Dirt will be flying at our greenhouse this Saturday!

Newsletter 13 – Thursday, March 30, 2017

Cottage Grove location open Hours

Mon-Sat 9-5 (Next week: 9-6)
Sunday 9-5

Edgerton location open hours

Mon-Fri 8:30-5:30
Sat 8:30-5:00
Sun 9-4

Lady’s Story – Chapter 35

'You know what, Lady?  I think we need to get up earlier and start going for morning walks before I go to work.' Me and my dad almost choked on our breakfast and then, well, we started laughing and we couldn't stop.  Then we looked at my mom and we got real quiet.Ya see, my mom's not a morning person. It takes a while for my mom to 'get the kinks worked out' as she puts it and then she drinks that stinky hot stuff and well, then she is almost, almost my wonderful mom once again.Fast forward…it's been 4 days running, whoops, I mean walking.  Yep, me and my mom have hit the early morning pavement 4 mornings in a row.  We have so much fun walking in the morning.  My mom talks, I don't.  I sniff things, my mom doesn't.  It works really well for the both of us.
“I’m so tired from all that walking that I’m sleeping in my own bed…” Click for Larger Image
My dad bet my mom that she couldn't walk for 2 straight weeks in the morning.  My mom said something like, 'Oh really? Well, we'll just see about that, Baby Cakes!'Whoa, really, Baby Cakes?!  Me thinks my dad is in trouble!I'll keep you posted!~Lady
A dog teaches a boy fidelity, perseverance,

and to turn around three times before lying down.
Robert Benchley

Classes at our Cottage Grove location

Saturday, April 1st

Come on out to our Cottage Grove location and watch the dirt fly!

Vegetable Gardening & Seed Starting Class


Organic Vegetables Click for Larger Image
Get a head-start and a-heads-up on the whys-and-what-fors involved with planting and growing a successful garden from Ed Knapton, the owner of America's Best Flowers.  Ed has over 40 years of experience in growing vegetables and flowers.  He has attended vegetable, fruit, and flower conferences all over the US and Canada, and has a degree in horticulture from the University of Wisconsin.This Saturday, from 10-11, Ed is THE go-to-guy for all your gardening questions!  If, by chance, he doesn’t know an answer, he will get it for you later.Handouts will be provided as to varieties and proper spacing for your garden area.
New gardeners learn by trowel and error!

Composting Demonstration


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Did you know that compost is the single most important supplement you can give your garden soil?  It is easy to make, so good for the environment and can be absolutely FREE!Join us this Saturday and learn the straight forward steps involved from a composting veteran of 20 plus years, Rebecca.Rebecca will answer all of your composting questions and will provide you with a helpful handout to take home.
A good compost pile should get hot enough to poach an egg,

but not so hot it would cook a lobster.

Rose Care Class


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Growing roses, made simple! Learn easy steps to prune, plant, and select varieties for a beautiful rose garden from our very own perennial manager, Margaret.All of our rose varieties should be available by the end of April. We carry hybrid teas (not hardy, good for cut flowers), shrub roses (hardy, with continuous blooms), and a few varieties of David Austin roses (only those hardy to our zone.) Our roses are easy to care for and we carry a wide variety of colors!
In the spring, at the end of the day, you should smell like dirt.

Margaret Atwood

Have you been thinking about trees?

Well, we have!  Our perennial manager, Margaret, is excited about the Redbud and the Magnolia trees that will be arriving soon.
Redbud Tree Click for Larger Image
The Eastern Redbud (Columbus Strain) is a beautiful shrub or small tree.  It's all in how you look at it, right?!  The branches are covered in clusters of small lavender flowers early in spring before the heart shaped leaves appear.The Minnesota Strain is an attractive tree that is covered in small pink flowers in spring before the heart shaped leaves appear.  Later brown seed pods form. This lovely tree does well in sun to part shade areas.These are our best selling early flowering trees.  We get a limited supply of Redbuds, so if you want one of these sweet trees please give us a call to reserve your Redbud.  Payment will be required at that time.
Magnolia TreeMagnolia Tree Click for Larger Image
The nostalgic Magnolia is a great tree for urban areas.  It's blooming time is mid-April to early May when it is covered in masses of large tulip shaped flowers. The Magnolia tree is pollution tolerant.  We'll have a selection which includes Ann (deep purple-red blooms that resemble tulips), Jane (reddish-purple on the outside with white coloring on the inside), Butterflies (deep rich yellow), and Leonard Messel (fantastic fuchsia) varieties. 
Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better.Albert Einstein

Fresh Flowers and Plants!

