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The Kansas City

GARDENER A Monthly Guide to Successful Gardening

May 2014

Thirsty for Color

Native Groundcover for Sun Read about area garden tours Silver-spotted Skippers Celebrate Spring Patrick’s Picks: Underused Herbs of Distinction

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NOTHING COMPARES TO HOME GROWN Few things can measure up to the satisfaction of growing, picking and eating garden fresh vegetables from seed or plant. The rich taste of a sun-warmed, vine-ripened tomato or the crisp snap of a just picked snow pea are just two of the many joys awaiting the home vegetable gardener. *Burpee selection may vary by store.



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May 2014 / The Kansas City Gardener



editor’s notes

The Kansas City

GARDENER A Monthly Guide to Successful Gardening

Garden friends

Independently owned and operated since 1996 Publisher Michael Cavanaugh Editor Elizabeth Cavanaugh Editorial Assistant Hannah Cavanaugh Contributors Charles Anctil Leah Berg Marie Bremerkamp Cindy Gilberg Diane & Doc Gover Lenora Larson Dee Maharg-West Patrick Muir Stephen Painter Dennis Patton Bob Pudenz Phil Roudebush 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 Submit editorial questions to Elizabeth Cavanaugh at

See us on the Web:

Don’t Miss A Single Issue! Get a subscription for yourself or your favorite gardener. See page 43. 4


or those who’ve followed this column, you might remember my driveway friend, Phyllis, who moved away a few years ago. You should know she’s doing well in her assisted living apartment in South Dakota. She’s healthy and happy with her surroundings and the staff who make her feel special. They cook meals, do the laundry and cleaning. (Where do I sign?) From manicures and pedicures, to having her hair done, it’s just the right place for her glory days. We both try to get together across the miles. We send greeting cards and notes for those special times of celebration. We trade voicemail messages when we must. And when we’re lucky enough to find each other available at precisely the same time on the phone, we connect like forever friends do. We talk about the kids, the weather, our health, the neighborhood, and how much we miss our chats. I fondly remembered our ritual recently while working in the garden. From her house across the street she could see me out in the garden. With impeccable timing (just when I needed a break), Phyllis

would open the garage doors, bring two white plastic chairs to the driveway, and sit to watch me do my thing. As if on cue, I would glance her way and she’d shout, “You’re working too hard. Come sit down and rest for a minute.” To her pleasure, and mine, I’d walk across the street to share a few minutes of driveway chat. I miss those days. Do you have a friend like that? Someone with whom you share the love of gardening? And because of gardening your friendship flourished? Gardening has a way of linking humans together, don’t you think? Lately, I’ve had the pleasure of sharing the garden with a new garden friend. His name is Sam. He lives across the street with his terrific parents and his baby sister, in the house where Phyllis once lived. (Coincidence? I think not.) Not long ago, donning his garden gloves I gifted for his birthday, he said, “Mrs. Beth, we got a lot a

work to do.” Sam, my friend, we do indeed. So I handed him a bucket, and with his mother’s blessing, he went to work. At three years old, he lasted for about 30 seconds, and then he was off exploring the garden, the cat, the retaining wall, jumping, climbing, chatting and singing the whole time. I am grateful for the joy he brought to the garden that day. We have become fast friends, shouting greetings of the day back and forth across the street. As the years go by and our friendship grows, I look forward to the day when he offers me a chair and says, “Mrs. Beth, you’re working too hard. Come sit down and rest for a minute.” That day my heart will soar. I’ll see you in the garden!

In this issue May 2014 • Vol. 19 No. 5 Ask the Experts ........................ 6 Grow Native Groundcover ....... 8 Irrigation System ..................... 10 Rose Report ............................ 13 Woodpeckers Damage ............ 14 Patrick’s Picks: Herbs ............... 16 Silver-spotted Skippers ............. 18 SeedSavers-KC ....................... 19 Little Night Garden ................. 20 Thirsty for Color ...................... 22 Private Gardens on Tour ........... 24

about the cover ...

Gardeners Connect Party ......... 27 Powell Garden Events .............. 28 Wanvisa Hardy Lily ................. 31 Versatile Pepper Plant .............. 33 The Bird Brain ......................... 36 Garden Calendar .................... 37 Upcoming Events ..................... 38 Hotlines ................................. 41 Weather ................................. 41 MGGKC Plant Sale .................. 42 Professional’s Corner ................ 43

Hibiscus has a range of colors suitable for any garden plan. If you are thirsty for color, check out Leah Berg’s article starting on page 22.


