2007 Newsletter Archive

Newsletter 19

Newsletter 19 – August 2, 2007  Bonnies Kitchen   Upcoming Events



Our recent stretch of ninety degree days added to three dollar a gallon gas are two great reasons to spend more time enjoying your outdoor living space.  Using fountains, patio furniture, rugs, birdbaths, hanging baskets and container gardens, you can create your own paradise where you can go whenever you need to be refreshed!  We also invite you to our paradise.  While it gets extremely hot inside the greenhouses, our covered areas can be quite refreshing, even on hot days.  With lawns turning brown and plants everywhere showing signs of stress, it’s nice to walk through the fresh, colorful plants here at America’s Best Flowers.


Why do we say something is out of whack?   What is a whack?



You may have seen gardens composed of all the same color flowers; indeed some of the world’s most famous gardens use a monochromatic color scheme.  Rather than relying on different colored flowers, the gardener creates interest by mixing flowers of different sizes and shapes, and choosing foliage with interesting textures and colors.  Currently one of the most popular colors to use is white.  Our designer has created an elegant white display at our front entrance. If you are interested in monochromatic gardening, you must see this one. 

When using a single color, you create varying moods by choosing big bold flowers (hibiscus) or tiny ones (alyssum); you build character by incorporating plants of different sizes and shapes, and you add contrast with foliage.  Fragrance is a huge part of a white garden, so be sure to include several white roses.  Because many white blossoms smell stronger in the evening, we often hear an all white garden referred to as a Romance Garden or a Moonlight Garden.  At dusk white flowers emit the sweetest fragrance attracting evening-flying insects to promote pollination.  The delicious heady perfume created by a mix of white flowers fills the air.  Whether you create an entire white garden, or just plant several varieties around your patio, you’ll be glad you did.   Just imagine – you, a special someone, comfortable patio chairs, two cold beverages, and the sweet smell of heaven.


Roses are red

Violets are blue

America’s Best Flowers

Has the roses for you.



If you are thinking about creating or expanding a rose garden, now is the perfect time.  America’s Best has a great selection of shrub, climbing, floribunda, and tea roses to choose from.  Our knowledgeable nursery staff is anxious to help you select the varieties best suited for your landscape.  We are offering you special savings now, rather than waiting for fall, so your roses will have a chance to get established before winter. Come out today for the best selection.

Whether you are an experienced rose gardener, or a novice, be sure to plan to attend our Rose Workshop on September 30.  We will show you how to winterize your roses.  Watch upcoming newsletters for more information on this workshop.


Childhood is that wonderful time of life when all you need to do to lose weight is take a bath.



Last week, at our Herbs are for Everyone class, Mari Lynn Haugh taught us many interesting tidbits of information.  She also brought two delicious kinds of herbal iced tea, which we enjoyed along with the luscious lemon balm cheesecake tarts made by our perennial manager, Ilene Isenberg. Recipe below.

Another highlight of the evening was when Mari Lynn passed around a sleep pillow she had made that had the most wonderful scent. A sleep pillow is nothing more than some fabric filled with bulk dried herbs. I asked her to share her “recipe” with us.  She uses equal parts of lavender buds, rose petals, rose geranium leaves, catnip, spearmint and thyme. You simply cannot believe the soothing aroma that helps to induce relaxation and ultimately sleep! Simply refresh the herbs when needed.


IRIS DIVIDE AND SWAP, Sunday, August 12 at 1:00 PM

If you love iris, you can never have too many.  Except of course if you have several large bunches of the same variety.  America’s Best Flowers can help you with that.  Last year we began a series of Divide and Swap Workshops, which allow you to bring in a clump you have too many of, divide them, and trade for other varieties.  In Wisconsin, late July to mid August is the perfect time to divide iris.  This allows them the necessary six to eight weeks of rest after their bloom period, but still gives them plenty of time to develop a root system before the ground freezes.  Last year we had customers bring in huge clumps which provided many divisions to share, so even if you don’t have iris that need to be divided, come on out anyway.  We’ll show you how it’s done and share the bounty.


Why do we sing “Take me out to the ball game” when we’re already there?




Iris Divide & Swap – Sunday, August 12 1:00 PM Bring in a clump of iris and learn how to divide them.  Trade divisions with others to expand your collection. 


Make a Fall Wreath – Tuesday, August 14th and Thursday, August 16th 6:30 PM.  Design a beautiful silk and grapevine wreath for indoor or outdoor use. This is another of our “Make and Take” events. Cost of Workshop $40. Pre-register by calling 222-2269.


Customer Appreciation Days  Saturday, August 18 and Sunday August 19thFREE SWEET CORN! 11-3PM


Fall Container Workshops FREE SOIL AND ASSISTANCE and we clean up the mess! Design a beautiful autumn container using your choice of mums, ornamental kale and cabbages, grasses, heucheras – whatever tickles your fancy!

