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Archives for March 27, 2015

Daffodils — in your yard and at the flower show — are a sure sign of spring

Winter-weary gardeners will note that clumps of sunny yellow daffodil trumpets have just popped open to herald the arrival of balmy spring breezes this week.

From teensy Tête-á-Tête miniatures to 20-inch high Ice Follies, these spring-flowering bulbs can be naturalized to return year after year with prolific blooms.

These flowers are just two of more than 28,000 named hybrid daffodils, most of which have been registered with England’s Royal Horticultural Society, according to horticulturalist Sara Van Beck, author of the just-released book Daffodils in American Gardens, 1733-1940.

The beauty and complexity of daffodils, or botanically speaking Narcissus, can be seen up-close at the daffodil show sponsored by the recently organized Kentucky Daffodil and Bulb Society and approved by the American Daffodil Society.

Exhibitors may enter daffodils for judging according to categories and rules which can be found on the KDABS website. Visitors can learn a lot about daffodil classification and varieties, and even pick up a few ideas for bulbs to plant in the fall. Divisions like trumpets, doubles, jonquillas, poets, and miniatures in color combinations of yellow, white, orange, pink and more will be represented.

Lisa and Michael Kuduk of Winchester are the main organizers of this show. They have been raising and exhibiting daffodils since 2003.

At first, spring-blooming bulbs were simply part of their home landscape plan.

The idea of exhibiting their flowers was inspired by a 2005 trip to retail bulb producers Brent and Becky Heath’s gardens in Gloucester, Va. Armed with recommendations from their guide Susan Appel and cultivation advice from the American Daffodil Society, which they joined, the Kuduks entered their first show in Nashville in 2006.

Throughout the following years, they gained experience and support through their contacts with fellow enthusiasts.

“We won our first purple ribbon for best collection of five daffodils in Nashville in 2009. We won our first gold ribbon for best in show in 2010, and our first ribbon for a large (12 stem and up) collection in 2012,” Michael Kuduk notes.

“We started attending regional and local bulb swaps in 2009, and now grow 350 varieties from virtually every division and from every decade going back to 1890. We especially like entering historic daffodils, as I am fascinated that a flower that was introduced over 75 years ago can still grow with exceptional vitality and can look great on the show bench.

“I continue to be amazed at the variety of colors and sizes represented in the species, and after a long, ugly winter, their blooms are always a welcome sight.”

Daffodils are some of the easiest flowers to grow. Bulbs should be planted in well-drained soil in cool fall weather. They must go through a cold winter chilling period of about three months to bloom in spring. While actively growing, daffodils need a sunny spot. Because energy produced by the leaves is stored in the bulb for the next year’s growth, leaves should be allowed to remain on the plant until they begin to yellow after the flowers are gone.

Daffodils can grow and bloom for many years. Deer and rodents will not eat them. They multiply by growing new bulb offsets which can be dug up, divided and dried in a shady spot with good air circulation during the summer months, then replanted in the fall.

Susan Smith-Durisek is a master gardener. Reach her at

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Displays Set Up For Home and Garden Show at Binghamton

BINGHAMTON, N.Y — Displays are put in place for this weekends big home and garden show from the Southern Tier Home builders and Remodelers Associations at the Binghamton University Events Center. 

From new build to renovation, windows and doors, to painting and landscaping, there will be certified professionals on hand to answer your questions and give you some ideas as the winter slowly fades away.

And, whether it’s an old product you’re interested in for the first time, or something new to the market, officials with the show said it’s the place to be.

“Cause sometimes you have a product that looks great but the applications doesn’t quite work in your particular suituation.  So, having that one on one relationship of conversation will help you find the best product for your particular application,” said Jim Trevitt, Southern Tier Homebuilders and Remodelers Association president. 

The home and garden show is this weekend from 9:00 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Saturday and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday at the BU events center.


