2008 Newsletter Archive

Newsletter 12


Newsletter 12 – June 5, 2008    Specials    Events    Recipe

“What’s this I see?  It’s not a bee!

It skims the blossoms gracefully,

And flies at sleepy summer’s pace

To each uplifted flower face.

The ladybug, I wish you joy

As you complete your garden chores.”

 Scotties tissue box



June is a wonderful month.  We can finally leave the house without a coat.  Farmers’ Markets abound with early crops. And the soil has warmed enough to make working in it a pleasure.  While we dig, the fragrance of a nearby iris drifts by our noses, and the trill of songbirds fill the air.  What a great month to be alive!!

For years June has been known as National Perennial Gardening Month.  At America’s Best Flowers we celebrate this by offering special pricing on a Perennial Plant of the Week.  Please check below, under Managers’ Specials, and read about Geranium ‘Rozanne’, this week’s choice.


Honesty and frankness make you vulnerable

Be honest and frank anyway. Joke 1



June is often referred to as the perennial month because so many perennials are putting on their show.  It’s a great time to plant, both for the plants and the gardener.  America’s Best will feature two Ask-the-Expert classes this week.  “Made in the Shade Gardening” will be Tuesday evening, June 10 at 6:30.  The following Thursday, June 12 at 6:30 we will have “Good Day Sunshine Gardening.”  These classes are designed to help gardeners select perennials that will do well in their yards.  It is our hope that you can set aside a little time to come on out and share your gardening experiences with each other.  If your schedule doesn’t permit you to attend both evenings, choose the one that best matches your landscape conditions.


If you are successful, you will win false friends and true enemies.

Succeed anyway!.joke 2



To an Open Garden of the Ed Schulz Garden at 410 Lincoln St in Verona, this Saturday, June 7 from  9 – 4.  Ed Schulz, president of the Madison Hosta Society, was with us last week for our annual Hosta Workshop.  Several of us have had the opportunity to see his gardens, and strongly suggest that all shade gardeners plan to attend.  His property is a Hosta Wonderland.


If you do good, people will accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives.

Do good anyway.. joke 3



In preparation for the Iris Divide and Swap on August 10 at 1 pm, I would encourage everyone to take photos of the iris they plan to bring.  I will be bringing in a huge clump of a beautiful, deeply fragrant, purple one that is growing in my neighbor’s yard.  She is taking pictures this week so you can all see how great it is.  Our divide and swaps are so much fun, and such a great way to expand your collection of plants.  Please plan to attend.  Watch future newsletters for more information.


The biggest person with the biggest ideas

can be shot down by the smallest person with the smallest mind.

Think big anyway.Joke 4


10 Favorite Herbs

Herbs were once defined as all plants useful to man. Today, an herb refers to plants whose leaves, roots, seeds, or flowers are useful for either medicinal or culinary purposes, valued primarily for their flavors and aromas. If you like to garden, and also like to cook, herbs are an easy and practical addition to your garden.

Though some herbs can be started from seed, either in a sunny window inside, or directly in the ground, an easier way to get your herb garden growing is with plants from America’s Best. Since many herbs are tender and cannot survive cool temperatures, now is the perfect time to plant.  Most herbs thrive in full sun, where dry growing conditions cause the plants to produce the strongest flavors.  Members of the mint family can take some shade.

We have a terrific selection of herbs again this year. At Herb Fest we were asked repeatedly which ones we’d suggest. Here are 10 “must haves”.


Makes delicious pesto, and is a delicious addition to tomato-based recipes. Try Thai Basil and Purple Ruffles Basil, too.


Easy to grow from seed directly in the garden.  Fabulous in Mexican foods, great in salsas.


Great with fish and vegetable dishes, and don’t forget pickles!


Isn’t as invasive as oregano, which can take over a space. Good with bean and meat dishes, along with thyme, and in almost anything Italian.  Great on Pizza!


Curly parsley is terrific as a garnish. Use flat leaf for better taste and flavor.


Especially good in classic comfort foods such as pea soup, minestrone, and chicken pot-pie.  Well suited to growing indoors.


Easiest, and the most reliably hardy perennial herb you can grow.  Mild onion flavor.


