection of delightfully fragranced body lotions, bar soaps, hand soaps, bath bombs and candles; in addition to a few items from their home decor lines, including dish towels and serveware—all printed with eye-catching floral patterns. Perfect for gift-giving, the Michel Design Works collection at Klein’s will make Mother’s Day shopping a breeze!

 

Welcome to Michel Design Works!
From Deborah Michel

 

“For as long as I can remember, I’ve loved giving gifts. There’s something magical about going to a store, walking up and down the aisles, and finding the perfect Mother’s Day gift, Christmas gift, or birthday present and then watching expectantly as they’re opened by family and friends.

 

That personal connection is very important to me, and it’s what we strive for at Michel Design Works. We want to make giving gifts as enjoyable and fulfilling as receiving them. We want your customers to experience that magical Ah-hah! moment when they spot one of our products or designs and realize it’s exactly right for a friend or family member, an office mate or new neighbor. And we want the recipients to feel the love and care that went into selecting those gifts—and then find the perfect place for them in their homes.

 

To help foster that connection, we make sure there’s nothing generic about our home décor and kitchen goods, nothing bland or ordinary about our fragrances and bath and body offerings. Our goal, each and every year, is to offer consistently high quality products and to create distinctive, signature designs that resonate with a broad consumer base.

 

I think you’ll find this year’s offerings lighthearted and fresh, warm and welcoming, with colors that are on trend and scents that are close to nature. I hope they’ll help your customers celebrate the joys of giving and receiving. And of course that magic couldn’t happen without you.”

 

Visit Michel Design Works website @ www.micheldesignworks.com for a peek at their extensive collection.

 

NOTES FROM MY GARDEN JOURNAL–Tips and Observations from My Own Garden by Rick Halbach

 

ENTRY: FEBRUARY 11, 2019 (Seed Buying Dos and Don’ts)
Nearly all of the seeds I’ve ordered from my various catalogs for this spring season have arrived and I spent much of the day sorting, organizing and dating the seed packets by sow date. Starting seeds indoors over the next two months is one of the many joys of gardening (especially during a winter like this one!). There are countless treasured annuals and cultivars of annuals available via catalog and and online sources that you’ll never find at garden centers for various reasons. After more than 30 years experience with indoor seed starting, I’ve learned (and enjoy sharing with especially new and young gardeners) the many dos and don’ts of growing my own flowers and vegetables firsthand.

 

Seed Catalog (and Online) Buying Dos and Don’ts
by Joe Lamp’l @ growingagreenerworld.com
Now that we have all those newly-delivered, luscious seed catalogs staring us in the face, what are we going to do with them? For many, the answer is nothing. They’re nice to look at but we never get around to buying anything. Then there is the other extreme.
Catalog-crazed purists, once hooked, find it preposterous to think of actually buying run of the mill seeds at a local garden center. Heaven forbid, those are always so ordinary!
For those who are buying seeds through the mail for the first time or for a lifetime, there are certain dos and don’ts that will make you a smarter shopper. Let’s start with the two most common mistakes gardeners make when catalog shopping:

 

Most common mistakes—
Overbuying: Even the veterans are guilty of this. It’s like going to the grocery store on an empty stomach or hitting the buffet line when you’re starving. When it comes to gardening, even the most disciplined can find themselves impulsive. Seed packs are pretty cheap, so hey, what the heck, right?

 

Wrong! Although seeds can be stored and saved, eventually they loose much of their viability. The best germination rate occurs on seeds that are packaged for the current year.

 

Buying without regard to appropriate conditions: Buying seeds (or plants) simply on the merits of their beauty and without regard to the appropriate zone or conditions is a common but avoidable mistake. It’s fun to experiment but no matter how good they look in the catalog, lilacs won’t thrive in the Deep South nor will blueberries prosper in non-acidic soil.

 

The photographs and artwork you see in catalog are as good as it gets. They’re grown under ideal conditions by professionals. In the garden of your mind, the seeds you plant will look just as good. But in reality, your true garden may have poor soil, pests, diseases and possibly shade. Take these issues into consideration and order seeds and plants that are appropriate for your growing conditions.

 

What you should do—
Plan ahead: In order to avoid the mistake of biting off more than you can chew, do a little advance planning. First, try to calculate how many plants you can realistically add to a given space.

 

Consider how much time you have to devote to planting and maintenance: Even if you have unlimited room, there’s still work to do in planting the seeds and subsequent care. Gardening should not be a burden or chore. Keep it manageable to fit your schedule and lifestyle.

 

Find reliable catalog companies: There are plenty of companies out there and seed quality can vary from one company to the next. In addition, freshness matters. Companies that offer bargain basement prices may be able to do so only because of inferior quality or stale seeds.

 

Consider making your first order small: If you are unsure as to a company’s reputation, start with a small order, you can always buy more later but don’t bet your entire garden’s success on an unknown company to supply the seeds.

 

Investigate shipping and handling costs: Some companies offer a minimal flat rate for shipping, while others base the rate on weight or by the size of your order.

 

Call before you buy if you’re unsure. Make sure ‘customer service’ is for real. If you do have questions before or after the sale or encounter problems with your order, a responsive service department with real people to talk to can resolve your problem and answer your questions.

 

Although this list is not exhaustive, it will give you some guidelines and remind you to look beyond the pretty pictures. Don’t be afraid to experiment with new varieties; just be realistic with what you’ll be able to do, before you spend your money.

 

* * * * *

 

ENTRY: FEBRUARY 17, 2019 (Frequent Visits from a Favorite Acrobat)
At least two pairs of downy woodpeckers are visiting my suet feeders on a regular basis. And as spring draws nearer they (especially the males) are becoming increasingly aggressive as they chase each other from the feeders for their turns and to establish breeding territories. Earlier in the winter, however, it wasn’t uncommon to see a downy woodpecker on all four of my suet feeders simultaneously—all very close to each other and without a care the others were nearby.

 

The active little Downy Woodpecker is a familiar sight at backyard feeders and in parks and woodlots, where it joins flocks of chickadees and nuthatches, barely outsizing them. An often acrobatic forager, this black-and-white woodpecker is at home on tiny branches or balancing on slender plant galls, sycamore seed balls, and suet feeders. Downies and their larger lookalike, the Hairy Woodpecker, are one of the first identification challenges that beginning bird watchers master.

