Flea Market this Saturday

Newsletter 22 – Thursday, July 11, 2013

Monday – Friday

Saturday – Sunday

Perennial of the Week – Nepeta ‘Walker’s Low’ Catmint

Nepeta 'Walker’s Low' Catmint
Nepeta ‘Walker’s Low’ Catmint
Click for Larger Image

The soft gray-green foliage of the Nepeta is highly aromatic.  The large lavender-blue blossoms occur heavily from late spring through midsummer and will reappear for a second heavy bloom in the autumn. Even when not in bloom it is a compact and very attractive plant.  To get a denser, bushier growth and quicker re-flowering, cut it back several times during its first bloom season.  This perennial is resistant to drought and is perfect for your sun garden.  In fact, the Nepeta was named 2007 Perennial Plant of the Year!

As always the featured perennial of the week is twenty percent off while supplies last!

Q. Where do fleas shop at?
A. the flea market!

America’s Best Flowers is having a Flea Market!

There is still time to register for our Flea Market on Saturday, July 13, from 9am-4pm.  To participate we require a non-refundable registration fee of $20.00.  After you arrive and have your space set up on that morning, America’s Best Flowers will present you with a $20.00 America’s Best Flowers gift card.  Each vendor will be allowed two parking spaces, which equals one booth, to display their wares.   

More vendor space is available for an additional $10.00 for each parking space.  Additional space must be requested at the time of the initial registration.  Each vendor is limited to only one $20.00 America’s Best Flowers gift card regardless of the number of parking spaces.

Rain or shine! Set up time is at 7am and the starting bell is at 9am.  This event will end at 4pm.  Vendors will need to bring their own furnishings, tables, awnings, chairs, etc.

For safety purposes all vendor vehicles must be parked in a separate area and will not be allowed in the market area until after 4pm. 

To register just stop by the greenhouse with a check or cash for the number of booths you would like to reserve.  In the memo section of your check please put ‘Flea Market”.  For clarity include a short note stating how many booths you are registering for, a telephone number and/or email address for contact purposes.

There are a few restrictions on what may be brought to the flea market at our greenhouse.  They are as follows:

  • No firearms or ammunition,
  • No live animals,
  • No flowers and/or plants,
  • No alcohol or tobacco is allowed on America’s Best Flowers’ property.

Remember, one man’s (or woman’s) junk is another man’s (or woman’s) treasure.

If you are interested in joining us contact Shirley at abfscimino@yahoo.com or call the greenhouse at 608-222-2269.

Earwigs – Yuck!


They will show up anywhere and everywhere.  Enough is enough!  Now is the time to take action. The following product is one that we recommend to combat this pest.

Earth-tone’s Bug and Slug Control is a wonderful product.  Simply scatter the bait granules on the soil around or near the plants to be protected. Bug and Slug is labeled for organic gardening.  This product kills earwigs, cutworm, sow bugs, pill bugs, slugs, and snails.

What do you do when two snails have a fight?
Leave them to slug it out!

Send Al your gardening questions!

America’s Best Flowers wants to help you succeed in your gardening efforts. If you have gardening questions send an email to Al Lunde, at abflunde@yahoo.com. Al will get back to you promptly.

Q: Why do dogs wag their tails?
A: "Because no one else will do it for them!"

Lucy’s Story – Chapter 14

Lucy laying down on the wooden patio nearby a plaster/plastic? bust of an unnamed man
Lucy and friend chilling on the deck!
Click for Larger Image

Pictures and party antics from Lucy’s birthday party coming next week! 

Has it happened to you?  Out of the blue you remember something you either had forgotten to do or had forgotten to tell someone?  Well, this is one of those times!  I apologize for neglecting to mention, what I believe, is an amazing part of Lucy’s Story.  I still get goose-bumps thinking about it.

After about six months of being Lucy’s mom I got together with Marge, Lucy’s foster mom for coffee.  We had intermittently kept in contact via e-mail, but decided it would be nice to get caught up in person.  Our main topic of conversation was Lucy.  That came as a surprise, didn’t it!  I asked Marge to, once again, tell me Lucy’s story.   Marge went through it all as I had remembered it except for one pretty major detail. 