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Oh, no, you forgot a birthday!  Have no fear we've got your back!To order flowers or plants for delivery, for any occasion, just contact us at either our Cottage Grove location at 608-222-2269 or www.americasbestflowers.net or our Edgerton location at 608-884-8120 or 1-888-287-1411 or www.edgertonfloralandgarden.com.Please keep in mind that flower and plant selection may vary between our two locations.
Got to work this morning and my boss told me ‘have a good day’,

so I went home and had a great day!

Bulb lovers unite…at our greenhouse!

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Our summer bulbs have arrived!  Stop on out to get the best selection of gladiolus, lilies (Asiatic & Oriental), dahlias, elephant ears, tropicanna cannas, hymenocallis, and crinums. You'll be amazed with the varieties we have!Wouldn't a variety of bulbs in an Easter basket make a great Easter gift idea?
I love being married. It’s so great to find that

one special person you want to annoy for the rest of your life.
Rita Rudner

Save the Date
Spring Open House Weekend!

Sat & Sun, April 8-9th 9-5

You’re invited to our special spring open house weekend! Come see what we have growing for you and check out our new 2017 varieties. We will provide a list of all new varieties including about a hundred annual varieties and lots of new fruits, vegetables, perennials, trees and shrubs. You’ll be able to get a jump on picking out your new faves!We also have some great events taking place:

Sat. & Sun  9-3  Universal Saw & Tool Sharpening
Sat. & Sun  10-2  Create a Colorful Spring Container

The Edgerton Easter Bunny & Egg Hunt

A cartoon bunny sitting on a pile of decorated easter eggsOur Pink Easter Bunny will be here!
Don’t forget your cameras!
The Edgerton Easter Egg Hunt is at our Edgerton location Saturday, April 8, from 10:00-2:00 PM.  Rain or shine!Bring the kids out for a day of fun and meet our Easter Bunny (also available from 10:00-2:00pm).We’ll have Easter Lilies and pots of spring flowers available for your decorating needs.
Why do we paint Easter eggs? Because it’s easier than trying to wallpaper them!

The Cottage Grove Easter Bunny & Egg Hunt

A cartoon bunny sitting on a pile of decorated easter eggsOur Pink Easter Bunny will be here!
Don’t forget your cameras!
The Cottage Grove Easter Egg Hunt will be at our Cottage Grove location on Saturday, April 15, from 10:00-Noon.  Rain or shine! Bring the kids out for some fun and meet our Easter Bunny (also available from 10:00-Noon).While you are here why not pick up an Easter lily and pots of spring flowers to decorate your dinner table?Our Cottage Grove location will be accepting donations for the Cottage Grove Food Pantry.
If I won the award for laziness, I would send somebody to pick it up for me.

Dane Buy Local

Dane Buy Local
America’s Best Flowers has been a proud member of Dane Buy Local, a non-profit organization that helps promote small businesses in the Dane County area for years.  The benefits of shopping locally are many.  It’s not always possible to buy what is needed locally, but when we do it supports our communities, our neighborhoods and independently owned businesses.  For more information on the Dane Buy Local organization we encourage you to visit their website www.danebuylocal.com
Knock knock!

Who’s there?

Little old lady?

Little old lady who?

Wow! I didn’t know you could yodel!