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Seek new ideas at the Fox Valley Home and Landscaping Expo

File photo (MGN Online/Donna McNeely)

NEENAH –  If you are looking to make improvements to your home, you might want to head to Neenah this weekend for the Fox Valley Home and Landscaping Expo.

Vendors will be showcasing the latest in home heating, landscaping and much more.

The event also includes seminars on do it yourself projects such as replacing windows.

Expo manager, Vickie Frank says there is something for everyone, “The show is geared towards homeowners, people that are looking to buy a home, people that are looking to do remodeling, possibly an addition, possibly looking to find out what it takes to qualify to own a home. Looking to landscape, maybe set up a swing set in the backyard. I mean, if you own a home and live in Wisconsin, there’s something here for you.”

The event is taking place at the Tri-County Ice Arena and runs through Sunday.

For more information on the event, click here.

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Trowel & Glove: Marin garden calendar for the week of March 28, 2015


Workshops and seminars: Sloat Garden Center has five Marin County locations that offer gardening workshops and seminars on a weekly basis. Check for schedule, locations and cost.

Workshops and seminars: The Marin Master Gardeners present a variety of how-to workshops, seminars and special events throughout Marin County on a weekly basis. Check for schedule, locations and cost.

Gardening volunteers: The Novato Independent Elders Program seeks volunteers to help Novato seniors with their overgrown yards Tuesday mornings or Thursday afternoons. Call 415-899-8296.

Nursery volunteers: Volunteers are sought to help in Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy nurseries from 1 to 4 p.m. Tuesdays at Tennessee Valley, 1 to 4 p.m. Wednesday; 9 a.m. to noon Saturdays, or 1 to 4 p.m. Wednesdays at Marin Headlands Nursery; or 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturdays at Muir Beach, 9 a.m. to noon Saturdays in the Marin Headlands. Call 415-561-3077 or go to

Nursery days: The SPAWN (Salmon Protection and Watershed Network) native plant nursery days are from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Fridays and weekends. Call 415-663-8590, ext. 114, or email to register and for directions. Go to for more information.

Garden visits: Marin Master Gardeners and the Marin Municipal Water District offer free residential Bay-Friendly Garden Walks to MMWD customers. The year-round service helps homeowners identify water-saving opportunities and soil conservation techniques for their landscaping. Call 415-473-4204 to request a visit to your garden.

Garden volunteers: Marin Open Garden Project (MOGP) volunteers are available to help Marin residents glean excess fruit from their trees for donations to local organizations serving people in need and to build raised beds to start vegetable gardens through the MicroGardens program. MGOP also offers a garden tool lending library. Go to or email

Harvesting volunteers: The Marin Organic Glean Team seeks volunteers to harvest extras from the fields at various farms for the organic school lunch and gleaning program. Call 415-663-9667 or go to

Around the bay

Landscape garden: Cornerstone Gardens is a permanent, gallery-style garden featuring walk-through installations by international landscape designers on nine acres at 23570 Highway 121 in Sonoma. Free. Call 707-933-3010 or go to

Olive ranch: McEvoy Ranch at 5935 Red Hill Road in Petaluma offers tours, workshops and special events. Call 707-769-4123 or go to

Botanical garden: Quarryhill Botanical Garden at 12841 Sonoma Highway in Glen Ellen covers 61 acres and showcases a large selection of scientifically documented wild source temperate Asian plants. The garden is open for self-guided tours from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily. $5 to $10. Call 707-996-3166 or go to

— Compiled by Adrian Rodriguez

The Trowel Glove Calendar appears Saturdays. Send high-resolution jpg photo attachments and details about your event to or mail to Home and Garden Calendar/Lifestyles, Marin Independent Journal, 4000 Civic Center Drive, Suite 301, San Rafael, CA 94903. Items should be sent two weeks in advance. Photos should be a minimum of 2 megabytes and include caption information. Include a daytime phone number on your release.

