‘THE SAGE’-Klein’s Online Newsletter—JUNE 2019
Klein’s Floral & Greenhouses
608/244-5661 or [email protected]

 

THIS MONTH’S HIGHLIGHTS:
You’re Invited to a ‘Ladies’ Night Out’ at Klein’s
Our ‘Mad Gardener’ Is Ready for Your Questions
Klein’s 11th Annual Most Beautiful Garden Contest
Grow a Colorful Perennial Cutting Garden
Klein’s Favorite Seed, Bulb & Plant Sources
No “Magic Bullet” To Control Asian Jumping Worms
You Asked the Mad Gardener About Keeping Fountains Clean
Plant of the Month: Angelonia (Summer Snapdragon)
Klein’s Favorite Garden Inspired Cocktail Recipes
Product Spotlight: Fountains From Henri Studios
Notes from Rick’s Garden Journal—From May 2019
—Tips for Harvesting Garden-Fresh Produce
—An Unbelievably Late Spring
—A Fertilizing Regimen for Containers
June 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

 

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.

 

FOR NEIGHBORHOOD EVENTS OR GARDEN TOURS that you would like posted on our web site or in our monthly newsletters, 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 area.

 

JUNE STORE HOURS:
Through June 16:
Monday thru Friday : 8:00-8:00 (Open Tuesdays at 7:00)
Saturday: 8:00-6:00
Sunday: 9:00-5:00

 

After Father’s Day, June 16:
Monday thru Friday : 8:00-6:00
Saturday: 9:00-5:00
Sunday: 10:00-4:00

 

Open Thursday, July 4: 10:00-4:00

 

CALENDAR OF EVENTS:
Throughout June, visit Klein’s and check out our specials on annuals, vegetables, herbs, hanging baskets and containers. Specials and selection change weekly so give us a call for the most up-to-date information at (608) 244-5661 or toll free at 888-244-5661 or on our home page @ www.kleinsfloral.com. We pride ourselves in having the best cared for plants in even the hottest weather and throughout the month we’ll continue to offer a full selection of annuals and perennials.

 

June 14–Flag Day

 

June 16–Father’s Day

 

June 17–Full Moon

 

June 19Annual Ladies’ Night at Klein’s, 4:00-8:00. Come out for a fun-filled night of shopping, refreshments, door prizes and more! The Succulent Bar will be set up for planting succulents in a wine bottle, wine glass or container or your choice. Back by popular demand Kingluv Taco Food Truck will be here selling a scrumptious variety of tacos. The Potting Bench will be well stocked for those that want to plant their containers here (no cost for soil). Sassy Cow Creamery will be here with samples while they last.

 

June 21–First Day of Summer

 

‘THE FLOWER SHOPPE’:

 

Grow a Colorful Perennial Cutting Garden
By Jean M. Fogle

 

Fresh-cut, home-grown flowers transform a house into a home! Cutting armfuls of flowers you grew, and then making arrangements, drying them or giving them away is a true country pleasure. For years, I resisted harvesting flowers from my gardens, afraid I would ruin the wonderful display. The perfect solution was to start a cutting garden.

 

This new garden was fun to plan. I had no reason to worry about the design; I simply planted the flowers in rows for easy plant care and harvest. I didn’t need to worry about color schemes; I could welcome flowers of all colors. Now, spring, summer and fall, I can cut to my heart’s content! If you love flowers in your home, try adding a cutting garden.

 

Where you plan your cutting garden will determine the plants you will be able to use. Check the location to see how much sunlight it receives during the day. If it is sunny in the morning but shady by noon, all but the deepest shade plants will thrive. Hot afternoon sun locations are best for the sun-loving plants. Note if the area holds water or if it drains quickly.

 

Perennials form the backbone of any cutting garden. The plants live and bloom for years but their blooming season is often counted in weeks instead of months. When you begin to plan your garden, don’t forget to check when the plants bloom. Be sure to add spring, summer and fall bloomers to your cutting garden. By staggering the bloom time, you will have plenty of flowers to grace your home.

 

Spring Color for Cutting:
When the snow recedes and the warm winds begin to blow, the spring bloomers brighten the grey landscape. Be sure to plant enough spring flowers to add some cheer to the cool spring days. Early bird bloomers have the shortest bloom times.

 

Lenten Rose (Hellebores)
Often blooming while snow still covers the ground, this tough and tenacious perennial has wonderful flowers. Flowers can be single or double, and come in a large variety of colors including green. Plant these shade lovers in well drained locations for years of blooms. Harvest the flowers when they are just opening. Zones 4 to 9Columbine (Aquilegia)
From April to June, columbines add their special beauty to the garden. The petals have spurs that project behind the flower which gives them an unusual look. For areas of the garden where you need some height, the McKanna’s Giants reach 36 inches and come in a wide array of colors. I love the long strong stem of these for cutting. For a more compact plant, look for the dwarf Dragonfly Hybrids; they only grow 16 inches. In cooler climates the plants can tolerate sun, but require shade in warmer climates, and enjoy rich well drained soils. Cut when the blooms just begin to open. Zones 3 to 9Dianthus
From lowly groundcovers to the taller varieties, dianthus performs well in almost any garden. One whiff of the spicy fragrance and you can understand why the flower is popular in cut arrangements. Dianthus do best in full sun and come in colors ranging from pure white to purple. The lovely grey green foliage makes a nice contrast to the flowers. When the flowers first open is the best time to harvest. Zones 3 to 8

Bleeding Hearts (Dicentra)
Bleeding hearts flowers are always a welcome sight. The stems with dainty hearts delicately dangling in a row make great cut flowers and add a special touch to any arrangement. The common bleeding heart had dark pink flowers and grows to 36 inches. These plants enjoy shady locations with rich moist soil. If you have a sunnier spot, try Dicentra eximia commonly called Fringed Bleeding heart. More compact, growing only 10 to 18 inches , this plant blooms for longer periods of time than common bleeding heart and tolerates some sun. Both types of bleeding hearts are available in white cultivars. Cut bleeding hearts for arrangements when the flowers are open. Zones 4 to 8

Peonies
What would spring be like without fragrant peony flowers? Though their blooming season is short, the big beautiful flowers are a must for any cutting garden. Hardy and easy to grow, peonies enjoy full sun sites, but can tolerate some shade. The colors range from white to red with a few yellow varieties. The double flowers tend to be the most fragrant, but single flowers have a lovely form. Cut theses flowers when they are just opening. Zones 2 to 8

Oriental poppy (Papaver)
Late spring brings the incredibly showy flowers of the oriental poppy. Brilliant colors of the large crepe paper like flowers make these plants a must for a cutting garden. They love full sun and well- drained soil but only bloom a few short weeks. Cut the flowers in the cool morning before the flowers fully open. Zones 3 to 7

Lupine
Lupine’s long spikes of pea-like flowers are held above the plant’s attractive foliage. The flowers come in many colors, including some bi-colors. Lupine grows best in acid soil and likes a shady spot in the garden. Harvest when most of the buds are open. Zones 4 to 8

 

Summer Color:
As the warmer weather of summer approaches, the spring bloomers slip away, replaced by the incredible array of summer bloomers. Just a few of the many to chose from, these are plants that are hardy in most gardens and have a longer bloom time than many summer perennials.

