Last Friday, several of us loaded up in the van and travelled to West Chicago to the Ball Seed Field Day & Landscape Day. Every year, Ball invites their customers to a day of garden tours, informative presentations and networking opportunities. We have the chance to see, side-by- side, how varieties stack up against each other. We also get the first peek at what’s new for the coming year.
Ball Horticultural Company was started in 1905 and has grown into a global leader of breeders, distribution companies, research & development teams and seed and vegetative plant producers on 6 continents, in 18 countries. At “The Gardens of Ball”, started in 1933, there are over 9 acres of display beds planted with annuals, perennials, cut flowers and vegetables.
We are excited about some of the new plants we saw and can’t wait to show them to you! New perennials such as Echinacea Sombrero Tres Amigos or Salvia Sky Blue Marvel are additions to series that have already proven themselves to be stellar. On the annuals side, Coleus Flame Thrower Salsa Roja, Salvia Skyscraper Dark Purple, Vining Merlot Dipladenia and Canary Wings Begonia were some of our favorites.
Ball Seed “Wooly Wall” filled with colorful foliages and the new Canary Wing Begonia
Container and small space veggies have made even more of an impact this year with continued development and introduction of varieties that can be grown in tight spaces. Patio Baby Eggplant and Butterbaby Squash show excellent form and production.
In our continued quest to bring you only the very best annuals, perennials, veggies and herbs, we will now compare notes and come up with what we think will provide you with the most beautiful, longest-lasting, most floriferous, most productive plants available. We look forward to next season when we can “throw back the curtain” and show you what we have to offer in 2019.
30% OFF
All Fruit Trees, Forsythias, Peonies, 

Magnolias, Redvein Enkianthus,

Harry Lauder’s Walking Stick


Limited quantities on hand. Call store for details.
Offer expires 08/09/2018. This is available at both locations.
Not valid on previous purchases.

Musa sumatrana..say that 3X fast!
Musa sumatrana ‘Zebrina rojo’
Blood Banana
Blood Bananas are a wonderful ornamental plant. They grow 5-8′ tall, but remain relatively slender, so they can be grown in containers even here in Wisconsin. They have attractive red & green variegated foliage on the topside of the leaves and solid red coloration on the bottom of the leaves and trunk. The red coloration on top of the leaves looks like splashed red paint, giving it a unique look.
Place Blood Banana in full to partial sun. Plants need to remain moist and should not be allowed to become excessively dry. Fertilize during the summer with Miracle Gro All Purpose fertilizer.
Because the plant is not winter hardy in our zone, you will have to bring it in for winter. There are several ways you can store it for winter 1) Overwinter it as a houseplant in a sunny room, reducing water and fertilization 2) Cut the foliage back to 6-8″ after the first frost and store in the container, in a dark, cool basement, giving only enough water to prevent complete drying 3) remove the plant from the container before frost in the fall and wrap the roots in plastic and store in a dark, cool basement. Foliage may be trimmed back or left on the plant to brown up as normal or 4) If the Banana was growing in the ground, dig it and wrap the roots in plastic, trim back the foliage and store as in #3.
Because of the shortened growing season here, Blood Banana likely will not produce flowers or bananas. However, it does produce cream to yellow colored flowers and small yellow bananas. The edibleness of the fruit seems to be highly debated, so if you do get bananas, eat them at your own risk!
Blood Banana are cool plants, even if they don’t get bunches of bananas and will add a tropical flair to your home, garden or patio.
Why do fish always sing off key?

Because you can’t tuna fish.

Ilex verticillata or Winterberry is a wonderful shrub for attracting wildlife to your yard as it
typically produces an abundant supply of red berries that serve as a food source for songbirds
and small mammals. According to the USDA, Winterberry attracts 48 species of birds.


These shrubs are generally dioecious, meaning they have separate male and female plants, so
you will want to be sure to have at least one male plant for pollination. Only one male is
required for every 6-10 female plants in order to get berries and must be planted within 40
feet of the female.


Red Sprite Winterberry


Winterberry has small, inconspicuous greenish-white flowers. It is a shrub that really doesn’t
stand out during the spring and summer. However, in the fall, the leaves turn yellow. Because
it is a deciduous holly, it loses all of its leaves in the winter. That’s when the berries
stand out, a bold, beautiful red.