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The Denver Post Garden Calendar, 3/27/2015


Ace Hardware

Through March 31: “31 Days of Color” continues with daily colors, projects, tips, in-store promotions, giveaways and more. Details on the websites.,

Boulder County Home Garden Show

March 27-29: Vendors and professionals offer advice and more for home improvement, landscaping and gardening, noon-6 p.m. March 27, 10 a.m.-6 p.m. March 28 and 11 a.m.-4 p.m. March 29. Free admission and free parking. Boulder County Fairgrounds, 9595 Nelson Road, Longmont, 970-218-5645,

Colorado Master Gardeners

April 1-30: Offers gardening help at the Denver Botanic Gardens 1-4 p.m. Tuesdays and Saturdays in April, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays May through September and all DBG free days. 1007 York St., stop by the Helen Fowler Library or call 720-865-3575 or e-mail

Denver Botanic Gardens

March 28-29: Colorado Cactus and Succulent Society Show and Sale offers workshops, talks, handcrafted pots, plants for sale, hourly drawings and more, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. March 28 and 9 a.m.-4 p.m. March 29. Included with admission. 1007 York St.,

Denver Rose Society

March 28: “Pruning and Training Your Roses,” 10 a.m.-noon. $31, $26 members; April 9: DRS monthly meeting features “Plant Life in the City” with Julie Lehman, greenhouse and horticulture manager for Parks and Rec, City and County of Denver, 7 p.m. Free, guests welcome. Denver Botanic Gardens, 1007 York St., 303-880-7415,

Lakewood Arts Council

Looking for gardens and yards in Lakewood, Morrison, Wheat Ridge and Golden to be considered for the 2015 Garden Tour scheduled June 27. Call 303-980-0625 or e-mail

Classes workshops

Bath Garden Center

March 28: “Organic Lawn Care,” 10 a.m. $5; “Composting 101,” 11 a.m. $5; “Rose Tips and Mythbusters,” 1 p.m. $5. Reservations required. 2000 E. Prospect Road, Fort Collins, 970- 484-5022,

Creek Side Gardens

March 28: “Herb Gardening and Tasting,” 10 a.m.; “Growing Sprouts 101,” 1 p.m. Free. Reservations recommended. April 4: The Gardens are hosting an Easter Egg Hunt for children at 10 a.m. 5730 W. Coal Mine Ave., Littleton, 303-933-8493

Denver Botanic Gardens

March 28: “Worm Composting in the High Desert,” 9:30 a.m.-noon. $32, $28 members; April 7 or April 14: “Seven Principles of Water-Smart Gardening,” 6-8 p.m. $62, $55 members. Reservations required. 1007 York St., 720-865-3580,

Denver Urban Homesteading

March 28: “Global Worming/ Vermiculture,” 2-4 p.m. $30, includes worm starters; April 4: “Chickenkeeping Urban Homesteading,” 1-3:30 p.m. $35; “Vegetable Gardening 101,” 2-4 p.m. $25. Reservations required. Most classes are held at Denver Urban Homesteading; off-site locations provided after registration. 200 Santa Fe Drive, 303-825-0231,

Echter’s Garden Center

March 28: “Landscape with the Natives,” 10-11 a.m.; “Garden to Pantry: Trees and Shrubs with Good Taste,” 1-2 p.m.; “Paradise on the Patio in the Garden,” 3-4 p.m.; March 29: “Bee Keeping for Beginners,” 10 a.m.-2 p.m. $65, includes lunch. Reservations required 5150 Garrison St., Arvada, 303-424-7979,

The Gardens on Spring Creek

March 28: “Season Extension: Techniques for Early Veggie Planting,” 10 a.m.-noon, $18; “Interpreting and Using Your Soil Test,” 1-3 p.m. $8; April 4: “Ornamental Grasses,” 1-3 p.m. $8. Reservations required. 2145 Centre Ave., Fort Collins, 970-416-2486,

Nick’s Garden Center Farm Market

April 4: “Fairy Garden Class,” 11 a.m.-noon. Free. Reservations required. 2001 S. Chambers Road, Aurora, 303-696-6657,