 

Shasta daisy (Leucanthemum)
White daisies compliment any flower arrangement and the perennial Shasta daisies are great bloomers. While most shastas have a short bloom period, ‘Becky’ blooms till frost. This tough plant fills out quickly and produces masses of flowers, making it my all time favorite daisy. As a cut flower it is excellent due to its sturdy stem that holds up well in arrangements. Plant is full sun, and be prepared to share this plant with friends since the clumps will grow quickly. Cut the flowers when they are fully open. Zones 4 to 9Delphinium
The tall stately beauties of the cutting garden, these plants produce masses of flowers. Strong stems make them great cut flowers in arrangements. “Pacific Giants” come in a variety of colors, are mildew resistant and grow around 4 feet tall. Look for ‘Magic Fountains’ if you need a shorter plant. Known best for brilliant blue flowers, they also come in pink, red and white. Plant in full sun and well-drained soil for the best results. Harvest when half of the florets are open. Zones 4 to 8Coneflowers (Echinacea)
Native to the North American plains, coneflowers have lovely flowers with drooping petals. These hardy, adaptable plants produce excellent cut flowers and deserve a place in any cutting garden. The standard coneflower has bright pink flowers, but ‘White Swan’ is an excellent cultivar with white flowers. Exciting new coneflowers varieties now come in shades of mango, orange and gold. Look for ‘Sunrise’, ‘Sunset’, and Sundown’ if you want these colors in your garden. Coneflowers tolerate many different conditions but do enjoy a fair amount of sun, and can be cut at any time. At the end of the season, don’t remove the spent flowers, the birds love the seeds. Zones 2 to 8

Phlox
If fragrance is a must in your garden, be sure to plant phlox! Ranging from white to purple, you are sure to find a phlox that fits your garden needs. Look for varieties resistant to powdery mildew, a common problem of this plant. “David’, has wonderful white flowers and is very disease resistant. ‘Robert Poore’ has rosy purple flowers with strong stems for cutting. Lovely lilac blooms and sweet scent make ‘Franz Schubert’ one of my favorite phlox. When half of the flowers are open is the best time to cut to take in for arrangements. Zones 4 to 8

Russian Sage (Perovskia)
This plant packs a punch! The silvery green foliage contrasts nicely with the lovely spikes of lavender blue flowers and an added bonus is the herb like fragrance of the plant. Russian sage blooms till frost and produces plenty of flowers. Plant size reaches four to five feet tall by three to four feet wide, with an open airy look. Tolerant of poor soil, drought and a range of pH, Russian Sage can grow in a variety of conditions. This plant deserves a sunny place in any cutting garden. Cut when most of the flowers are open. Zones 3 to 9

Coreopsis
For your garden border, try coreopsis. Growing from 8 inches to 2 feet, these sun loving plants produce flowers for a long period of time. Thread leaf coreopsis, has fern like foliage and blooms profusely. The yellow, pink or red flowers are small but the foliage adds a nice texture to an arrangement. Taller growing ‘Early Sunrise’ has large, bright yellow semi-double flowers and is one of my favorite coreopsis. Harvest when the flowers are open. Zones 4 to 9

Blanket flower (Gaillardia)

Easy to grow Blanket flower is a lovely addition to the cutting garden. The daisy like flowers have yellow tips and rust centers and a long bloom time. For dwarf plants look for ‘Goblin’ and ‘Baby Cole’. ‘Burgundy’ is taller and has solid red flowers while Dazzler’ had the bicolor red and yellow flowers. ‘Red Plume’ has a dark red, double flower .Plant them in full sun and well drained soil then sit back and enjoy. Cut the flowers when they are fully open. Zones 2 to 10

 

Fall Bloomers:
When cool weather arrives, the summer perennials decide they are done, and the fall bloomers begin their show.

 

Sneezeweed (Helenium)
Once used in place of snuff to induce sneezing, this wildflower is finding a home in the fall garden. The yellow, orange or red daisylike flowers open in late summer and the plant grows 3 to 5 feet.. This plant is excellent if you have clay soil and enjoys a sunny spot. Cut when the flowers just open. Zones 3 to 9Goldenrod (Solidago)
Because ragweed and goldenrod bloom at the same time, goldenrod has long been wrongly blamed for causing hay fever. This incredible plant is finally getting the respect it deserves in the fall garden. Unlike native goldenrods, the new varieties are more compact and less invasive. ‘Fireworks’ grows three feet and blooms vigoursly till frost .’Golden Fleece’ is a more compact varitiey that grows about 18 inches tall. Give goldenrod plenty of sun and once they are established, they are tolerant of drought. Cut these flowers when some of the florets are just opening. Zones 2 to 9Asters
In shades of pink, red, purple, blue and white, these delicate daisy-like blossoms add punch to the autumn garden. There is an abundance of varieties available, with dwarf plants and ones that grow 3-5 feet. I particularly love the dark purple of the ‘Purple Dome’ and the brilliant red of ‘Winston Churchill’. The airy foliage is a nice contrast to the flowers and helps fill in fall bouquets. Give them a sunny site and enjoy the show. Cut the flowers when most of the flowers are open. Zones 4 to 9

Turtle head (Chelone)
Don’t let the name of this perennial put you off! Nick-named for blossoms shaped like turtles heads, this plant adds a lot of interest to the fall garden. Coming in shades of white, pink or red, turtle head has attractive foliage and generally, the plant is 3 feet tall and 2 feet wide. Partial shade to full sun and a consistently moist to wet, organic soil are ideal conditions for growth. Cut the flowers when they are just opening. Zones 2 to 9

Toad Lily (Tricyrtis)
Here is another lovely plant with a less than desirable name. The speckled pink flowers look like orchids and rise above lovely foliage. New varieties include those with variegated foliage and a few even have yellow flowers. ‘Miyazaki’ and ‘Amethystina’ are nice varieties. Plant toad lilies in moist but well-drained soil in part to full shade. To bring the flowers in for arrangements, pick when buds show color and are just beginning to open. Zones 4 to 9

Japanese Anemone
Tall and stately, the anemones add pink or white flowers to the fall garden. An excellent selection is ‘Honorine Joubert’. This vigorous plant grows up to five feet and produces masses of single white flowers. ‘Max Vogel’ is another tall plant with single pink flowers. Where you need a shorter plant, look for ‘Prince Henry’. It only reaches two feet and had semi-double flowers that are rosy pink. Japanese anemones need well draining soil and shade. Cut the flowers as the buds open. Zones 5 to 8

Sedum (Stonecrop)

Sedum makes a great cutting garden plant. It requires minimal attention and is drought tolerant. ‘Autumn Joy’ is the traditional variety but newer varieties such as ‘Bertram Anderson, ‘Brilliant’ and ‘Matrona’ are excellent choices. Give sedum full sun and well drained soil and sit back and enjoy the show. Cut when most of the florets are open. Zones 3 to 9

 

 

YOU ASKED THE MAD GARDENER . . .
I love the sound of moving water as I relax on my patio. For that reason I have three lovely fountains spread around my small backyard. I know keeping them clean is important. Any tips? Celeste

 

How to Clean & Maintain Outdoor Fountains
by Amelia Allonsy

 

The sound of trickling water from a fountain adds a sense of tranquility to your outdoor space. Available in a wide range of sizes, outdoor water fountains rely on submersible water pumps to constantly circulate the water in the fountain, preventing algae buildup and stagnation. Even with a constantly running water pump, however, your fountain can accumulate mineral deposits and debris, requiring regular cleaning and maintenance to keep it operating smoothly.

