We have Stuff … and lots of it!

Newsletter 6 – Thursday, March 21, 2013

Yes, we are open for business!
Monday – Saturday

Hey, is your non-profit organization in need of funds?

We don’t want you to miss out on this opportunity! 

There are still a few weeks left to take advantage of our fantastic fundraiser program.  The America’s Best Flowers fundraiser program offers non-profit organizations the opportunity to keep 25% of the proceeds from the sale of our gift cards.

Our fundraiser is quick, easy, and profitable. Most organizations need only one person to run it and it is designed to be time efficient. Earn money for your organization in as little time as a couple of weeks, or even 1-2 days. If your non-profit organization is in need of funds for electronic equipment, youth group trips, sports equipment or uniforms, or other necessary items, contact Shirley at either 608-222-2269 or abfscimino@yahoo.com.

What’s Irish and comes out in the spring?

Return of the Cottage Grove Easter Bunny!

A cartoon bunny sitting on a pile of decorated easter eggs
Our Pink Easter Bunny will be here!
Don’t forget your cameras!

The Easter Egg Hunt at our America’s Best Flowers Cottage Grove location is Saturday, March 30, from 10:00 – 2:00 PM.  Rain or shine! 

Bring the kids out for a day of fun and meet our Easter Bunny.  We’re going to have chickens and bunnies for the kids to giggle over. 

While you are here why not pick up an Easter lily and pots of spring flowers to decorate your Holiday table? 

If you would be so kind…we are accepting donations for the Cottage Grove Food Pantry.

America’s Best Flowers will be closed on Easter Sunday.

Are you looking for a perfect Asiatic Lily?

Asiatic Lilies mixed in with Cineraria
Asiatic Lilies mixed in with Cineraria
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Choose from our beautiful selection of pink, orange, burgundy or the bi-color (burgundy and white) Asiatic lilies.  Just look at these beauties. Take home more than one and have your own gorgeous display of color.

Available here…Beautiful Centerpieces

Do you need centerpieces for a future banquet or some other type of celebration?  Give us a call!  We can create lovely potted plant and potted flower arrangements for your event. 


A wide assortment of our pottery for sale
My favorites are the ones that look like they’re partly buried in the ground
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Pottery is actually a form of art.  Enhance your potted plants and flowers with a sensational piece of pottery.  Stop in and take a look at our new and exciting line of unique and one-of-a-kind pottery. 

While you’re here…

A photo of our retail area, showing the benchs filled with pottery and a variety of plants
The only thing missing in this picture is you!
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Check out (get it?) our retail area!  Marty, Bev and Mark have been very busy these last 4-6 weeks not only stocking up on lawn and garden products, but also arranging new and dazzling displays.  We have lots of new and fun items for both your lawn and garden.  The place looks great! Come on in and see for yourself just how hard these three have been working! 

Q:How many rabbits does it take to change a light bulb?
A: Only one if it hops right to it.

America’s Best Flowers
2013 Shade Tree Program

Early spring is the perfect time to plant larger shade trees.  We are offering 4 popular varieties this year at a special price that includes free delivery and planting (price good within a 10 mile radius of Cottage Grove or Edgerton).  Trees must be pre-ordered and prepaid by April 1.  To take advantage of this offer, call America’s Best Flowers in Cottage Grove at 608-222-2269.

River Birch(clump form) 1½” diameter trunk– 12-14’ tall – $229.99

A native birch with very attractive, exfoliating bark varying from cinnamon brown to parchment.  Interesting effect in the winter.  Resistant to bronze birch borer.  Golden-yellow fall color.  Tolerates a wide range of soil conditions but prefers a slightly acidic soil.  40’ tall by 30’ wide at maturity.

Autumn Blaze Maple
Autumn Blaze Maple
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Autumn Blaze Maple  1½” trunk diameter – 12’ tall – $229.99

A hybrid cross of red and silver maple, with a more refined shape and incredible fall color.  Summer green leaves turn ruby red in fall, but the interesting thing is the underside of the leaves is pink.  This plant tolerates dry areas or areas that can be wet.  Very adaptable and fast growing.  Super fall color.  45’ tall by 35’ wide at maturity.

