Ghosts, Gardens and Goodies

Newsletter 33 – Thursday, October 2, 2014

Current Hours

Cottage Grove open
Mon-Fri 9-6, Sat and Sun 9-6

Edgerton open
Mon-Fri 8:30-5:30, Sat 8:30-5, Sun 9-4

Lucy’s Story – Chapter 69

"Ingenuity like this is why bears will never rule the world."
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We were having so much fun last Sunday getting ready to watch the Packer vs the Chicago Bears game on Sunday.  We were all rushing around in different directions to put all of our green and gold on. 

I ran to get my Packer collar when…WHAT!? Where was it?  I couldn’t find it.  We looked up, down, over and under everything and it wasn’t there.  It was gone.  

But it was just there a week ago.  What happened to it?  Where did it go?  Did a Bears’ fan sneak in and slip away with my good luck Packer collar? 

I was numb…in shock!  How were the Packers going to win now? 

I looked up at my mom and dad and then sank to the floor.  Desperation filled the air.   

Then I heard my dad say ‘We gotta fix this and fix it fast.’  And ‘fix it’ we did.  We took my fancy glow-in-the-dark Packer leash, that my friend Jeff made, and jerry-rigged it into a Packer collar for the game.

And it worked!  We walloped the Bears! 

Ha!  Take that you collar snitching Bears’ fan!

Go Pack!


P.S. If any of you other Packer Backer cool dogs out there would like your very own Packer leash just have your mom or dad send Jeff an email at

Road construction ahead!

The corner of Cottage Grove Rd (Hwy BB) and Vilas Hope Rd will be a mess for a while.  At that intersection, Cottage Grove Rd is being widened to add a turn lane in both directions.   We ask for your patience during this time period.

We’d like to believe that any slight delay you experience is worth the trip out to our greenhouse.

The road to success is always under construction.

Beautiful Bulbs!

Tulip ‘Golden Apeldoorn’
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Imagine welcoming this yellow beauty in your garden next spring!

Wisconsin winters are too long and too cold! We promise that when next spring rolls around you’ll be so glad that you took a little time this fall to plant bulbs. 

Remember, fall is the only time you can plant those wonderful spring-blooming bulbs.  Plant now and be the absolute envy of your neighbors next spring! Tulips, daffodils, crocus, hyacinth, allium, and more are waiting for you.

When you plant your bulbs is the perfect opportunity to dig in a generous amount of plant food. It’s your only chance you will ever have to put the nutrients the bulbs need for maximum flowering directly under the bulbs in the root zone of your plants. We suggest Espoma Bulb Tone.

Protect Your New Bulbs!

When planting your fall bulbs, to protect them from birds, squirrels and chipmunks, try our Repels-All animal repellent granules around the bulb. After placing bulbs in the planting hole, apply one tablespoon of Repels-All into the hole making sure granules surround the bulb. Backfill with soil and you’re all set.  Repels-All is NOT a poison, it is a repellent. Its unique blend of ingredients causes a mild irritation to animal’s nasal passages. When an animal touches, tastes or smells Repels-All, it triggers a natural instinct to escape/avoid and the animal simply leaves.

We have fall decorating bundles!

A rare porch scarecrow in its natural environment
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Take advantage of all the decorating tools that our Wisconsin fall offers.  Our brilliant colored mums and asters along with our corn shocks, gourds, and pumpkins will add the perfect seasonal look to any porch or yard. 

To make things even easier, America’s Best Flowers has an Autumn Bundle that includes one of our gorgeous mums, a straw bale, and a bundle of corn shocks, all at special savings.  Add two more mums and save even more.

Our corn shocks are netted (like a Christmas tree) so they can be safely tied to the roof of your vehicle, keeping your car clean and the shocks free from wind damage.  We’ll even provide the twine.

Our supply is limited, so don’t lose out on the chance to have the coolest looking yard on the block!

Q: How do you fix a broken pumpkin?
A: With a pumpkin patch


A small sampling of what we have in store for you!
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We were recently introduced to Bald Eagle Foods, from Plymouth, WI.  We were so impressed with how wonderful their food products tasted that we are now carrying a variety of them at our greenhouse.  We have Beer Pub Mustard, Spinach and Artichoke Dip, Black Bean and Corn Salsa, Salsa Verde, Harvest Apple Salsa, Jalapeno Honey Mustard, Bread and Butter Jalapeno Dip, Holy Cow Snack Sticks, and more.