 

1. Check the water level frequently and add more water as needed, making sure to keep the water pump covered with water at all times. Use distilled water, if possible, to reduce the amount of mineral buildup in the fountain and on the water pump.

 

2. Remove debris, such as leaves, twigs and insects, from the water several times a week, using a small net. Check the water pump to remove any debris that might clog it, preventing it from circulating water properly.

 

3. Unplug the pump and drain the water from the fountain at least once monthly or when the water appears dirty. Most fountains have a small plug on the bottom to make draining easy, otherwise scoop or siphon the water with a piece of tubing.

 

4. Remove the pump from the fountain and soak in a 50 percent solution of diluted distilled white vinegar to loosen tough mineral stains. Wipe the outside with a soft cloth.

 

5. Remove the pump cover and remove any large debris from the inside with your hands. Use an old toothbrush to clean and remove small deposits of algae and mineral buildup in hard-to-reach areas. Rinse thoroughly and replace the pump cover.

 

6. Scrub the inside of the fountain with a stiff-bristled scrub brush, hot water and mild dish detergent. If needed, use vinegar to soak off mineral stains or baking soda, which acts as a mild abrasive to loosen and lift stains.

 

7. Rinse the inside of the fountain thoroughly, wiping with a rag to ensure the fountain walls are completely free of detergent.

 

8. Replace the plug and fill the fountain with distilled water containing fewer minerals than tap water, if possible. For larger fountains requiring a lot of water, add a few teaspoons of chlorine bleach to tap water or treat the water with a fountain enzyme product designed to prevent mineral and algae buildup. Use only about one teaspoon of bleach for smaller fountains.

 

9. Put the pump back in the water, plug it into an electrical outlet and turn it on to begin circulating the water.

 

10. Drain, clean, disassemble and store your fountain indoors from early fall to spring if you live in an area with frost danger in which you can’t operate the fountain year-round.

 

 

Thanks for your question,
Klein’s Mad Gardener

 

DID YOU KNOW. . .
. . . that there is no “magic bullet” to control invasive Asian jumping worms? (…at least not yet…)

 

Jumping worms, known also as Asian jumping worms, crazy worms, Alabama jumpers and snake worms, are invasive earthworms first found in Wisconsin in 2013. Native to eastern Asia, they present challenges to homeowners, gardeners and forest managers.

 

History
Jumping worms (Amynthas spp.) first arrived in North America sometime in the late 19th century, probably in imported plants and other horticultural and agricultural materials. Since then, jumping worms have become widespread across much of the northeast, southeast and midwestern U.S. In 2013, jumping worms were confirmed for the first time in the upper Midwest, at the University of Wisconsin-Madison Arboretum.

 

Jumping worms aren’t the first invasive earthworms in Wisconsin.

 

Surprisingly, all earthworms in Wisconsin are non-native. There have been no native earthworms in Wisconsin since the last glacier moved through the state thousands of years ago, scouring the landscape down to the bedrock. The familiar earthworms, red worms and night crawlers we see in our gardens and on our fishing hooks originated in Europe, brought here by settlers. Although all earthworms can harm landscapes and forests, jumping worms may pose a bigger threat than European worms.

 

Why jumping worms are a problem
Jumping worms grow more rapidly, reproduce more quickly and consume more nutrients than other earthworms in the state. Once jumping worms become established, they quickly transform soil into dry, granular pellets with a texture like discarded coffee grounds. This altered soil structure is often unaccommodating to ornamental and garden plants, and inhospitable to many native plant species. In many cases, invasive plants thrive where jumping worms live.

 

Identification and biology—

 

Where to look for jumping worms

 

—Jumping worms do not burrow far into soil – they live on the soil surface in debris and leaf litter.
—Look for them in your yard, garden, forest, in mulch, compost, potted plants and other suitable places.

 

What jumping worms look like
—Smooth, glossy dark gray/brown color
—Clitellum*, the lighter colored band, is cloudy-white to gray; completely encircles the body. Its surface is flush with rest of body
—Bodies are firm and not coated in “slime”
—Snake-like movement
—They tend to occur in large numbers; Where there’s one, there are always more

 

The real problem: cocoons
Unlike most other kinds of earthworms, jumping worms are parthenogenic – they self-fertilize and do not need mates to reproduce. Each new generation begins with the production of hardened egg capsules, known as cocoons, that overwinter in the soil to hatch the following spring. Jumping worm cocoons are resistant to cold and drought and are as tiny as mustard seeds. Since they greatly resemble small bits of dirt, they are hard to see and so are often unknowingly moved in soil, mulch, potted plants, etc.

 

Effects—

 

What jumping worms do to the soil
Jumping worms feed ravenously on organic matter in soil, leaf litter and mulch and excrete grainy-looking, hard little pellets that alter the texture and composition of soil.
Besides consuming nutrients that plants, animals, fungi and bacteria need to survive, the resulting soil, which resembles large coffee grounds, provides poor structure and support for many understory plants. Invasive species will move in when native plants die.

 

Management
There is no “magic bullet” to control jumping worms, at least not yet. Management mainly consists of taking precautions to not move them onto your property. If they are already there, you will need to adapt and adjust until there are better control options available.

 

Prevention
Prevention is by far the best approach to jumping worms. Even if jumping worms are on part of your property, take care not to introduce them to uninfested areas.

 

The following simple steps will reduce the spread of jumping worms:
—Educate yourself and others to recognize jumping worms
—Watch for jumping worms and signs of their presence
—Arrive clean, leave clean. Clean soil and debris from vehicles, equipment and personal gear before moving to and from a work or recreational area – they might contain jumping worms or their cocoons
—Use, sell, plant, purchase or trade only landscape and gardening materials and plants that appear to be free of jumping worms
—Sell, purchase or trade only compost and mulch that was heated to appropriate temperatures and duration following protocols that reduce pathogens.

 

What to do if jumping worms are already on your property
—Don’t panic. By taking precautions, you can continue enjoying your yard, trees and garden. Just because you have jumping worms in one part of your property doesn’t mean that they are everywhere. Take precautions to avoid spreading them.
—Remove and destroy jumping worms when you see them. Simply seal them in a bag and throw it in the trash – they will not survive long. Reducing the adult population will eventually reduce the number of egg-carrying cocoons in the landscape.
—Experiment. If necessary, try a variety of plants or consider alternative landscaping in heavily infested parts of your property. Keep a log and share your successes with fellow gardeners.
—Keep your chin up. Research is moving forward to find ways to control jumping worms. Until a solution is found, learn to live with these unwelcome pests.

 

Source: dnr.wi.gov

 

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.

 

WATER FOUNTAINS FROM HENRI STUDIO
‘The Creativity Continues’

 

The soothing sounds of running water has become increasingly popular in Madison area gardens in the past few years and nothing could be easer to maintain or look more stunning than a self contained fountain from Henri Studio. Their elegant designs are craft in cement; making them virtually indestructible and resistant to anything Mother Nature can throw at them. All styles come with a pump and all accessories needed for immediate set up.

