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The Kansas City

GARDENER A Monthly Guide to Successful Gardening

July 2014

Perennial Climbers

Plan ahead for a lush lawn Mystery of Disappearing Caterpillers Tropical Day and Night Blooming Lilies Apply now for K-State Extension Master Gardener Program

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First and foremost we back all our installations with a five year warranty. This is unheard in the Water Garden Industry. Most companies want to give you a three month, six month or, if you’re lucky, a one year warranty on their installations. We don’t think that’s right! We’ve seen horribly incorrect installations by many companies out there that just don’t know what they’re doing and they won’t stand behind their work. You will never have to worry about that with us. We’re celebrating our 20th year in business and our warranty is longer than many water garden installers have been around. We don’t just dabble in the water garden business, “It’s our way of life”.

Here at “The Water Garden Center” we are committed to Research and Development. Before we ever sell a new product to our customers, it has to be tested here. Just because a Manufacturer says their product is the newest miracle on the market doesn’t make it so.

We carry only the highest quality products available and will not sell cheap inferior products just to compete on price. All of the pumps, liners, filtration systems and other pond supplies that we use in our installations are sold right here at “The Water Garden Center”. We research our competition and all the Manufacturers in the industry so we are on top of any new developments.

In today’s market place, we know you’re bombarded with everyone claiming to be the best or having the most quality products with the lowest prices. There’s so much misinformation out there it can be very confusing for the beginner and experienced Water Garden enthusiast. So what should you do? That’s easy. Come out to “The Water Garden Center” and we’ll walk you through the lushly landscaped water gardens or just let you stroll through at your leisure. Either way when you leave here you’ll have a good understanding on how to correctly build a water garden or maybe you’ll decide to have our experienced installation crew build one for you.

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May vary, check online for your specific location

July 2014 / The Kansas City Gardener


The Kansas City

editor’s notes

GARDENER A Monthly Guide to Successful Gardening

Granddad, can I help?

Independently owned and operated since 1996 Publisher Michael Cavanaugh Editor Elizabeth Cavanaugh Editorial Assistant Hannah Cavanaugh Contributors Charles Anctil Leah Berg Cindy Gilberg Diane & Doc Gover Lenora Larson Patrick Muir Stephen Painter Dennis Patton Phil Roudebush Rodney St. John Diane Swan Distribution Publishers Delivery Solutions, Inc.

How to Reach Us ...

P.O. Box 8725 Prairie Village, KS 66208 Phone: 913-648-4728 For advertising information contact Michael Cavanaugh at

faces the street and the sun, so when neighbors pass, they will notice those orange flowers right away. He showed her the spot, they gathered tools and gloves, and the planting lesson began. They discussed how the vine will grow up the arbor, clinging to the wire for support. There she was wearing my well-worn garden gloves, holding the shovel, digging in the soil, watching Granddad’s every move. How deep the hole should be, how to feed the plant to give it a good start, and then there’s watering, of course. She also learned how to use a box cutter to open a bag of soil amendment. (I’m not sure her parents know about that part.) With enthusiasm building, it was time to move to the backyard. She was in charge of carrying the potted jasmine vine, while Granddad brought the tools. Another plant in the garden and another lesson complete.

Submit editorial questions to Elizabeth Cavanaugh at

In this issue

See us on the Web:

July 2014 • Vol. 19 No. 7

Don’t Miss A Single Issue! Get a subscription for yourself or your favorite gardener. See page 27.



e are fortunate that our two granddaughters live within a short two-hour drive. With that distance comes the blessing of their frequent visits. Upon one recent arrival, the girls found Granddad in the garden. He and I had just come from the garden center, had unloaded all of our treasures, and we were getting ready to plant a few new additions to the garden. G, the seven-yearold, spies Granddad right away in the garden, leaps from the car, and says, “Hey Granddad, can I help?” Aren’t kids just like that? Eager to be at your side, willing to learn anything, and the Grands are no exception. G enjoys discovering how things work and live, while J, the six-year-old, is quite comfortable in skirts with tulle, and runs like lightning everywhere she goes. Both of them love the outdoors, don’t mind dirty knees, and are quick to create a bug observatory every time they come. When G saw the bold orange flower on the black-eyed Susan vine, she asked, “Where can we plant this?” Granddad had just the place. The arbor in the front yard

Ask the Experts ........................ 6 The Bird Brain ......................... 8 Plan ahead for lush lawn .......... 9 Prevent Potting Soil Fires .......... 10 Apply K-State EMG Program ..... 12 Meet the Neighbors ................. 13 Perennial Climbers ................... 14 Rose Report ............................ 16 Pets and Plants Cat Grass ......... 17

about the cover ...

Like a mother bird looking after her young, G checks her plants whenever she’s here. “Granddad, do we need to water the vines?” Fortunately the garden has benefitted from plenty of recent rain, giving them a solid start. She is amazed at how fast they grow between visits. (I often say the same thing about her.) The garden has always been a great place to teach our children, and now their children, about life and our environment. Plants and bugs, cooperation and participation, life and death. We are blessed to have such a classroom, which is sometimes harsh, yet mostly gentle and lovely. I too check on G’s plants while she’s away. It’s another opportunity for quiet contemplation, reflecting on the beauty of our family, and the love that binds us. I’ll see you in the garden!

GrowNative for Hummers ......... 18 Disappearing Caterpillars ......... 20 Tropical Blooming Lilies ............ 21 Upcoming Events ..................... 22 Powell Garden Events ............. 24 Hotlines ................................. 25 Weather ................................. 25 Garden Calendar .................... 26 Professional’s Corner ................ 27

Fragrant and showy, this Wisteria macrostachya can be seen at Kauffman Memorial Gardens. See more perennial climbers starting on page 14. Photo courtesy of Powell Gardens.



The Kansas City Gardener / July 2014

Annual K-State Horticulture Center Field Day July 26


ome see the hottest, newest plants while enjoying cool classes in air conditioned comfort and icy cold water while wandering the field trials. Learn about the latest and greatest before it ever hits the garden centers. It’s all here at the K-State Research and Extension Horticulture Center’s Field Day, Saturday, July 26, from 8 a.m. – 3 p.m. It’s your chance to peek behind the scenes, talk with the experts and learn about the latest varieties and methods for achieving growing success. Admission is $5 per person, which includes ice cold bottled water, seminars, classes and demonstrations. K-State Research and Extension horticulture research develops its list of recommended grasses, flowers or vegetable varieties through university research conducted in Olathe to determine what grows best in our Kansas City landscapes.

equal. Check out the container plantings as some annuals are only meant for use in pots. • Impatiens – Are you concerned about downy mildew? Come check out the research being conducted on alternatives plants for the landscape. Many new cultivars are being grown to see how they stand up to our climate. • Native Plants, Liatris – Numerous varieties of this Kansas native have been planted. See how these blue-spiked flowers can perform in your garden. • Cannas – This favorite plant is making a comeback in the garden with smaller varieties suitable for creating texture in the landscape or for dramatic containers. • Cutting Garden – Grow your own flowers for the table with a cutting garden. See the array of flower colors and varieties to grow.

What you’ll see The Center conducts research in flowers and vegetables. Visitors can speak with university professors heading up the research and Johnson County Extension Master Gardener volunteers. Highlights – Flower Area • Annual flower trials – Companies from around the world submit their newest developments. The research trials show which flowers can withstand the Kansas City climate. The trials illustrate that not all varieties are created

no shoveling or wheelbarrowing needed!

How to get there The Research Center is located at 35230 West 135th Street, Olathe. The entrance is approximately nine miles west of Highway 7 on 135th Street. Admission is $5 at the gate. Lunch will be available for purchase during the event. For information call (913) 715-7000, or visit

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We provide services as well as topsoil, mulch and river rock. We don’t simply just dump and leave it, but can place the material around your buildings and property.

July 2014 / The Kansas City Gardener

Free soil tests Johnson County residents can bring their soil and get one free soil test per Johnson County address, complements of Johnson County Stormwater Management. A soil test determines the nutrients in the soil. It is important to know the nutrient levels to grow healthy plants. Go to to learn how to take a soil sample. At least 2 cups of dry soil are needed for a proper test.


We provide more than just topsoil.

you pay only for the amount of topsoil that is off-loaded.

Highlights – Vegetable Area • No till Gardening – Reducing tillage in the garden is all the rage. See how minimal tillage can be used in your garden to reduce work and improve yields. • Tomato and Pepper Variety Trials – Check out the new introductions and find out which varieties will make the cut in our quest for bigger yields and flavor. • Grafted Tomatoes – This latest trend is breathing new life into heirloom tomatoes. Learn more about this process and see how they compare. • Backyard Garden Demonstration Garden – Vegetable gardening is as popular as ever. This Extension Master Gardener’s project demonstrates various methods of growing vegetables. Raised beds, trellises, and different planting methods are demonstrated along with a fruit garden.

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Ask the Experts! questions from our readers

Dennis Patton CREEPING WEED CONTROL Question: I have a ground cover type weed that has taken over parts of my lawn. I’ve had it identified as Creeping Charlie. I am having problems finding control options. What can I do to help get rid of this problem? Answer: Creeping Charlie also goes by the name of ground ivy. No matter what you call it, this is one difficult weed to control. It prefers to grow in the shadier parts of the lawn where the grass will stress from lack of sunlight. Some people

simply embrace the ground ivy as a ground cover and let it take over the area. Most likely you prefer to rid the lawn of this invasive weed. Since it is a perennial, control is going to take repeated chemical applications and time. Treatments should be applied in the spring or early summer when actively growing and again in the late summer or fall. It is this latter application that might be the most effective. Chemical controls include the use of Triclopyr or Carfentrazone. These are the active ingredients so you will need to read the label and follow all information. These products are broadleaf herbicides and are safe to use on turf but will damage flowers, trees or shrubs so take caution when making the repeated applications.