Here are a few short and to-the-point testimonials from several members of our staff:

‘This stuff is sooo good!’

‘Ya gotta try the Spinach and Artichoke Dip!’ 

‘I love the sausage!’

Need we say more?

My four year old daughter had a terrible case of the flu,
she was achy, had a high fever, and was terribly hoarse.

After waiting in the waiting room at the doctor’s office for
over an hour we were finally admitted to see the Doctor.

After the usual routine of listening to her breathing and checking
her ears, the Doctor looked my daughter in the eye and said,
“So what would you say is bothering you the most?”

Without skipping a beat my daughter promptly answered,
“Billy, he always breaks my toys!”

More Family Fun at Scarecrow Days!

Hayden, age 6 and Kallen, age 3 created this handsome scarecrow!
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Their scarecrow in its natural environment
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Scarecrow time is here at America’s Best Flowers (Cottage Grove location).  We are stuffing straw from 10am to 5:00pm on Monday – Friday and 10am – 4pm on Saturday & Sunday, running through Sunday Oct. 12.  There is a nominal fee for the scarecrow kit and garage-sale prices for scarecrow clothing (or bring clothes from home). 

Set your lovely or scary creation on a straw bale, use a few corn stalks for background and surround the whole scene with brilliant mums, fountain grass and pumpkins, and you will have a fabulous fall display.

For groups of 5 or more, please call ahead 608-222-2269.  This will allow us to plan ahead and have enough staff available for your group.

Fairy Garden Halloween Accessories

I caught a ghost on camera! Let’s see the skeptics debunk this one!
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Your fairy garden is dying to be decorated for Halloween!  We have a spooky assortment of ghost, skeletons, pumpkins, grave stones picks, pumpkin fairy masks and even witch hats for the fairies for you to choose from.

A sign that you’re getting too old to Trick or Treat
You ask for high fiber candy only!

Boston Ferns

Improve the Air Quality of your Home

Houseplants benefit us in so many ways.  Often chosen for the color and texture they add to a room, houseplants are a beautiful addition to any home.  Nothing helps create a pleasant, relaxed mood faster than the addition of a few plants.  Research has shown that the benefits of indoor plants go far beyond decorative, proving that people living in homes and offices with plants have fewer problems with stress-related illnesses.  The group also had lower blood pressure than those living without plants.

Boston Ferns are on the list of best choices for air purification, and ours are especially nice this year.  Stop out today and pick up several for your home and office.

Easy Money for Your Non-Profit Organization!

Is your non-profit organization in need of funds?  America’s Best Flowers fundraising program begins this fall on October 1 and runs through April 1, 2015.  We have designed it to be quick, easy, and profitable.  In as little as 2-3 weeks or less, you can earn substantial money for your group. 

What else makes our fundraiser so special?

  1. Your group gets 25% of the total value of the America’s Best Flowers gift cards they sell!
  2. Our gift cards are valid at both our Cottage Grove and our Edgerton locations!
  3. America’s Best Flowers gift cards NEVER EXPIRE!

Offer your customer that perfect gift to give for the holidays or any occasion.  To help promote your fundraising efforts be sure to advertise that an America’s Best Flowers gift card may be used to purchase items for the coming holiday season.  We will have beautiful poinsettias, Christmas trees, decorated and undecorated fresh wreaths, holiday hanging baskets, Grab and Go Porch Pots, and much more for your holiday decorating needs.  Many non-profit groups have told us that ‘America’s Best Flowers gift cards almost sell themselves!’ 

How do you get started?  One way is to take orders for our gift cards.  Your customers make payment directly to your group.  Submit your completed order to us and we will process it.  One check, from your organization, for payment of 75% of the total order will be due when you pick up your gift cards.  Another way is to purchase, in bulk, several different denominations of gift cards to sell at your organization’s activities.  One check, from your organization, for payment of 75% of the total is due when you pick up your bulk order.  Some groups do it both ways! 

All holiday orders must be placed with us on or before Monday, December 15.  The cards will be available for you to pick up in a few days time.  Your orders may be submitted weekly, or all at one time.  If you need a gift card after December 15 just give us a call and we will make arrangements with you.

Learn more about our fundraising program by visiting our or email me at

Let’s work together to make this your best fundraiser ever!

Please don’t forget to vote…for us!

