Spring Fever

Things are hopping all over. I’m just going to jot it all down and let you sort through it.

Sales Alerts

Knollwood Garden Center (Beavercreek) is having their spring edition of Ladies’ Night Out this Tuesday, April 17 from 6-8 pm. Featured: a taste of wine (from Brunings Wine Cellar, courtesy of Knollwood), a few spring garden nibbles, and lots of informal demonstrations.  Did you know Knollwood offers seniors 60 years and older a 10% off  regularly priced items every day! The OAGC (Ohio Association of Garden Clubs) Foundation, a 501(c)3 charity, will have their fantastic Challenge Quilt on-site for viewing. This winner for this fundraising raffle will be drawn at the OAGC convention in June. Tickets are $1 each or 6 for $5. It only takes one ticket to win!

Now for a limited time, Knollwood has 1.5 cubic foot bags of Osmocote Potting Soil with a great rebate! For use in any container or pot, it is a light, rich mix including sphagnum peat and perlite as well as Osmocote fertilizer! Sold for $9.99 a bag, with the $5.00 Mail-In rebate it’s only $4.99. Use your rebate form for up to 4 bags, or $20; just ask for the form at the checkout counter when purchasing. While supplies last.

Grandma’s Gardens & Landscape(South of Centerville)is having their Perennial Spring Party now through April 22, offering all quart, gallon and larger perennials at 25% off. Buy 10 or more quart and larger perennials and automatically become a Perennial Club Member on the spot. That will give you 20% off all future regular priced perennials. No fees, no expiration. Flower tree and shade trees are also on sale at 25% off through April 22. See store for details.

Educational Events

The Greene County Master Gardeners will present Thais Reiff and Jerry Mahan, Wednesday, April 18, 7-8 pm for a program  “Saving Ohio’s Ash Trees – Emerald Ash Borer Treatment Options”. This presentation for homeowners will be on the Emerald Ash Borer at the Greene County Extension Office, 100 Fairground Road, Xenia. Check out the flyer HERE.

The Ohio Invasive Plant Council (OIPC) is presenting a free workshop (lunch is included), “Aliens Among Us – An Introduction to Invasive Plants in Ohio” at the Dawes Arboretum (7770 Jacksontown Rd., Newark OH 43056) on April 26th, from 9:30am-4pm. Check out the flyer HERE. Dawes Arboretum is about 2 hours from the Dayton area and WELL worth the drive.

The Midwest Native Plant Symposium‘s registration is now open. The event will be held July 27-29 right in our backyard at Bergamo Center in Beavercreek. Top notch speakers and vendors are the highlights. Check out the flyer HERE.


Till we meet again

White-throated sparrow

Some of us who live in Ohio year-round  may find it hard to believe that anyone or anything would want to spend winters here let alone consider it a balmy vacation destination, yet that is exactly what some of our feathered friends do. The recent mild weather has allowed a welcome spring breeze to come in though open windows. Riding the perfumed wind comes the melodic “Oh, sweet Canada, Canada, Canada” song of the white-throated sparrow. You can listen to its sweet song HERE.

I was very surprised to hear sparrow’s song this morning for I know he’ll be packing it up and heading north to Canada for summer breeding. Other winter visitors to Ohio include the dark-eyed junco, pine siskins, long-eared owls, red-breasted nuthatches and more. You can follow the occurrence progress of many birds  HERE. Safe journeys, friends. I’ll see you again come winter.

NOTE: Get your hummingbird feeders out. They have already been spotted in Ohio. Follow their 2011 migration HERE.


Invasive wildflowers

Lesser celandine

Dense mat of lesser celandine

On the other side of the coin are visitors that have overstayed their welcome. Case in point is the Lesser Celandine (Ranunculus ficaria) also known as the fig buttercup. Not to be confused with our native marsh marigold (Caltha palustris), this non-native invasive vernal plant forms large, dense patches in floodplain forests and some upland sites, displacing many native plant species, especially those with the similar spring-flowering life cycle.  Because it emerges well in advance of the native species, it has a developmental advantage which allows it to establish and overtake areas rapidly. (Sounds like the Amur honeysuckle!) After flowering, the above-ground foliage begins to die back and are mostly gone by June. Learn more here.

Worm update

My worms were no worse for wear considering their vermicomposting road trip to the Licking County Master Gardener Conference in Newark, OH last Saturday. In fact, a handful of them now have a new home somewhere up that way. The keynote speaker at the event was Jim McCormac who spoke on the often misunderstood group of plants: Goldenrods. If you get the opportunity to hear Jim speak, on any subject, GO. You won’t regret it. Check out his blog HERE.