Hello all and welcome to our 9th season of Garden Time. We are excited to be back on the air with another season of Garden Time. We have had a lot of meetings as a staff over the last couple of weeks and we are full of ideas for some great stories. We even have talked about stories in August already! There was no sitting back and relaxing for this first episode. We also had the Yard, Garden and Patio show going on this same weekend. That means our viewers in the Portland area get a bonus! Following our first episode of 2014, viewers of our program on KOIN TV will get the opportunity to see a half hour special from the floor of the YGP. We will show you some of the great vendors and see some of the beautiful plants they have for sale at this year’s show.
More exciting news for fans of the Garden Time show. We are hosting our first garden tour! This June from the 18th to the 22nd, Garden Time will be hosting a tour to Victoria BC. This 5 day, 4 night tour will include 8 of your meals on the trip and includes all transportation and admission into some of the best public and private gardens in Victoria. We will even get to visit the award winning Butchart Gardens.
This trip is now sold out,
but check our Garden Time Tours page in the future for information about upcoming trips.
This week we featured...
Getting back out into the garden may be just what your psyche ordered, but your body may pay the price in the long run. You will find that there are muscles that have not been used in a long time and they will let you know they are there in the days following your garden adventures. To learn how to ease the pain and possibly prevent it we paid a visit with yoga instructor Joan Gunness (971-235-7621). Joan recommended that you stretch and work all your muscles before and after your garden chores. You also should take a lot of breaks and change your position frequently. If you would like to see all of the exercises you can check out Joan’s story in the February 2014 issue of Garden Time Magazine [FLASH VERSION][PDF VERSION]. Do these simple exercises and your garden work will be even more rewarding!
Small Fruit Plants
Everyone is looking to get more gardening out of their small spaces. This trend is very hot and garden centers can help. We stopped by Portland Nursery on Stark Street (503-231-5050). Sara and Ken joined Judy to talk about small fruit plants for containers. First Sara talked about the conditions that are special for container gardening. First of all, containers will dry out quicker. Because most pots drain well and some will even ‘breathe’ through the clay, they will lose water faster. You will also want to fertilize with an organic fertilizer in the pot. Make sure you don’t use a fertilizer with a high nitrogen number (the first one of the 3 numbers) since this may cause the plant to ‘burn’. Since these plants can get big over time, make sure you pick varieties that will stay short. Always read the tags or ask an expert at your local garden center.
Next we talked to Ken about the different varieties that they had at Portland Nursery. He mentioned that blueberries are one of the most popular fruits they sell. One of his favorites is ‘Sunshine Blue’, it is a great plant that may even reward you with fruit into late summer. He had also pulled out a shorter variety called ‘Top Hat’. Prefect for a small container! Another new popular variety is the ‘Raspberry Shortcake’. This is a raspberry that was hybridized for small containers. It is a ‘one time crop’ berry and once it is done you can cut back the old growth and make room for new fruiting branches. This brings up the idea of larger fruit plants in containers. If you want a larger variety in a container, make sure the container is larger as well. Large varieties of raspberry may require a whiskey barrel to hold them. Finally, we checked out strawberries. These are old standby garden favorites. Still there are new varieties out there to try. Ken pointed out the new ‘Fort Laramie’ variety. He also pointed out that you can get up to 10 small plants when you buy the larger containers. It’s a great deal and a way to get lots of plants.
If you are thinking of growing fruit in a small space or in a container, stop by Portland Nursery or any local garden center for varieties that will work the best for your space.
Dividing Perennials in the Ground
Dividing your perennials is not hard. In fact you can do it with just a shovel. William and Judy found a lobelia that had just spread too far in the yard. It was covering part of the lawn and was hanging out into the street. The first thing Judy did was to cut back the plant. The early spring is the perfect time for dividing your plants. The foliage is dead, and by cutting it back you can see the entire crown of the plant. Then William took a shovel and just drove it down into the middle of the plant. By cutting a line across the middle of the plant he was able to cut out that part of the plant and keep it from spreading into the yard again this year. The best part? We now have parts of our favorite plant that we can share with our friends and family.
If you want to get more precise in your dividing, you can dig the entire plant up, cut it apart and then replant a smaller portion. Either way, it is easy to divide most of your garden perennials like this! For more tips check with your local independent garden center.