Paulino Gardens

March 28: “Spring through Summer Landscape Care Punch List with Betty Cahill,” 10 a.m. Free; April 4: “Terrarium Class,” 10 a.m. $35. Reservations required. 6300 N. Broadway, 303-429-8062,

Tagawa Gardens March 28: “Growing Tropical Edibles Indoors,” 9:30-11:30 a.m.; “Fabulous Fruits for Front Range Gardeners,” noon-1 p.m.; “Creative Ways to Renovate Your Unusable Landscape Areas,” 2-3 p.m. 7711 S. Parker Road, Centennial, 303-690-4722,

Timberline Gardens

March 28: “Integrating New and Underused Plant Species Into Your Landscape,” 1-3 p.m. $10; April 4: “Planting By the Moon,” 10-11 a.m. $10. Reservations required. 11700 W. 58th Ave., Arvada, 303-420-4060 , timberlinegardens .com

Save the date

Front Range Wild Ones

April 8: Presents “Creating a Suburban Wildlife Oasis” with Marcia Tatroe, 7 p.m. Tatroe is the author of “Cutting Edge Gardening in the Intermountain West” and contributes to The Denver Post. Free. Englewood Public Library, 1000 Englewood Parkway,

Horticultural Art Society

April 11: Spring Lecture Series offers “Yes You Can: Veggie Gardening Success: Come Learn the ABCs of Vegetable Gardening” with Leslie Holzmann, 10 a.m. Free. A tour of the Penrose House Gardens follows. Reservations required. The Carriage Room at Penrose House, 1661 Mesa Ave., Colorado Springs, 719-357-9427, e-mail

Mail info 10-14 days in advance to Garden Calendar, The Denver Post, 101 W. Colfax Ave., Suite 800, Denver, CO 80202; e-mail

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Comings and Goings: Parkleigh takes over former A Step Apart

Kimmie Prinsen, MacKenzie-Childs manager, puts finishingMacKenzie-Childs Butterfly Garden Sky breakfast bowlTotes McGoat stands next to a display including RoostThe new Parkleigh 235 located at 235 Park Avenue inCourtly Check Tea Kettles on display.A full table of place settings featuring MacKenzie-ChildsA full setting featuring MacKenzie-Childs Flower MarketA MacKenzie-Childs ceramic Simon Serving Dish looksA picnic table covered in MacKenzie-Childs ParchmentA table setting centerpiece featuring the new MacKenzie-ChildsA giant display featuring MacKenzie-Childs popularLooking out the front door of the new Parkleigh 235

If you’ve walked around the bustling Park Avenue area lately, you’ll notice that the spot formerly occupied by A Step Apart is now decked out in black and white checks as well as colorful hues.

That’s because Parkleigh has taken over the store at 235 Park Ave. and expanded its MacKenzie-Childs collection. The 2,000-square-foot space is now filled with MacKenzie-Child’s signature enamelware, furniture and jewelry.

“It’s one of our top vendors,” said Parkleigh owner Jeannine Klee, explaining her decision to lease the store front across from the original Parkleigh at 215 Park Ave.

MacKenzie-Childs is extremely popular, she said, adding that many couples register for the items for their wedding gifts.

Klee plans to use the extra space at the original Parkleigh for boutique clothing and shoe items. She will bring in the Comfy USA clothing line as well as brands such as Bernie Mev for shoes.

New at the MackKenzie-Childs shop are garden accessories, just in time for spring, Klee said.

There will be a grand opening celebration planned April 24 to April 26 at the new MacKenzie-Childs extension of Parkleigh at 235 Park Ave., Klee said. Parkleigh has been in business since 1960 and Klee is the second owner.

Hunt’s Hardware looking for buyer

A mainstay in the 19th Ward may be closing. Hunt’s Hardware at 390 Thurston Road is looking for a buyer, said owner Bill Hunt.