We suggest the tricolor variety for cooking. It is used in sausages, stuffings, and more.


The distinctive flavor is used in recipes for seafood and chicken, and in French cooking. Sprigs of tarragon can be dried or frozen and used later with good results.


Makes a great container plant and is used to flavor grilled lamb and chicken, and works well with roasted potatoes.


What you spend years building may be destroyed overnight.

Build anyway. joke 5



Double KnockOut Roses

Easy care and rose weren’t often used in the same sentence until the introduction of the ‘Knockout’ rose a few years ago.  Bred for this area, this fabulous rose requires very little of your time, but provides summer-long color for your garden.  Come on out to our Cottage Grove location this week, and receive special savings on this wonderful plant.


Geranium “Rozanne” has been chosen by the Perennial Plant Association as the 2008 Perennial Plant of the Year.  Large violet-blue flowers combined with deep green, lightly marbled foliage and an extended season of interest make ‘Rozanne’ a ‘must-have’ for any garden.  Planted in partial to full sun, it will reach a height of 20 inches and a 24-28 inch mound.  Come out today at our Cottage Grove location and pick up one for your perennial garden at special pricing.


Perennial Plant Supports are a necessity for tall perennials, especially in windy areas.  We have a good selection of supports designed to meet your gardening needs.  Stop by our rack at the farm just inside the doorway leading to our new perennial area


Father Dom’s Duck Doo is one of the best products available to dig into the soil as you plant.  Made entirely of duck poop, cranberries, rice hulls, wood shavings, pickles and vanilla beans, Duck Doo is absolutely free of weed seeds.  It is especially good for perennials, providing an excellent source of composted material for your plants to feed on.  But the goodness of Father Dom’s Duck Doo is not limited to what it does for your plants,  Profits from the sale of Duck Doo go to fund charities that provide food, shelter and clothing to the needy.


The good you do today will be forgotten tomorrow.

Do good anyway.joke 6




Saturday, June 7 from 10-4

Container Workshop

FREE soil and assistance.  Note: This workshop is the last one of the spring season and will be Saturday only this time.

Tuesday, June 10 at 6:30 pm

“Made in the Shade Gardening.”

We’ll help you with your shade gardening; suggest plants; and give you tips on design.

Thursday, June 12 at 6:30 PM

“Good Day Sunshine Gardening”

Learn how to design a great garden for sunny locations.

Saturday and Sunday, June 28 and 29  from 11-3

Independence Day Celebration

FREE ice cream for everyone.  Dress in red, white and blue and receive a special gift.

Our goal is to hold events that are interesting and helpful to our customers. If you have ideas for events, please let us know.  You can email us at ed@americasbestflowers.com or call 608-222-2269.


Give the world the best you have

and you might get kicked in the teeth.

Give the world the best you’ve got anyway.joke 7


Bonnie’s Kitchen

In summer I go by the cooking rule, that it either has to go on the grill OR it HAS to be easy. This one is so simple and delicious served with rice or risotto.

Chicken Artichoke Casserole

1 broiler-fryer (about 3 lbs. cut up)

1 ½ t salt

½ t paprika

¼ pepper

6 T butter

1 can (8 oz) whole mushrooms, drained*

2 T flour

1 c chicken broth

¾ c dry sherry

1 can (14 oz) artichoke hearts, drained

Season chicken and brown on all sides in 4 T butter. Place chicken in a casserole.

Add remaining butter to skillet and sauté mushrooms. Blend in flour. Add broth and sherry; cook, stirring constantly, until thickened. Arrange artichokes in casserole and pour sauce over all.

Bake uncovered in a 375 oven for 45 minutes to an hour, until done. Serves 6

*I use fresh mushrooms—the Baby Bellas are GREAT in here.


Some guy bought a new fridge for his house.

To get rid of his old fridge, he put it in his front yard

And hung a sign on it saying: “Free to good home.  You want it, you take it.”

For three days the fridge sat there without even one person looking twice at it.

He eventually decided that people were too un-trusting of this deal.

It looked too good to be true, so he changed the sign to read:

“Fridge for sale $50.”

The next day someone stole it.joke 8



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
https://www.americasbestflowers.com/home.htmlAlso 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