PRUNE Your Roses
If you follow the traditional rules, your roses should have been pruned a couple of weeks ago, but with roses you can break a few rules. We went to the experts at Heirloom Roses (503-538-1576) to see how they tackle the chore of pruning. Ben Hanna, the owner of Heirloom was out in the fields pruning away some of the old winter canes and prepping the plants for a full season of bloom. Roses are very forgiving, but we tend to treat them gingerly when it comes time to cut them back. Ben showed us how to cut them back and even how to remove some of the older canes to promote that new growth. He and his wife even came up with an acronym to help you remember the few basic rules of pruning: PRUNE. P is for ‘Prepare your plant’. This means cutting everything back to about 36 inches. This will give you a better view of the plant and help you assess what needs to be cut. R is for ‘Remove all dead, diseased and crossing canes’. This will make for a healthier plant in the long run. U is for ‘Understand your plant’. If you know what type of rose you have and how it grows that will help you know where to cut and how much needs to be taken off the plant. N is for ‘Nothing left behind’. Clean up your plant and clean the area around the base of the plant to remove all diseased leaves and canes. Throw these into your garbage and not into your compost. If they are composted and you spread that compost in your garden it spreads the spores of the previous disease to your plants again. And finally, E is for ‘Enjoy your rose. By following these simple steps you can now expect to have a healthy rose loaded with blooms all summer long! Of course now is also a good time to get new plants in the ground. If you have any rose questions you can call Heirloom, or better yet, sign up for one of the Saturday Academies where you can learn in a ‘hands-on’ setting. Be sure to check out their website to see a video on pruning http://www.heirloomroses.com/care/prune, and also print a ‘how to’ sheet to help you.
Sedum Bird and Bee Houses
We all love birds in our gardens. Plus, attracting bees to the garden is also a top priority! We also want the house for both to look great and be functional at the same time. To see some bird and bee houses that serve both purposes we stopped by Little Prince of Oregon, a local grower of fine plants and perennials. They had an idea for combining a cool sedum roof with bird and bee houses. We visited with Ryan at Little Prince to see how they put them together. He showed us how they use flats of sedums and cut them to the perfect size to get them to fit the locally built houses that they found. If you go to your local independent garden center you can find them already planted, or without any plants so you can plant your own! If you are going to the Yard, Garden and Patio show this weekend at the Oregon Convention Center, be sure to stop by Dennis’s 7 Dees booth where they will be for sale as well.
The Yard, Garden and Patio Show at the Oregon Convention Center
French Prairie Gardens
We started our program with a visit to French Prairie Gardens. A lot of people think they only open in the fall for their wonderful fall harvest event. They also sell lots of beautiful plants. We met with Katie and saw some of the cool plants they will have at booth 547 at the Yard, Garden and Patio show. William also talked to her about all the great events they have coming up including the Ladies Night Out (with William and Judy) happening on the 27th of March, and the very cool CSA (Community Sponsored Agriculture) program they will have again this year. Check out their booth for more info.
Garden Gallery Iron Works
Don Sprague always has something new at the YGP show. Judy met with Don in one of the three booths he has for the show (booth 129). He talked about all the cool stuff he brought to the show. We started with the first booth which had garden stakes, mole traps, and whirly gigs. Then moved to the second booth where there were neat stuff for the inside of your home. In the third booth he had some great furniture made from distressed and recycled materials including a great outdoor fire pit! This is a must stop when you are at the show!
Premier Pools and Spas
Everyone has memories of playing in a pool when they were a kid, and people actively look for hotels with pools when they go on vacation. Why? Because pools are cool. So why wait until vacation to enjoy a pool? We stopped by Premier Pools and Spas (booth 340) to talk with Vitaliy about the benefits of an in-ground pool. It isn’t as expensive or overwhelming as it seems. Premier can even work with your existing hot tub or spa to make your project seamless. Interested? Stop by and see what they can do for you.
If you are looking to add some structure to your garden you may not have to spend a lot of money on materials, you might be able to recycle your old structures to do the job. The guys at The Wall (booth 1168) can help you out. They also work with a landscaper and new materials to build your dream garden!
French Prairie Perennials
If adding something unique to your garden is up your alley then you need to stop by Booths 419-421 and talk to Rick at French Prairie Perennials. He showed us some truly unusual conifers and perennials. He can also help you with landscaping, so these plants will really look great in your garden. Stop by and check them out.
Getting to be a good gardener is not hard, sometimes all you need is a little help. Jenna Bayer is an expert landscape designer and she takes pride in helping gardeners learn. With her business partner, Lynn Starkman, they hold hands-on classes that help get beginners over the hump! Stop by booth 1179 to learn about their schedule of programs. While you are at the show you can also check out Display Garden B, Jenna put her design talents to work to make this outstanding garden!
Out in the Garden
Bring some great late winter and early spring color to your garden. Stop by booth 655 and see all the great plants that Carol brought from her nursery, Out in the Garden. While you are there, ask her about visiting her nursery and see where they shot an episode of the TV show, Grimm!