Plant these shrubs in full to part sun, in soils that are moist to wet. They are adaptable to
both light and heavy soils, but have a preference for good loam soil. Because it is native to
areas that are swampy, along ponds or in damp thickets, it is a perfect shrub for these
difficult situations at your home.
Jim Dandy Winterberry
The female ‘Red Sprite’ and the male ‘Jim Dandy’ are in stock now. Catch our class this
Saturday from 10:00 AM- 11:00 AM, “Shrubs for Birds & Wildlife”. Afterwards, take home a
couple of these stunning shrubs and watch the birds flock to your backyard this winter!
 BUY 1 Hanging Annual Basket Get 1 FREE
Free basket must be of lesser or equal value.

Not valid on previous purchases.

Available at Cottage Grove location only. 
Excludes houseplants and tomato baskets. No coupon necessary.

Floral Notes


When we think ‘Tropical’ in the floral shop, we usually think of the traditional tropical flowers used in floral arrangements : Birds of Paradise, Orchids, Proteas and Gardenias for example. But, there are so many other tropical flowers and plants that are used in our garden center and we’d like to share them with you.
Imagine creating a tropical paradise in your own yard or maybe right in your home! A grouping of plants such as a mandevilla or passion flower winding up a banana tree with a bamboo plant near the base would be beautiful on your sunny deck or patio. Or, for a shadier area, maybe a palm, peace lily, croton and a rich, lime-colored dracaena could grace your deck. Either of these combinations could be taken inside for the winter to enjoy even when the outside temperatures are frigid.
If your home will not accommodate a large grouping of plants through the winter, you could create a dish garden with a schefflera or aralia, croton, ferns and ivy to bring the tropics inside in miniature form. Be sure to add a set of chairs and table to complete your tropical paradise.



Cottage Grove

Bonide 4 Phase
Lawn Care Program
Last October we wrote of our mea culpa on the Bonide 4 Phase Program. We overbought. There’s no mincing words. There’s no burying the truth. Just plain and simple, WE BOUGHT MORE THAN WE COULD SELL!!
So, as a sort of reprise, we want you to know, we are still offering our Bonide 4 Phase Lawn Care Program at $5.00 per bag, So come in today and take advantage of this phenomenal deal!!!
Now is the perfect time to be putting down Phase 3, the “Insect and Feed”. It controls ants,
chiggers, fleas, ticks, centipedes and many other insects. It also feeds your lawn with slow
release nitrogen along with iron and other micronutrients.

Want to learn more about the 4 Phase Lawn Care program?

Employment Opportunities


Do you enjoy helping people? How about working with flowers and in the dirt?
If so, we may have the perfect job for you.
We are looking for a few good people to join our team.
Lead Maintenance Technician: Cottage Grove Location


Are you gifted with the ability to fix almost anything?
Do you love the challenge of problem-solving? Like working outdoors?
We are looking for a Lead Maintenance Technician to handle the maintenance and repairs of our greenhouse systems, buildings, vehicles and equipment. This person is also in charge of all grounds maintenance, as well as assisting with greenhouse production. If you like diversity in your day-to-day and are mechanically gifted, this job is for you!
Full-time / Part-time Floral Designers 
Cottage Grove and Edgerton Location

 We’re looking for a Full-time and a Part-time floral designer with strong customer service skills and a willingness to learn. Use your artistic abilities and knowledge of design to create floral arrangements for various occasions.

A minimum of four year previous floral design experience is required.
Position includes some customer service, watering and plant maintenance.
Grower/Biological Control Technician: Cottage Grove Location
Do you have a horticulture background? We are searching for the right candidate to take over the responsibility of Grower for our operation. We are approximately 2 acres under cover and grow almost all of our own product. Pest control is done primarily through monitoring and release of biological controls. Minimum requirements are a two year Horticulture degree and ability to pass the State Pesticide Certification exam. This is a full time, permanent position.


How do you communicate with a fish?

You drop it a line.
Upcoming Events 
2018 – Mark your Calendars!!!
2018 is full of new workshops and informational classes for you to attend. 
Like our Facebook page to keep up to date with the latest!
Shrubs for Birds and Wildlife 
Saturday, August 4, 2018
10 am – 11 am


Create A Delicious Smoothie
Saturday, August 11, 2018
10 am – 11 am


Cooking With Herbs
Saturday, August 18, 2018
10 am – 11 am


All classes are only available at our Cottage Grove location.
To reserve your spot please call (608) 222-2269 to register.







Watermelon Ice Cream



Watermelon Ice Cream


2 cups of watermelon, cubed
2 cups of whole milk
2 tablespoons of sugar
1/4 teaspoon of vanilla extract


Put all ingredients into a blender and
blend to a smooth consistency.  Pour
everything into a loaf pan and freeze.
After 3 hours, blend everything once
again. Pour the mixture back into the
loaf pan and freeze for another hour.


A great refreshing treat for the summer!!!