16 The Kansas City Gardener / May 2014

Pets and Plants

Learn about Castor Bean By Phil Roudebush, DVM, DACVIM


he castor oil plant, Ricinus communis, is a species of flowering plant in the spurge family that is native to the Mediterranean basin and Africa, and has been introduced around the world as an ornamental perennial shrub that can reach the size of a small tree — cultivars of the plant are commonly found in Midwestern landscapes. Common names include castor bean, castor oil plant, African coffee tree, Mexico weed, mole bean, wonder tree and Palma Christa (palm of Christ). The seed of the castor oil plant is the castor bean, which, despite its name, is not a true bean. The seeds are grown commercially for castor oil and ornamental purposes (jewelry). Ricin is a highly poisonous cellular toxin (toxalbumin) found in all parts of the castor oil plant with highest levels in the seeds

May 2014 / The Kansas City Gardener

(castor beans). Ricin is poisonous if inhaled, injected or ingested, and causes cell death by inhibiting protein synthesis. Poisoning most often occurs in dogs or cats when they ingest or chew the seeds ? severity of clinical signs increases if the seed is chewed, broken or damaged, which releases more of the toxic compound. Ornamental sources of seeds such as jewelry

are also common causes of poisoning in pet animals. Because ricin is a general toxin affecting many different cells in the body, multiple organ systems can be affected and symptoms are difficult to treat since there is not a specific antidote. Vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain, bloody feces, loss of appetite and lethargy are usually observed if the seeds are

eaten. Decontamination, gastrointestinal protectants and supportive care are the usual treatment measures. More serious problems arise if ricin is absorbed and spreads to other organs. Ricin has received recent attention in the news because of efforts by disgruntled people to poison public officials via the mail with powder from ground castor beans or more concentrated sources. Bottom line — keep castor beans out of reach of pets and children. 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


Ask the Experts! questions from our readers

Dennis Patton DON’T LET GRASS GO TO SEED Question: I have what I think is a great idea. Each spring sections of my lawn develop seed heads. I am thinking about not mowing these areas and let the grass go to seed to naturally reseed my lawn. What do you think? Answer: I think this is a really bad idea. While it sounds good in theory in practice it is not recommended. Turfgrass that is allowed to go to seed strains the plants, which leads to a thinner stand. The result is weaker lawns that will

more than likely need to be overseeded come fall. Another problem is that very little of the seed that will develop will ever germinate to provide your needed cover. The bottom line is you just need to bite the bullet and overseed. The best time is early to mid-September. For now keep up the mowing and encourage the lawn to naturally thicken up by providing good cultural practices. GO AHEAD, GROW KALE Question: Kale is all the rage. Can it be grown in my garden? Answer: Kale is a very trendy vegetable and can be grown in local gardens. It is a member of the cabbage family and as you know is used for its nutritious leaves that can be eaten cooked or raw. Kale is an excellent source of vitamins A and C. Kale is a cool sea-

Great Gift Ideas for Mom and Mother Nature

son vegetable which means it can be planted in mid to late March or again in early August for a fall crop. Harvest the older lower leaves when they are full size and still tender. Cold weather improves the flavor. Kale can be left in the garden and used until a severe freeze, usually in December, damages the crop. Kale will not tolerate summer heat and lose its flavor so it is best to treat as a spring and fall crop. Plant the seeds about ? to ? inches deep and thin the plants to about every 8 to 12 inches to allow the plants to develop. IMPATIENS VS DOWNY MILDEW Question: Last year my planting of impatiens died out as a result of Downy Mildew. From what I understand this happened because of the cool, wet period in late July and early August. My question is should I plant impatiens this year or not? Answer: That is a really good question and while the answer may seem black and white there are some shades of gray. In order for a disease to occur you need a host (impatiens), pathogen and the right environmental factors. If you had an outbreak of the disease last year and you plant impatiens then you

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have two of the requirements. The question is how likely is it to be cool and moist during a Kansas City summer? This is how I would answer the question. If you do not wish to take any chances then don’t plant impatiens. If you are willing to bet that the environmental patterns are a fluke then you might consider planting again. My other comment is that I would possibly consider planting again but maybe limit the number in the plants and diversify the planting to include other flowers to provide a mass of color if or when the disease returns.

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SWARMING HONEYBEES Question: Last year a swarm of bees was found in my neighbor’s backyard. I am not for sure how they handled the issue but what can be done if a swarm of honeybees finds their way to my house? Answer: Honeybees swarm in mid to late May in most years. Honeybee swarms occur when the bee colony increases in size and is in need of more space. There are other triggers such as food and water supply. A swarm is a loose group of honeybees consisting of 30 to 70 percent of the hive it has left including workers, drones and the queen; usually found hanging on tree limbs, eaves of homes, rails or other objects. By nature, swarms are usually not a threat since these honeybees do not have a hive or food to defend and are looking for a new place to relocate. These bees can cause a source of panic and may even be considered an emergency for a person who is allergic to them. The key is to stay calm, and do not disturb the swarm. Instead, people who find swarms should try to contact a beekeeper to remove the bees. Many beekeepers welcome the opportunity to increase the number of colonies they have by catching these swarms and giving them a new home in a hive. Johnson County Extension and Kansas State Extension have a resource list of beekeepers interested in retrieving swarms. If you need assistance give us a call.