Skyline Honey Locust
Skyline Honey Locust
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Skyline Honey Locust  1½” trunk diameter – 12’ tall – $229.99

The most popular honey locust.  It’s upright, spreading branch angles give it a distinctive pyramidal form.  Has a strong, sturdy trunk.  Provides excellent filtered shade.  Yellow foliage in the fall – seedless.  45’ tall by 30’ wide at maturity.

Autumn Brilliance Serviceberry
Autumn Brilliance Serviceberry
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Autumn Brilliance Serviceberry  1½” trunk diameter – 10’ tall – $229.99

An excellent, smaller tree with all-season interest.  Showy white flowers in spring followed by purple edible fruit in June.  Glossy blue-green leaves turn brilliant red-orange in the fall.  Smooth gray stems.  20’ tall by 15’ wide at maturity.

All through the long winter, I dream of my garden.
On the first day of spring, I dig my fingers deep into the soft earth.
I can feel it’s energy, and my spirits, soar.

Helen Hayes

We are looking for young talent!

Many of you have come to our annual Art in the Garden event and left with great pieces of artwork, jewelry and such. 

This summer we would like to offer a venue for the young and musically talented!   All ages of singers and musicians are welcome to perform at our very casual Music in the Garden event.  The dates for this event are Saturday, June 29 and Saturday, July 27th.

We are hoping to make this an annual event just like our fabulous Art in the Garden, only this year you’ll leave with the sound of music in your ears!  

If you know of a group or a solo artist that would like to perform please contact Shirley at abfscimino@yahoo.com.

Has your home address or your email address changed?

Several people have called the greenhouse asking if we have discontinued our on-line newsletter.  Obviously, no, we haven’t, but they’d changed their email address and forgot to let us know.  Please don’t let this happen to you.

If you have changed your name, phone number, mail delivery or email address please give us a call at 608-222-2269 or email us at abfbev@yahoo.com.  We want you to continue receiving our fabulous and informative weekly on-line newsletter and special mailings.

What season is it when you are on a trampoline?

Lucy’s story – Chapter two

Lucy had been surrendered to Angel’s Wish with her eleven 4- week old puppies.  The puppies were 7 weeks old at that time and there were 8 puppies left ready to be adopted.  There was a short bio for each puppy with two different pictures of each.  In the corner of their bio was a very small picture of their mother.  It showed a rather forlorn looking black Labrador with patches of fur missing and the subsequent saggy skin and such that comes with a pregnancy.  (Hey all you moms out there, you know what I’m talking about, don’t ya?)

Along with the picture, was a statement that said she was a wonderful mother and that she would be available for adoption soon. 

My very first reaction to her picture was ‘Oh, that poor thing.  Nobody is going to adopt her.’

Whoever said that you can’t see the eyes of a black dog was an idiot! ‘Cause once I took a good look at this dog and her caramel colored eyes all I could see was love in the truest sense and that is the very moment my heart melted!   

Q: Why did the bunny build herself a new house?
A: She was fed up with the hole thing!

`til next time,
    ~ Shirley

Upcoming Events

Sat, Mar 30
Community Egg Hunt

10am – 2pm – Rain or Shine! FREE candy! Children 6 and under. Bring your camera and have your picture taken with the Easter Bunny. Accepting items for the Cottage Grove Food Pantry.

Sat, Apr 6 – Sun, Apr 7
Herb Container Workshop

10am – 4pm – FREE soil and assistance. Create an herb container garden. Bring in your own containers or buy some of ours.

Sat, Apr 13
Make & Take Terrarium Workshop

10am – 4pm – FREE soil and assistance. Create your own terrarium. Bring in your own terrarium container or buy one of ours.

Sat, Apr 13 – Sun, Apr 14
Universal Saw & Tool Sharpening

10am -4pm – Get those tools ready for easier gardening.