 

At Klein’s we currently carry many popular designs in stock. Many are lit with long-lasting LED lights for added nighttime effect. That said, Klein’s is able to order any fountain in the current Henri Studio catalog for pick up at the store or drop shipped to your home for an added fee. Simply contact Kathryn @ 608-244-5661 or [email protected].

 

About Henri Studio:
Over the past 50 years, Henri Studio has become synonymous with excellence in cast stone fountains, statuary and garden décor. Acclaimed worldwide, Henri sets the benchmark for innovative concepts and premium products in a category which it virtually created.

 

Season after season, our flow of original designs in fountains and garden décor has energized the Henri brand. From classic to contemporary, Henri creations are sculpted with an eye for detail and a time-tested sensibility.

 

The artisan’s touch shapes every Henri creation. Each piece is poured by hand in the tradition of meticulous Old World craftsmanship, complemented by our rich, trend-setting finishes. Our fountains are expertly engineered and all Henri products are skillfully made in America.

 

The result is an evolving legacy of beauty. Henri fountains and garden décor continue to enhance distinctive homes and landscapes around the world, adding elegance and enjoyment to your outdoor living experience.

 

Creativity and quality are our passion. And with Henri fountains and garden décor, beauty and elegance are yours to enjoy now, and for years to come.

 

Visit their website at www.henristudio.com for more info and a peek at their catalog.

 

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

 

ENTRY: MAY 12, 2019 (Tips for Harvesting Garden-Fresh Produce)

Going into a new growing season, it’s time to remember a few harvesting tips for all of the fresh garden vegetables we’ll be growing.

When to Harvest Garden-Fresh Produce
By Kris Wetherbee
Source: Mother Earth News @ www.motherearthnews.com

 

The secret to enjoying garden-fresh produce at its prime is knowing when to harvest. If you’ve ever eaten a melon that lacked sweetness or green beans that were fibrous and tough, you know how crucial timing can be. Just as different vegetables have their own distinct needs for planting, fertilizing and growing, each also will give certain clues when it is ready to pick.

 

A few vegetables are very accommodating and can stay in the ground for weeks until you’re ready to eat them. Others need continual picking to ensure ongoing production of a crop, but most have a short window of time during which they can be gathered at peak flavor. After a vegetable passes its prime, it undergoes permanent changes that alter its taste, appearance, quality and, sometimes, its future production. Sugars turn to starches, and the texture becomes mushy, like an overripe melon or chewy green beans.

 

On the other hand, if you pick too soon, you’ll harvest a vegetable that has not had adequate time to develop peak flavor, substance or nutrition.

 

The following is a guide to help you know precisely when your summer and fall fruits and vegetables have reached their peak of perfection and are ready to be picked and eaten.

 

Beans should be checked daily for harvesting. Snap beans/green beans are ready when the pods have filled out but the seeds are still tiny, which, depending on weather conditions, is usually some two to four weeks after bloom. The pods should be firm and crisp, with pliable tips. Pick haricot (French filet) types when the pods are about one-eighth inch in diameter, while they’re still young and very slender.

 

Beets can be picked when the roots are from 1 1/2 to 3 inches in diameter, and most taste best when they are about the size of a ping-pong ball or golf ball. White and golden varieties are tasty and tender until they reach baseball size, but storage (winter-keeping) varieties remain tender until they reach softball size or even slightly larger. When harvested past their prime, beets have a strong taste and a tough, pithy texture.
Broccoli should be harvested when the buds are still tight and before the florets begin opening their yellow flowers. For the first harvest, cut the central stalk at a slant about 5 to 6 inches below the base of the head. This prevents rot and encourages production of new side shoots, which can be harvested at a later date.

 

Brussels sprouts develop a sweet flavor after the plant has gone through a couple of mild frosts. The buds at the base are the first to mature, so pick from the bottom up when sprouts become firm and are about 1 inch in diameter. To encourage larger sprouts, which mature more uniformly, cut the top of the plant back by about 4 inches about four weeks before the harvest is to begin.

 

Cabbage offers some leeway as to when it can be picked at perfection, though larger heads are more likely to split than smaller ones. If a head is threatening to split, twisting it a quarter turn will slow down the splitting. Cabbage heads that have split are still tasty and should be picked; they just won’t store as well as solid heads. Begin harvesting cabbage anytime after developing heads have become solid and firm.

 

Carrots usually hold well in the ground and can be harvested over a long period of time. Begin as soon as the roots color up and grow to from a half to 1 inch in diameter. Continue harvesting until the last frost-sweetened carrots are dug before the ground freezes for winter. Careful digging — rather than pulling — is best as a harvest method; only pull the roots if your soil is extremely friable. The texture of a fresh carrot is at its finest in the young ones, but the sugar content heightens as they mature.

 

Cauliflower is at its best when 6- to 8-inch, fully formed heads are firm and the curds in them are solid. If you wait until after the curds have opened (they resemble rice grains), you have passed the window of opportunity for harvesting optimum-quality heads.

 

Corn should be picked when the kernels have swollen to their maximum juiciness, usually about 20 days after the first silk strands appear. When the silks begin to turn dry and brown, partially peel back the husks and pierce a kernel with your thumbnail. If a milky juice squirts out, the corn is ready to eat. To harvest, snap off the ear by pulling it downward, then twisting and pulling again. If allowed to overripen, corn will loose its sweet flavor and become starchy.

 

Cucumbers grow fast, so check them daily if you plan to keep up with the peak of harvest and ensure continued production. For fresh use, a cucumber should be filled out enough to be crisp and juicy, and should measure from 6 to 9 inches long. For sweet pickles, cucumbers are best harvested when they measure from 1 1/2 to 2 1/2 inches long; for dill pickles, the ideal length is from 3 inches to 4 inches.

 

Eggplant has received a bad rap as a bitter-tasting vegetable because of the oversized fruits often sold in supermarkets. Eggplant past its prime is soft, pithy and laden with seeds, which are what give it the bitter taste. Fruit harvested while still young and firm is actually rather sweet and very tender; that’s when the vegetable measures from 4 inches to 8 inches in length, or about one-third of its mature size. Use strong scissors or pruning shears to harvest the fruit rather than pulling it, which will injure the plant.

 

Kale leaves — a fall green — can usually be harvested about 40 days after planting, although a frost really sweetens and enhances the flavor, so wait until then if you can. Harvest by taking off outer leaves as needed; because the plants are frost-hardy, in mild winter areas, you can pick fresh kale at its prime well into December.

 

Leeks can be pulled from the ground anytime the stem is an inch in diameter or larger. Use them when they are still very small for the mildest, most delicate flavor. Cut off the roots and most of the top green portion before storing in the refrigerator. (Save the green part to use in soup stock.) Many varieties will overwinter in mild climates and remain harvestable into March. After that, they can develop a hard core in the center that will not soften even when cooked.

 

Lettuce can be picked in stages: tiny leaves for a gourmet salad mix or larger leaves for a main dish. For loose-leaf varieties, pick outer leaves as needed, or cut the head an inch aboveground for a cut-and-come-again crop. Butterheads, romaines and crispheads should be harvested when the head begins to form, and — for peak perfection — before the center begins to elongate, which means that the plant is preparing to flower. After that point, the lettuce will taste bitter. For refrigerator storage, run washed leaves through a salad spinner, place in a sealable plastic bag with a paper towel or tea towel, and store in the crisper section of your refrigerator.