 

Where they occur, Downy Woodpeckers are the most likely woodpecker species to visit a backyard bird feeder. They prefer suet feeders, but are also fond of black oil sunflower seeds, millet, peanuts, and chunky peanut butter. Occasionally, Downy woodpeckers will drink from oriole and hummingbird feeders as well.

 

Look for Downy Woodpeckers in woodlots, residential areas, and city parks. Be sure to listen for the characteristic high-pitched pik note and the descending whinny call. In flight, look for a small black and white bird with an undulating flight path. During winter, check mixed-species flocks and don’t overlook Downy Woodpeckers among the nuthatches and chickadees – Downy Woodpeckers aren’t much larger than White-breasted Nuthatches.

 

In winter Downy Woodpeckers are frequent members of mixed species flocks. Advantages of flocking include having to spend less time watching out for predators and better luck finding food from having other birds around.

 

Male and female Downy Woodpeckers divide up where they look for food in winter. Males feed more on small branches and weed stems, and females feed on larger branches and trunks. Males keep females from foraging in the more productive spots. When researchers have removed males from a woodlot, females have responded by feeding along smaller branches.

 

The Downy Woodpecker eats foods that larger woodpeckers cannot reach, such as insects living on or in the stems of weeds. You may see them hammering at goldenrod galls to extract the fly larvae inside.

 

Woodpeckers don’t sing songs, but they drum loudly against pieces of wood or metal to achieve the same effect. People sometimes think this drumming is part of the birds’ feeding habits, but it isn’t. In fact, feeding birds make surprisingly little noise even when they’re digging vigorously into wood.

 

 

* * * * *

 

ENTRY: FEBRUARY 28, 2019 (Plant Families & Their Common Threads)
As a plant geek who loves gardening, taxonomy AND the study of language (etymology), I relish learning how plants are related by common features, structure and name. This is one of the joys of working at a greenhouse. Examples are nearly always available at arm’s length. I enjoy showing customers (who are interested) that poinsettias, pencil cacti and the popular garden annual ‘Diamond Frost’ all belong to the Euphorbia Family (Euphorbiaceae), along with many other familiar plants, including spurges, crown-of-thorns and castor bean. The most recognizable feature they all have in common is a sticky, white sap. Plants belonging to this family are also usually toxic to varying degrees.

 

That said, other plant families also contain a white, sticky sap. These include members of the milkweed family (**Asclepiadaceae). Familiar members of that family include hoya, stephanotis and, of course, the milkweeds from roadsides and gardens.

 

By definition, a Plant Family is a group of genera that share a set of underlying features (the sticky white sap, for example). Family names always end in -aceae and that’s where language (the use of Latin) comes in play.

 

Some of the more recognizable plant families from our homes and gardens include (along with their distinguishing features and some common members):

 

Apocynaceae (The Dogbane Family), 5 petal lobes, paired leaves (along with a milky sap)—Vinca, amsonia, mandevilla, oleander, periwinkle. **The milkweed family (Asclepiadaceae) has recently become a subfamily of this group.

 

Astercaceae (The Daisy Family-Composites), blooms clusters of flowers–The largest family of garden plants!! Ageratum, yarrow, goldenrod, sunflowers, thistles, shasta daisies, gerbers, osteospermum, joe-pye weed, gazanias, liatris, rudbeckia, zinnias, bidens, strawflowers, calendula, asters, coreopsis, bachelor’s buttons, marigolds, coneflowers,cosmos, dahlias, gaillardia, chicory, mums and many, many more.

 

Boraginaceae (The Borage Family), hairy leaves, often blue flowers–Forget-me-nots, brunnera, heliotrope, lungwort, comfrey, bugloss.

 

Brassicaceae (The Mustard Family), 4 petals form a cross, cool temps—Cabbage relatives, alyssum, dame’s rocket, stock, arabis.

 

Convolvulaceae (The Morning Glory Family), mostly vines, bell-shaped–Morning glories, cardinal climber, evolvulus, sweet potatoes.

 

Cucurbitaceae (The Melon Family), vines with tendrils–Cucumbers, melons, squash.

 

Fabaceae (The Legume Family), nitrogen fixers with compound leaves–Many have pea-like seed pods. Peas, beans, sweet peas, lupines, lead plant, lotus, baptisia, wisteria, alfalfa.

 

Lamiaceae (The Mint Family), square stems, foliage usually aromatic–Most herbs (mint, rosemary, thyme, sage, oregano, savory, basil, lavender), in addition to: lamium, coleus, agastache, ajuga, nettles, salvia, bee balm, stachys, nepeta, plectranthus, creeping charlie .

 

Liliaceae (The Lily Family), three petals & three sepals, grass-like leaves–Lilies, many spring bulbs (tulips, hyacinth, squill, etc.), allium, alstroemeria, daylilies, hosta, agapanthus, liriope, garlic, spider plants.

 

Malvaceae (The Mallow Family), 5 petals with central column of stamens–Hibiscus, hollyhock, lavatera, abutilon, sidalcea, okra, velvet leaf (a common field weed)

 

Rosaceae (The Rose Family), five petals and five sepals–Roses, many fruits (apples, crabapples, pears, plums, peaches, cherries, quince and even strawberries), potentilla, geum, queen-of-the-prairie, spirea, ladies’ mantle.

 

Solanaceae (The Nightshade Family), fruit is a pod, juglone sensitive–Tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, potatoes, tobacco, nicotiana, petunias, datura, brugmansia, browallia, Chinese lantern, painted tongue, nolana, nierembergia, nightshade.

 

Verbenaceae (The Verbena Family), flowers in clusters, toothed leaves–Verbena, lantana, caryopteris, vervain, duranta.

 

KLEIN’S RECIPES OF THE MONTHThese are a selection of relatively simple recipes chosen by our staff. New recipes appear monthly. Enjoy!!

 

Cauliflower is a member of the ‘cole crop’ family of plants that includes: cabbage, kale, brussels sprouts, kohlrabi, broccoli and many more. These are all essentially the same species of plant that has been modified over time.