Sun, Apr 14
Make & Take Miniature Garden Workshop

10am – 4pm – FREE soil and assistance. Create your own miniature garden. Bring in your own containers or buy some of ours.

Sat, Apr 20 – Sun, Apr 21
Open House & New Plants

We have your all-time favorite plants plus our new line of Hort Couture plants!

Our Kitchen

By Bev Wilson

My kids are spoiled.  Even though they are well into adulthood, I still occasionally fill their freezers with some of their favorite ‘Mom’ food. The following recipe is the most requested. I’ve been making these enchiladas since my son was very small.  I initially got the recipe from a friend.  Over the years I’ve nipped and tucked it a bit, ending up with the version below.  This is an easy make ahead and put in the freezer meal.  It makes 16 enchiladas, enough to fill two 9×13 pans, each pan will serve 4-6 people.  I use disposable aluminum foil pans for the freezer. And I always triple the recipe, yep that’s 6 pans, so I have some on hand to share with family or friends.

These are delicious with any or all of your favorite Mexican side dishes.  And don’t forget to set out chips and salsa for everyone to munch on while they wait for them to bake.  For more heat, top with your favorite salsa, or cool them down with sour cream, or both.  Enjoy!!

Bev’s “Awesome” Chicken Enchiladas

  • 16 flour tortilla shells -8” ones that fit across the pan
  • 3½ – 4 lbs bone-in, skin-on chicken breasts
  • 3 cloves minced garlic
  • onion powder & black pepper to taste
  • 2-3 fresh yellow banana peppers, diced*
  • 2 C chopped onions
  • 2– 4 oz cans chopped green chilies
  • 1 large can cream of chicken soup, 26 oz.
  • 1 pint sour cream
  • 16 oz shredded medium cheddar cheese

* You can substitute 4 additional cans chopped green chilies for the fresh

Cook chicken seasoned with garlic, onion powder and black pepper either in a little water in a pan atop the stove over medium heat or foil-wrapped in a preheated 325 degree oven until tender and cooked through – 40 – 50 minutes, depending on size of breasts.  I prefer to use bone-in chicken.  It seems to stay more moist.  You can substitute 3 lbs. boneless chicken breasts, just be aware they cook faster and will need less time. I’ve never tried cubing them first and then sautéing, but I think it would work and save some time.  Remove chicken from pan, skin and debone.  Dice into half-inch cubes. Save broth for soup or gravy.

In a separate pan sauté the fresh peppers and onions in a bit of water over medium heat until tender, 10 – 15 minutes. Drain, discarding water.

In a large mixing bowl, combine green chilies, soup and sour cream.  Mix well.  Reserve about a cup and a half – I put it back in the sour cream container. Add 8 oz. of cheese, the diced chicken and cooked vegetables to bowl and stir well.

Spray your pans with Pam.  

To assemble.  Place half the tortillas on a plate and heat for 30 seconds in the microwave.  Spoon 2-3 heaping spoons of filling down the center of a tortilla. Roll up and place in pan.  It should use about half of your mixture to fill enough for one pan (8).  Repeat with rest of tortillas for other pan. 

Spread ½ reserved soup mixture down center of each pan of enchiladas.  Using the back of your spoon, gently smear it around, spreading it almost to the edges.  Sprinkle the remaining 8 oz of cheese over the enchiladas.  Cover tightly with foil.

At this point you can freeze or bake.  If you’re making dinner, pop them in a 350 oven.  Bake 35 – 45 minutes, until bubbly.  Remove foil and continue baking 5-10 more minutes, until tops are lightly browned. 

If you freeze them, remove the day before you plan to serve them and allow them to thaw in your refrigerator.  If still frozen, sit out on counter for up to an hour before you bake. Depending on how defrosted they are, you may need to bake them longer – 45 min to an hour before you remove foil.  My daughter actually takes hers out of the freezer and puts them directly in a 325 degree oven for 2 hours or so.  I use 8×8 pans with 4 enchiladas in them for her.

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