2009 Newsletter Archive

Newsletter 9

Newsletter 9 – April 30, 2009


Salsa Recipe            Events           Container Workshop           We Need Your Help


“There are no mistakes in gardening.  Just experiences.” Farnsworth


Like life, gardening is full of experiences.  Some more fun than others.  This Saturday, May 2, the fun will be at America’s Best Flowers as we celebrate Cinco de Mayo. In addition to serving complementary chips and salsa to our customers from 11 – 2, copies of the winning recipes from our Salsa Contest will be available.  The weather report sounds great, sunny skies and seasonal temps, so come on out and enjoy shopping to a Latin beat. While you’re here, pick up a salsa container so you can grow your own ingredients.  Or, better yet, plant up your own.  This weekend we are doing Container Workshops with expert help and free soil.  See below for details.

I ordered a hot chocolate and the waiter brought me a Hershey bar and a match. Joke 1

Container Workshop Number 1

Your all-time favorite event, the Container Workshop, kicks off this Saturday and Sunday, May 2 and 3, from 10-4 each day. If you’ve never attended, you may be surprised that we provide FREE SOIL AND ASSISTANCE and clean up the mess!  All you do is choose a variety of plants from our large inventory of annuals and perennials, pick out a pot (or bring in your own) and create a beautiful, unique creation for your porch, deck or patio.  Many people use these workshops to plant all the containers they will need for the season.  No registration is required, but if you will need a lot of assistance, you might want to consider coming Sunday morning, before it gets too busy.  Sharon, Cathy, Chris and Barb will give you ideas to personalize your containers.  This is truly an event you won’t want to miss!

Did you hear the one about the man with the split personality?

He went to a psychiatrist and asked for a group rate. Joke 2

Speaking of Containers

America’s Best Flowers is fast becoming known as Dane County’s Container Specialist.  Custom planters, created by Sharon Stickford and her talented staff, are gaining popularity with many Madison area homeowners and businesses.  You, too, can add panache to your entryway or outdoor living area with one of our dramatic, unique containers.  Examples of these stunning living arrangements, featuring multi-colored tropicals, annuals and perennials in beautiful pots, line the walkways of our big house.  Come out today and see for yourself what happens when you mix America’s best flowers with Dane County’s most talented designers.

Appointments are encouraged when you are ready to get down to the specifics of how we can help.  Please call 222-2269 to set up a time when you will have the undivided attention of one of our design staff.  Home visits can be arranged for orders with numerous containers.

What’s the difference between an optimist and a pessimist?

An optimist invented the airplane.

The pessimist made the seat belts. Joke 3

We Need Your Help

The USDA has Value Added Grants available for agriculture-based companies.  America’s Best is applying for a grant to expand our herb production and flowering container departments.  Our goal in applying for this grant is to expand our production capabilities so we can offer you a wider selection of herbs, along with classes to help you use them; as well as to enlarge our annual and flowering container departments.

Part of the application process requires an informal survey of a sampling of our customers by the grant writer.  Please contact us to give your permission to share your contact information with our grant writer by emailing ed@americasbestflowers.com.  We sincerely appreciate your participation.

Did you hear about the new restaurant that just opened up on the moon?

Good food, but no atmosphere. Joke 4


This year we have two satellite sites open for business.  We are at the Sears automotive parking lot in West Towne Mall and across from the old Hanley’s hardware in Sun Prairie.  Unfortunately, the contracts for our previous sites at East Towne and in Monona were not renewed by Menards.  We are very disappointed with their decision, because we have established wonderful relationships with our customers in those areas.  If you normally have shopped at these sites, please come on out to our main greenhouse, located between Madison and Cottage Grove at 4311 Vilas Hope Road.  You will find the short drive well worth your time. Our hours are 9 to 8 Monday through Friday, and 9-6 Saturday and Sunday.  Call for directions 222-2269.

What did one elevator say to the other?