Employment Opportunity

Are you looking for a short-term seasonal job?   Do you enjoy people and flowers? We have a position available for a Greenhouse Production Associate.  The Greenhouse Production Associate is responsible for all aspects of plant maintenance including but not limited to: watering, moving, shipping, and disposing of all plants while maintaining the quality standards of America’s Best Flowers. Physical stamina is necessary for this position.We are in need of candidates who can work weekends and several days during the week.  This is a 40 hour per week position.If you are interested in either of these employment opportunities please email Marty Robbins at abfrobbins@yahoo.com or Betty Bless at abfbettyb@gmail.com.

Upcoming Events

Sat, Apr 1Vegetable Gardening & Seed Starting Class (10-11am)
Learn from an expert!
Sat, Apr 1Composting Demonstration (11-noon)
Learn the art of composting.
Sat, Apr 1Rose Care Class (1-2pm)
Planting, pruning & maintenance.
Sat, Apr 8 – Sun, Apr 9Spring Open House
We have your all-time favorite plants plus a few new ones for the season and a HUGE selection of new pottery.
Sat, Apr 8 – Sun, Apr 9Universal Saw & Tool Sharpening (9-3pm)
Get your tools ready for easier gardening.
Sat, Apr 8 – Sun, Apr 9Create a Colorful Spring Container (10am-2pm)
and we’ll grow it for you! We will care for your creation at our greenhouse until Monday, May 22. Pre-Registration Appreciated
Knock Knock!

Who’s there?


Broccoli who?

Broccoli doesn’t have a last name, silly.

Our Kitchen – By Bev Wilson

Every year, about this time, my mind wanders to memories of Bonnie.  I can't believe it's been six years ago this week since we lost her.  We still miss her every day, but feel blessed to have shared her life; and so fortunate to still have so much of her in the recipes she left behind.Bonnie gave me this one in 2008 when I was trying to figure out something new to make for my daughter, who I was getting ready to visit in another state. I needed something that I could freeze in individual containers that would be easy for her to thaw and pop in the microwave.  It has become one of her favorites.Low-fat options are available for many of the ingredients, though Bonnie seldom used them.   It's up to you how many you want to use.  I generally go with tuna in water, 2% cottage cheese, full fat cheddar cheese and mayo, neufchatel cream cheese (which has 30% less fat) and reduced fat cream of mushroom soup.Feel free to change this up anyway you think your family would like.  I think adding some celery and mushrooms with the onions would be wonderful.  Just use a bit more butter to make sure they sauté properly.Tuna and dairy provide the protein in this dish, so the season of Lent seems like the perfect time to share it.  Hope you enjoy it as much as my daughter does.

Tuna Stuffed Shells

• 28 jumbo pasta shells (I like Barilla)Filling:• 1/2 C diced sweet onions• 2 t butter• 2 cans tuna• 1 1/2 C cottage cheese• 1 C (4 oz) shredded cheddar cheese• 2 T mayonnaise• 1/4 C fresh parsley• 1/2 t black pepperSauce:• 2 cans cream of mushroom soup• 8 oz block cream cheeseTopping:• 1 C shredded cheddar cheese


Cook shells according to package, rinse well and lay out in a single layer on a cookie sheet with sides.Filling:
In a 3 qt saucepan, sauté onions in butter over medium heat until golden brown, 8-10 minutes.  Remove from heat.  Stir in other filling ingredients. Set aside.
Stir together soup and cream cheese in a 2 qt saucepan.  Warm just enough to melt cream cheese.
Put half of sauce mixture in the  bottom of a sprayed 9×13 baking pan (I use my Pyrex one for this).  Stuff shells with tuna filing.  Do this on the cookie sheet, as it may be necessary to move some of the filling from one shell to another.  After you have the filling evenly distributed among shells, arrange them in casserole on top of sauce.  Pour remaining sauce evenly over the shells.  Sprinkle on additional cheddar cheese. Cover with lid or foil.Bake in 350 oven until  bubbly all over – 35-45 minutes, removing cover the last 15 minutes.  Or refrigerate to bake later.  If you do this it will take 50-60 minutes baking time.Serve with a green salad and fruit for dessert.Freeze leftovers, 4 or 5 in a square microwaveable container.   Thaw before heating.