Water for the Birds Large variety of Birdbath selections available: pedestal, hanging, and tabletop • Rust free cast aluminum bowls • Heavy duty cast iron post and base for stability • All powder coated finish • Provides the ideal setting for your birds to drink and bathe

Pictured: 2-Tier Lily Pad Birdbath

MORE DAYLILY BLOOMS Question: I have several clumps of Stella d’ Oro daylilies. When I planted them several years ago they bloomed their heads off. Now I am only getting a few bloom stocks and hardly any repeat blooming. How can I get them to bloom more? Answer: Stella d’ Oro daylilies are a great plant but as the clumps mature they become crowded. This results in reduced flowering. Stella responds nicely to timely divisions if not done the bloom quality will continue to decline. Daylilies are very forgiving and they can be divided in early spring or mid-summer. Simply lift the clump and split into smaller sections or divisions containing three to seven fans. These can be replanted and they should start blooming theirs heads off. Daylilies usually need divided about every three to five years.

Also remember for repeat blooms the plants must be deadheaded and receive supplemental moisture so they remain vigorous. TREE SEEDLINGS Question: I am being overrun with tree seedlings. Acorns have germinated in the lawn and, in the beds, the mulch is full of redbud and hackberry seedlings. What can I do to get rid of these unwanted trees? Answer: I feel your pain as I have issues with the hackberry and redbud seedlings in my mulched beds. Let’s handle them separately. The oak seedlings in the lawn are the easiest to control. Organically, just continue to mow. Over the long term they cannot tolerate this removal of foliage and will eventually die out. If you are not that patient then a treatment of a broadleaf herbicide should help speed up the process. But here

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Hours: Mon. through Sat. 9am-6pm • Sun. 10am-3pm The Kansas City Gardener / July 2014

is a trick to improve effectiveness. Skip a mowing or two in this area so that more oak leaves develop in which to uptake the chemicals. Now the seedlings in the mulch beds will be a little trickier. Because these beds probably have shrubs and flowers the use of broadleaf herbicides are out as they will damage the desirable plants. Products such as glyphosate (Roundup) can be spot sprayed targeting the seedling. This type of herbicide is contact only so avoid hitting the foliage of any desirable plant. In my garden these seedlings are thick and usually growing right up next to a desirable plant. I have found that when young and growing in the mulch layer they are very easy to pull by hand. It is time consuming, hard on the hands but works. I have also had success with vigorously raking the mulch to disturb the roots before establishment. PALE PIN OAK LEAVES Question: This spring I noticed my pin oak tree leaves were pale green, even showed a hint of yellow. What is wrong with my tree? Answer: Pin oak along with many other plants such as birch, red maples, crabapples and sweet gum suffer from a soil related issue called iron chlorosis. Iron chlorosis is the result of the nutrient iron not being available to the plant from the soil. The result is a pale green leaf that will hinder the growth of the tree and in more severe cases can lead to death. Iron chlorosis is related to soil pH. Under higher pH levels above 7.0, iron becomes unavailable to the plant roots as it is bonded tightly to the soil particles. This lack of iron appears as pale green leaves. There are several methods of treatment but the most effective is an application of a liquid iron solu-

tion injected into the vascular system of the tree. This treatment must be done by a trained arborist. Home owner treatments include the application of iron and sulfur products into the soil around the tree. Avoid the use of iron caplets that require you to drill a hole in the trunk and then insert. These cause extensive damage to the tree. HOLLY BUSH DECLINE Question: My holly bushes died this spring. They were several years old and had been in good health. What went wrong? Answer: Hollies took it on the chin this winter. They succumb to a double-whammy. First there was the extreme cold spell and many of the holly stems and buds simply could not tolerate the cold. The second issue is the ongoing drought issues in the area. We have been experiencing drought conditions on and off since the fall of 2011. The fall and winter of 2013-2014 was very dry. Plants that are under drought stress are less able to tolerate stress such as winter cold. As a result the hollies collapsed this spring as the roots and vascular system were damaged. This issue of winter cold and drought stress did not just show up on hollies but all the evergreens. Our office saw a high number of spruce, white pines, boxwood, and other evergreens that have dieback this spring. Here is the important tip, make sure you evergreens have ample soil moisture heading into winter. That is their best defense against harsh winter conditions.


Create Something Beautiful; Bent Willow Furniture Making Class

aturday, August 2, starting at 9AM, held at the Overland Park Arboretum and Botanical Gardens. Join us as we welcome Master Furniture Builder, Bim Willow, bending fresh willow into heirlooms. Come with a hammer and leave with your choice of a 1-shelf Potting Bench, a Garden Bench, Ladder Back Chair, an End Table, or 2 Trellises! YOU choose the project – fees start at just $45, each priced separately! Advance registration required so that materials can be collected. Estimated times per project available, but you will leave with a completed project by 1PM. Bent Willow Furniture is a historical, uniquely American craft that emerged in the Midwest during the great depression. It was a means not only to create furniture, but to make

a living as well selling finished pieces door to door. Willow grew in the wild and was free to harvest. Pieces from that era are rare, but if you are lucky, you might find one in a local antique store. Call today to reserve your spot: 913.685.3604 or register online at

Keep your trees and shrubs healthy this summer. We can keep your trees free of bagworms, aphids and other damaging pests.

Dennis Patton is the horticulture agent for Johnson County K-State Research and Extension. For free information fact sheets, visit, or call the Extension office at 913-715-7000.

Call our office for a free tree evaluation today to make sure your landscape plants are protected.


We Do the Planning, You Do the Planting • Landscape plans starting at $150 • Nursery stock at discounted prices • Installation available • Degreed professional horticulturist

Bug Barrier Program We can keep ants, silverfish, crickets and other pesky insects out of your home.

For more information or to schedule an appointment

Call Judy Archer (816) 399-9883

Landscape Designers and Contractors July 2014 / The Kansas City Gardener

Call to discover how we can treat the perimeter of your house to keep uninvited guests outside.

MO: 246.1707 KS: 381.1505

“The pros you know in the clean red truck.” 7

The Bird Brain

answers your backyard birding questions Tips for Selecting and Storing Birdseed During Hot Weather

Doc & Diane Gover


ffering fresh, high quality birdseed is the most effective way to attract wild birds to your yard for viewing. We get many questions from bird lovers about how to best store their bird seed in hot weather. Seed can be stored, but it must be stored properly to ensure freshness. It’s

only bird food, right? The key word here is FOOD. Just like people food, your bird food needs proper care too. Purchase only high quality seed that has been properly stored. Premium Black Oil Sunflower seed is the preferred food of seed eating songbirds. The following fillers, used in many blends to bring prices down, are not eaten by songbirds; wheat, oats, milo, barley, red millet and peanut hearts. These are used to bring prices down but it is not money well spent. But because these fillers are thrown to the ground and not consumed by the songbirds, a garden will begin

Booms & blooms Thursday, July 3 at Powell Gardens!

Dazzling Daylilies See peak bloom and shop our sale

Fun For KiDs Face painting, paint-a-pot and Gardens Gone Wild

spiriteD Music 4:30-6:30 p.m. Lee’s Summit School of Rock

suMMer Flavors Homemade ice cream & more

7:30 p.m. Lee’s Summit Symphony

sizzling FireworKs At dusk over a dark country sky! No outside alcohol allowed.

Powell Gardens, Kansas City’s botanical gardenTM 30 miles east of KC on Highway 50


Festival aDMission $12/adults, $10/seniors, $5/children ages 5-12

RAIN DATE Saturday, July 5


to sprout below your feeders. If a blend is what you choose to use in your feeders, be certain the highest percentage of seed in the blend is black oil sunflower, followed with seeds such as safflower, peanuts, striped sunflower and white millet. To keep your seed fresh it must be stored in the coolest environment possible, not in a hot garage or shed. Heat causes the FOOD to lose its oil content which is the most important nutrient needed by your birds. Seed stored in a refrigerator or freezer will hold its freshness for up to 6 months or more. This will also keep all critters (mice, chipmunks, raccoons, squirrels, etc.) at bay. Storing birdseed in this preferred setting will save you money as seed retains its freshness. If you are not able to store the seed in this manner, then be sure to buy only an amount of seed that will be used up in 2 to 3 weeks. Do you already have seed on hand that you are unsure about its freshness? The best clue that the supply may be unsuitable is if the birds are no longer eating it. Visually inspect the seed for signs of insects, larvae or webbing. Sniff the seed for hints of mold and mildew. There will be musty odors that indicate unwelcome growth in the seed. Sprouting seed is another

sign of unwelcome moisture. This seed should be disposed of and NOT offered to your birds. These are very simple steps to follow to properly take care of your bird seed and a smart choice for you and your birds. If you have any questions please stop by the store. Our Certified Birdfeeding Specialists will be glad to help you and answer any questions that you may have. Happy Birding! Doc and Diane Gover own and operate Wild Birds Unlimited of Leawood at 11711 Roe Avenue, Leawood, Kansas. Contact them at 913-491-4887.


Need a speaker for your church, civic group or garden club? The Johnson County Extension Speakers’ Bureau have the speakers you are looking for on just about any topic like environmentally safe lawn care, or perennial flower gardening. To schedule a speaker for your group, please contact the office. For more information on this service, call 913-715-7000.