 

Melons can be a challenge, but several telltale signs can help you decide when the fruit is perfectly ripe. On some cantaloupes, which may also be called “muskmelons,” “netting” (“venation”) that overlays the skin becomes more pronounced, and the melon will separate easily from the vine when it has fully ripened. True cantaloupes and honeydew-types soften and give slightly to pressure on the blossom end, and the background color will change. Cut these from the vine, as they will not slip from the stem. Pick for optimal quality after the tendril closest to the fruit has turned completely brown. On watermelons, the surface of the fruit loses its gloss, the belly side touching the ground changes from white to creamy yellow, and the tendril turns brown and begins to shrivel. Thumping as a measure of ripeness is a matter of luck; it works for some and not for others. Those who claim the gift say the thump should sound hollow and deep.

 

Onions can be harvested in two stages: the green “scallion” stage or the bulb stage. Green onions are best when tops are 6 to 8 inches tall and stems are the thickness of a pencil. For maximum size and mature bulbs, wait until more than half of the tops have fallen down, then push over the remaining tops. A week later, harvest the bulbs and set them in the sun for a day or two (cover at night). Cure the bulbs with tops intact for about a week in a sheltered, dry area; during this time, the outer layers will form a dry skin. After that, cut the tops about an inch above the bulbs, trim off the roots, and store the onions in a well-ventilated, dry, cool and dark location.

 

Peas are best harvested in the early morning or early evening, but the stage at which to harvest the pods depends on the type. Snap peas and snow peas are both eaten pod and all. For best flavor, pick snap peas when plump and well-colored but not as fully filled as garden peas. Pick snow peas before the pods fill out, when they are young, tender and thin. In contrast, garden peas, often referred to as “shell peas,” are ready to harvest and shell when the pods are bright green and fully filled. Then, the peas inside are sweet, plump and tender — a true taste treat of the early summer garden.

 

Peppers can be harvested anytime in the immature green stage — the more you pick, the more your plant will produce. However, for a fully flavored and sweet pepper, wait until it changes color. (Some varieties turn red, others gold, some yellow and still others orange.) Hot peppers also usually take on more flavor when their color changes as they mature.

 

Potatoes give an easy signal as to when they’re ready to harvest: Their tops die down. About two weeks after that happens, dig the potatoes; the delay gives them time to toughen their skins for long-term storage. You can leave potatoes in the ground longer — just be sure to dig them before rain or frost sets in. Carefully dig tubers with a spading fork, allow them to dry for a few hours in the sun, and then cure them for about two weeks at 50 to 60 degrees Fahrenheit in a sheltered, well-ventilated, high-humidity area. After they have been cured, potatoes store best at 40 to 50 degrees.

 

Summer squash is at its best if harvested on the small side, while skins are still tender. For zucchini, straightneck types and crookneck types, harvest when fruits are 4 to 8 inches in length; for pattypan varieties, up to 3 inches in diameter. Don’t let your squash get too big, or the plant’s production will falter.

 

Tomatoes are tops if picked between the semi-firm and semi-soft stages, when the fruits are fully colored (whether gold, pink, orange, red, black or white). Second best is to pick fruits a few days early and allow them to finish ripening indoors, a great option when temperatures are too hot or frost threatens. Tomatoes are best stored at temperatures higher than 50 degrees — never in the refrigerator, which will turn their texture to mush.

 

Winter squash that passes the thumbnail test (the skin should resist puncture from your thumbnail) usually is fully ripe and ready to harvest. The stem hardens and the skin color deepens: Spaghetti squash turns a mellow golden yellow, butternut deepens to a subtle orange-tan, and a splotch of orange-yellow will often appear on the underside of acorn, delicata and buttercup types. Most winter squash will keep up to four months after harvest if you follow these tips: Harvest after the first light frost to enhance sweetness but before a hard frost; never handle squash by the stem (fruits can rot in just a few weeks after the stem breaks); cut — don’t pull — squash from the vine, and leave 2 inches of the stem attached; wipe off any dirt but don’t get the fruits wet; cure fruits in a warm place (80 to 85 degrees is ideal) for a couple of weeks. Once cured, store in a cool, dry location at 50 to 55 degrees.

 

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ENTRY: MAY 23, 2019 (An Unbelievably Late Spring)
This has been one of the more fascinating springs in the garden that I can remember. Both April and May have been extremely cool. And though probably a few weeks behind, my garden is almost more beautiful than ever. Whereas the days have been cool, the nighttimes have been relatively mild. Though threatened, I’ve had no frost in my garden since mid-April. Plants whose bloom periods seldom overlap are now blooming simultaneously creating a stunning effect. The cool weather has allowed early spring blooms to last longer as the late spring bloomers are now beginning to open. The first peony just popped while tulips and bluebells are still putting on their show. The cool weather has kept plants shorter and more compact, helping them to stand up to winds and rain much better. My Globemaster, Gigantium and Gladiator allium stalks are thick and stocky. The alliums are all blooming simultaneously this year, rather than being staggered over a three week period. It’s quite a show.

 

And just last Sunday the male wren in the yard began his early morning serenade. Without the male’s song, I was beginning to wonder if a family was going to build in one of my houses this season. It would have been the first season in twenty-five or more years without the song of a wren waking me up each morning. Thank goodness he finally decided to make his debut–nearly a month later than in 2018!

 

* * * * *

 

ENTRY: MAY 31, 2019 (A Fertilizing Regimen for Containers)
One of the more common questions I’m asked as neighbors and friends visit my garden is how I can possibly keep all of my containers looking so healthy from spring until fall. My simple answer is FERTILIZE, FERTILIZE & FERTILIZE! Starting about now each year I begin a rigid schedule of fertilizing all of my containers every two weeks (give or take a few days depending on the weather). Many experts recommend weekly fertilizing, but with experience, I’ve found every second week to be adequate. The key to my success is using a calendar or my garden journal in planning the fertilizing schedule. Doing so ensures that I actually do this most important of garden tasks.

 

I fertilize my containers in a rotating cycle of three beginning in early June using a water soluble, all-purpose fertilizer like Jack’s or similar. An all-purpose fertilizer is higher in nitrogen to promote vigorous and rich green growth. It’s very important to closely follow the recommended rates on the box for outdoor plants. Different brands use different rates.

 

I repeat the process again two weeks later–again, using the all-purpose to encourage strong new growth. But every third watering I now use one of three fertilizers based on the plant being fertilized and intended results.

 

For my foliage containers (coleus, palms, elephant’s ears, bananas, houseplants, etc.), I continue using an all-purpose fertilizer for vigorous growth and healthy color.

 

For the vast majority of my blooming containers (and vegetables), I now use a high in phosphorous “bloom booster” for added flower power, making sure to closely follow the instructions. Without a bloom booster, flowering typically slows for most annuals as the summer progresses and as the plant spends its energy.

 

However, or my petunias, calibrachoas, gerbers and certain other plants that tend to yellow, I instead use a fertilizer higher in acid or Jack’s Petunia Food. For these plants, the acid in the fertilizer helps prevent bare and woody stems and the typical yellowing foliage as the season progresses.