As Marge is telling me this very familiar story she mentions that Lucy was a stray found in Boscobel, WI.  I stopped Marge immediately and said that she had never mentioned that Lucy was found in Boscobel.  Marge tried to reassure me that yes, she had mentioned it.  My response was a very insistent no; I had never, ever been told that part of her story.  Marge asked me how I could be so sure.  After all, there was so much to Lucy’s story I had probably just forgotten it.  

With my eyes welling up, I very softly said, “Marge, I promise you, I never would have forgotten the fact that Lucy was found in Boscobel, because that is where I was born.”

Some things are just meant to be!

`til next time,
    ~ Shirley

If any of you other dog people want to share a dog story send it to abfscimino@yahoo.com.

Q: Why did the potato cross the road?
A: He saw a fork up ahead.

Upcoming Events

Sat, Jul 13
Flea Market

9am – 4pm – Rain or Shine

Sat, Jul 20
Contest for Kids

10am – 2pm – Bring your colored chalk & color our parking lot! A prize winner for each age group (2-5) (6-10) (11-15) A PAPA JIMMY’S $20.00 GIFT CARD for the Grand Prize winner.

Sat, Jul 27
Music in the Garden

Musical talent featured at the greenhouse!

Sat, Aug 10
Customer Appreciation Day
Sat, Aug 17
3rd Annual Dog Wash Fund Raiser for the Dane County Humane Society

11am – 3pm Bring your dirty dogs out to the garden.

Sat, Aug 24
Flea Market

8am – 3pm – Rain or Shine

Our Kitchen

We had a potluck last Wednesday night, at our home, just across Lake Monona from Rhythm N’ Booms.  This is such a great opportunity every year to gather family and friends for an evening of food, conversation and fireworks.  The week before the big event, Jim’s Uncle Joe presented us with a fifty-pound box of russet potatoes, making the food theme of a Baked Potato Bar an easy choice.

After I made my basic list, I did go online and to check out suggestions for toppings, just to make sure I hadn’t missed anything.  The fact that I had, along with questions from our guests asking how I had baked the potatoes, led me to sharing what we did with you.  When guests asked what they could bring, I just read off a few choices from the toppings list, and let them choose.

The Basic Baked Potato

The Basic Baked Potato

  • 1 large russet potato for each guest, plus a few extras
  • vegetable shortening (or olive oil)
  • sea salt

Scrub potatoes well with a soft brush.  Allow to air dry for a couple of hours, or thoroughly pat dry with paper towels.  Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil.  Make sure it is large enough for all the potatoes with space between them.  For a larger number of potatoes, use your oven rack.  To do so, position the bottom rack of your oven in the lowest position and place foil directly on it, leaving a couple of inches all the way around for heat circulation.  You will bake the potatoes on the rack directly above the foil-covered one.  The foil will catch any drips from the shortening/oil.  Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

While the oven gets hot, poke several holes in each potato with a fork or paring knife.  After you’ve poked them all, rub thoroughly with shortening or oil until there is a very thin coat covering the potatoes.  I use my hands for this.  After you’ve oiled them all, sprinkle the outsides lightly with sea salt.  Arrange on baking sheet or directly on the middle oven rack.  Bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes. If you are using jumbo potatoes, add an additional 15 minutes.

The Basic Potato Bar

The Basic Potato Bar

    My list:
    • Salt & Pepper
    • Butter and margarine
    • Sour cream, regular and light
    • Shredded Cheddar Cheese
    • Diced ham
    • Bacon, pan-fried, drained & crumbled
    • Taco Meat, ground beef with taco seasoning
    • Black Beans, heated straight from can
    • Green onions, sliced very thinly
    • Black olives, sliced
    • Salsa, mild or medium
    • Jalapeno pepper slices, pickled
    • Little Smokies in BBQ sauce
    Other Options:
    • Any variety shredded cheese
    • Parmesan cheese
    • Cheese sauce
    • Steamed Broccoli
    • Cooked mixed vegetables
    • Chopped tomatoes
    • Chopped Green Peppers
    • Diced red onions
    • Pineapple chunks
    • Chili
    • Chopped chicken cubes
    • Gravy
    • Ranch dressing
    • Alfredo sauce
    • Barbeque sauce

    Choose at least 5-6 items from the lists.  When you arrange everything for buffet-style serving be sure to arrange everything logical order; plates, potatoes, butter, and so on.

    Leftovers?  Turn them into twice-baked potatoes using the leftover odds and ends, and you’re all ready for another meal.  Enjoy!!

    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