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The Kansas City Gardener / July 2014

Plan ahead for a lush lawn

Rodney St. John


ardening requires we think ahead. With summer just beginning, start planning for fall seeding now. Many lawns are thin or have some dead areas that need to be re-seeded. These can be touched up as soon as temperatures drop toward the end of summer. Some lawns may be so bad that they need to be completely killed and seeded from scratch. (And sometimes it can be refreshing to start all over from scratch!) Lawns that lack uniform color, have serious weed issues or haven’t been replaced in several years (if ever) are good candidates for kill outs. These projects start much sooner – some toward the beginning of July. But wait, kill it all?!?! Yes, sometimes it is better to kill out all the existing grass and weeds and start from scratch. To do this, you will need to total spray the entire lawn with RoundUp. If you have any zoysia or Bermudagrass in your lawn, you will want to spray the first time at the beginning of July. You will need to spray a second time approximately six weeks after the first. Then, if the lawn is still not completely gone, spray again four weeks after the second treatment. Many people are tempted to stop watering their lawns during this process – after July 2014 / The Kansas City Gardener

all, you are trying to kill your grass. However, if the grass isn’t actively growing, it won’t die. If you have a bluegrass and/ or Fescue lawn, you can likely get away with spraying with Roundup once in early August. Pictured above left is an example of a good kill-out. All the existing grass and weeds are gone and the yard has been seeded and vertcut. The verti-cutting is essential to establish good seed-to-soil contact. Seed may germinate if it is placed on top of the soil, but much more if it will germinate if it is incorporated into the top 1/2 inch of the soil. This yard was completely killed and seeded. A successful kill-out and reseeding like this picture should make your neighbors question your sanity. Just tell them to watch and wait. With careful and daily watering your yard will be the envy of the block. You can see the results of the killout and seeding four weeks later. Here are pros and cons of killing out a yard and starting over from scratch. Pros: • Removes all the patches of different grasses and weeds. • Creates a lawn of uniform color and texture. • Some grassy weeds can only be killed with Round-Up®. • Makes a ‘stunning’ improvement to your yard. Cons: • Seeding large areas requires accurate and properly timed irrigation. • More expensive up front. • May need to buy more hoses and sprinklers if you don’t have an irrigation system.

• Requires daily watering. Irrigation is critical to all seeding, but even more with a kill-out. With all of the grass dead, there is so much bare ground. If any of that bare ground is under or over irrigated, the seed will not germinate properly or soil may be washed away. For most yards, now is the time to prepare for a kill-out. However, there are some yards with certain weeds, like rough bluegrass that should be killed

and re-seeded in the spring, because it is often dormant in the summer. Just like replacing your roof, repainting your house or updating your kitchen, your lawn should be killed-out and reseeded from time to time. It can be a labor-intensive process, but the results are well worth the sweat. Dr. Rodney St. John is an agronomist with Ryan Lawn & Tree. He can be reached at 913-381-1505 or

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Only You Can Prevent Potting Soil Fires Patrick Muir


t was a still night around 10 p.m. when my nurses aid at Trinity Nursing & Rehab walked out to the front entrance to find a ball of fire in one of my large planters under the front canopy. She started to put it out with a hose but was soon rescued by the Merriam Fire Department. The planter was a two feet wire basket I had fashioned into a standing cedar planter. To my horror the next morning, I saw the beginning of serious flame damage on the inside of the canopy entrance and significant burning on the cedar frame.

Enhance your Garden Plan with an Outdoor Accent

The bare planter was next to a bench underneath the canopy. We all quickly determined who was the probable resident that most likely would have put out her cigarette in the bare potting soil. The planters were lined with coco-fiber linings and I assumed that was the problem but turns out that potting soil itself is very flammable when dry. Why is dry potting soil so flammable? Well firstly there is no “soil” but rather it can include up to 65% shredded bark fiber and other ingredients including wood and peat moss. And the addition of time-release fertilizer in some leading brands acts as an oxidizer that makes any fire burn at a faster rate. To be clear, potting soil is shipped pre-moistened so all risks of the product begin once the bag is opened. Two major fires in the metro in 2012 were blamed on potting


100 years of serving Kansas City

soil fires. A fire in Olathe caused $100,000 in damage and a house in the Northland quickly went up in flames and was a total loss from a planter investigators believe had smoldered for four days. Overland Park Fire Education Specialist Tricia Roberts stresses small buckets of sand or water should be available to extinguish cigarette butts in outdoor areas with containers. The buckets also help with the other major problem of mulch fires started from discarded cigarettes. Tips For Responsible Use of Potting Soil 1. Do not store bags of opened potting soil in a garage or consider investing in large re-sealable tubs for leftover material. 2. Do not place planters directly next to benches or seats where

smokers could be easily prone to extinguish their cigarette butts. 3. Keep your planters well watered and maintained. 4. Discuss the risks of potting soil fires when entertaining smokers before they first go outside to smoke near containers. 5. Share the risks of potting soil fires at garden club meetings, within master gardener organizations or amongst gardening friends. 6. Once the season is complete or if the planter is past its prime, clean out all containers of potting soil so there are no pockets of opportunities for out-of-season fires. Read Patrick Muir’s blog at, where you can also subscribe.

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Do you know how much water you are applying with each watering? You should. Frequent, shallow watering encourages shallow rooting. Also, in a wet year, automatic watering can drown plants.


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Apply now for K-State Extension Master Gardener program


f you enjoy gardening, working with others and having fun while sharing your passion then the Extension Master Gardener program may be just the opportunity for you. Applications are now being accepted for the Johnson County K-State Research and Extension Master Gardener (EMG) 2015 training program. Application deadline is July 15. An informational meeting will be held Tuesday, July 1, from 1–3 pm at the Extension office, 11811 S. Sunset Drive, Room 1060, in Olathe. Projects and program guidelines will be outlined. You are encouraged to attend this meeting if you have questions about the EMG program or would like more information prior to completing your application. Only 30 applicants are accepted into this prestigious program.

The EMG program, sponsored by K-State Research and Extension, is designed to teach area gardeners about horticulture and give them the opportunity to share their


Uniquely Yours

knowledge through various gardening-related volunteer projects. Applicants who are selected will receive intensive horticulture-related training from university experts. In return, newly-trained recruits will be required to volunteer a minimum of time each year. EMG volunteers get involved in a variety of projects including maintaining demonstration gardens, staffing a gardening hotline and giving presentations through the speakers’ bureau. Youth programs are also another avenue for volunteer participation.

Applicants are selected on the basis of gardening and volunteering experience, ability to attend training sessions and volunteer activities, and, most importantly, willingness to commit long term to the annual requirement of volunteer service. Gardeners who join the program bring many different experience levels and interests to the program. If you are a novice gardener, do not let the title of Extension Master Gardener intimidate you. Your love of gardening and passion for sharing your garden experience is the basis for success. Training sessions will begin September 17 and run each Tuesday through November 19, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. All classes will be conducted at the Johnson County K-State Research and Extension Office, 11811 S. Sunset Drive, Suite 1500 in Olathe. There is a $125 administration fee for those accepted into the class. Class members must be Johnson County residents. If you are interested in applying for the program, or would like more information, please contact Johnson County Extension at (913) 715-7000 or visit www.johnson. and click on the Master Gardener link for details.


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Meet the Neighbors

Stephen Painter


ast month, we explored the habits of squirrels, raccoons and moles. Let’s meet other wildlife neighbors and the trouble they can bring. Groundhogs Welcome the groundhog family. With 3-6 young ones in the spring, your landscape is like a salad bar, and they are known to climb trees searching for tender sprouts or fruit, like Mulberries. The only true hibernators, groundhogs prefer to live under your front porch or back deck. These areas allow them to burrow and hibernate next to the foundation, where radiant heat from the basement keeps them cozy through winter. Chipmunks The eastern chipmunk doesn’t require much space. They have a home range of about 1/2 mile but only protect about 50 square feet around the den entrance (although there is speculation on the exact home ranges of the eastern chipmunk). In most areas that have

(part two)

chipmunks, the population level is usually high. Although really cute, these guys can be destructive to sidewalks or brick patios. They will remove the soil under a well laid brick patio leaving it to collapse and causing major damage. Also they can eat a lot of your flower bulbs and seedlings in the spring after planting. Skunks Skunks are usually quiet neighbors. As you know, however, they flat out stink – that’s only if you bother them. If you leave them alone they usually will leave you alone. These guys are gregarious in the winter. Just like the groundhog, they like to live under the porch and snooze the winter away. Sometimes there are as many as 20 skunks living in one den. In the spring they have 4-7 young. The female will sometimes take the young out and show them how to “grub”. This feeding behavior is the whole family digging up your yard looking for insects under the sod. They’ll settle on grubs, earthworms, pill bugs or any other invertebrate found in your lawn. Bats Bats are considered the creepy neighbors, but are actually interesting and often the most misunderstood. Granted, they do love living in your attic, but bats help the neigh-

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Skunks and chipmunks are quiet, yet destructive in the landscape. borhood keep the insect population down. They eat large amounts of insects every night that can be detrimental to gardens and lawns. In the attic if left to stay, their droppings and urine can create quite a mess of staining, odor and insect issues. This accumulation of waste can become a health issue. There are about 13 species of bats in the KC metro area. All of the species that live in a home are social bats. Meaning they live in colonies. The other species are

p o t s

solitary bats and live in the leaves of trees and behind loose bark of trees, not in structures. Now that you’ve met the neighbors, keep in mind they live in harmony with us. Sometimes though, they overstep their boundaries and try to move in. If that happens, call a professional to help. Steve Painter owns and operates Catch-It Wildlife and Pest Control, Inc. You may reach him at 816-7693106.

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Photos 1, 4, 5, 6, 8, 10, 11 and 13 courtesy of Powell Gardens.