NATIVE GRASSES VS CITY MOW ORDINANCES Question: I have an area in my backyard I would like to plant in native grasses to reduce mowing and maintenance. I have been warned that this planting will violate city mow ordinances because of the height. Is this an issue I should be concerned with? Answer: You are joining a growing number of people that are opting out of a manicured lawn for a native planting of grasses. The good news is that most cities are slowly adapting their ordinances to include plantings such as these. Here is how I handle these questions. There is still maintenance associated with native grass plantings. I ask this question, is the planting being maintained? If I look at a native area I should not seed tall weeds, tree seedlings or other socalled prairie invaders in the planting. The vast majority of the planting should be native grasses and wildflowers. If I look at a planting and I see a number of weeds, trees seedlings or other plants that don’t belong then I would have to say this area not being maintained and would violate the ordinances. Basically, planting native grasses and calling it a native planting without any maintenance is a weed patch, not a planned element of your landscape. 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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lmost every property owner has a problem area—in a sunny spot—that could use a strong and reliable planting of regionally native, hardy plants that function well as ground cover. Identify various problem areas on your property where ground covers might be the right answer. The most common reasons for groundcover plantings are places that are too hot and dry, too wet, steep slopes that are difficult to mow, for stormwater management, and/or to eliminate large areas to mow. Other considerations to bear in mind are whether you need deer-resistant plants, plants that contribute to habitat value, or maybe even an edible landscape (share with the wildlife). By using native plants adapted for the conditions you have, a gardener can add both habitat value and have a reliable, problem-solving planting at the same time. The most appropriate plants for hot, dry, sunny sites are those that are native to dry, upland prairies and some of Missouri’s famous,

Blue false indigo ing Hibiscus contributes a large plant with great texture. Add in some switch grass for height and to blend the scene. For hot sunny and dry sites, try shorter native grasses such as little bluestem, prairie dropseed, or even side-oats grama. Contrast these with perennials such as the low-growing prairie alum root (Heuchera richardsonii) or the latest aster to bloom (October–November), which is the blue-flowering aromatic aster. These can be highlighted with taller perennials such as blue false indigo (Baptisia australis) or with a shorter shrub known as New Jersey tea (Ceonathus americana). When these are planted in large masses, they effectively cover the ground, need only spring clean-up/ cutting back, and will help to choke out weeds that try to encroach. Once established, these hardy native plants require little to no additional irrigation, no pesticides,

Swamp milkweed

Photos courtesy of Missouri Department of Conservation.

Cindy Gilberg

hot, dry and rocky glades. A groundcover is any robust planting that effectively covers the ground. Therefore, it should include shrubs with robust grasses and perennials so that there is diversity, interest, and effective habitat throughout the season. For best success, always match the plants’ natural habitat to the conditions where you are planting. Check soil conditions and don’t add too much compost. Too much compost can adversely affect some native plant growth—these plants don’t typically grow in rich soil. A well-draining topsoil that is not high in organic matter (compost) is best—construction rubble and back-fill soil are typically high in clay, rock, and are considered subsoils, not appropriate for planting. If a low and wet sunny site is your problem area, there are some beautiful native plants that need and thrive in wet soils. This list includes shining bluestar (Amsonia illustris), a four-foot tall perennial that blooms sky-blue in spring. Copper (red/orange flowers) or blue iris (Iris fulva, I. virginica) add color to the scene in late spring and early summer. In mid-summer, orange coneflower (Rudbeckia fulgida var. umbrosa) shows off its yellow, black-eyed Susan flowers, and in late summer and early fall the pink flowers of marsh milkweed (Asclepias incarnata) put on a show. Native, hardy fall-bloom-

Photo by Allen Woodliffe.

Native Groundcovers for Sun

Prairie dropseed and will automatically add habitat and provide pollen/nectar for visiting pollinating insects. To find sources of these and other native plants, visit the Resource Guide at 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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The Kansas City Gardener / May 2014

