Archive: February 2017
If you have a bad case of spring fever and really want to stretch every last penny this month… a visit to the WPT Garden Expo may be the cure!
Make plans to join Avant Gardening and Landscaping at the 2016 Wisconsin Public Television Garden Expo February 10th-12th at the Alliant Energy Center in Madison. This event is sure to get you ready for all your spring gardening and landscaping adventures and with so many offerings it’s sure to please everyone in the family.
For more information and to pre-purchase tickets visit: www.wigardenexpo.com
A day at the Garden Expo costs $8 (in advance) and the list of fun things to do throughout the weekend is endless. Here’s a quick look at our team’s top 5 reasons to visit:
1. 150+ FREE EDUCATIONAL SEMINARS & DEMONSTRATIONS
If that’s not enough to get your gardening soul excited, we don’t know what will! There’s a huge variety of topics from beekeeping to landscape design. Becky Kielstrup, Avant Gardening’s General Manager/Horticulturalist, will also be presenting! Be sure to check out her seminar, especially if you are interested in reducing or eliminating pesticides and inorganic fertilizers in the landscape. She will discuss organic lawn care, sustainable planting bed methods, native plants, integrated pest management and simple tips on how to begin!
Organic Landscape Maintenance Practices
When: Saturday 11:45am – 12:30pm Location: Waubesa/Kegonsa OR Sunday 12:45pm – 1:30pm
2. EXCITING RAFFLE PRIZES
Need a new outdoor grill, gardening tools or maybe a whole new garden? Try your luck in the Garden Expo Raffle. This year, Avant Gardening & Landscaping has donated a gift certificate towards a Perennial Collection, a great prize whether you’re an established gardener or just starting out.
3. INDOOR FARMER’S MARKET
Back by popular demand, the second annual Farmers’ Market! It will feature farmers, food artisans and local food retailers. Products available include pickles and preserves, artisan cheeses, honey, olive oil, tea, chocolate, greens, coffee, and hand-crafted salami and cured meats. Stop by the expo on Sunday, February 12 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and visit the Atrium of the Exhibition Hall to do some shopping!
4. BOTANICAL THEMED CRAFT COCKTAILS
New this year – on Friday from 5-8 p.m. in the central garden there will be botanical-themed craft cocktails offered, developed by mixologists from Graze. A little cost but hey, when in Rome… View the cocktail menu here.Take some time to enjoy the beautiful plant and flower display put together by members of the Wisconsin Nursery and Landscaping Association (WNLA) and enjoy music from jazz pianist Dave Stoler, a featured member of the Tony Castaneda Latin Jazz Sextet.
5. SHARE IDEAS & GET INSPIRATION
Avant Gardening and Landscaping will be one of the hundreds of businesses, contractors, nonprofits, and artists on hand, ready to answer any of your questions throughout the weekend. Get new ideas about gardening, landscaping and local food production. You can even talk directly with experts from UW-Extension Horticulture and many local Botanical Gardens.
If money is really that tight – you can always get in free (and even FREE parking). For Garden Expo volunteer opportunities, visit Wisconsin Public Television’s Volunteer website to browse available positions and shifts. As a thank you for your help, they provide you with a free parking pass and admission to Garden Expo on the day of your volunteer shift.
We hope you venture out for this mid-winter oasis – Spring will be here before we know it!
The first snow of the year can be a thing of beauty. By the 15th snowfall however, we start to get real sick of white everywhere. Enter the Redtwig Dogwood! As the name implies this shrub boasts some very colorful stems that look great against the snow and add a pop of color to an otherwise stark winter landscape.
Arctic Sun™ dogwood is a dwarf suckering shrub, a compact version of the popular ‘Winter Flame’ redtwig dogwood. The Dutch plant breeder of ‘Winter Flame’, Andre van Nijnatten, introduced this fantastic dogwood with smaller-stature that is perfect for small space gardening and residential landscapes. The beautiful stems are yellow with red tips that appear as a coral shade when massed together and best stem color occurs on new, youngest twigs. Bring some of the outdoors in this over the winter season by using these uniquely colored stems as cut accents in holiday arrangements!
Dogwoods are wonderful native, deer resistant, multi-seasonal shrubs with creamy white flat-topped flower clusters in late spring, that give way to whitish/blue drupes in late summer and golden yellow to peachy orange fall color. The flowers umbel shape offers an excellent landing pad for many butterflies, while the fruits are quite attractive to a wide variety of birds. In fact, American Robin, Cedar Waxwings, Purple Finch, Red-Eyed Vireo, Scarlet Tanager and Wood Thrush all use dogwoods as a source of food, cover and nesting.
Soap! Dye! Baskets! – Oh my! Did you know that dogwood seed contains 45% of a non-drying oil that is used in soap making? A blue-green dye can also be obtained from the fruit, and the flexible young stems can be used in basketry.
Common Name: Arctic Sun™ Bloodtwig Dogwood
Scientific Name: Cornus sanquinea ‘Cato’ P.P. #19,892
Height: 3-4’ Spread: 3-4’
Bloom Time: May to June
Sun Requirements: Full Sun to Part Shade