The Kansas City Gardener / July 2014


Perennial Climbers Leah Berg


hen applying the “outdoor rooms” concept of landscape design, we might think of vines as “curtains” that help decorate walls and drape windows for privacy. Since perennial vines often endure for years and require lots of space, make well-considered selections and try to view mature examples in area landscapes before shopping. Many need strong structural support! Just inside the Kauffman Memorial Gardens entry and farther along, notice the woody stems diameter of Wisteria macrostachya (commonly called Kentucky wisteria, a southeastern native American species preferred here rather than more aggressive Asian species) (#6). Fragrant and showy, they flower more reliably in our area in late May-June in sunny sites. Inside the entry walk to the left of the first path intersection, by the Shell Girl fountain is yellow trumpet honeysuckle ‘John Clayton’ (#5) and a second variety Lonicera sempervirens ‘Blanche Sandman’ with red flowers on the conservatory building’s outside west wall (behind the spruce). Include these nectar sources for hummingbirds, not invasive Japanese honeysuckle. Visitors admire several varieties of clematis here like ‘Perle d’Azur’ (#8) and ‘Jackmanii’ behind the conservatory. Large-flowered variJuly 2014 / The Kansas City Gardener

eties often top the wish list for many people, with blooms usually 2-5” in diameter. Colors range from white to shades of blue and purple, magenta, pink, and bi-color. However, others like native Clematis versicolor (#1) feature bell-shaped flowers. Small white flowers dominate other species, and like sweet autumn clematis (C. terniflora) (#11) some spread so vigorously they may become a nuisance. On the Missouri Botanical Gardens website ( read about a fungal disease called clematis wilt affecting some plants (especially large-flowering varieties) and how to minimize the chance of developing this problem. Check this website’s “Plantfinder” tab for detailed information on many varieties of clematis and other plants. Clematis tend to bloom best in sunny sites, but prefer root zones cooled by mulch and shaded by neighboring plants. To understand how and when to prune which type of clematis (they fall into 3 groups), consult this link: http:// Notice climbing hydrangea vine (Hydrangea anomala var. petiolaris) (#7) just outside the Kauffman Memorial Gardens entry on the north wall. It prefers shade and produces white lacecap-type flower clusters. Maturing woody stems create winter interest with contrasting backgrounds like stone walls. For partly shady sites, consider several species of Aristolachia with foliage that feeds caterpillars of native pipevine swallowtail butterflies. The common name Dutchman’s pipe (#3) derives from

distinctly shaped flowers which vary some in size and appearance depending on the species. Look for pipevine during the Festival of Butterflies at Powell Gardens in August. Variegated porcelain berry vine (Ampelopsis brevipedunculata ‘Elegans’) (#9) foliage brightens two sites in my yard, one with mostly shade and one in morning sun. Related to grapes, the tiny flowers produce blue berries birds enjoy. The original plant has produced just a couple seedlings. Akebia quinata (#2) tolerates shade as well as sun, but can be invasive. The common name chocolate vine hints at the slightly cocoa aroma of flowers, which may be pinkish-lavender in May/June. Vines will latch onto neighboring shrubs and tree limbs and may require timely control. Use caution with many perennial vine species! I allow and can control native Virginia creeper (Parthenocissus quinquefolia) (#12) rambling across fences from adjacent yards. I love the red fall color, and its 5 leaflet pattern easily distinguishes it from the 3 leaflet poison ivy that also snuck in last year. Nearly indestructible trumpet vine (Campsis radicans) has completely covered the street lamp post on my neighbor’s corner. The woody stems survived her multiple attacks of chainsaws and chemicals, so each year it blooms lavishly and scatters countless seeds germinating in both our yards. Seedlings get established under cover of perennials and shrubs, then prove very hard to dig up without disturbing something I care about.

Though the showy orange trumpet flowers should normally attract hummingbirds, I haven’t witnessed them visiting this location. Near the cafe terrace at Powell Gardens, visitors can see both trumpet vine (#4) and related native cross vine (Bignonia capreolata) (#13) with similar large orange-red tubular flowers with yellow throats (#4). Cross vine flowers April-June and foliage differs from its relative which blooms May-August, both providing nectar for hummingbirds and insects. Fall floral arrangers often buy dried bittersweet at craft stores, likely Oriental bittersweet with orange berries visible in a yellowish capsule along the stems. At local farmer’s markets look for American bittersweet (Celastrus scandens) (#10) which produces orange and red fruits hanging in clusters at short branch tips. Or buy native plants from reputable growers with several starter plants sold together in a pot since bittersweet requires both male and female plants to ensure fruit production. By next June I hope the sky blue clematis I planted last May will nearly cover its supporting structure, a 3-D iron form shaped like a Christmas tree with a star on top. It’s growing now a bit cautiously, with tendrils gripping the bars like a child fearful of heights stuck partway up a playground jungle gym. Leah Berg is a landscape designer with a conservation emphasis. She also teaches at MCC-Longview. To consult privately, contact her at 816-353-7170. 15

Rose Report

Moonlight in the Midwest

Luminous ambience and a starlit night give distinction to a Liberty, Missouri garden


undulating alley of 20 emerald green boxwoods and 28 white begonias beckons one toward a stone jockey statue at the back of the property. A left hand turn reveals a trellis covered in white mandavellia. The path through the trellis prompts you on past arborvitae, maiden grass, Russian sage, white althea up through a clearing where the “Bird Girl” of the garden of good and evil stands. And as the day slowly vanishes away soft shimmering, flickering lights will appear – a magical and peaceful sanctuary. A non-alcoholic summer beverage will be served to those who seek this twilight experience on July 11. Hours are 8-10pm. Advance tickets are required. Tickets are $10 and may be obtained by contacting Dee West, Northland Garden Club President, at 816455-4013. For further information, see the club website at www.

his homeowner’s garden is an adaptation of a Midwesterners’ approach to the more classic, European inspired landscapes with stylish features which invites one to linger, rest and embrace being outdoors. The grounds offer easy access to the garden through a street side dry creek river bed which meanders past yews, maiden grasses, sand cherry shrubs, lavender, river birch and columnar cypress trees right up to the entrance gate. Inside there are gravel pathways ushering one past long curvilinear beds filled with a variety of sparkling white and cream flowers. If you look closely you might spy a colony of 17 bunnies amid fox tail ferns and echeverias. Across from the patio is a large hosta bed culminating in an old world bubbling fountain. If you pause and truly listen with your heart, you just might hear the water singing. An

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ix weeks ago I started seeing powdery mildew on the leaves of the Drift roses, which is unusual this early in the season. I was able to stop it, but had to spray four times and with four different fungicides with spreader-sticker. The leaves look silvery, but it wipes off easily. Also, the fungi did not penetrate the skin of the leaves. I continue to get calls concerning Witches Broom. Customers are bringing photos and live specimens in for me to look at. There is some work being done by some universities, but I haven’t seen much as of yet. I had a few black canes on my roses, but I just cut them back and did not dig them up. Some customers dug their’s up too quickly and the bud union was still green and alive. Disappointing. The winds this spring have not been nice. Beautiful long canes have been broken clear down to the bud union. Oversized blooms along with lots of rain also caused some

problems. At the store, I have had to tie and stake a bunch of roses because they have grown too fast and the canes are not able to hold the large, wet blooms. We did get a rose that was misnamed from the grower. It was tagged Loves Magic, but when it bloomed, it was Love and Peace; awesome blooms that you dream of… perfect centers, blooms as large as the original Peace rose, and so slow to open, no flaws of any kind with perfect leaves. I had to get another one! The roses we sell the most of are Mr. Lincoln, J.F. Kennedy, Double Delight, St. Patrick, and Veteran’s Honor. I am anxious to see what happens when customers get their hands on the rose called Beverly – look out! You might want to do some research on the Easy Elegance roses and David Austin roses. I don’t think we have had complaints on either of these! See you next month! Charles Anctil has been an active Rosarian since 1958, Kansas City Rose Society, ARS Judge Emeritus, ARS Master Consulting Rosarian. If you need help, call him at Moffet’s Nursery, St. Joseph, Mo., 816-2331223.

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Pets and Plants Cat Grass

By Phil Roudebush, DVM, DACVIM


a mixture of these plants. The product is usually labeled as “cat grass” with the scientific name of the corresponding plant. Growing one or more of these grasses indoors for consumption by domestic cats is fine but not essential for feline health. Vomiting after grass ingestion is common, usually not harmful and should be expected in most cats and dogs. Persistent or severe vomiting after eating grass or other plants should prompt a visit or call to a veterinarian.

Grass consumption by cats or dogs is not harmful unless grass has been recently sprayed or treated with pesticides, herbicides or fertilizers. this purging reflex since domestic cats will often vomit grass after its consumption. Since we cannot ask cats about their behavior, there may certainly be other reasons that cats find grass consumption so compelling. Grass consumption by cats or dogs is not harmful unless grass has been recently sprayed or treated with pesticides, herbicides or fertilizers. Commercial “cat grass” is sold in pet or garden stores and catalogues. Cat grass is usually barley grass (Hordeum vulgare),

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any domestic cats like to consume green grass but reasons for this are poorly understood. Cats are obligate carnivores and are usually less likely than dogs to eat plants or plantrelated materials. Fresh green grass is one plant item to which domestic cats are attracted and dogs may ingest green grass as well. Purported causes of cats eating grass range from they simply “like the taste” to a need for dietary folic acid (an essential water-soluble vitamin) or a need to stimulate vomiting as a way to purge themselves. Cat’s taste receptors respond to proteins, amino acids and other acid compounds typically found in meat so it seems unlikely they find the taste of grass intriguing. Folic acid and other essential vitamins and minerals are supplemented in all commercial cat foods so it also seems unlikely cats are trying to overcome a nutritional deficiency. The purging theory is the most likely candidate for the feline behavior of eating grass. Domestic cats who hunt outdoors will usually consume voles, mice and other small rodents. Prey is often swallowed whole and cats will later regurgitate or vomit the indigestible pelt. Consuming grass may be one strategy to promote

common oat grass (Avena sativa), orchardgrass (Dactylis glomerata), wheatgrass (Triticum aestivum) or

Phil Roudebush is a retired veterinarian, specialist in small animal internal medicine and adjunct faculty member in the College of Veterinary Medicine at Kansas State University. He is an Extension Master Gardener in Shawnee County, Kansas. He can be reached at

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Native Gardening for Hummingbirds

Cindy Gilberg


ummingbirds return to Missouri in late-April, but they need nectar sources all summer long, and in fall before they make their southward migration. The promise of nectar is welcome after an exhausting spring migration north from Mexico and Central America. Known only in the western hemisphere, there are over 300 species of hummingbirds, but only one that commonly frequents our gardens—the ruby throated hummingbird. These tiny gems have iridescent plumage and are, as John J. Audubon once remarked, “glittering fragments of a rainbow.”