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May 2014 / The Kansas City Gardener

where gardeners go to grow. 9

By Bob Pudenz


Automatic irrigation system simplifies watering

s I type this, the forsythias are blooming, the magnolias are stunning and lawns are greening up – it must be Spring! Spring rains are refreshing and rejuvenating for our landscapes and for our psyches. Who doesn’t love the smell of a spring rain? As Mother Nature reminds us from time to time, especially with colder than normal weather this March, weather – and rainfall – is anything but predictable. When rain doesn’t fall, many green thumbs turn to manually watering to give their landscapes a drink. For those of us who drag hoses across the yard year after year, when is the right time to consider an automatic sprinkler system? Before we get into the ins and outs of automatic sprinkler systems, let’s consider the advantages

of a properly watered landscape, even if you are quenching a landscape’s thirst manually. Healthy lawns, trees and shrubs have a cooling effect. According to a Mississippi State University study, a healthy lawn has the same cooling effect as an 8.5 ton air conditioning compressor. Watering your lawn also means you are maintaining proper soil moisture. We have heavy clay soils in Kansas City. Clay soils ‘shrink’ when they dry out, which can contribute to foundation damage. Adequate watering of your landscape can help mitigate this effect. I don’t have to tell you the biggest benefit of green spaces – if you picked up this magazine, you likely already know. HAPPINESS. Green spaces can actually help people feel better. They generate positive emotions, help your brain work better

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and can rejuvenate people who feel drained. These are just a few benefits of a healthy landscape, and there are many more, but let’s get back to the question at hand – is it time for you to get an automatic sprinkler system? Automatic sprinkler systems are convenient and less labor intensive, sure. If you travel frequently, an automatic system would certainly come in handy. Aside from shortening your ‘to do’ list, there are several perks of automatic watering. Automatic systems water more effectively and efficiently. Most people will get much better coverage from a properly designed system. No more dry spots! Additionally, technology has come a long way. A rain sensor added to your system will ensure you aren’t watering during or immediately following rain. Set it and forget it. (Almost.) Once you have a system installed, you can be pretty hands-off. You will want to program your controller once in the spring, again in early summer, once more in late summer (when it’s REALLY hot and dry) and a final time in the fall. As with innovations like the rain sensor, controllers are much more dynamic than in the past. Today’s controllers allow for greater flexibility in scheduling and enable you to customize your watering program to your landscape’s needs. Drip irrigation allows for better watering of shrubs. Drip irrigation systems are typically more than 90% efficient at allowing plants to

use the water supplied. These systems slowly release water into the soil at the root zone, keeping moisture levels in the optimal range for shrubs to thrive. Automatic systems are great for new seed. If you have a shady yard and seed your lawn frequently, you may decide you have even more reason to install an irrigation system. Automatic systems can easily be programmed to water evenly in short intervals several times a day, ensuring seed never dries out. Improper watering is the number one reason seeding fails. If you decide the time is right to install an irrigation system, be sure to check with your neighbors, friends and family members who have had systems installed. Ask them if they’ve had any problems with the system, and how they liked working with the contractor. Pricing for new systems can vary widely – as can the quality of the finished product. If you are making this investment in your landscape, you want to make sure you are pleased with the final product. An automatic sprinkler system can be a huge benefit to your landscape – not only are they convenient and labor-saving, they also water more effectively than a sprinkler attached to a hose. If you love working outdoors with your hands in the dirt, I think you will be more than happy with your decision to take the next step in taking care of your landscape. Bob Pudenz is an irrigation manager at Ryan Lawn & Tree. He can be reached at 913-381-1505. The Kansas City Gardener / May 2014


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May 2014 / The Kansas City Gardener


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The Kansas City Gardener / May 2014


Rose Report

Charles Anctil


hose tall, dark (black) rose canes are certainly getting attention this year. No, this is not caused by diseases! The cold, cold winds actually caused this situation. If you mulched heavily and planted deeply the roses should come back. I have pruned roses back so the bud union looked like the knuckles on my hand, gave them a shot of Mushroom Stuff, and they came back beautifully. So that you will be ready, I must repeat my message about Japanese Beetles. If you have not noticed the beetle itself, you are probably familiar with the damage that it leaves behind. The beetles skeletonize the leaves of their favor-

ite plants which include a lot of our favorite ornamental, vegetable and fruit plants. They will also eat fruit and flower buds, including corn silks, preventing pollination. Chemical control methods for adults include carbaryl, malathion, methoxychlor and rotenone. Larvae should be controlled by Merit. Forget the traps! The traps work by using pheromones, the insect soil attractant, to lure in the beetles from miles around. The problem is that the traps only catch about 75% of the beetles they draw to your yard, and they are going to be feeding on all your plants along the way. If you’ve got questions, give me a call. Works for me – might work for you! 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.


has sprung and we are blooming at these locations. 2351 N. 400 Rd. • Edgerton, KS • Hours: 9am-6pm, Mon.-Sat. • Sun. noon-4pm 2 miles west of Edgerton on Hwy 56 • to County Line, 2 miles north 1/2 west Shawnee Location • 5920 County Line Rd., KCK • 913-375-1335 Nieman and County Line Rd. • Mon.-Sat. 9am-6pm • Sun. noon-4pm KCMO Farmers Market Location, 3rd & Walnut, Saturday only Stall 50 across (west) from the Arabian

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Woodpeckers always entertaining, sometimes destructive