Tuesday, August 21st   4-7PM

Thursday, August 23rd   4-7PM

Thursday, September 6th   4-7PM

Saturday, September 15th 10-4PM

Tuesday, September 18th   4-7PM


Dividing Perennials Saturday, September 22nd 10AM Let our knowledgeable staff show you how to divide the different kinds of perennials. FREE CLASS


How to Winterize Roses – Sunday, September 30th 1PM.  Join rose experts Sharon Stickford and Jean Schultz as they share their knowledge on everything you need to know to ensure having healthy roses following even the harshest of winters FREE EVENT


Make a Scarecrow  September 29-October 14th One of our favorites, and tons of fun.  Create a scarecrow while sipping cider and munching on popcorn. Pumpkin painting and fun fall activities.


Forget the health food.  I need all the preservatives I can get.


Bonnie’s Kitchen


This is a recipe Ilene, our perennial manager, made for our herb class last week.  The tarts were so incredibly good that everyone wanted the recipe.  Ilene said they were a bit of a challenge to make on a hot day, because you had to play around with the temperature and consistency of the dough. If you are experienced with pastry, it should be no problem.


Ilene’s Lemon Balm Cheesecake Tartlets

For Tart Shells

2 c all-purpose flour

1 c powdered sugar

1 t salt

2 sticks cold unsalted butter (1c)

2 large egg yolks

2-3 T cold water

2 t fresh lemon juice

In a food processor, pulse flour, powdered sugar and salt.  Add cold butter and pulse until mixture resembles coarse meal. In a separate bowl whisk together yolk, cold water and lemon juice, then add to processor and pulse until pea-size lumps form and dough holds together when squeezed ( dough will appear somewhat crumbly).  [You can also use a bowl and a pastry cutter.]

Note: you may have to add more flour or water depending on the consistency of the dough.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Press a small amount of dough evenly into the bottom of each cup of a miniature muffin tin; refrigerate 20 minutes.  Using your thumb and first finger, spread the dough evenly on the bottom and around the sides of each muffin cup.  Place tins on a sheet pan and bake in middle of oven until golden, 12-15 minutes.  Makes 4 dozen tart shells.


2 T butter, melted

2 T honey

12 oz cream cheese

2 eggs beaten

6 T very finely chopped lemon balm leaves

½ t finely grated lemon rind

Beat the butter, honey and cream cheese together in a bowl until creamy. Add eggs. Beat well.  Fold in lemon balm leaves and grated rind. Fill tartlet shell about ¾ full.  Bake 12-15 minutes at 350 degrees.


Summertime Corn Salad


This is great served with grilled margarita chicken, found in Week 9 newsletter, and a crusty sourdough bread. It has a real taste of summer!

To get to Week 9, Scroll up, click on Index of newsletter, and go to week 9.


¼ c lime juice

1 T honey

1 jalapeno, seeded and finely chopped

3 T fresh chopped cilantro or 1 T snipped fresh mint

¼ t salt

6 fresh ears of corn, cleaned and lightly cooked

1 ½ c baby spinach leaves

1 large tomato, seeded and chopped

¼ c seeded chopped cucumber


In large bowl, whisk lime juice and honey until well blended.  Stir in jalapeno, cilantro and salt.  Carefully cut cooked kernels off corn cobs. Stir in spinach, tomato and cucumber. Serve immediately.


9 servings

59 calories for a 2/3 c serving


Here is a specially formulated diet to help women cope with the stress that builds during the day.  Enjoy!!


Breakfast    1 grapefruit, 1 slice whole wheat toast, 1 cup skim milk

Lunch         1 small portion lean, steamed chicken, 1 cup spinach,

                   1 cup herbal tea & 1 Hershey’s kiss

Snack         The rest of the Hershey Kisses in the bag

                   1 carton of chocolate chip ice cream

Dinner        4 glasses of wine, 2 loaves garlic bread

                   1 family size supreme pizza

                   3 snicker bars

Bedtime      1 whole Sarah Lee cheesecake, eaten straight from the freezer


May the Holy Spirit Guide You!  God Bless
Edward Knapton says Keep on Smiling!
President Berry Hill Farms, Inc.
DBA Americas Best Flowers Garden Center
4311 Vilas Hope Road
Cottage Grove, WI 53527
608-222-2269 Fax 608-222-1234 Cell 608-698-5627

Also President of The Commercial Flower Growers of Wisconsin  http://www.cfgw.org/ an Organization that is a division of the six group Wisconsin Green Industry Federation (WGIF) a 3 Billion dollar industry with over 4700 businesses and over 43,000 employees in Wisconsin
Senator Representing Wisconsin members of the American Nursery and Landscape Association – ANLA
Also Board member of Garden’s Beautiful Garden Centers
Also member of legislative of Committee of WGIF

Also Board Member of (WGIF) Wisconsin Green Industry Federation

Carol and Ed Knapton, owners of Americas's Best Flowers You’ll Love Your Garden … It’s Our Promise! May the Holy Spirit Guide You! God Bless
Edward Knapton says Keep on Smiling!
Sec – Treasurer Berry Hill Farms, Inc.
DBA Americas Best Flowers Garden Center
4311 Vilas Hope Road
Cottage Grove, WI 53527
608-222-2269 Fax 608-222-1234 Cell 608-698-5627