Fondly referred to as ‘hummers’ by many, their preferred native habitat is woodland edges. A good mix (about 50/50) of open area to tree and shrub plantings is an easily attained landscape in residential properties. This will provide everything they need from shelter and nesting areas to open arenas for their aerial displays during mating season. Because of the hummingbird’s high metabolism and need for copious amounts of energy-rich nectar, they can’t afford to waste time foraging—flowers help them out by advertising both color and shape. Red, yellow, and orange flowers as

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Trumpet creeper well as tubular flowers are “flags” that draw the attention of hummers. These flowers co-evolved with long-tongued creatures (hummingbirds and butterflies), offering a tasty meal in exchange for pollination. A lesser known fact is that these miniature birds compliment their sweet tooth by hunting for small insects that add much-needed protein to their diet. The key to creating a garden attractive to hummingbirds as well as many other insects and birds is to plant a diverse backbone of the native plants they depend on for survival. Be attentive to the bloom times, adding in flowers for each season so that nectar is always available. The color red will attract them initially yet they also forage on plants such as blue salvia, white penstemon and pink bergamot. The plant list should also include flowers that attract small pollinating insects, for example coneflowers and other composite

flowers as well as plants such as mountain mint and buttonbush. Consult for a Resource Guide, where native plants can be purchased, and for a searchable, native plant database. Design plantings that include masses of each species to create big splashes of color – hummers prefer to frequent easy buffets. The final touch is to incorporate various trees and shrubs for shelter and nesting sites. Don’t be tempted to spray pesticides—using natives eliminates the need for pesticides, ensuring that these tiny winged jewels won’t die from exposure to harmful chemicals. Summer marks the beginning of mating season, and these bold little birds waste no time to attract a female, stopping only to replenish their supply of food. Watch for the courtship dance of the red-throated males—a spectacular swooping U-shape flight. Nesting soon follows as females collect spider web


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The Kansas City Gardener / July 2014

Photo courtesy of MDC. Photo by Cécile Lagandré.

Cardinal flower

Photo by Noppadol Paothong.

Mountain Mint

Royal Catchfly strands for gluing their minute cupshaped nests to twigs along with bits of lichen and assorted fluff. The result is about as big as a walnut and will hold two eggs. Make an abundance of summer flowers available to satisfy their voracious appetites: the bright orange flowers of butterfly weed, trumpet creeper, and our wellbehaved native honeysuckle serve up delectable meals. Add some pink monarda, tall phlox, red royal catchfly, and blazing star for further variety. An unusual plant for

dry sites is the American aloe. Though hummers aren’t attracted by fragrance, in the evening the aloe emits a delicate fragrance from its long, tubular flowers, an indication that it counts on more than one group of pollinators. Top off the summer list with yellow and purple coneflowers, sunflowers, and other flowers that attract protein-rich insects. By late summer both the adults and young enter into a contest, vying for their spot at flowers and feeders. They become quite territorial and aggressive in an attempt to stock up on food as the moment approaches for them to once again fly south for the winter. Among the autumn flowers, the red cardinal flower reigns supreme, loving the moist, part-shade haunts that hummingbirds frequent. Another real magnet in fall is the bright orange annual jewelweed that grows in similar sites as the cardinal flower. Some more late-blooming perennials to try are turtlehead and obedient plant, both pink to white, yet the tube-shaped flowers are quite evident and appealing. An additional surprise for me was the frequent visits hummers made to my hardy hibiscus—not only white but not tubular at all, yet a valuable addition to the plant list. These amazing minute gems are creatures of habit. The same birds return to those sites that are especially attractive in providing not only great nectar sources but also water, shelter and nesting sites. The measure of your success will be evident with their arrival the following spring. Cindy Gilberg is a horticulturist, landscape designer, and a professional member of Grow Native!, a program of the Missouri Prairie Foundation.

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It’s Fair Time!

151st Platte County Fair Opens July 22


he oldest continuously running county fair west of the Mississippi has so much fun planned we added another night! The fair will run evenings July 22-25 and all day and night July 26. Daily admission is only $10 (including parking on the fairgrounds as available.) Children 12 years and younger are admitted free. A huge carnival, queen contest, petting zoo, fiddle and talent showcases, 4-H exhibits, Motocross, demolition derby, Mudathon, NATIONALLY SANCTIONED truck and tractor pulls, arts and crafts, horse and mule shows and more will await fairgoers. There will be food vendors and LIVE music nightly, too. July 22-25 the gates open at 4:00 p.m. The carnival starts at 6:00 p.m. On July 26 shows start at 9:00 a.m. and exhibits, games and fun – including live music – go on through the night. On Saturday the carnival runs from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. and 6:00 p.m. to closing. The fairgrounds are located at exit 18 or 20 off Missouri’s I-29 (15730 Fairgrounds Road, Tracy, MO 64079). For a full schedule of the events and activities at the fair and locations for pre-season ticket sales visit Follow the fair on Facebook! To contact the fair call (816) 431-FAIR.

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Mystery of Disappearing Caterpillars

Lenora Larson


eginning butterfly gardeners excitedly tell me about finding caterpillars on their Parsley or Milkweed or Pipevines. Of course they have caterpillars! Assuming no insecticides, if you plant the correct host plant and a pregnant female butterfly finds it to lay her eggs, you will have caterpillars. Butterfly gardening is like the field of dreams: plant it and they will come. You may even see the egg before the caterpillar emerges. Unlike most insects’ egg masses, butterfly eggs are usually laid oneby-one on the leaves and the plant’s identity tells you which species of butterfly has chosen your garden as home and nursery. During the three weeks of caterpillar life, the insect increases in weight over 3,000 times from egg to full-grown. Butterfly gardeners become quite attached to their “children” and proudly show them off to visitors. The caterpillars are fat and sassy; life is good. Then, suddenly, they are gone. Overnight! What happened? I get a panicked email or telephone call.

Usually it’s good news, especially if they disappeared in the night, because many caterpillar predators hunt by day and sleep at night. Most likely, your caterpillar reached its full growth and has begun the next phase of its life to become a butterfly. As a first step, they evacuate their gut, i.e., take a giant dump. Then they get “the wanders” and wander away from the host plant to find the perfect spot to pupate. For at least 24 hours they relentlessly crawl, often travelling hundreds of feet from the host plant. No one knows why they select a certain spot, which may be a twig, blade of grass, tree trunk or even the side of your house. Except for Monarchs who often locate their chrysalis in a very public spot, you’ll probably never find the chrysalids because they are designed to be ‘cryptic’, hidden from predators by color, texture and location. If the caterpillars disappeared during daylight hours, they still may have begun their journey to become a butterfly. However, it’s time to play detective. Have you seen bird activity around your host plants? 97% of North American birds eat insects and caterpillars are the primary diet fed to most nestlings. For instance, research has documented that a Chickadee feeds its chicks between 390 and 570 caterpillars each day! Fortunately,

Defying discovery, this Giant Swallowtail chrysalis is perfectly camouflaged on a twig.

A Spined Soldier Bug enjoys his Monarch Caterpiller smoothie. almost all of the consumed caterpillars are moths, which vastly outnumber butterflies. We butterfly lovers usually also love birds. Caterpillars are Mother Nature’s perfect convenience food for many other insects such as Wheel Bugs and Spined Soldier Bugs which capture caterpillars, inject digestive juices and suck out the resulting caterpillar smoothie. You may find the caterpillar’s blackened empty skin hanging on the plant. If you’ve seen wasps and hornets hovering about your host plants, the females of many species capture caterpillars, paralyze them with a sting and haul them back to their nests to cache for their hatchling larvae. What to do? You can intervene by placing a mesh bag around

the host plant’s leaves to protect the caterpillar. Some remove the caterpillars to hand raise indoors, a winning strategy that provides safety for the caterpillar and pleasure for the rescuer. However, since caterpillars are an important part of the food chain, many butterfly gardeners choose to just relax and let nature follow its course. Natural predators are not the cause of our butterflies’ shrinking populations. Butterflies have far more to fear from human activities like habitat destruction and insecticide spraying. Butterfly gardeners provide much needed respite for our beleaguered flying flowers. MICO Extension Master Gardener and Kansas Native Plant Society member, Lenora Larson gardens and hosts butterflies in the cruel winds and clay soil of Paola, Kansas. Contact her at lenora.


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The Kansas City Gardener / July 2014

William McLane

Emily Grant Hutchings

Trudy Slocum

Tropical Day and Night Blooming Lilies

Diane Swan


ater gardeners wait anxiously each year for the tropical lilies to arrive. These lilies need warm water and warm air temperatures to survive and thrive. So they can’t be rushed. Tropicals are noted for their beauty and aromatic flowers. They raise their multiple blooms high above the water level. Their blooms and leaf pads are larger than hardy lilies and have serrated edges, while hardy lilies have smooth edges. Day blooming tropical lilies stay open several hours later in the day than hardy lilies and also usually bloom almost a month longer than hardies. The day tropical lilies come in all colors of the rainbow and

are noted for their shades of blues and purples. They bloom profusely especially when you fertilize them for the summer months. The night tropical lilies are great for people who work all day as they open in the evening and stay open until 10-11 p.m. Since they don’t need the sun to bloom, they are ideal for shade gardens where no other lilies will bloom! The night bloomers come in shades of red, white and pink. Tropicals are very dramatic in the water garden and you can’t help but fall in love with them. They are truly award winners in your pond. NOTE: Keep in mind when choosing your lilies, it takes several years before the award winners are available for sale on the market. However, there is a wonderful selection of tropical lilies to choose from now. Announcing IWGS Award Winners! In order to promote interest in hybridizing new colors, forms, and increased frequency of blooms of

various sizes of both tropical and hardy waterlilies, the International Waterlily and Water Garden Society conducts an annual competition where hybridizers display their new creations. Listed here are just a few of the recent winners: 2008 Ultra Violet 2009 Tanzanite 2010 Bimini Twist 2011 Scarlet Flame

2012 Tropic Punch 2013 Plum Crazy To learn more about the IWGS and information on all of the winners, visit Kevin and Diane Swan own Swan’s Water Gardens, a full service water garden center. You may contact them at 913-592-2143.