 

In two weeks, the cycle begins again until about mid-September.

 

As an added note, I’ve found that fertilizing is most effective if the soil is slightly moist. Not only do the plants take up the fertilizer more quickly and efficiently, but less is wasted. If the soil is overly dry, much of the fertilizer is lost as the water quickly runs through and out of the pots.

 

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

 

Garden inspired cocktails, anyone? Cheers!!

 

WATERMELON CUCUMBER TONIC–From Cooking Light magazine, July 2009.
For 8 drinks:
6 cups cubed watermelon, divided
1/4 cup mint leaves, divided
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice, divided
3 cups peeled and sliced cucumber, divided (English type works best)
2 1/2 cups chilled tonic water
1 1/4 cups gin

 

Combine half of each: the watermelon, mint, lemon juice and cucumber in a blender and blend. Strain into a bowl through 4 layers of cheese cloth lining a sieve. Squeeze out all of the juice. Repeat the process with the other half of the ingredients. Discard the solids remaining in the cheese cloth. Combine 2 1/2 cups of the juice mix, the tonic and the gin, stirring well. Reserve the rest of the juice for the next round of cocktails or for another use. Serve over ice.

 

TRIPLE BERRY MARGARITAS–From Bon Appetit magazine.
3 x 1/2 pint containers of blackberries (3 cups)
1 x 1/2 pint container of raspberries (1 cup)
1/2 cup fresh lime juice
2/3 cup sugar
1 1/2 cups gold tequila
2/3 cup Grand Marnier
2 x 1 pint containers strawberries (4 cups), sliced and frozen for 1 hour
5 cups ice

 

Puree the blackberries, raspberries and lime juice in a blender until smooth. Strain through a mesh sieve into a large measuring container. Add the sugar and stir until dissolved. Refrigerate at least 1 hour or up to a day. Mix the tequila and Grand Marnier into the berry puree. Transfer half of the mixture to the blender. Add half of the frozen strawberries and 2 1/2 cups ice. Blend until smooth. Transfer to a pitcher and repeat with the rest of the puree, strawberries and ice. Pour into margarita glasses rimmed with lime juice and sugar. Serve with lime slices. Makes 8-10 drinks.

 

CUCUMBER YUM YUM–From Bon Appetit magazine.
Per two drinks:
12 x 1/8” thick English cucumber slices, divided
10 fresh raspberries, divided
1/4 cup gin
1/4 cup honey
2 TBS. aquavit
2 TBS. fresh lime juice

 

With a wooden spoon, mash 10 slices cucumber and 8 raspberries in a shaker. Add the gin, honey, aquavit and lime juice. Shake hard 20 times. Fill two old-fashioned glasses with crushed ice. Strain the drinks into the glasses, dividing equally. Garnish with remaining cucumber slices and raspberries.

 

FENNEL CRUSHES–From the pages of Rachel Ray’s magazine, November 2007.
1/4 cup fresh fennel, coarsely chopped
1/4 tsp. crushed fennel seed
Ice
3 oz. to 1/4 cup + 2 TBS. gin
2 oz. to 1/4 cup anise liqueur, i.e. Pernod
1/4 cup fresh orange juice

 

Add fennel and seeds to a shaker and muddle with a wooden spoon. Fill the shaker halfway with ice cubes. Add the gin, anise liqueur and juice. Shake 10 seconds and strain into two ice-filled glasses.

 

MINT MARGARITAS–From Cooking Light magazine, July 2008.
1 cup sugar
1 cup packed mint leaves
2 cups water
3/4 cup tequila, divided
1/2 cup fresh lime juice (about 4 limes)
2TBS. Grand Marnier
3-4 dashes bitters

 

Combine the sugar, mint, water and 1/2 cup tequila in a saucepan. Cook on medium heat 3 minutes or until tiny bubbles form around the edge of the pan. Remove from the heat and allow to steep for 15 minutes. Strain and discard the mint. Stir in the lime juice, Grand Marnier and the remaining 1/4 cup tequila. Cool to room temperature and add the bitters. Place the mixture in a ziplock bag, seal and freeze for 2 hours. (The tequila will separate out.) Knead the bag to combine the ingredients and pour into margarita glasses dipped into lime juice and then dipped into a salt/sugar combination. Serves about 4.

 

NATURAL NEWS–

 

8 Common Herbs That Make Any Meal Instantly Healthier
You don’t need supplements to boost your mineral intake—just grow herbs!
By Emily Main

 

What’s the quickest way to load your dinner down with antioxidants? Add oregano. Need more iron? Add lavender. If you’re not cooking with fresh herbs, you’re missing out nature’s real miracles, tiny taste-enhancers loaded with compounds that add antioxidants and vital minerals to every dish, and some that can even cut down on toxic chemicals that form while cooking. Even if you don’t care about nutrition, they’ll all help you make totally killer meals sure to impress anyone.

 

Thyme:
One of the most commonly used medicinal herbs, thyme has been used for everything from killing germs to curing colds. But don’t just relegate it to your medicine cabinet. Two teaspoons of the herb pack in nearly 20 percent of your daily requirement for iron, and it’s also rich in manganese, a mineral that boosts brain function and aids in healthy bone, skin, and cartilage formation.

 

Parsley:
Two tablespoons of fresh parsley will provide more than 150 percent of your daily requirement for vitamin K, which plays an important role in blood clotting, proper bone formation, and liver function. A super side benefit of eating parsley is that the herb’s odor-beating chlorophyll will freshen your breath—which might spice things up in your bedroom. The ancient Greeks utilized parsley as an aphrodisiac.

 

Lemongrass:
This aromatic, citrusy grass is probably best known for its prevalence in Southeast Asian cuisine. And exotic lemongrass—which derives its flavor and scent from the same compound found in lemon zest—is not only a great addition to recipes, but also is prized in natural medicine for its ability to relieve fever, muscle cramps, upset stomachs, and headaches. It’s loaded with antioxidants, as well, which help protect against oxidative stress, one of the leading causes of heart disease and cancer. Studies have also found that lemongrass contains antimicrobial properties that fight E. coli.

 

Oregano:
If you use only one herb in your cooking, make it oregano. This potent herb (which some chefs think actually tastes better dried) contains up to 20 times more cancer-fighting antioxidants than other herbs, on average, and holds its own against fruit, as well. According to USDA researchers, 1 tablespoon of fresh oregano has the same antioxidant power as an entire apple. And gram for gram, the herb has twice the antioxidant activity of blueberries.

 

Rosemary:
Who doesn’t love a good grilled steak? But exposing meat (red or white) to the hot flames of a grill leads to the formation of heterocyclic amines (HCAs), carcinogenic compounds created when meats are barbecued or grilled. Add rosemary, though, and that doesn’t happen, according to researchers from the University of Arkansas, Iowa State University, and Kansas State University, who found that cooking meats with rosemary could lower the levels of HCAs by 60 to 80 percent.