Stephen Painter


oodpeckers can be a real treat at your home bird feeders, but sometimes these welcome visitors become unwelcome guest in your own home. Most species of woodpeckers here in the greater Kansas City metro area are year round residents. Although in the winter we do host several species, probably the most common is the YellowBellied Sapsucker. Some of our most common woodpeckers species that are year round residents are the Red-Bellied, Hairy, Downy,

Northern Flicker and the RedHeaded woodpecker. And a species that is expanding and becoming more common even in our suburban areas is the impressive Pileated woodpecker. All of these year round species breed here in Missouri. Although entertaining to watch at the bird feeders throughout the year, come spring they may decide to use your home as a “drumming” location. These “drumming” spots are used in the spring and fall of the year. In the spring they are commonly used to attract mates. The males are attracted to anything from the side of your home, your windows, your metal chimney or metal heater pipe. They like to pick things that have a unique sound and will resonate throughout the area. The greater the sound and the more unique, the better the odds of attracting a mate. This “drumming”



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behavior is also used to establish an audible boundary of the bird’s territory. In the fall is when the young birds of the spring begin establishing their own territories using this technique. Woodpeckers can damage the home. Particularly if there is water damage or wood rot anywhere on your home. They will attack this soft wood and literally excavate a large hole out of this soft wood and damaged wood. There is a lot of debate among biologist and ornithologist on why this occurs. Some speculate that they are looking for insects within the soft wood much like they would do on an old dead tree in the woods. Other feel it is simply the result of their “drumming” activity. If your home has siding that is DryVit and woodpeckers start pecking at this insulating siding you will most likely have a real war on your hands. I have seen a Northern Flicker literally excavate over 12 softball size holes in a home with DryVit and all were evenly spaced about two feet apart. Looked like he used a tape measure. And to make matters worse, it is hard to find someone to repair this type of siding and make it look original. Sometimes woodpeckers will actually create a cavity within an outside wall of the home and attempt to nest within this cavity. They are rarely if ever successful, largely due to the fact that they European Starling, a more aggressive bird, will force the wood-

pecker out and take over nesting in the cavity. So at this point you may be asking yourself; what would I do if I had a woodpecker damaging my home? The best approach is to try scaring the bird away. Mylar is one of the most commonly used products. And although a little unsightly it is better than baseball size holes in the siding of your home. Some have tried wind chimes, pie pans and those whirly bird foil things that you blow in and it spins. Legally you cannot kill the bird. But, after looking at the damage that they have done, that may have been your first idea. All species of woodpeckers are federally protected. So if you can’t live with them, scare them away. Stephen Painter owns and operates Catch-It Wildlife and Pest Control, Inc. You may reach him at 816-769-3106.


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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Patrick’s Picks: Underused Herbs of Distinction

Anise hyssop

Patrick Muir


aula Winchester founded The Herb Gathering with a unique mission, at the time, to provide fresh herbs to restaurants and

Bronze fennel


French sorrel

grocery stores sourced from small market growers and gardeners. After winning a blue ribbon for curly mint at the Kansas City Flower Show as a teenager in 1979, she approached me to see if I had enough plant material to provide bunches of twenty-five stems for her clients. We were totally overrun with mint, as I’m sure many of you can probably relate to, so I was happy to oblige.

Winchester has since sold her business but I asked her to reflect and highlight some underused herbs she believes warrant more attention. “One of the herbs I started selling from my yard as soon as I had enough for such a limited market was shiso, Perilla frutescens. Available in green or burgundy varieties, it self sows and I’m sure it will be even in more places this year than last year.” As a general

rule, use shiso anywhere you’d use basil or mint. As the name implies, pineapple sage, Salvia elegans, is known for the distinct pineapple aroma that its leaves emit when crushed. Winchester says “I love pineapple sage – mostly because I treasure the very late blooming red “firecracker” flowers that look so lovely on a soup, salad or in cream cheese and are so sweet even just by themselves.” Pineapple sage is an excel-

Water Garden Society of Greater Kansas City presents

Water Gardens 2014 21st Annual Water Garden Tour Saturday, June 28 • Sunday, June 29 9am - 5pm • Rain or Shine • Bus tours available. Call: 913-599-9718 • 816-861-3449 • Buy early to plan your personal driving tour of 50 plus gardens in Greater Kansas City and nearby communities. There are a variety of private gardens and Water Garden Society constructed educational water gardens for schools and nature centers. Tickets are $10 per person (ages 14 and older). A tour book with maps, driving directions, and host written descriptions of the gardens are included. Proceeds benefit construction of educational and restorative water gardens and other educational programs in the Kansas City metropolitan area.