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July 2014 / The Kansas City Gardener

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Let us install & maintain your landscaping.

Upcoming Garden Events places to go, things to do, people to see Club Meetings African Violets Club of Greater KC Tues, Jul 8, 6pm; at Loose Park Garden Center, 51st and Wornall, Kansas City, MO. Membership meeting. 816-784-5300 Greater Kansas City Dahlia Society Sun, Jul 13, 1-3pm; Tour the garden of Bernard Lohkamp, 13134 Sycamore Ave, Grandview, MO. Bernard has planted 100 dahlias this season and is graciously inviting anyone interested in growing dahlias to the tour. If you have questions about the event please contact Bernard at 816-7637526 or


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Greater KC Gardeners of America Sat, Jul 12. The tour and presentation will begin at 10am, at Kansas City Zoo, Main Entrance. The Greater Kansas City Gardeners of America present a walking horticultural tour of the zoo. Our speaker and leader is Crystal Broadus-Waldram, the horticultural manager of the Kansas City Zoo. We will tour the butterfly garden, the vegetable garden and other exciting new areas. We will meet at the Zoo entrance near the giant ZOO sign. There is no charge for admission to the zoo or for the tour. If you need walking assistance, please bring your own wheelchair. Kansas City’s zoo was voted one of America’s best zoos in 2008. For additional information contact Vince Vogel at 816-313-8733, cell 816-289-8733; Greater Kansas City Herb Study Group Wed, Jul 9, noon; at Loose Park Garden Center, 51st St and Wornall, Kansas City, MO. A potluck luncheon will be served after the meeting. Lenora Larson will speak on Citrus Family Rue and Xanthoxylum and Giant and Black Swallowtail Butterflies. Ms. Larson is a frequent contributor to The Kansas City Gardener magazine. Visitors are welcome. Please call 913-592-3546 for reservations. Heart of America Gesneriad Society Sat, Jul 19, 10am-1pm; at Loose Park Garden Center, 51st and Wornall, Kansas City, MO. Membership meeting. 816-7845300 Independence Garden Club Mon, Jul 14, 6:30pm; a tour of Nartiache’s garden, 1006 SW 15th St, Oak Grove, MO. Refreshments will be served and visitors are welcome. Please bring lawn chairs. In case of rain, we will meet at Sermon Center, corner of Truman and Noland Rds, Independence, MO. For more information please call 816-373-1169 or 816-812-3067. Visit us at our website Heartland Hosta & Shade Plant Society Sat, Sep 13, 9am; at Faith Lutheran Church, 4805 W 67th St (67th & Roe) Prairie Village, KS. Hospitality planned at 9am, program to follow a brief 10am meeting. ‘Confession of a Hostaholic: How Antiques and Antics Have Made Gardening Fun’ presented by Larry Tucker, Southhaven, MS. Tucker has

been active in the Mid-South and AHS for two decades and was creator of the Hosta Trail; a National display garden at the Memphis Botanic Garden. Proceeds from his book, Made in the Shade: Confessions of a Hostaholic, go to support the Hosta Trail. There will be a potluck luncheon following the program, with meat and drink being furnished by the club. You may bring a dish to share. Guests are always welcome – come and being a friend! Info: Gwen 816213-0598 or 816-228-9308. Johnson County Rose Society Thurs, Jul 10, 7pm; at Prairie Village Community Center, 7720 Mission Rd, Prairie Village, KS. The JCRS will host Rachel Minnis, a rose grower and experienced amateur photographer for it’s July meeting. Rachel will share her love of roses and photography and give us some tips on how to take beautiful pictures of the roses in our gardens - even with your cell phone! Dust off that camera or review the picture settings on your phone and come to this meeting to get some inspiration! The meeting is free and open to the public. Refreshments will be provided. Members and guests are welcome to take advantage of the Consulting Rosarians Corner for a free individual consultation with a Consulting Rosarian about specific questions or concerns regarding all aspects of rose growing and care. The Consulting Rosarians will also give timely tips about caring for roses This Month in the Rose Garden. For more information about the meetings, programs, and other activities of the JCRS, or for membership details, please visit their website at www.rosesocietyjoco. org. You can also visit them on Facebook at Kansas City Cactus and Succulent Society Sun, Jul 20, 1-4pm; at Loose Park Garden Center, 51st and Wornall, Kansas City, MO. Membership meeting. 816-784-5300 Kansas City Garden Club Tues, Jul 7, 9:30am-3pm; at Loose Park Garden Center, 51st and Wornall, Kansas City, MO. Membership meeting. 816-7845300 Kaw Valley Herbs Study Group Tues, Jul 8, 6-8pm; at Unitarian Fellowship of Lawrence, 1263 N 1100 Rd. We explore all aspects of an herb: growing and harvesting, historical lore, culinary virtues, medicinal merits, and aromatherapy, household, and cosmetic applications. Our gatherings are fun and educational, and jam-packed with useful information, including relevant demonstrations. Everyone with an interest in herbs is welcome. There is a $2 charge to cover costs (KVHSG is a non-profit group; no charge for students). No pets. Nursing babies and children over 10 are welcome. herbstudygroup@ Mid America Begonia Society Sat, Jul 19, 1-4pm; at Loose Park Garden Center, 51st and Wornall, Kansas City, MO. Membership meeting. 816-784-5300

The Kansas City Gardener / July 2014

Northland Garden Club Tues, Jul 15, 7pm; at Sherwood Bible Church, 4900 N Norton, Kansas City, MO (just south and west of Penguin Park). The Garden Club will host their annual picnic this month. Members are requested to bring a side dish to share and the club provides meat and drinks. Please check website for additional information: Olathe Garden & Civic Club Tues, Jul 15, 12:30pm; at Bass Pro Shop, second floor, 12051 Bass Pro Drive, Olathe, KS. The program will be on Design Elements, presented by 2 members of the club, experienced in blue ribbon designs. This will be invaluable for anyone interested in entering a design in the club’s flower show in Olathe, Sep 4, 5, and 6. Public is welcome. Any questions, please call, Joan Shriver 913-492-3566.

Events, Lectures & Classes July Daylily Open House-Garden Tour Sat, Jul 5-Sun, Jul 6, 9am-1pm; at 7460 W 255th, Louisburg, KS 66053 (1/4 mile east of Metcalf on 255th). The public is invited to tour the daylily gardens at Hart’s Gardens in Louisburg, KS. Over 900 varieties of daylilies are on display. The open house will be free and the owner will be on hand to answer any questions. Information on purchasing and raising daylilies will be available. 913-837-5209 Who Ya Callin’ Dirty – Make Your Own Dirt! Thurs, Jul 10, 7-8:30pm, at North Kansas City Public Library, 2251 Howell St, North Kansas City, MO. Some call it lasagna gardening, others no-till gardening – come learn how to create a superior growing medium in any garden. We will discuss layering, no-till, composting and more. Attendees will leave ready to turn the sandiest or thickest clay soil into a luxurious home for food and flowers. Class is free to attend, but pre-registration is required, contact 816-221-3360 to register for this class. Ornamental Grasses in the Landscape Thurs, Jul 10, 6-7:30pm; Sunflower Meeting Room, Wyandotte County Extension Office, 1208 N 79th St, Kansas City, KS. Sponsored by the Wyandotte County Extension Master Gardeners. Presented by Family Tree Nursery. $5.00 fee. Registration not required. Call 913-299-9300 for more information. Moonlight and Mint Juleps Tour Jul 11. Summer night garden tour sponsored by the Northland Garden Club, at the Liberty home of David and Sharon Cleveland. Tour begins at 8pm and ends at 10pm. Advanced tickets required and may be purchased by calling Dee West, 816-455-4013. They are $10 each and will include the dusk tour, evening tour and a cool refreshing summer drink. Check the Garden Club website at for further information. Cooking with Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme Sat, Jul 19, 10am-noon; at Powell Gardens. Learn how to grow and cook with herbs. Sample mint/black pekoe tea, tilapia with sage and prosciutto, rosemary cream bis-

July 2014 / The Kansas City Gardener

cuits served with thyme butter, basil cheese crisps, and lavender-honey ice cream. $34/ person, $27/members. Registration required by Jul 14. To register call Linda Burton at 816-697-2600 ext 209. Or register online at

Judy Keith 1938 – 2014

Love of plants and gardening were hallmarks of Judy Keith’s life starting in early childhood, according to her family. For the last 30 of those years, she was a mainstay and manager of Suburban Lawn & Garden at 105th & Roe. Judy enjoyed sharing her horticultural knowledge with co-workers and customers, enriching their lives and helping to make their gardening efforts successful. She died May 29. Her benevolent presence will be greatly missed by all who knew and loved her.

Yoga with the Butterflies Sat, Jul 19, 9am-noon; at Hoot Owl Hill Gardens, 30750 Osawatomie Rd, Paola, KS. Enjoy a one hour Yoga session with butterflies swirling about you in this NABAcertified Butterfly Garden. The class will be led by Brenda Wrischnik who has over 30 years experience as a certified instructor and personal trainer. Afterwards, local butterfly expert and Master Gardener Lenora Larson will conduct a tour through the gardens to identify butterflies, their caterpillars and the critical plants. Mixed-level Hatha flow – Beginners welcome! Wear comfortable, layered clothing, hat, sunscreen, and bring a large towel. Yoga mats available on request. Enjoy this country setting which includes a gourmet lunch prepared from the garden’s bounty. Please call 913-271-7451 for information or sign up and pay for the class at

Green Industry Directory now available for CONSUMERS!

Platte Co Fair Opens Jul 22. The fairgrounds are located at exit 18 or 20 off Missouri’s I-29 (15730 Fairgrounds Rd, Tracy, MO 64079). For a full schedule of the events and activities at the fair and locations for pre-season ticket sales visit Follow the fair on Facebook! To contact the fair call 816-431-FAIR.