 

In general, cauliflower is grown like cabbage and like most all cole crops. High fertility and an abundant supply of moisture throughout the season are most important. Plant 18” apart with 24-36” between rows. When small white heads become visible through the leaves, it’s time for “blanching” by gathering the outer leaves over the head in tying them together with twine to preserve the white curd color. Although this practice is culturally not necessary, it helps prevent yellowing of the curd due to exposure to the sun. Cauliflower tends not to head well during very hot weather. Cauliflower is ready for harvest when heads are firm and still tightly clustered and adequately sized.

 

Unlike cabbage, cauliflower doesn’t store well for long periods and should be eaten shortly after harvesting or purchasing.

 

AMAZING ROASTED CAULIFLOWER—No chopping involved for this easy recipe from Better Homes & Gardens from April 2018. You simply roast the whole head with a delicious savory topping.
2 TBS. olive oil
1 TBS. coarse stoneground mustard
2 tsp. toasted then crushed caraway seed
1 tsp. salt
1 largish head of cauliflower
1/4 cup water

 

Preheat the oven to 425º. In a bowl, whisk together the oil, mustard, toasted caraway seeds and salt. Evenly spread over the entire top of the cauliflower head. Pour the water into a cast iron skillet. Place the head in the skillet and cover (with foil if your skillet doesn’t have a cover). Bake 30 minutes. At 30 minutes, raise the oven temperature to 450º, remove the cover/foil and roast another 30 minutes until the head is golden and tender. Serve right from the skillet if desired!

 

CURRIED ROAST CAULIFLOWER–Easy, easy, easy!!! From Cooking Light magazine, September 2010.
1 medium head cauliflower cut into florets
1 1/2 TBS. olive oil
1/2 tsp. coarse salt
1/2 tsp. curry powder (Madras if possible)

 

Preheat the oven to 475º. Toss all of the ingredients together in a large bow and spread onto a lined cookie sheet sprayed with non-stick spray. Bake 18 minutes or until browned and crisp tender, stirring occasionally. Serves 4.

 

CAULIFLOWER AND SWEET POTATOES–Delicious and wonderfully easy. From the pages of Everyday Food, March 2010.
1 lb. sweet potatoes, peeled and sliced 1/4” thick
1x 2 lb. head cauliflower cut into medium florets
3 TBS. extra virgin olive oil
coarse salt & pepper to taste
4 TBS. sherry or red wine vinegar

 

Preheat the oven to 450º. In a large bowl, toss together the veggies with the oil and salt and pepper. Roast on a large, rimmed cookie sheet until tender and browning on one side–about 30 minutes. Put into a serving bowl and toss with the sherry/vinegar. Serves 8.

 

CAULIFLOWER GRATIN–A classic, kid friendly casserole favorite from the pages of Everyday Food, March 2007.
3 bread slices torn into pieces
2 TBS. parmesan cheese
3 TBS. butter
1/3 cup flour
2 cups milk
1x 2 lb. head cauliflower in small florets
coarse salt and pepper to taste
1 cup shredded Gruyere or cheese of choice

 

Preheat the oven to 350º. In a food processor, pulse together the bread and the parmesan into coarse crumbs–about 3 or 4 times. Set the crumbs aside. Melt the butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the flour and stir and cook 1 minute. Slowly whisk in the milk. Add the cauliflower, season with salt and pepper and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat, cover and simmer 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the Gruyere. Pour the mixture into a buttered 2 qt. casserole. Sprinkle with the crumb mix. Cover and bake 20 minutes. Uncover and bake 20 minutes more. Serves 4.

 

CAULIFLOWER PUREE–A delicious and easy side dish for the upcoming holidays.
1x 2 lb. head cauliflower, cooked
1/2 cup half & half
2 cloves garlic, smashed
coarse salt and pepper to taste
2 TBS. butter

 

While cooking the cauliflower, bring the half & half, garlic and butter to a boil in a small saucepan on high heat. Remove from the heat and allow to steep for 10 minutes. Discard the garlic. In a food processor, blend together the cauliflower and cream mix. Reseason to taste. Serves 4.

 

CURRIED CAULIFLOWER AND GARBANZO STEW–A hearty and belly-warming recipe from the May 2009 issue of Bon Appetit magazine.
2 TBS. vegetable oil
2 1/2 cups chopped onion
5 tsp. curry powder
1 small head cauliflower in small florets
2x 15 oz. cans garbanzo beans, drained
2x 10 oz. cans diced tomatoes with green chiles
1x 14 oz. can unsweetened coconut milk
1/2 cup chopped cilantro

 

Heat the oil in a large skillet on medium high heat and saute the onions until golden. Add the curry powder and stir 20 seconds until fragrant. Add the cauliflower and the garbanzos and stir 1 minute. Add the tomatoes, then the coconut milk and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low. Cover and boil gently until tender and the liquid thickens a bit, stirring occasionally–about 16 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste and stir in the cilantro. Serve over cooked white rice. Serves 4.

 

NATURAL NEWS–

 

How to Grow Fruits & Vegetables from Food Scraps
By Kelly Reilly for Eating Well Magazine @ www.eatingwell.com

 

Don’t toss those food scraps! Did you know that you can actually grow new plants from common food scraps that are so often destined for the garbage or compost bin? The stems, butts and seeds from many common fruits and vegetables can be turned into a fresh new crop with soil, water, sunlight and a little know-how. Here are 11 grocery-store staples you can easily grow more of at home from the food scraps you already have. So reduce your food waste and get fresh produce at your fingertips with these scrappy tips.

 

1. Celery
Remove roughly 2 inches from the base of a bunch of celery and place in a shallow bowl with water, spraying the top daily to keep it moist. Replace with fresh water every couple of days until a new root system emerges, then transplant into the ground.

 

2. Herbs
Most herbs will propagate through cuttings—snip at a node (where sections of the plant merge), and place the cut portion in a jar of water on a windowsill. Replace the water every one or two days until roots emerge, then transplant to a container or the ground.

 

3. Garlic
Garlic is one of the easiest foods to grow from kitchen scraps—simply take cloves and place them pointy-side up in the ground, 4-6 inches apart. Plant them outside in fall before the first frost, and enjoy fresh garlic the following year. Plant them inside in a container any other time and enjoy garlic greens, but not a full head.