 

Cilantro:
Love it or hate it, you may want to make sure you always throw a few sprigs of cilantro into your next chicken dish. Researchers from the University of California have found that a compound in cilantro called dodecenal is nearly twice as effective at killing salmonella bacteria (commonly found in raw meats) as commercial antibiotics, and they isolated a dozen other antibiotic compounds that were also effective at killing other foodborne bacteria. Those same compounds were also found in coriander, the spice made from seeds of the cilantro plant.

 

Sage:
This strong-flavored herb is an antioxidant powerhouse, ranking just behind oregano in terms of antioxidant content, and this herb, widely used in herbal and traditional cures, boosts your brain power. In a study published in the journal Pharmacological Biochemical Behavior, 45 adults were given either a placebo or varying levels of the essential oils found in sage. Those receiving even the lowest levels of sage oils had better memory and subject recall, based on cognitive tests, than people taking a placebo. If you’re a local-food addict, try pineapple sage, a variety you can grow in your back yard that tastes and smells just like the tropical fruit but without the food miles.

 

Peppermint:
Peppermint does more than just dress up a cocktail or freshen your breath. It ranks third, behind sage and oregano, in terms of antioxidant content, and it might actually keep you skinny. Simply smelling mint can reduce cravings, so much so that a study from Wheeling Jesuit University in West Virginia found that people who sniffed peppermint every 2 hours for a week consumed 2,800 fewer calories that week than non-peppermint-sniffers.

 

Please note that all of the above herbs are available at Klein’s.

 

JUNE’S PLANT OF THE MONTH:

 

Angelonia (Summer Snapdragon)
Until not that many years ago, this plant didn’t appear in any gardening books. Just 20 years ago angelonia was unheard of. That seems hard to believe nowadays in that there are few easier to grow annuals that relish Wisconsin’s summer heat. Today, angelonia is available at nearly all garden centers and has become a commonplace annual in area gardens. These sturdy, upright and very fragrant plants appear in shades of blue, purple, pink white and bicolors. Cascading varieties have become available for hanging baskets and window boxes and a variety grown from seed appeared on the market about five years back.

 

The first angelonias sold at garden centers in the late 1990’s were rather unreliable. They were susceptible to fungal problems when conditions were wet and humid. Once breeding breakthroughs lessened that problem and vegetatively propagated plants became available sales skyrocketed. Angelonias are bothered by few insect pests and are attractive to bees and beneficial insects.

 

Angelonias are native to Mexico and the West Indies. They are distantly related to snapdragons and diascia. The most commonly available varieties include AngelMist, Angelface and Serena (the seed grown variety). Angleonias perform well in beds and containers alike and thrive in full sun. They do not need to be deadheaded and plants remain tidy all summer long with minimal care. Once established, angelonia is extremely drought tolerant. Plants grow to 1-2’ and are very frost sensitive.

 

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.

 

Guided Garden Strolls
Sundays, May 5 thru October 13, 1:30-3:00

 

Get an insider’s view of Olbrich’s outdoor gardens during a free guided garden stroll. All ages are welcome for this casual overview of the Gardens. Guided garden strolls will vary somewhat according to the season to reflect the garden areas that are at peak interest.

 

Strolls start and end in the lobby near the Garden entrance and are about 45 to 60 minutes in length. No registration is required; strolls are drop-in only. Strolls are held rain or shine and will be cancelled only in the event of dangerous lightning.

 

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

 

Garden Excursion
Sunday, June 2, 1:30 pm – 2:30 pm
Walk

 

Learn about Arboretum history, land, and science on a gently paced walk in the gardens. This new monthly stroll offers a multigenerational learning experience on the first Sunday of each month, April–October. Free, no registration required. Meet at the Visitor Center.

 

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

 

Spring Herbal Medicine/Wild Edible Walk
Sunday, June 9, 10:00-12:30
Location: Willy East Community Room and Jenifer Street

 

Instructor: Linda Conroy
Fee: $20 for Owners; $30 for non-owners

 

Join herbalist and forager Linda Conroy to explore the wild plants that grow around us. We will learn about common and uncommon wild plants that can be used for food and medicine. Identification techniques, as well as ways to prepare plants for optimal nutrition and healing, will be discussed. Dress appropriately for the weather and wear comfortable walking shoes. Meet in the Community Room; the tour leaves promptly at 10:00am.

 

Payment is required at registration; please register by stopping at the Willy East Customer Service desk or by calling 608-251-6776.

 

Willy Street Co-op East
1221 Williamson St.
Madison, WI 53703
(608) 251-6776

 

Madison Rose Society Rose Show
Sunday, June 16, 12:00-4:00
Free Admission

 

The Madison Rose Society hosts this indoor exhibit of cut roses and arrangements in all sizes and colors. Members of the Rose Society will be available to answer questions. Stroll through Olbrich’s two acre Rose Garden. For more info call 608-634-2146.

 

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

 

2019 Summer Concert Series at Olbrich Gardens
Enjoy the evening with a concert on the Great Lawn of Olbrich’s outdoor gardens. Bring a lawn chair or blanket. Picnics are allowed in the Gardens for Tuesday concerts only. Hot dogs and brats available for purchase from the Madison East Kiwanis Club. In case of rain, concerts will be held indoors. Olbrich’s Summer concerts are Tuesdays, June 18 – August 13 at 7 p.m. A $2 admission donation is suggested.

 

Olbrich Concerts in the Gardens 2019 Schedule:
(All concerts are on Tuesdays at 7 p.m.)

 

June 18
The Rascal Theory—Rock / Soul / Blues / Funk

 

June 25
Bosky Point—Alt-Rock / Soul

 

July 2
Gin, Chocolate & Bottle Rockets—Pop-Rock

 

July 9
Down From The Hills—Bluegrass

 

July 16
Mal-O-Dua—Hot Hawaiian & French Guitar

 

July 23
Proud Parents—Power Pop Rock

 

July 30
Panchromatic Steel—Island Music

 

August 6
Madison Public Library’s Summer Reading Club Concert

 

August 13
Fresco Opera-Opera Made Fresh. Live opera performances in different locations throughout the Gardens. Stand and stroll concert viewing; no seating provided.

 

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

 

What’s Blooming?
Wednesday, June 19, 7:00 p.m.
Native Plant Garden Tour

 

Join Susan Carpenter, Arboretum native plant gardener, to find, compare, and learn about flowers on native trees, shrubs, and herbaceous plants. Meet at the Visitor Center.

 

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

 

A Prairie in Bloom
Sunday, June 23, 1:30-3:30
Family Nature Program

 

Many flowers are blooming on our Wisconsin prairies in late June. Walk through the world-renowned Curtis Prairie and learn more about flowering prairie plants. Naturalist-led hike, 1:30–2:30 p.m., indoor activities, 2:30–3:30 p.m. Free, no registration required. Meet at the Visitor Center.

 

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

 

2019 Summer Sundays: Concerts in the Garden at Allen Centennial Garden
Add a little bit of musical enjoyment to your Sunday afternoons this summer with Summer Sundays: Concerts in the Garden. This concert series will feature some of the best musical groups in Madison ranging from classical to jazz chamber music. The concerts will be held alternating Sunday afternoons starting June 23 and ending September 1, from 5-6:15 p.m.

 

This event is free and open to the public. Brought to you by the Friends of Allen Centennial Garden.