Do you have a LANDSCAPE PROJECT and need HELP or ADVICE from an industry professional? Consider a member of the Hort NetWORK, which membership consists of professionals in all aspects of the green industry. To connect with a professional, go to

Powell Gardens’ Annual Butterfly Count Sat, Jul 26, 9am-5pm; at Powell Gardens. The North American Butterfly Association annual butterfly count will begin at 9am. At 1pm there will be a 4-hour hike on the 3.25-mile nature trail to find butterflies restricted to the Gardens’ natural habitats. Attend any part and stay until close. Wear sun protection and hiking shoes, and bring a water bottle. Garden admission plus $3/ participant. Registration required by Jul 23. To register call Linda Burton at 816-6972600 ext 209. Or register online at www. Homemade Sauerkraut and the Benefits of Probiotics Sat, Jul 26, 9:30-10:30am; at The Gardens at Unity Village, 150-B NW Colbern Rd, Lee’s Summit, MO (1/4 mile west of the Douglas/Colbern intersection). Chef Michael Willet (of the Unity Inn) will provide a new twist on our popular sauerkraut workshop with an emphasis on the benefits of probiotics. Students will learn how to make their own kraut and go home with a jar, ready to ferment! Cost: $15. ($5 to Gardens members) Call 816-769-0259 and leave a message to make a reservation, check for workshop updates, etc.

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Evening with Moths and More Sat, Jul 26, 8-11pm; at Powell Gardens. Start with a twilight hike of the Gardens and the 1.25 mile loop of the Byron Shutz Nature Trail to listen the calls of crepuscular (dawn and dusk active) insects and animals. Black-lighting and baiting techniques will be demonstrated to lure in a variety of nocturnal moth species. $9/person, $5/ members. Registration required by Jul 21. To register call Linda Burton at 816-6972600 ext 209. Or register online at www. (continued on page 24)


Booms, Blooms & Summer Adventures in July at Powell Gardens


uly brings blazes of blooms to Powell Gardens during one of the summer’s biggest festivals. Booms & Blooms is set for Thursday, July 3, with daylilies near peak bloom in the Perennial Garden. Gardeners will find daylilies for sale throughout the day and lots of gardening inspiration—from daylilies to unusual edibles in the Heartland Harvest Garden. Music starts at 4:30 p.m. with the Lee’s Summit School of Rock and continues at 7:30 p.m. when the Lee’s Summit Symphony Orchestra takes the stage. As the music concludes, a dramatic fireworks display takes place over the Gardens’ 12-acre lake. Note: Rain date is Saturday, July 5. Festival admission is $12 for adults, $10 for seniors and $5 for children ages 5-12 and includes parking and access to the trolley. For more details, visit Culinary Adventures in the Heartland Harvest Garden Missouri Barn Dinner Series Gather friends to experience the culinary creativity of a one-night only menu made with garden-fresh ingredients to be enjoyed in the summer twilight. The July dinner by guest chef Craig Howard is the first vegetarian dinner in the series. Howard is a chef and owner of Howard’s Organic Fare and Vegetable Patch. For pricing and to make prepaid reservations, visit Garden Chef Series Sample delicious food created by local chefs and culinary experts at 2 p.m. Sundays in the Heartland Harvest Garden. Coming in July: • July 6: Chris Graham, executive chef at Taste • July 13: Ian Denney, Sous Chef at The Raphael Hotel • July 27: Julie Kendall, chef/ owner of Café Blackadder 24

Sunday Concerts in Missouri Barn, sponsored by Darn Good Food After the chef demonstrations on July 13 and July 27, stay for an afternoon concert by local favorites. David and Jimmy Nace of the Nace Brothers perform on July 13 and Jeff Porter plays on July 27. Both the chef demonstrations and concerts are included with regular Garden admission. Fresh Bites Series Come out to the Heartland Harvest Garden for demos covering upcycling and growing edibles. The sessions meet in the Missouri Barn and are great for visitors of all ages. Go to for more information. Gardens Gone Wild! continues Gardens Gone Wild, a summer exhibit of 26 monumental sculptures by Colorado artist Dan Ostermiller, continues through July. Set in nine adventure zones representing habitats both familiar and exotic, Gardens Gone Wild is a journey the entire family can enjoy together. Aesop’s Amazing Fables On July 19, Martin City Melodrama Jr. presents “Aesop’s Amazing Fables” at 10 a.m. This lively telling of life lessons is presented by a cast of animal characters and is included with regular Garden admission. Garden Art Discovery Station Be inspired to make art from the gardens at this discovery station, open 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, July 19, and Sunday, July 20. The activity is included with Garden admission. The Amazing Animal Quest Every day during the exhibit visitors can take part in the Amazing Animal Quest—a way to document and share your adventures for a chance to win great prizes! Learn more at

Upcoming Garden Events places to go, things to do, people to see

(continued from page 23)

Leavenworth County Fair Jul 29 – Aug 2; Tonganoxie, KS. Leavenworth Master Gardeners Club has arranged presentations at the Leavenworth County Fair. Here are the dates and times of presentations. Tues, Jul 29: 7pm Butterfly Gardens and 8pm Container Gardens. Wed, Jul 30: 3pm Butterfly Gardens, 4pm Container Gardens, 5pm Herb Gardens, 6pm Emerald Ash Borer by Lynn Loughrey, and 7pm Raised Bed Gardens. Thurs, Jul 31: 3pm Container Gardens, 4pm Raised Bed Gardens, 6pm Butterfly Gardens, 7pm Herb Gardens. Fri, Aug 1: 4pm Butterfly Gardens, 5pm Raised Bed Gardens, 6pm Herb Gardens and 7pm Container Gardens. Sat, Aug 2: 1pm Butterfly Gardens, 2pm Herb Gardens and 3pm Raised Bed Gardens. Like us on Facebook at leavenworthmastergardeners for the latest details. Kansas State University is committed to making its services, activities and programs accessible to all participants. If you have special requirements due to a physical, vision, or hearing disability, contact Karol Lohman, 913-364-5700.

August Fall & Winter Vegetable Gardening Thurs, Aug 7, 11:30am-1:30pm; at the Sunflower Meeting Room, Wyandotte County Extension Office, 1208 N 79th St, Kansas City, KS. Gardening does not have to stop just because the weather turns colder. Bob Broyles, a Butler County, Kansas, Extension Master Gardener, has experimented for many years to determine the best methods for continuing vegetable gardens through Kansas winters. He will share his experiences, techniques and tips. $5.00 fee. Registration not required. You are welcome to bring your lunch. Sponsored by the Wyandotte County Extension Master Gardeners. Call 913-299-9300 for more information. Moonlight and Mint Juleps Tour Aug 8. The night garden tour of the summer sponsored by the Northland Garden Club is at the Platte County home of Kim and Jesse Johnson. Tour begins at 8pm and ends at 10pm. Advanced tickets required and may be purchased by calling Dee West, 816-455-4013. They are $10 each and will include the dusk tour, evening tour and a cool refreshing summer drink. Check the Garden Club website at for further information. Kansas City Cactus and Succulent Society 37th Annual Show and Sale Sat, Aug 9, sale 9am-5pm; Show Room open noon to 5pm; Sun, Aug 10 – sale and show 11am to 4pm; at Loose Park Garden Center, 51st St and Wornall Rd, Kansas City, MO. Park entrance is West driveway immediately South of 51st St. Plant sales will be provided by J&J Cactus and Succulents, Midwest City, OK, and KCCSS members. Members will be present to answer questions and, if asked, give help-

ful growing tips. Among the great selection of cactus and succulent plants will be hardy varieties that thrive in outdoor gardens. You are invited to view the KCCSS outdoor garden next to the Garden Center prior to entering the building. FREE ADMISSION. If further information is needed, call Bryan 913-827-7489. Raising Caterpillars at Home Sat, Aug 9, 1-3pm; at Powell Gardens. Learn how to raise and identify your own butterflies, about life cycles, predators and diseases that harm butterflies. Take home a caterpillar with everything you need to raise it to an adult butterfly. (Price includes Festival of Butterflies admission for one adult.) $35/person, $27/members. Registration required by Jul 28. To register call Linda Burton at 816-697-2600 ext 209. Or register online at www.powellgardens. org/AdultClasses. Gibbs Road Organic Farm Tour Thurs, Aug 21, 6:30pm; at 4223 Gibbs Rd, Kansas City, KS. Master Gardeners of Greater Kansas City present: Gibbs Road Organic Farm Tour. The Gibbs Road Community Farm is a certified organic vegetable production farm sitting on two acres in Kansas City, KS. As Cultivate Kansas City’s model and demonstration farm, they participate in the Growing Growers program experimenting with high tunnels, raised beds and no-till production and offering technical assistance to other growers. Free and open to the public. No registration required. For further information call 816665-4456. Turning Fresh Fruits and Veggies into Delicious Homemade Ice Cream Sat, Aug 23, 9:30-10:30am; at The Gardens at Unity Village 150-B NW Colbern Rd, Lee’s Summit, MO (1/4 mile west of the Douglas/Colbern intersection). Brooke Hood introduces a unique workshop on how to turn those fresh fruits (and VEGGIES) into delicious homemade ice cream. Samples and Recipes provided. Cost: $10 (Free to Gardens members) Call 816-769-0259 and leave a message to make a reservation, check for workshop updates, etc.