 

4. Ginger
If you’ve ever bought the exact amount of ginger you need for a recipe, you’re our hero. If you’re like most of us and always have some left over, give it new life by planting it and growing more! Soak the root in warm water overnight, then plant it sideways in a container, cover with soil and place in a sunny spot. Keep the soil consistently moist, and within several months you’ll have enough ginger to harvest.

 

5. Green Onions
If you’re only using the green part of the onions, retain the white part with a small amount of pale green and place it in water on a sunny windowsill. Refresh the water regularly and use green portions as they grow, or transplant into a pot with soil for more extended use.

 

6. Lettuce
If you typically throw out the base of a head of lettuce, cut it away from the leaves and place in a bowl of water. Replace the water every one to two days, and within two weeks you’ll have enough fresh new leaves for a sandwich or side salad. Note: This will not regenerate a new full head of lettuce, but it will help extend the life of what would have otherwise become compost or trash.

 

7. Peppers*
Save the seeds from your next bell or hot pepper. Plant them directly into soil, and water them regularly. Once a new plant emerges, transplant it to a larger container or outdoors, where it will thrive best in direct light and warm temperatures.

 

8. Potatoes & Sweet Potatoes
Plenty of us have started growing new potatoes by accident—raise your hand if you’ve ever left a bag in the back of the pantry for too long, only to find them covered in sprouts. Take a more intentional approach by cutting potatoes into 2-inch pieces and letting them sit on the countertop for a couple of days to dry. Sow directly into the ground in early spring, and enjoy buttery homegrown potatoes in early to midsummer.

 

9. Strawberries*
Carefully cut the outer skin (containing the seeds) off the berry, or extract seeds using tweezers. Place the skin or seeds in a container with soil, cover with soil, place in a sunny spot and water regularly until sprouts emerge. Transplant the sprouts to a strawberry pot or outside garden in springtime.

 

10. Tomatoes*
Simply plant the seeds from your store-bought tomato into a small pot, keep well-watered on a windowsill, and wait for a new plant to emerge. Once the plant reaches several inches tall, transplant it to a larger pot—or outside once the threat of frost has passed.

 

11. Turmeric
Like ginger, turmeric is a rhizome, meaning you should plant it sideways to allow its root system to spread horizontally. A tropical plant, turmeric will thrive best indoors in most parts of the United States. Put it in the warmest spot in the house—it prefers temperatures well into the 70s and 80s. You may need to place it under a grow light and/or heating lamp, or purchase a germination kit with an incubation lid, heating tray and light. Keep the plant consistently moist, spraying and watering it regularly. Harvest when the plant begins to dry out after several months.

 

*Note about regrowing grocery store produce from seed: Many of the fruits and vegetables grown and sold on a large-scale basis are hybrids, meaning they contain genetic components of more than one variety, and are not designed to be replicated through seed. Hybrid seeds from conventional produce may be sterile (will not grow) and if they do grow, will not give you an exact copy of the parent plant, but rather something closer to one of the varieties used to create the hybrid. For more predictable produce from harvested seeds, purchase nonmodified, heirloom varieties.

 

MARCH’S PLANT OF THE MONTH:

 

JACK-IN-THE-BEANSTALK PLANT (Castanospermum australe)
(Also known as: Moreton Bay Chestnut, Blackbean, Lucky Beans, The Lucky Bean Plant, Lucky Bean Tree, Jack’s Beanstalk)

 

Jack-in-the-Beanstalk plant is native to coastal rainforests and beaches in the east of Australia and to the Pacific islands of Vanuatu and New Caledonia. It grows in moist, fertile, well-drained soils on terraces on the side of mountains or along the banks of rivers and streams. It is a large evergreen tree growing up to 130 feet tall, though commonly much smaller.

 

The tree is grown for its attractive glossy pinnate leaves sometimes reaching 24 inches long. It makes an ideal indoor plant, especially when young.

 

Jack-in-the-Beanstalk plant makes an ideal indoor plant and is widely available in flower shops and nurseries as baby plant with the ‘bean’ attached to its base. Multiple plantings of plants will give a good display combining the dark shiny leaves of the tree with the novelty ornamental value of the giant seeds. The “bean” in the common name Lucky Bean Plant refers to the large seeds partially exposed above the soil and from which the plants have sprouted. The ‘bean’ pod will naturally dry up and separate from the plant in several months and can be removed without any effect to the plant.

 

Keeping the Castanospermum australe dry and cool in the winter can encourage it to produce sprays of red and yellow pea-shaped flowers. These butterfly like blooms are quite hard to achieve in the living room, however, the whole plant is rather decorative even without them.

 

Cultivated as a houseplant, trees in this genus can grow into small, shrubby plants. Size can be controlled by keeping the plant in a relatively small pot and shaping these plants with pruning, trimming, and training. Prune as desired to keep the lush ‘indoor forest’ look. They can be kept trimmed at any height.

 

Frequent pruning can control growth and form the Castanospermum australe into a bonsai-like short ornamental tree. This tree can be grown indoors or outdoors in a container.

 

The potted Castanospermum australe can be placed outdoors during the warm months of spring and summer and taken inside again before the first fall frost.

 

Ensure that the potting mixture is always moist but do not allow roots to sit in standing water. Water it regularly. Soak the soil well at each watering and allow it to become dry to the touch before watering again.

 

In early fall and throughout the winter months, water just enough to keep the soil from drying out completely. Allow the top 1 inch of soil to dry to the touch and then water it thoroughly.

 

In the first year Castanospermum australe does not have to be fertilized. Afterwards liquid plant food may be added monthly from spring to summer.

 

The seeds are poisonous, but become edible when carefully prepared by pounding into flour, leaching with water, and roasting. The leaves and seeds are toxic, so keep the plant away from pets and small children.

 

Klein’s currently has a large number of the unique Jack-in-the-Beanstalk plant in stock in 4” pots.