Tickets available June 6 at these locations. KANSAS

Kansas City, House of Rocks Lawrence, Water’s Edge Leavenworth, Homestead Nursery Leawood, Suburban Lawn and Garden Lenexa, Suburban Lawn and Garden Overland Park, Family Tree Nursery Shawnee, Earl May Garden Center Shawnee, Family Tree Nursery


Blue Springs, Colonial Nursery Blue Springs, Roberts Nursery Independence, Wild Bird Center Lee’s Summit, Randy’s Lakeview Nursery Liberty, Family Tree Nursery Kansas City, Bannister Garden Center Kansas City, Brothers Fish Kansas City, City Pets & Ponds

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Martin City, Rosehill Gardens Raymore, Creekside Market Smithville, Full Features Nursery Spring Hill, Swan’s Water Gardening

Tickets also available at all Hen House Markets, all Westlake Hardware stores and all Grass Pads. 16

The Kansas City Gardener / May 2014

Lemon balm

Pineapple sage


Wild Bergamot

lent selection for the herb garden and the perennial border. Winchester says “A very rampant herb once it takes a hold via spreading seed is lemon balm or Melissa officinalis. I let it grow where it likes for it is so easy to use in salads, cutting off hands full to stick upside down into a pitcher of water, even sautéed or used in tempura.” She cuts it back when it starts to look rangy so it will look beautiful again in the fall. As featured in The New York Times in 2012, Linda Hazel’s Prairie Birthday Farms near Kearney MO, is a 15-acre, pesticide-free operation growing a wide amount of different herbs. A former nurse practitioner, Hazel says “Wild bergamot, Monarda fistulosa, is a Missouri native sporting a bold mint flavor with a myriad of uses. Fresh flower petals are beautiful in fruit and savory salads and tender, tiny spring leaves are a great, surprise sprinkled in a green salad.” Provide plenty of good air circulation around the plants since they are prone to powdery mildew.

French sorrel, Rumex acetosa, bridges into both the greens and herb categories. Hazel says “French sorrel adds a slightly sour bite to green salads and makes a fabulous soup or sauce for salmon. Flower spikes are visually subtle but can be snipped into stir fried meals or over scrambled eggs.” At home in either the herb garden or as a valuable native in the back of the perennial border, anise hyssop, Agastache foeniculum, is a bold flavored selection easily grown from seed. Hazel says “The smallest tender leaves can be harvested spring, summer and fall. Steeped in a simple syrup, they are lovely drizzled on fresh fruit, especially strawberries, and the beautiful, purple flower spikes can be plucked over salads.” Matt Gawron is the Horticulturist at Powell Garden’s Heartland Harvest Garden in Kingsville MO. “I love bronze fennel Foeniculum vulgare for the texture and height it gives to the herb garden. The bronze cast of the foliage works beautifully to add another color to the garden.” It is also a great plant

to attract beneficials to the garden. “I snip some off to add to a salad or wait for the seed which is a must for me for adding to tomato sauce.” Gawron says, “Roselle or Hibiscus sabdariffa is a strikingly beautiful herb that any tea lover should have as part of their herb garden. Many parts of the plant have different uses in various cultures but the outer covering of the flower, the calyx, is the part I’m going for and it makes a tart deep red tea. “Get started early with this tropical because it will take six months to produce enough flowers for collecting. Gawron believes dill, Anethum graveolens, is an easy, wonder-

ful to grow herb that is underused considering all of its benefits, from foliage to taste. He says, “Kind of like the fennel, I really enjoy the lacy foliage with its umbrella shaped flower heads and I love the refreshing taste that just cut dill provides on a sandwich or in a salad”. ‘Bouquet’ is the most popular variety but Gawron likes the more ornamental steel blue foliage and chartreuse flowers of ‘Vierling’. Dill is also a host plant for Black Swallowtail Butterflies, and really underused as a trap crop for tomato hornworm. Subscribe to Patrick Muir’s blog at, where you can read more about Patrick’s Picks.

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Silver-spotted Skippers Celebrate Spring

The silver flash of the Silver-spotted Skipper is a common sight on Butterfly Bushes.

The silvery Lead Plant is a stand-out in any sunny, dry garden.

blue and pink flowers, but never joining the other butterflies nectaring on yellow blossoms.

Lenora Larson


inally, spring welcomes us back to the garden after a long, cold winter. While we were snuggled in our down jackets, the Silver-spotted Skipper (Epargyreus clarus) spent the winter as a chrysalis hidden among fallen leaves. By late April, this common harbinger of spring emerges from its chrysalis and begins cruising the garden. They are a familiar sight until October since there are multiple broods each year. Unlike most skippers, a family of LBBs (Little Brown Butterflies), this showy butterfly stands out with a wing-span of up to 2.5 inches. Beginning butterfly gardeners appreciate its easy identification by the large metallic silver splash on the dark-brown hind-wing and jerky flight pattern. You will find them frequenting