September Must-Have Perennials Thurs, Sep 4, 11:30am-1pm; at Sunflower Meeting Room, Wyandotte County Extension Office, 1208 N 79th St, Kansas City, KS. Sponsored by the Wyandotte County Extension Master Gardeners. Presented by Merle Sharpe, Johnson County Extension Master Gardener. $5.00 fee. You are welcome to bring your lunch. Registration not required. Call 913-2999300 for more information. Moonlight and Mint Julep Garden Tour Sep 12. Rescheduled from June, this evening tour will be held Sep 12 at the oneacre, award-winning garden of Marla and Dan Galetti. Here you will experience a

The Kansas City Gardener / July 2014

garden created by a true plant collector featuring both native and collected specimens. Lighting ranges from professionally installed lighting to ambient lighting added by Marla. Check the garden club website at for further information. Advance tickets are required and may be obtained by calling Dee West at 816-455-4013. Price is $10 each and includes a refreshing drink. Map and directions provided. Apple Butter Festival Fri, Sep 19, 5-7pm Peeling Party/Sat Sep 20, 7am-3pm (stirring and canning); at The Gardens at Unity Village 150-B NW Colbern Rd, Lee’s Summit, MO (1/4 mile west of the Douglas/Colbern intersection). We?re firing up the copper kettles on the west lawn again! Friday evening’s Apple Peeling Party is followed by an early morning start over camp-fires to turn apples, organic cinnamon and sugar into some of the best apple butter you’ve ever tasted! We do it all – from peeling apples, to cooking to canning. Come join the fun! Cost: Free. Call 816-769-0259 and leave a message to make a reservation, check for workshop updates, etc.

October Landscape Re-Design and Rehabilitation Thurs, Oct 2, 11:30am-1:30pm; in the Sunflower Meeting Room, Wyandotte County Extension Office, 1208 N 79th St, Kansas City, KS. Does your current landscape need a make-over? Has it grown

out-of-control? Do you want a change? Jamie Hancock, horticulture specialist from K-State Shawnee County Extension, will give a 2-hour presentation on $5.00 fee. Registration not required. Sponsored by the Wyandotte County Extension Master Gardeners. You are welcome to bring your lunch. Call 913-299-9300 for more information. Lake Lotawana Homes Tour Sat, Oct 4, 10am-5pm; We hold Homes Tours every two years and typically have six houses on tour, different from previous years. Boats rides are available for Homes Tour from 10am-4pm and depart from the Marina Grog and Gallery. Box lunches are available from 10am-2pm. Tickets $15. Ticket information contact: Rita Goppert 816-578-4344. General information contact: Natalie Byard 816-730-9007. Honey Harvest Sat, Oct 18, 9:30-11:30am; at The Gardens at Unity Village 150-B NW Colbern Rd, Lee’s Summit, MO (1/4 mile west of the Douglas/Colbern intersection). Rick Drake, resident beekeeper, returns to provide a fascinating hands-on workshop on the history, harvesting and many benefits of raw, local honey. Attendees help extract the honey and go home with their own jar of golden goodness. Cost: $15.00 ($5 to Gardens members). Call 816-769-0259 and leave a message to make a reservation, check for workshop updates, etc.

Promote your group’s gardening events, workshops, and classes!

Hotlines for Gardeners Extension Master Gardeners are ready to answer your gardening questions. Get your garden growing. DOUGLAS COUNTY

785-843-7058;; Mon-Fri, 1-4pm


816-833-8733 (TREE); Mon-Fri, 9am to noon


913-715-7050; Mon-Fri, 9am-4pm;


660-747-3193; Wed, 9am-noon


913-364-5700; Apr 15 thru Jul 1, Monday 10am-1pm, Thursday 1-4pm


913-294-4306; Mon-Fri, 9am-noon


913-299-9300; Mon, Wed, Fri, 9am-4pm


Weather Repor t

Highs and Lows Avg temp 80° Avg high temp 89° Avg low temp 71° Highest recorded temp 111° Lowest recorded temp 51° Nbr of above 70° days 31

Clear or Cloudy Avg nbr of clear days 13 Avg nbr of cloudy days 8

The listing is FREE.

Rain and Snow Avg snowfall 0 Avg rainfall 3.7”

Send information to: The Kansas City Gardener P.O. Box 8725 Prairie Village, KS 66208 E-Mail: Deadline for August issue is July 5.

Avg nbr of rainy days 9 Source:

From the Almanac Moon Phases

5-9, 12, 26

First Quarter: July 5 Full Moon: July 12 Last Quarter: July 18 New Moon: July 26 Source: Harris’ Farmer’s Almanac

July 2014 / The Kansas City Gardener

Plant Above Ground Crops: Plant Root Crops: 12, 13, 16, 17

Control Plant Pests: 18, 19, 22-24

Transplant: 7-9, 26

Plant Flowers: 5, 26



garden calendar n LAWNS

• Mow bluegrass and tall fescue at 3 to 3 1/2 inches. • Mow zoysia at 1 1/2 inches. • Fertilize zoysia to encourage summer growth with a high nitrogen fertilizer. • Let grass clippings fall to return nutrients to the soil. • Be on the lookout for summer diseases such as brown patch; treat areas where it has been a problem. • Sharpen mower blades. • Replace lawn mower air filter and change lawn mower oil per owner’s manual. • Prepare to control perennial grassy weeds such as zoysia, fescue and nimblewill. • Take a soil test to prepare for fall lawn renovation. • Water deeply and less often for deep roots and a healthy lawn.


• Remove faded flowers from annuals to stimulate more flowers for late summer color. • Deadhead perennials to prevent seeding and encourage plant growth. • Replenish mulch layers, 2 to 3 inches ideal. • Cut fresh bouquets for enjoyment. • Lightly fertilize annuals monthly for best flowering. • Dig, divide and replant crowded irises. • Fertilize roses for fall blossoms. • Fertilize and water container gardens.

• Complete the final pinching of chrysanthemum tips for bushier plants.


• Water newly planted shrubs and young trees (planted within the last three to five years) during dry weather. • Keep plants mulched to conserve moisture and cool roots. • Remove sucker growth from the base of trees and along branches. • Prune diseased, dead or hazardous limbs.


• Harvest fruits of your labor and enjoy. • Control weeds growth to preserve water and nutrients. • Fertilize vegetables to encourage plant development. • Watch for foliar disease development on lower tomato leaves and treat with a fungicide. • Prepare for fall gardening. Plant potatoes, broccoli and other fall crops. • Spray sweet corn to control corn earworms as silks emerge. • Be on the lookout for pests in the garden and control. • Remove old raspberry canes’ after harvest.


• Keep compost pile moist for fast processing and turn occasionally. • Take photographs of the garden to document success and for future planning.

Johnson County K-State Research and Extension recommends environmentally-friendly gardening practices. This starts by identifying and monitoring problems. Cultural practices and controls are the best approach for a healthy garden. If needed, use physical, biological or chemical controls. Always consider the least toxic approach first. Dennis Patton is the horticulture agent for Johnson County K-State Research and Extension. For free information fact sheets, visit, or call the Extension office at 913-715-7000.

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The Kansas City Gardener / July 2014

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GARDENER A Monthly Guide to Successful Gardening

For convenient mail delivery, complete the form below and send with your check for $20.00. You will receive a one-year subscription to The Kansas City Gardener. Name: Address: City, State, Zip: Phone: E-mail: Where did you pick up The Kansas City Gardener? Please enclose your check payable to The Kansas City Gardener and mail with this form to: P.O. Box 8725, Prairie Village, KS 66208 The Kansas City Gardener is published monthly Jan. through Dec.

July 2014 / The Kansas City Gardener

Meet Jeff Sifrit, general manager at K.C. Arborist Tree Care Job title and description: As General Manager, the majority of my responsibilities lie in daily operations. As an ISA Certified Arborists MW-4842A, I specialize in consulting with both residential and commercial clients and identifying their individual tree care needs. I am also a Missouri Certified Pesticide Applicator (#c16353) and was amongst the first Certified Tree Care Safety Professional (#415) in the state of Kansas in 2009. I’ve been with K.C. Arborist for 6 years, and in the green industry for over 20 years. Daily operations: All of us at K.C. Arborist Tree Care believe that the maintenance and management of trees on your property should only be done by a professional tree care company. The term professional implies that the tree company is licensed to operate in the State, employs arborists that are certified by the International Society of Arboriculture (ISA) and they operate within the ANSI Standards for tree care operations. Every aspect of every job is handled in a professional way. My job, from the morning briefing with our trained/ certified crew, safety and maintenance check of equipment, and finalizing the day’s schedule, requires many variables to prioritize. Once complete, I meet with customers across the city to provide estimates, consult with them on their tree needs, like trimming, preservation, removal and healthcare. Favorite tree: Paperbark Maple Acer griseum. I love the patina colored exfoliating bark and the vivid Fall colors. Favorite garden destination: As you might guess, trees are my passion. The Overland Park Arboretum and Botanical Garden is one of the finest locations to view and evaluate a wide variety of hybrid trees and shrubs, native to this area. What every gardener should know: Avoid the “mulch volcano,” where mulch is piled against the stems or tree trunks. Mulch piled high against the trunks of young trees may create habitats for rodents that chew the bark and can girdle the trees. Incorrect mulching can also stress stem tissues and may lead to the development of insect and disease problems. Instead, pull the mulch back several inches so that the base of the trunk is exposed. Proper mulching is crucial to tree vigor and health. Other interests: In my off time, I enjoy NASCAR, the Iowa Hawkeyes, cooking and grilling, smoking meats, and spending time with my family which includes my beautiful fiancé and 4 terrific children! Contact information: K.C. Arborist Tree Care, P.O. Box 25282, Overland Park, KS 66225; 913-390-0033;; 27


Plant your Butterfly Garden

GARDEN ACCENTS Select your perfect patio accent from our huge collection of unique pottery in every shape, color and size.

Classic Statuary & Fountains Decorative Planters Wind Sculptures Arbors & Trellis Stone or Teak


SHRUBS & PERENNIALS Coral Bells Daylily Coreopsis Astilbe Caryopteris Lavender Coneflower Clethra Viburnum Yarrow and many many more

Your lawn this July call 816-941-4700 P regular lawn care P insect & disease controls

135th & Wornall 28

(816) 942-2921

K-7 & Prairie Star Pkwy (913) 897-5100

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The Kansas City Gardener / July 2014

KCG 07Jul14 issue  
KCG 07Jul14 issue  

ask the experts, perennial climbers, birds, caterpillers, tropical lilies, emg program, lawn