 

 

AROUND TOWN:
For neighborhood events or garden tours that you would like posted in our monthly newsletter, please contact Rick at (608) 244-5661 or [email protected]. Please include all details, i.e. dates, locations, prices, brief description, etc. Events must be garden related and must take place in the Madison vicinity and we must receive your information by the first of the month in which the event takes place for it to appear in that month’s newsletter.

 

2019 Winter Concert Series at Olbrich Gardens
Enjoy a winter Sunday at Olbrich with musical performances in our Evjue Commons. All Winter Concerts are traditional theatre-style seating.
Admission is $2 per person (cash only).
Children 5 & under are free.

 

Olbrich Winter Concerts 2019 Schedule:
(All concerts are on Sundays at 2 p.m.)

 

March 3
Ladies of the Fjord—Norwegian Hardanger Fiddle Music

 

March 10
Finding North—Folk-Americana/Rock/Country/Blues

 

March 17
Black Marigold—Woodwind Quintet

 

March 24
Gin Mill Hollow—Folk Rock

 

March 31
Le Gran Fromage Cajun Band—Cajun Music from Southwestern Louisiana

 

Olbrich Botanical Gardens
3330 Atwood Ave., Madison
608/246-4550 or www.olbrich.org for details.

 

Square-Foot and Raised-Bed Gardening
Wednesday, March 6, 7:00 p.m.
Verona Library, 500 Silent St., Verona, WI 53593

 

Spring is coming and it’s nearly planting time for gardeners. Master Gardener volunteer Anne Michet will explain how you can try square-foot and raised bed gardening on Wednesday, March 6, from 7 to 8 p.m., at the Verona Public Library. Michet will discuss the history of square-foot gardening, how to construct raised beds, and what growing media to use in raised beds and containers. She will also cover crop selection, spacing, and rotation; and how to mulch and water your new gardens.

 

This presentation is free and open to the public. To register, or for information, visit www.veronapubliclibrary.org, or call 608-845-7180.

 

2019 Green Thumb Gardening Series
Thursdays, February 21 thru April 18, 6:30-9:00
Dane County UW-Extension Office, 5201 Fen Oak Dr, Suite 138

 

The 2019 Green Thumb Gardening Series will give you the practical knowledge to keep your home garden thriving! University of Wisconsin Extension educators, specialists, and local horticulture experts will provide in depth and accessible information for everyone from the novice to the experienced gardener.

 

Register for the complete class series at a discounted price ($90.00) or individual classes ($12.00) according to your interests @ https://www.eventbrite.com/e/2019-green-thumb-gardening-classes-tickets-50406424974?utm-medium=discovery&utm-campaign=social&utm-content=attendeeshare&aff=escb&utm-source=cp&utm-term=listing

 

2019 CLASS TOPICS
March 7: Garden Landscape Design. Ben Futa, Director at Allen Centennial Garden, will cover fundamentals and elements of landscape design for your annual or perennial garden.

 

March 14: Hot Composting & Vermiculture. This class covers various techniques including worm composting (vermiculture) and hot composting. Taught by Joe Muellenberg, Dane County UW-Extension Horticulture Program.

 

March 21: Native Plants for Gardens & Pollinators. Lisa Johnson, Dane County UW-Extension Horticulture Educator will discuss native prairie plants for gardens and some of the best plants to choose to attract butterflies and other pollinators.

 

March 28: Managing Vegetable Garden Pests, Diseases, Insects, & More. Learn how to prevent and manage diseases and insects that afflict a variety of plants in the home garden. Taught by Lisa Johnson, Dane County UW-Extension Horticulture Educator.

 

April 4: Backyard Chickens. Learn from Ron Kean, UW-Extension Poultry Specialist, on how to best care for your small flock of egg-layers in a backyard setting.

 

April 11: Flower Gardening. Learn general techniques for selecting, planting, and caring for annuals and perennials. The session will also highlight new and recommended varieties. Taught by Lisa Johnson, Dane County UW-Extension Horticulture Program.

 

April 18: Lawn Care. Learn from Doug Soldat, UW-Extension Turf Specialist, on how to best select, start, and maintain a lawn of turfgrass best suited to your needs.

 

Dane County University of Wisconsin-Extension
5201 Fen Oak Dr, Suite 138
608/224-3700 or dane.uwex.edu

 

Annual Spring Symposium
Saturday, March 16, 9:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m.
at Rotary Botanical Gardens

 

Registration deadline: March 11

 

Price:
$69 for RBG Friends
$79 General Public
*Note – fee includes lunch *
to register.

 

Susan Martin
Horticultural Marketer, Writer and Speaker, “Lessons Learned Under the Trees”

 

Chris Fehlhaber
Assistant Horticulturalist at Chanticleer, “Gardening for the Sake of Gardens”

 

Ed Lyon and Mark Dwyer
Ed is director at Reiman Gardens and Mark is Director of Horticulture, Rotary Botanical Gardens, “Tried & True Perennials (and Exciting Newcomers)!”

 

Rotary Botanical Gardens
1455 Palmer Dr., Janesville, WI

 

Find Your Farm (Formerly CSA Open House)
Sunday, March 17, 11:00 – 2:00 pm
Monona Terrace
1 John Nolen Dr., Madison, Wisconsin

 

Join us at the first annual Find Your Farm event (formerly the CSA Open House)! Learn about FairShare CSA Coalition and Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) at the Monona Terrace on March 17th. This event is free and open to the public.

 

Meet local farmers from a variety of CSA farms to learn more about their farm, pick-up locations, on-farm events, and 2019 sign-up information. Explore different share options such as veggies, meat, eggs and chose your own CSA share for this growing season while snacking on local food samples.

 

One-on-one consultations with experts will help you learn how to make the most of your CSA experiences. This event will celebrate our FairShare CSA farms and inspire people to support a strong local food system. We hope to see you there!

 

For more event and CSA information visit www.csacoalition.org

 

Native Plant Gardens at the Arboretum: Then and Now
Thursday, March 21, 9:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m.
Winter Enrichment Lecture

 

Susan Carpenter, Native Plant Gardener, UW Arboretum. Register by March 18.

 

The cost is $10. Registration is required for this event. Register @ arboretum.wisc.edu/classes/native-plant-gardens-at-the-arboretum-then-and-now/

 

University of Wisconsin Arboretum
1207 Seminole Highway
Madison, WI 53711
608/263-7888 or arboretum.wisc.edu/ for details.