I think I’m coming down with something! joke 5

Colorful Spring Trees

Spring-flowering trees and shrubs are beginning to show their colors in the landscape.  As you drive through your neighborhood, are you envious of the bright lavender flowers of rhododendrons, or the stunning yellows, oranges, or pinks of hardy azaleas?  Perhaps your taste runs to the larger pink blooms of magnolias, the sunshine yellows of forsythia, or the delicate pinks of flowering almond.  Or maybe it’s the thousands of fragrant blossoms on the fruit trees that catch your eye.

Whichever you prefer, this spring is the time to plant so you can enjoy your favorite in your own yard.  Stop out today and choose from our wide selection, which includes Royal Star and Ann magnolias, and, new for this year, the weeping double flowering Higan cherry, and Double Flowering Plum,

“Everybody’s going bankrupt.  The latest?  Muzak.

So the next time you’re in a crowded elevator,

Try to organize a sing-along.” David Letterman. joke 6


.May 2          SALSA SATURDAY. 11 – 2 Join us as we celebrate Cinco de Mayo by serving our FREE salsa & chips, while you shop to a Latin beat!

May 2-3        Container Workshop Your all-time favorite event kicks off Saturday and Sunday, May 2 and 3, from 10-4 each day. Plan to attend.

May 5 & 7     Mother’s Day Make and Take Workshop 6:30 pm. SIGN UP TODAY!! Space is limited.

Design a beautiful planter for your mom or other special woman from the following options:

#1 Fill a colorful Scheurich pot with cheerful pansies or begonias. Cost $20.

#2 Plant a Topsy Turvy pouch with a cherry tomato plant to hang outside your door or for your patio (as seen on TV). Great for people in apartments or condos. Cost $25

#3 Fill our elegant ceramic planter (3 square pots nesting on a matching ceramic saucer) with fresh herb plants. A beautiful accent piece for your kitchen, in choice of sage or cobalt blue. Cost $35

Tuesday, May 5, and Thursday, May 7, at 6:30PM.  Register at 222-2269 and indicate the planter of choice, supplies are limited.

May 16       Rose Workshop at 10 AM  If you have any questions about roses, you won’t want to miss this one.  Our own Sharon Stickford, past president of the Madison Rose Society, will simplify rose gardening and show you just how easy growing and caring for them can be. HONEST!

May 23       Easy Vegetable Gardening, Tomatoes and More! 10AM. Vegetable gardening is back!  People have rededicated themselves to growing their own veggies. In addition to providing delicious fresh produce, other benefits include the therapeutic effects of working the soil, which clears your mind; the physical exercise, which strengthens your body; and the calming effect of watching your garden grow, which is a tonic for your soul. We invite you to learn gardening shortcuts and tips from Brian Emerson of the Madison Agricultural Research Station.

We will have free classes continuing throughout the season, along with more Make and Take Workshops.  Our goal is to hold events that are interesting and helpful to our customers. Remember to give us your input.  We’re listening!

I can’t cook.  I use a smoke alarm for a timer. Joke 7

Bonnie’s Kitchen

This week we’re featuring a genuine Mexican recipe from one of our co-workers, Gabriel. It’s easy and delicious, and would be fun to have on Cinco de Mayo. Serve with warm tortillas (Gabriel prefers corn tortillas).

Gabriel’s Zucchini and Chorizo

3 lbs. zucchini, chopped to a 1/2’” dice

1 cup diced onion

2 cloves minced garlic

8 Roma tomatoes, chopped to a 1/2 “ dice

3 Jalapenos, diced (add the seeds if you like it hotter)

1 package chorizo sausage

1 cup packed chopped cilantro

salt to taste

Heat large frying pan or Dutch oven.  Remove chorizo from casings and break up with wooden spoon. Cook with onion and garlic until sausage is browned: drain. Add tomatoes, cilantro and jalapenos.  Cook until soft. Stir in zucchini, cook a few minutes longer. Salt to taste. Serve with tortillas, taco style.


I’m the postmaster for a small town in Pennsylvania.

 One of my regular customers, Jeff,

bought several sheets of newly released commemorative stamps.

Soon after he left, a woman came in, carrying two crisp sheets of

Harry Houdini stamps she’d found in the parking lot.

The next morning, I gave Jeff the sheets of stamps he’d lost.

“You know,” Jeff said to me,

“I’m not all that surprised the Houdini stamps reappeared.” 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