“Business has not been so good the past five years,” Hunt said, adding that mom and pop shops like his hardware store have been hurt by the proliferation of big box stores.

He is trying to stay open while seeking a buyer, but “we can only last so long.”

Bill Hunt is the fourth-generation owner of this century-old business.

Restaurants closings and openings

From the readers’ file: Cici’s at 1100 Jefferson Road in Henrietta has closed. It was a pizza buffet in a fast, casual setting. In East Rochester, Bistro 135’s voice mail said it is closed for renovations until further notice. Its outdoor patio is a great spot for summer dining so hopefully it will reopen in the warm weather season. Tim Hortons has closed its outlet at the downtown Library, leaving downtown entirely as the spot on the corner of State and Main Streets also closed. And the long vacant building that was Steven’s on Monroe Avenue in Brighton is being rehabilitated. Entrepreneur Craig Webster Plans to move his Men’s Room Spa to that spot.

Arthur Treacher’s Fish and Chips has opened its seventh location at 2496 West Ridge Road in Greece. Arthur Treacher’s Fish and Chips reopened in the Rochester area a year ago at East Ridge Road in Irondequoit. Since then, Arthur Treacher’s has also opened in Webster Village, Avon, East Rochester, Spencerport and Macedon.

“We are excited about seven locations in Rochester,” said Sam Fantauzzo, CEO and founder of Salvatore’s Pizza. “Arthur Treacher’s has been a great addition to the Salvatore’s brand.”

Ock Hee’s Gallery to close

One of my favorite places for art and gardening will close at the end of this year. Ock Hee Hale, owner of Ock Hee’s Gallery and Bloomfield Gardens in Honeoye Falls, wrote to her customers to let them know that she will close the retail portion of the business and focus on her landscape clients.

“I decided to simplify my life, mostly my business,” she said. “I asked myself the same question that I asked myself 20 years ago when I was planning a business: What is it that you love to do the most?”

She realized it was the gardening that her mother taught her when she was 4 years old, so she will maintain the gardening side of her business.

Ock Hee Hale will close the retail shop and art gallery at the end of December in 2015 and just keep the landscaping design business which includes garden design, installation, and maintenance. She will still live in the converted train station.

If you haven’t visited, it is a wonderful way to spend a day in Honeoye Falls. Her shop at 2 Lehigh St. is filled with Asian decor and you’ll discover new local artists. If you visit on a Saturday, do stop for lunch at the Rabbit Room nearby.

Do you know about a business that’s coming or going? E-mail Mary Chao at

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Gardening Tips – Courier

Plant Pansies! Eat Pansies! We have hundreds of Blooming Pansies!

This delicate flower is a pretty tough character! Plant them in containers or window boxes now.

Pansies protect themselves by allowing moisture to escape their leaves astemperatures fall. Other plants cannot do this, so when the temperature goes below freezing the water in their cells freezes and ruptures the cell walls. That’s what happens when you leave a houseplant on the patio during a freeze. Dry cells, though, can’t rupture. They just go limp. It is normal to see pansy leaves completely wilted at dawn but green and perky by noon. That’s why it is important to keep the soil in pansy beds moist after a freeze…. so their roots can re-hydrate the leaves.

Generally, they can freeze to 25 degrees or so without damage. If it looks colder, put the container under cover or cover with a blanket or some other material.


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Soil test among tips on spring gardening checklist (PHOTOS)

HAMILTON — A capacity crowd of 30 filled the Mercer County Connection office in the Hamilton Square Shopping Center on Tuesday to hear a presentation by Mercer County Horticulturist Barbara Bromley on spring planting essentials.

Rooted in 60-plus years of gardening, Bromley freely shared her experience and advice on subjects ranging from the commonplace “you can fertilize now” to the esoteric “downy mildew is an emerging disease that is decimating impatiens.”

Bromley went on to encourage reading labels and recommend getting a soil test. “It makes you and me look a whole lot smarter,” she said, adding the surprising fact that “we get more rain here than Seattle” but “in chunks rather than constants.”