 

Phenology
Saturday, April 6, 1:00 p.m.-3:00 p.m.
Class

 

Tune in to signs of early spring. Phenology—the study of periodic occurrences in nature—is both art and science, practiced for millennia across cultures and regions. Learn about different approaches, and even invent your own. Instructor: Kathy Miner, Arboretum naturalist. Register by April 2. Meet at the Visitor Center.

 

The cost is $20. Registration is required for this event. Register @ arboretum.wisc.edu/classes/phenology-tracking-nature/

 

University of Wisconsin Arboretum
1207 Seminole Highway
Madison, WI 53711
608/263-7888 or arboretum.wisc.edu/ for details.

 

Dane County Late Winter Farmer’s Market
Saturdays, January 5 thru April 6, 8:00-noon
Madison Senior Center
330 W. Mifflin

 

For details visit www.dcfm.org

 

MARCH IN THE GARDEN-A checklist of things to do this month.
___Pinch back over wintered geraniums one last time. Root cuttings if needed.
___Check perennials for heaving during warm spells. Remulch as needed.
___Check for early spring bloomers like crocus, winter aconite & hellebores.
___Begin uncovering roses by month’s end.
___Continue bringing out your cooled forced bulbs for indoor enjoyment.
___Inspect stored summer bulbs like dahlias, cannas and glads for rotting.
___Check for and treat for pests on plants brought in from the garden.
___Keep birdfeeders full. Clean periodically with soap and water.
___Keep birdbaths full and clean for the return of the first robins & other arrivals.
___Repair and clean out birdhouses. Early arrivals will be here soon!
___Inventory last year’s leftover seeds before ordering or buying new ones.
___Seed starting is in full swing: petunias, tomatoes, peppers and cole crops.
___Sterilize seed starting equipment and pots with a 1:16 bleach solution.
___Shop for summer bulbs like gladiolas, lilies and dahlias.
___Remove mulch & rodent protection (chicken wire) from tulip and crocus beds
___Use the winter days to plan next summer’s garden.
___March is the month to prune most fruit trees and apply dormant oil.
___Prune late summer and fall blooming shrubs.
___Do not prune spring blooming shrubs like lilacs, forsythia or viburnum.
___Begin bringing in branches for forcing: pussy willow, forsythia, quince, etc.
___As the days lengthen and new growth occurs, increase fertilizing houseplants
___Check your garden for any plant damage from weather or rodents.
___Ready the lawn mower—just a few weeks to go.
___Visit Klein’s—the showrooms are filling up with spring annuals. Pansies, violas, calendula, cole crops & onion sets become available by month’s end.

 

Some of our very favorite seed and plant sources include:

 

For seeds:
Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds @ www.rareseeds.com or 417/924-8887
Burpee @ www.burpee.com or 800/888-1447
Harris Seeds @ www.harrisseeds.com or 800/514-4441
Johnny’s Select Seeds @ www.johnnyseeds.com or 207/861-3901
Jung’s Seeds @ www.jungseed.com or 800/247-5864
Park’s Seeds @ www.parkseed.com or 800/845-3369
Pinetree @ www.superseeds.com or 207/926-3400
Seeds of Change @ www.seedsofchange.com or 888/762-7333
Seed Savers @ www.seedsavers.org or 563/382-5990
Select Seeds @ www.selectseeds.com or 800/684-0395
Territorial Seeds @ www.territorialseed.com or 888/657-3131
Thompson & Morgan @ www.thompson-morgan.com or 800/274-7333

 

For bulbs:
Brent & Becky’s Bulbs @ www.brentandbeckysbulbs.com or 877/661-2852
Colorblends @ www.colorblends.com or 888/847-8637
John Scheeper’s @ www.johnscheepers.com or 860/567-0838
McClure & Zimmerman @ www.mzbulb.com or 800/883-6998

 

For plants:
High Country Gardens @ www.highcountrygardens.com or 800/925-9387
Logee’s Greenhouses @ www.logees.com or 888/330-8038
Plant Delights Nursery @ www.plantdelights.com or 912/772-4794
Roots and Rhizomes @ www.rootsrhizomes.com or 800/374-5035
Wayside Gardens @ www.waysidegardens.com or 800/213-0379
White Flower Farm @ www.whiteflowerfarm.com or 800/503-9624

 

A SEED STARTING PRIMER–
Starting your own plants from seed can be both rewarding and frustrating for the beginning gardener. From experience, it’s best to start out slow. This eliminates some of the frustration. Experience will gain you knowledge and confidence. Before starting your seeds, read the packet and get a little basic information. Some seeds are best sown directly in the garden come spring and not started indoors. It’s best to do a little research by going on-line or purchasing a good gardening book. The packets themselves will usually tell you whether to direct sow in the garden or how many weeks before our last frost date to sow indoors. Our last frost date is about May 10. Using a calendar, count back from May 10 and this will be your sow date.

 

One can start seeds on any sunny windowsill and in almost any container. Warmth and moisture are critical in getting most seeds to germinate. But a few pieces of basic and inexpensive equipment purchased at your garden center and/or hardware store will help you get started and make your seed starting experience a great success. Here is a shopping list:

 

*A heating mat–makes seeds germinate quickly and uniformly
*A few 10×20” trays without holes
*A few clear humidity domes
*A sterile seed starting mix
*A 4’ shop lamp w/ 2 fluorescent bulbs (you don’t need “gro-lights”)
or a seed growing rack if you’d like to make an investment
*A few 10×20” trays with holes
*A few sheets of empty cell packs, e.g. 4-packs or 6-packs
*A water mister
*A timer
*A soilless potting mix
All of the above items, except the timer, are available at Klein’s.

 

Again, following package instructions, sow the seeds, as many as you want, in a very shallow, open container, filled with moistened seed starting mix. This container can be anything from very low or cut off dairy containers to disposable food storage containers. Per package instructions, cover or don’t cover the seed. Some seeds require light for germination. Next place your seeded containers in a tray without holes, mist them till well watered and cover with a humidity dome. Place your covered tray on the plugged in heating mat under the shop light. Set your timer so the shop light is on for 13 hours (off for 11 hours).