Host Plants On sunny days, the lusty males perch on branches and tall weeds to ambush females. The pregnant ladies then seek out their caterpillar’s food plants, woody members of the pea family, such as Wisteria, Black and Honey Locusts and several species of False Indigo. However, unlike most butterflies that lay their eggs directly on the host plant, Silver-spotted Skippers lay single eggs near the host trees. How cruel to force the tiny newlyemerged caterpillars to search for their host plant! I consider the False Indigos (Amorpha species) to be the most garden worthy of the host plants, with the plus of being easycare natives. All prefer full sun and bloom with brilliant nectarrich flowers for the pollinators, plus feeding the caterpillars of Silver-spotted Skippers and Gray Hairstreaks. For a dry area, choose the silvery Lead Plant (Amorpha canescens) with its stunning deep

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blue flowers. For wetter areas, the False Indigo Bush (Amorpha fruticosa) flourishes with vivid violet flowers. An ideal plant for your rain garden, False Indigo grows as a graceful deciduous shrub, typically reaching 6 to 8 feet with many stems arising from the base. The pale green alternate compound pinnate leaves are marked with minute dots. Attractive in spring and summer, the leaves abruptly fade to pale yellow and quickly drop in fall. The Clever Caterpillars As usual, the caterpillar is not as obviously beautiful as the adult, but exhibits far more interesting behaviors to avoid being on a predator’s menu. In spring and summer, I patrol my False Indigo bushes, searching for the folded leaf caterpillar nests. Just look for this “leaf taco” and gently roll it open to see the chartreuse caterpillar, with a brown head like a beebee and two bright orange fake eyes. Mature caterpillars nest in multiple leaf clumps, sown together with silken threads. The leaf nests protect against predators’ scrutiny,

• • • • • •

and if the caterpillar is out eating or making a new nest, the snake-like fake eyes deter birds. However, the main caterpillar predators are predatory and parasitic wasps. Not only do these wasps recognize the folded leaf nests, they also locate their caterpillar prey by the aroma of the accumulating frass, the caterpillar’s poop. As a defense, the Silver-spotted Skipper caterpillar is equipped with a “fecal catapult”, which hurls its fecal pellet up to 38 times its body length! Children are delighted when I describe the caterpillar’s special talent. The kids do the math: how far could they hurl a fecal pellet if they were Silver-spotted Skipper caterpillars? Butterflies are not just for entomologists and gardeners; they can even make arithmetic fun! 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 / May 2014

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membership. In turn we ask that they learn how to properly save seeds by attending one of our free classes, reading literature we list on line or watching free online webinars. With their seed saving skills we ask that they return seeds to the Seed Library to replenish the supply for others to “check out.” An optional $1.00 lifetime donation is asked to join the Seed Library. The seeds available will be Non GMO vegetables, annuals, perennials, natives, shrubs and trees. Native plants are very well adapted to our conditions and weather extremes better than exotics. We recommend their use for their durability, beneficial insect attraction and food sources for wildlife in your gardens. Our Seed Library is the first in the greater Kansas City area. It is a project of the Facebook Group SeedSavers-KC that was started two years ago ( Our website is We invite you to visit our Seed Library. It currently has 121 varieties and will be stocked weekly with more.Won’t you be part of this growing trend?

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he purpose of SeedSaversKC Seed Library is to create a community of people dedicated to helping grow fresh vegetables by providing seed and educational resources. SeedSaversKC Seed Library realizes the importance of seed saving in maintaining biodiversity, creating a safe food supply, and growing a community of sustainable gardeners. Humans have been saving seeds for thousands of years and it is commonplace in many countries still today. Sadly, it fell out of use in the 1950’s in our United States with the exception of a small population. We feel this is an important skill and therefore teach it in our classes. SeedSavers-KC Seed Library is a nonprofit project located in the Anita B. Gorman Missouri Department of Conservation Discovery Center located at 4750 Troost, Kansas City, Missouri 64111. The Seed Library will be open Monday through Friday 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. and the same hours on the 1st and 3rd Saturdays of each month. Seed Library patrons will be able to “check out” up to 15 packages of seeds each year with their

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A Little Night Garden By Dee Maharg-West


o you want to expand your gardening adventures and expand the time you get to enjoy your garden? Then a little night garden might just be for you. I know from which I speak, because a few years ago my husband illuminated a few choice pieces of garden art for me, and we have never stopped. Adding lighting to the garden is one way to extend your gardening pleasure, or you can achieve it by adding some ‘night plants’. Combine the two and you have a magical, mysterious, and romantic garden. Lighting First. You can go the professional route and have trees up-lighted, and ‘quiet’ lighting, or you can go the more creative way and add your own spin with solar lights, spot lights, and/or fairy lights. Candles and lanterns work well too. Most gardens I know have used a combination of all of the above. A subtle light on a fountain extends your enjoyment forever. Next Plants. Although special planting considerations are not

