This page is Sponsored by:
A late summer garden can become wan, tired and picked over. When others say their gardens have come to that yet we're still enjoying ours, it's because we kept the annuals well watered during summer drought, deadheaded and also clipped back whenever they got a bit rangy. How full, fresh and colorful they are now.
At our Detroit Zoo Adopt-a-Garden beds, that's just in time for the busy season of back-to-school field trips.
Hoo boy, are we glad we tied some string around the clumps of bearded iris to help us keep track of which color flowers are where in the bed. Otherwise we would never know which were which now. And what smart cookies we were to use a photo to remind us where we intended to plant them in the gardens at the Detroit Zoo.
Too bad we forgot to include a color tag in each segment of the bed. So although we could be sure segment A plants are all one color, segment B another, we didn't know if A plants were yellow or white, or peach. Also, we took the photo of Judy, Michele and Lily to remind us where we wanted to plant our iris divisions, but forgot to bring it with us on iris dividing day.
Ah well, the best laid plans gang oft aglee! So we kept plants from each segment segregated as we divided, then simply planted a three color cluster at several sunny places in the garden.
Maybe we'll sort it out next May!
Master Gardener Adopt-a-Garden volunteers Kari Grady and Debi Slentz guide volunteer Karen Thompson through her first iris division. "Throw out any roots that have soft spots..." (Close up on iris divisions and handling soft rot in Iris allowed in the kitchen.)
For more on peony problems:
• See What's Coming Up 51. (Page 3, above, right.)
• Also check What's Coming Up 111 (page 14, above, left) from your own files of back issues or
• Use our CD Potting Up Perennials, or
• Consider helping us post that issue sooner.
Sponsor us with a request for more peony info.
It's a lifelong discovery
To read more about ground beetles and see a picture of its larval stage (equally beneficial, and fearsome to behold), check this Iowa State University bulletin. Scroll down past the descriptions of destructive cutworms and white grubs to reach the beetles.
Well, perhaps chowing down is the better description. We try, but often fail to keep our hands off our clients' vegetables as we work. Nothing better than broccoli just snapped from the plant, a cucumber still warm from the sun...
Many of those who volunteer with us at the Detroit Zoo first came to learn at a Garden by Janet & Steven session. If you prefer hands-on learning, too, come join us at the zoo or your choice of other locations. Watch and/or give these activities you see here a try. Click for more about what goes on and how to get involved in a Garden by Janet & Steven session.
Why do we offer free workshops? To share what we know. Also, there are perks in it for us, like many hands making light work if people choose to help drag and bag prunings. Here, Carolyn Reidel, Jim Ranieri, Judy Fritzsche and Nancy Ranieri manned the over-the-fence end of the branch brigade when we pruned at Ray Wiegand's Nursery's fabulous display gardens.