 

In a few days, as your seeds begin to sprout, remove them from under the humidity dome and place in a well-lit, warm location. Keep your seeds and seedlings moist. Different seeds sprout at different rates so this can take from a few days to a few weeks. Once all your seeds have germinated, unplug your heating mat. You can now move all of your seedlings to under the shop light still set at 13 hours.

 

Once your seedlings have 2 sets of “real” leaves it’s time to “prick them out” (transplant them). Do this by placing a sheet of empty cell packs in a tray with holes. The holes now become necessary for proper drainage. Fill the cells with soilless potting mix and moisten well with the mister. Using a pen or pencil “dibble” a hole into each of the cells. This is where you’ll now place your seedling. Remove the seed starting mix and seedlings as a clump from their starting containers. Gently break apart this root ball, separating your seedlings. The pen or pencil will come in handy as an added tool to help separate the seedlings. Carefully place one seedling in each of the holes you put in the prepped cells. Gently firm in with your finger tips. Mist well to water thoroughly and place in a warm, well lit area. Using your shop light again makes this easy. The seedlings may seem weak and somewhat abused, but they’re very resilient and will pop back quickly. When watering, fertilize your new plants with a very dilute solution, rather than at full rate. By May 10 your flowers and vegetables should be ready to put in your garden and you can say that you did it yourself–beginning to end.

 

BEHIND THE SCENES AT KLEIN’SThis is a sneak peek of what is going on each month behind the scenes in our greenhouses. Many people are unaware that our facility operates year round or that we have 10 more greenhouses on the property in addition to the 6 open for retail. At any given moment we already have a jump on the upcoming season–be it poinsettias in July, geraniums in December or fall mums in May.

 

IN MARCH:
—Transplanting is in full swing on the transplanting line in our back greenhouses.
Employees work 8-10 hour shifts planting thousands of plugs and tiny seedlings into the cell packs you purchase in the spring. Once planted, the flats move by conveyor and then monorail into the various greenhouses, all kept at different temperatures depending on the plant.

 

—The greenhouses and showrooms are filling fast with thousands of hanging
and potted plants. We’re constantly moving product around, trying to make the best use of space.

 

—By the end of the month we’re moving product outside into hoop houses. We move product that is very cold tolerant, such as pansies, dianthus, dusty miller, alyssum and even petunias. The cold keeps them compact and pest free and hardens them off for the transition outside. We also need the room in our ever-filling greenhouses.

 

—Perennial plugs and bare roots arrive and are stepped up into 3 1/2”, quart and gallon sizes. Our perennials are grown quite cold so they invest their energy into rooting out, rather than growing. Plants remain compact. Any remaining perennials from last season are moved outdoors from an unheated greenhouse.

 

—Geraniums are pinched and shaped for the last time by the first week of the
month. Any later pinching will delay blooming too much for spring sales.

 

—Retail items are arriving nonstop for unpacking and pricing, everything from
garden ornaments and pottery to pesticides and fertilizers.

 

PERMANENT FEATURES–
KLEIN’S MONTHLY NEWSLETTER
Have our monthly newsletter e-mailed to you automatically by signing up on the right side of our home page. We’ll offer monthly tips, greenhouse news and tidbits, specials and recipes. . .everything you need to know from your favorite Madison greenhouse. And tell your friends. It’s easy to do.

 

THE MAD GARDENER–“Madison’s Firsthand Source for Expert Gardening Advice”
Ask us your gardening questions by e-mailing us at [email protected]. Klein’s in-house Mad Gardener will e-mail you with an answer as promptly as we can. The link is posted on our home page and in all newsletters.

 

We can only answer those questions pertaining to gardening in Southern Wisconsin and we reserve the right to leave correspondence unanswered at our discretion. Please allow 2-3 days for a response.

 

TO WRITE A REVIEW OF KLEIN’S, PLEASE LINK TO

 

FACEBOOK
Follow Klein’s on Facebook where we post updates and photos on a regular basis.

 

TWITTER
Join Klein’s on Twitter where we post company updates and photos on a regular basis.

 

SENIOR CITIZEN DISCOUNT
We offer a 10% Off Senior Citizen Discount every Tuesday to those 62 and above. This discount is not in addition to other discounts or sales. Please mention that you are a senior before we ring up your purchases. Does not apply to wire out orders or services, i.e. delivery, potting, etc.

 

RECYCLING POTS & TRAYS
Plastic flower pots and garden edging can now be recycled as part of the City of Madison’s rigid plastic program. Flowerpots and edging must be free of dirt and can be placed in your green recycling bin. For more information call 267-2626 or visit www.cityofmadison.com/streets/recycling/plastic.cfm

 

DELIVERY INFO

Klein’s Floral and Greenhouses delivers daily, except Sundays, throughout all of Madison and much of Dane County including: Cottage Grove, DeForest, Fitchburg, Maple Bluff, Marshall, McFarland, Middleton, Monona, Oregon, Shorewood Hills, Sun Prairie, Verona, Waunakee and Windsor. We do not deliver to Cambridge, Columbus, Deerfield or Stoughton.

Current delivery rate on 1-4 items is $7.95 for Madison, Maple Bluff, Monona and Shorewood Hills; $8.95 for Cottage Grove, DeForest, Fitchburg, McFarland, Sun Prairie, Waunakee and Windsor; and $9.95 for Marshall, Middleton, Oregon and Verona. An additional $3.00 will be added for deliveries of 4-10 items and $5.00 added for deliveries of more than 10 items. For deliveries requiring more than one trip, a separate delivery charge will be added for each trip.

 

A minimum order of $25.00 is required for delivery.

We not only deliver our fabulous fresh flowers, but also houseplants, bedding plants and hardgoods. There may be an extra charge for very large or bulky items.

Delivery to the Madison hospitals is $5.95. Deliveries to the four Madison hospitals are made during the early afternoon. Items are delivered to the hospital’s volunteer rooms and not directly to the patients’ rooms per hospital rules.

There is no delivery charge for funerals in the city of Madison or Monona, although normal rates apply for morning funeral deliveries to Madison’s west side (west of Park St.). Our normal rates also apply for funeral deliveries in the surrounding communities at all times. Although we don’t deliver on Sundays, we will deliver funeral items on Sundays at the regular delivery rate.