 

June 23
Tony Castaneda Latin Jazz Band
Voted Madison’s Best and Favorite latin jazz group multiple times, the Tony Castañeda Latin Jazz Band has been honoring and keeping alive the latin jazz tradition for over 10 years, playing the music of the Golden Age of Latin Jazz (1940’s-1960’s). The Afro-Cuban jazz arrangements of that period, presented in the traditional blend of congas, keyboards, horns, timables and hand percussion, are timeless, seductive, and infectious.

 

July 7
Gerri DiMaggio World Jazz Unit
As original as it is enticing, Gerri’s music is a sultry mix of Brazilian Jazz along with a fresh blend of jazz standards. Her seductive sound invites the audience into her own creative and colorful world. “DiMaggio has a deliciously husky insinuatingly sexy delivery with just the right touch of parlando.”

 

July 21
Dave Larson Quintet
This classic combo anchors its repertoire in jazz standards from the 1950-60’s, featuring innovative arrangements adapted for the group. Tight horns and sizzling rhythm section turn in a high energy show with a few soulful ballads to mix it up.

 

August 4
Tommy Mattioli with Mambo Blue
Vibe virtuoso and Madison native Tommy Mattioli returns from New York to join Mambo Blue, Madison’s class Cal Tjader-styled quintet that blends colorful orchestrations with infections Latin rhythms to offer a sizzling set of steamy and evocative Latin jazz.

 

August 18
Gaines & Wagoner (aka The Stellanovas)
An eclectic mix of Americana—original and classic tunes ranging from folk to jazz, bluegrass to blues, honky-tonk and a little singer-songwriter. Jazz fiddle, old-time duo vocals, a jangle of acoustic strings, heart-stopping jazz ballads – Gaines & Wagoner resist classification. With Doug Brown (guitar) and Eric Radloff (drums).

 

September 1
Golpe Tierra
The irresistible acoustic groove of Golpe Tierra again kicks off Summer Sundays 2019! Nick Moran, Juan Tomas Martinez, Tony Barba, and Richard Hildner make up this guerrilla-style ensemble, employing the traditional Afro-Peruvian guitar-bass-cajón set-up. The group embarks on a musical journey throughout Latin-America, flirting with blues, jazz, and shades of soul. This uniquely- presented original and traditional music is sure to get you out of your seat to dance!

 

Allen Centennial Gardens
620 Babcock Dr. on the University of WI campus, Madison
608/576-2501 or allencentennialgarden.org for details.

 

Rio Home and Garden Tour
Friday, June 28, 4:00-8:00
Saturday, June 29, 9:00-4:00

 

Tour eight gardens in the village of Rio and surrounding countryside to benefit the Rio Community Library. Included are the library garden and two others in town plus five gardens in the country. Our gardens range greatly in size and style and include some innovative gardening techniques. Tickets ($8.00) can be purchased at the library, 324 W. Lyons St. in advance or on the days of the tour. Lunch will be available at the library from 11:30 am – 1:30 pm for $6.00. You may also purchase raffle tickets for the chance to win a beautiful quilt made by the Rio Quilt Guild. Contact the library 920-992-3206 for further information. Sponsored by the Blooming Buddies Garden Club and Rio Area Library Friends. A member of the South Central Library System.

 

Spring Herbal Medicine/Wild Edible Walk
Saturday, June 29, 10:00-12:30
Location: 4864 Pheasant Branch Conservancy Springs, Middleton

 

Instructor: Linda Conroy
Fee: $20 for Owners; $30 for non-owners

 

Join herbalist and forager Linda Conroy to explore the wild plants that grow around us. We will learn about common and uncommon wild plants that can be used for food and medicine. Identification techniques, as well as ways to prepare plants for optimal nutrition and healing, will be discussed. Dress appropriately for the weather and wear comfortable walking shoes. This class will take place at Pheasant Branch Conservancy, 4864 Pheasant Branch Road, Middleton. Meet in the Conservancy parking lot; the tour leaves promptly at 10:00am.

 

Payment is required at registration; please register by stopping at the Willy West Customer Service desk or by calling 608-284-7800.

 

Willy Street Co-op West
6825 University Ave.
Middleton, WI 53562
(608) 284-7800

 

Dane County Farmer’s Market
Saturdays, April 13 thru November 16, 6:15-1:45
On the Capitol Square

 

Wednesdays, April 17 thru November 6, 8:30-1:45
In the 200 block of Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd.

 

For details visit www.dcfm.org

 

Northside Farmers Market
Sundays, May 5 through October 20, 8:30-12:30
In the Northside TownCenter at the intersection of N. Sherman Ave. and Northport Dr. across from Warner Park.

 

The Northside Farmers Market is a nonprofit community enterprise. It is one of the newest and fastest growing farmers’ markets in Dane County. In keeping with the innovative spirit of Madison’s Northside, we are surpassing what defines the traditional farmers’ market. Our fundamental principles include:

 

–Providing an abundant selection of high quality, locally grown foods.
The market accepts Quest, WIC and Senior FMNP vouchers.

 

–Supporting our local agricultural entrepreneurs who are increasingly important today in ensuring that we have the best and safest food possible.

 

–Educating the community about traditional foods and the history of local agriculture in an attempt to preserve (and expand upon) our rich heritage.

 

–Promoting nutrition and the market by hosting dinners for neighborhood groups and seniors.

 

Parking is always FREE!

 

 

JUNE IN THE GARDEN-A checklist of things to do this month.
___By early June, finish planting all annuals and vegetables.
___By early June, move all houseplants out that spend the summer outdoors.
___In early June give all beds a thorough weeding for easier follow-up.
___June is a great month to plant perennials, trees and shrubs.
___Prune evergreens.
___Prune hard any spring flowering shrubs like forsythia, quince, etc.
___Mulch beds to conserve moisture and keep down weeds.
___Begin deadheading spent blooms as needed.
___Remove yellowed foliage of spring tulips, daffodils, etc.
___Begin staking and supporting tall plants as needed.
___Begin your fertilizing regimen. Regular fertilizing makes for healthy plants.
___Order spring bulbs from catalogs while your memory is still fresh.
___Keep and eye on the weather. Water as needed.
___Watch for pests and control as needed or desired.
___Begin seeding cole crops for fall harvest. Also sow pansies and wallflowers.
___Pinch hardy mums until July 4 for bushier less floppy plants.
___Visit Klein’s—Watch for end of season savings on annuals and perennials.

 

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

 

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 JUNE:
—The back greenhouses are nearly empty of product. We’ve had another successful season. This is the time to plan for next spring–while our memories are still fresh: How can we improve in 2020? Which plants did we run out of too early? How was staffing?

 

—Watering is a nonstop endeavor. On hot, windy days, we no sooner finish the first round, when we have to start all over again. Some plants in our retail areas may need watering 3 or 4 times in a single day! You wouldn’t do this at home, but customers don’t like to see wilted plants. It’s not harmful for us to let them wilt a bit, but it makes for bad presentation.

 

—We continue to plant some annuals, hanging baskets and containers for summer sales. Our summer “Jumbo Pack” program is under way.

 

—Fall mums and asters are stepped up into larger tubs and containers for fall sales.

 

—We begin prepping some of the back greenhouses for the arrival of poinsettia plugs in just a few weeks.

 

—Our employees breathe a sigh of relief and spend some much needed downtime with family and friends.

 

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