We just found out that America’s Best Flowers has been included in this year’s Best of Madison Readership Poll. 

If you feel that we are the Best Garden Center in the area please vote for us.  It’s easy to do and takes just a couple of minutes.  All you do is go to the Madison Magazine Best of Madison website,  Under ‘Pick a Category,’ choose ‘Home & Lifestyle’ then scroll down to ‘Lawn, Garden & Landscape.’  America’s Best Flowers is the first one listed.  Thanks so much for taking the time to do this.  As always we appreciate your loyalty.

This one little boy in about 4th or 5th grade was trying out for a school play.
He earned a part and went home to tell his father.

His father was really proud of him. So his father asks what part did you get?
He replies, “I got the part of a man who has been married for 25 years.”

His father congratulated him. And then he said,
“That’s good son, maybe next time you’ll get a talking role!”

Flea Market

Clean out your garage, basement, and cupboards and bring your treasures out to our last 2014 Flea Market on Saturday, October 18, from 8-3.

This will be an indoor flea market.  Inside space is limited and vendor space is smaller. This inside area is toward the back of our main greenhouse, so vendors will need to transport their items on carts, which we will provide.  We do not allow vehicles inside the greenhouse.

For planning purposes we need to have your registration by 6:00 pm, Monday, October 13.  

The following booth sizes are available:

  • Single booth – 10 ft long x 10 ft deep ($25.00)
  • Double booth – 20 ft long x 8 ft deep ($35.00)

To participate we require a non-refundable registration fee of $25.00 or $35.00.  After you arrive and have your space set up, we will present you with a $20.00 America’s Best Flowers gift card.  Each vendor is limited to one $20.00 gift card regardless of the size of booths.

Rain or shine! Set up time is at 6:30 am and the starting bell is at 8.  This event will end at 3.  Vendors will need to bring their own furnishings, tables, chairs, etc.

very limited number of 6 ft. long steel mesh top tables are available if you need a display table. Tables are on a first come first serve basis and you are responsible for covering the steel mesh top. Your display and products MUST fit with-in your designated area. After unloading your vehicle it must be moved to the designated parking area for vendors.

To register please send a check to America’s Best Flowers for the size booth you would like to reserve.  In the memo section of your check please put ‘Flea Market’.  For clarity include a short note stating the size booth, whether or not you need a table and a telephone number and/or email address for contact purposes.

Our mailing address is America’s Best Flowers, 4311 Vilas Hope Road, Cottage Grove, WI 53527

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 person’s junk is another person’s treasure.

If you are interested in joining us or if you have any questions contact Shirley at or call the greenhouse at 608-222-2269.

Upcoming Events

Sat, Sep 20 – Sun, Oct 12
Scarecrow Days

M-F 10-5pm / Sat – Sun 10am-4pm –

Sat, Oct 18
Flea Market

8am – 3pm – Rain or Shine

Sat, Oct 18 – Sun, Nov 16
Miniature Garden Container Workshops

10am-3pm Every Weekend – FREE soil and assistance. Create your own miniature garden. Bring in your own containers or buy some of ours.

Sat, Nov 22 – Sun, Nov 23
Holiday Porch Pot Workshop

9am–3pm – Pre-Registration Appreciated

Sun, Nov 30
Wreath Workshop

9am–3pm – Pre-Registration Appreciated

Sat, Dec 6
Holiday Centerpiece Workshop

9am–3pm – Pre-Registration Appreciated

Our Kitchen

The final harvest of the garden is upon us.  Time to pick the last of your crops, get the vines and plants into the compost pile and decide what it is you are going to do with the produce.

Last week Judy had a neighbor give her some beets.  She used them to make a recipe for pickled beets she had found in a magazine.  It is made with brown sugar instead of white and Judy reports they are very, very good.  Recipe can be cut down or doubled depending on how many beets you have.

Pickled Beets

  • 5 qt pail fresh beets
  • 2 c white vinegar
  • 2 c water
  • 2 c light brown sugar
  • 3 T pickling spice, tied in cheesecloth

Select small beets, cut off tops and place in a cooking pot with enough water to cover.  Cook until tender.  Dip in cold water and peel.  Cut beets into slices or chunks.

Place remaining ingredients in a clean pot, stir well.  Add beets.  Simmer 20 minutes.  Remove spice packet. Ladle into sterilized jars. Seal with hot tops.  Store in fridge.

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