 

Morning delivery is guaranteed to the following Madison zip codes, but only if requested: 53703, 53704, 53714, 53716, 53718 and Cottage Grove, DeForest, Maple Bluff, Marshall, McFarland, Monona, Sun Prairie, Waunakee and Windsor.

We begin our delivery day at 8:00 a.m. and end at approximately 3:00 p.m. We do not usually deliver after 4:00 unless specific exceptions are made with our drivers.

Except for holidays, the following west-side zip codes and communities are delivered only during the afternoon: 53705, 53706, 53711, 53713, 53717, 53719, 53726, Fitchburg, Middleton, Oregon, Shorewood Hills and Verona.

During holidays (Christmas, Valentine’s Day, Mother’s Day, etc.) we are able to make morning deliveries to all of the above areas. We are not able to take closely timed deliveries on any holiday due to the sheer volume of such requests.

It’s best to give us a range of time and we’ll try our absolute hardest. Orders for same day delivery must be placed by 12:30 p.m. or by 2:30 p.m. for Madison zip codes 53704 and 53714.

 

DEPARTMENT HEADS: Please refer all questions, concerns or feedback in the following departments to their appropriate supervisor.
Phone: 608/244-5661 or 888/244-5661

 

Horticulturalist & General Manager–Jamie VandenWymelenberg [email protected]
Accounts, Billing and Purchasing—Kathryn Derauf [email protected]
Delivery Supervisor & Newsletter Coordinator—Rick Halbach [email protected]
Owner, Floral Designer & Purchasing—Sue Klein [email protected]

 

RELATED RESOURCES AND WEB SITES
University of Wisconsin Extension
1 Fen Oak Ct. #138
Madison, WI 53718
608/224-3700

 

Plant Disease Diagnostics Clinic
Dept. of Plant Pathology
1630 Linden Dr.
Madison, WI 53706

 

Insect Diagnostic Lab
240 Russell Labs
1630 Linden Dr.
Madison, WI 53706

 

U.W. Soil and Plant Analysis Lab
8452 Mineral Point Rd.
Verona, WI 53593
608/262-4364

 

American Horticultural Society

 

Garden Catalogs (an extensive list with links)

 

Invasive Species

 

Community Groundworks
3601 Memorial Dr., Ste. 4
Madison, WI 53704
608/240-0409

 

Madison Area Master Gardeners (MAMGA)

 

Wisconsin Master Gardeners Program
Department of Horticulture
1575 Linden Drive
University of Wisconsin – Madison
Madison, WI 53706
608/265-4504

 

The Wisconsin Gardener

 

Allen Centennial Gardens
620 Babcock Dr.
Madison, WI 53706
608/262-8406

 

Olbrich Botanical Gardens
3330 Atwood Ave.
Madison, WI 53704
608/246-4550

 

Rotary Gardens
1455 Palmer Dr.
Janesville, WI 53545
608/752-3885

 

University of WI Arboretum
1207 Seminole Hwy.
Madison, WI 53711
608/263-7888

 

University of Wisconsin-West Madison
Agricultural Research Center
8502 Mineral Point Rd.
Verona, WI 53593
608/262-2257

 

PLANTS POISONOUS TO CHILDREN:
Children may find the bright colors and different textures of plants irresistible, but some plants can be poisonous if touched or eaten. If you’re in doubt about whether or not a plant is poisonous, don’t keep it in your home. The risk is not worth it. The following list is not comprehensive, so be sure to seek out safety information on the plants in your home to be safe.
•Bird of paradise
•Bull nettle
•Castor bean
•Chinaberry tree
•Crocus
•Daffodil
•Deadly nightshade
•Dieffenbachia (dumb cane)
•Foxglove
•Glory lily
•Hemlock
•Holly berry
•Indian tobacco
•Iris
•Jimsonweed
•Lantana
•Larkspur
•Lily of the valley
•Marijuana
•Mescal bean
•Mexicantes
•Mistletoe
•Morning glory
•Mountain laurel
•Night-blooming jasmine
•Nutmeg
•Oleander
•Philodendron
•Poison ivy
•Poison sumac
•Pokeweed
•Poppy
•Potato
•Privet
•Rhododendron
•Rhubarb
•Water hemlock
•Wisteria

 

PLANTS POISONOUS TO PETS:
Below is a list of some of the common plants which may produce a toxic reaction in animals. This list is intended only as a guide to plants which are generally identified as having the capability for producing a toxic reaction. Source: The National Humane Society website @ http://www.humanesociety.org/
•Aconite
•Apple
•Arrowgrasses
•Autumn Crocus
•Azaleas
•Baneberry
•Bird-of-Paradise
•Black locust
•Bloodroot
•Box
•Buckeye
•Buttercup
•Caladium
•Carolina jessamine
•Castor bean
•Chinaberry tree
•Chockcherries
•Christmas berry
•Christmas Rose
•Common privet
•Corn cockle
•Cowbane
•Cow cockle
•Cowsliprb
•Daffodil
•Daphne
•Day lily
•Delphinium (Larkspur)
•Dumbcane
•Dutchman’s breeches
•Easter lily
•Elderberry
•Elephant’s ear
•English Ivy
•European Bittersweet
•Field peppergrass
•Foxglove
•Holly
•Horsechestnut
•Horse nettle
•Hyacinth
•Iris
•Jack-in-the-pulpit
•Jerusalem Cherry
•Jimsonweed
•Lantana
•Larkspur
•Laurels
•Lily of the valley
•Lupines
•Mayapple
•Milk vetch
•Mistletoe
•Monkshood
•Morning glory
•Mustards
•Narcissus
•Nicotiana
•Nightshade
•Oaks
•Oleander
•Philodendrons
•Pokeweed
•Poinsettia
•Poison hemlock
•Potato
•Rhododendron
•Rhubarb
•Rosary pea
•Sago palm
•Skunk cabbage
•Smartweeds
•Snow-on-the-mountain
•Sorghum
•Star of Bethlehem
•Wild black cherry
•Wild radish
•Wisteria
•Yellow jessamine
•Yew