The Mercer County Extension program is part of the statewide Rutgers Cooperative Extension that has offices in all 21 New Jersey counties. The Rutgers New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station is at 930 Spruce St. in Trenton.

Additional information can be found at the The Master Gardeners of Mercer County website.

To speak with a Master Gardener call 609-989-6853. This time of year, Master Gardeners are in the office weekdays from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Follow The Times of Trenton on Twitter @TimesofTrenton. Find The Times of Trenton on Facebook.

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Learn landscaping, vegetable gardening tips in Extension classes

Catherine Kirk and her daughter, Victoria Kirk, 9, plant a Japanese cherry tree on the grounds of the Parker Road government facility in Conyers where the Rockdale Cooperative Extension Office is located. The extension office will be offering home gardening and landscaping lunch-n-learn classes over the next several months. (Staff Photo: Karen Rohr)

Catherine Kirk and her daughter, Victoria Kirk, 9, plant a Japanese cherry tree on the grounds of the Parker Road government facility in Conyers where the Rockdale Cooperative Extension Office is located. The extension office will be offering home gardening and landscaping lunch-n-learn classes over the next several months. (Staff Photo: Karen Rohr)

CONYERS — If you want to develop your green thumb a little more, and you live or work nearby during the week, then consider taking your lunch to the Extension Office for the monthly lunch-n-learn sessions on topics related to landscaping and gardening.

The sessions run from noon to 1 p.m. on April 9, May 14, June 18, July 9 and Aug. 6, and are held in the Rockdale Cooperative Extension Office, 1400 Parker Road in Conyers. Those interested must pre-register and the cost for a class is $5.

Rockdale Extension agricultural agent Steve Pettis is heading up the series.

“When I was county extension agent in Gwinnett, I offered them there. They were successful, so I thought I’d give them a try here,” said Pettis, who began his position in Rockdale in August.

In April, Pettis will discuss “Trees and Shrubs of Interest to Southern Gardeners.” Pettis said the session is an overview of desirable, but not necessarily easy-to-find, trees and shrubs.

“I’ll include some of my favorite plants, such as lots of native plants like the oak leaf hydrangea, the native Piedmont azalea, and the Georgia oak, native to the rocky outcroppings of this area,” said Pettis. “They are plants you might run across while taking a walk in a state park.”

May brings a class on the “Home Landscaping for Beginners,” and those wanting to change the look of their yard are encouraged to bring video or photos of their property as it currently exists.

“The class will entail the basics of landscape design and the point is to try to show people that you don’t have to be an artist or a landscape architect to landscape. With a few basic concepts, you can do it yourself,” said Pettis.

“Pruning Trees and Shrubs” is the topic for the June session, and Pettis said come ready to trim some trees.

“That will be a hands-on class. We will be pruning some trees at Parker Road to teach proper pruning techniques,” said Pettis. “You can prune all summer long, particularly with trees like hollies and evergreens. People have to prune just to keep the plants from overtaking their homes during the summer.”

In July, in keeping with the season, Pettis presents, “Not all Bugs are Bad: How to Attract Pollinators and Beneficial Insects.”

“It’s a celebration of bugs,” said Pettis.

The group will discuss how to attract pollinators like butterflies and honey bees and predatory bugs that eat others, such as ladybugs and green lace wings and preying mantises.

He’ll talk about what plants to incorporate into the yard to create an inviting habitat for the insects and the importance of not destroying existing habitat. Pettis will also talk about the importance of giving the insects water and food, beyond what’s growing naturally in the yard. For example, honeybees enjoy a jar of sugar water. “Once they find it, they’ll come and drink every drop,” said Pettis.

Pettis said keeping these insects thriving is of utmost importance because they face great challenges and their numbers are declining, perhaps due to genetically modified crops or because of pesticides.

The monarch butterfly and the honey bee are under particular pressure as is evident by seeing less of the insects in the environment in recent years.

“In any event, protecting pollinators benefits us even if they’re not being threatened,” said Pettis.

As summer’s wane is on the horizon, Pettis offers the last in the series, August’s “Fall Vegetable Gardening.” In the cooler growing season, home gardeners can plant crops like leafy greens — cabbages, spinach, lettuce — as well as carrots, broccoli, cauliflower and asparagus. Many of the vegetables are grown from seed and grow better in lower temperatures.

Pettis said some plants will come in fast, like the lettuce, and others will take over winter, such as onions.

Pettis said his purpose in offering the monthly classes is twofold.

One is to provide a reason for the community to visit the Extension office, where they can be exposed to all of the services it offers, including soil and water testing and the diagnosis of plant diseases.

The other reason is to simply expand their base of knowledge when it comes to planting and gardening.

“I’m getting to meet the public each time, with each phone call and email and class attendance. Over time, hopefully the classes will grow and possibly expand to include evenings,” said Pettis.

To learn more or to register, call Steve Pettis at 770-278-7373 or email him at or visit Pettis’ blog at visit

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5 tips for creating a pet-friendly garden

When you begin to prepare your garden’s soil and plant flowers and vegetables in the soil, be aware of the hazards that gardens pose for cats and dogs. Also, consider the ways that you can make your backyard pet-friendly throughout the gardening season.

Here are five tips to keep in mind:

Identify poisonous plants

Pets can be naturally curious when it comes to sniffing around the garden, so know which plants are toxic to your pets before you let them loose in your garden.

The Humane Society states that more than 700 plants have been identified as being poisonous to animals. The list includes house plants, ornamental shrubs and ornamental vines as well as trees, cultivated trees, shrubs, vines, garden herbs and garden flowers. There are also a number of wildflowers, weeds, vines, field herbs, wild shrubs and marsh plants that are toxic to animals.

Some of the most common plants toxic to pets include:

  • Lilies
  • Daffodils
  • Philodendrons
  • Azaleas
  • Sago palm
  • Rhubab
  • Elderberry
  • English ivy
  • Holly
  • Yew

Be careful with pesticides and fertilizers

spraying fertilizerAnother way that pets can be poisoned is by pesticides and fertilizers.

The University of Montana Extension reminds gardeners to keep pets away from chemicals and to prevent food and water contamination. Before mixing and spraying pesticides, cover food and water bowls and move them outside of the area that will be treated. Keep animals off of areas that have been treated, too.

Although fertilizers that don’t contain pesticides or herbicides usually don’t harm pets, some contain ammonium nitrate. This chemical is toxic if consumed and will irritate animals’ skin and lungs. If pets walk in areas that have been treated by fertilizers, they may groom their paws and thus ingest the fertilizer. To avoid this, keep pets off of areas that have been fertilized.

Watch for fleas and ticks

dog laying in grass

Pet owners inevitably have to manage fleas on their cats and dogs. Tall grasses and shrubs typically harbor fleas and ticks.

The National Pesticide Information Center recommends checking pets soon after they’re been in areas that are infested or likely infested with ticks. Also, keep your yard and garden clear of leaf litter and tall grasses, shrubs and bushes. Keep the grass mowed and trimmed to reduce the number of fleas and ticks bothering your pets.

Keep pets out of garden beds

Cats will naturally use garden beds as litter boxes, but you can prevent this behavior, according to Louisiana State University Ag Center. If you’ve turned the soil in your beds, spread a thick layer of mulch on top, then cover the mulch with tarp or plastic until you’re ready to plant.

Louisiana State University Ag Center also recommends installing fences around vegetable gardens to keep dogs out of plants and to deter them from digging holes.

Incorporate raised beds

One way to keep pets out of your plants is by using raised beds. Raised beds can be fenced and framed, so pets will be less-likely to roam through your plants. They’ll also be less-likely to eat plants that are toxic to them if they’re not easily accessible.

Have any other tips for pet-friendly gardens? Share them in the comments below.

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