mandatory, evening plants enhance the night garden and add a glow. Then there is the added element of fragrance. Many flowers not only open in the evening hours, but also release their sweet fragrance after the sun goes down. Here are easy varieties you probably already use: White impatiens, lamb’s ear, flowering tobacco, meadow rue and star jasmine. In my garden I am delighted each evening with huge white moon flowers that put on a show until late the next morning. To add fragrance, include trumpet or oriental lilies, acidanthera, brugmansia and datura, night phlox (Dame’s rocket), stock, tuberose, mock orange, alyssum, petunias and helitrope. White Casa Blanca lilies are my favorite and they will add more fragrance than you can imagine, not to mention huge stark white blooms. Don’t forget seating. Although you can enjoy your garden from inside, you won’t want to miss the display that Mother Nature (and

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your careful planning) has created for you. You just cannot beat a garden at dusk, but a night garden takes you into an entire new realm of gardening. You will want to have a comfortable place to sit and relax. Keep those flowers deadheaded so you will get the full pleasure of fresh blooms. Invite some friends over. Take it all up a notch. Enjoy. Join the Northland Garden Club for three special Night Garden events this summer, June 13, July 11, and August 8. All gardens have been carefully planned by their owners to enhance and extend their beauty. A fresh summer drink will be provided. Twilight tour begins at 8 p.m. Advanced tickets are required and may be obtained from Dee Maharg-West, Master Gardener, President, Northland Garden Club 816-455-4013. Cost is $10 per person, each garden. Check the website for further information at Recommended reading: The Twilight Garden, Lia Leendertz


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Wornall/Majors House Museums Host Kansas City’s Largest Garden Tour


n Saturday, June 7, from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., The Wornall/Majors House Museums, the nonprofit that oversees the historic John Wornall and Alexander Majors Houses, will open the garden gate to six of the most stunning and prestigious garden spaces in Kansas City. Held on a biennial basis, the Wornall/ Majors House Museums Garden Tour is the organization’s largest fundraiser, allowing it to bring history to life through innovative, hands-on programs and experiences for thousands of children and adults from throughout the greater Kansas City region. Both houses are on the National Register of Historic Places. “Garden tour participants and patrons—often numbering 700 or more—will enjoy a marvelous experience for an affordable price,” says Anna Marie Tutera, the Museums’ executive director. “They will also help support school field trips, summer camps and other learning experiences for some of our community’s most under-served children and youth.” Garden Tour tickets are only $25 per person if purchased by June 1; tickets sold from June 2 through the day of the event are still a bargain at $30. Tickets can be purchased now by calling 816444-1858 and online at Tickets can also be purchased at Brookside Market (Cosentino’s) in Brookside and at Hen House locations in Fairway and Prairie Village. And the fun starts a day early, on Friday, June 6, from 6:30 to 10 p.m., for Garden Tour patrons. They will enjoy a delicious buffet dinner and wine at the home of Kansas City business man and Garden Tour Honorary Chair Jim Blair. His Frank Lloyd Wrightdesigned home in Kansas City’s historic Roanoke district is the perfect location for an event that celebrates Kansas City’s history and beauty. Patron party tickets are only $100 ($80 for Museum memMay 2014 / The Kansas City Gardener

bers). Patron tickets include a sneak-peek preview of the gardens on the evening of June 6, followed by the Patron Party. Patron-level tickets are also available by calling 816-444-1858 and at www. And patrons are welcome to visit the gardens at a more leisurely pace again on June 7. Rain or shine, the Garden Tour takes place from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, June 7. It will be a day to remember for all—from sophisticated gardeners to beginners and those who simply appreciate creativity and quality. A sampling of the six featured gardens tells the story: • The garden of Joey and Liesl McLiney is located in the storied Sunset Hill neighborhood of Kansas City, just south of the Country Club Plaza. It features an enormous, urn-lined pool and terraced entertaining patios surrounded by inviting formal and informal gardens. Exotic chickens, bee hives and a vegetable garden (complete with a white picket fence) inhabit the space as well. The property is primarily organic, demonstrating good ecology in this wonderful Town & Country-type garden. • The Fairway garden of Talis and Anne Bergmanis is a showstopper! At over an acre, it showcases large and rare trees, over 100 varieties of peonies, vibrant color and extraordinary architectural touches and garden artifacts. The garden is

anchored by a beautiful, two-sided studio—one side for painting and one for potting plants. The studio will be open to attendees! • The Old Leawood garden of Dr. Greg and Cindy Barnhill is one of the largest and most sophisticated outdoor spaces in the area.

A series of impressive “rooms” or designated spaces, the garden includes a magnificent pool area and a vast expanse showcasing walking areas and an enormous variety of beautifully placed plant species. The garden even features a fruit-producing orchard! Coming soon. Visit for an overview of all six gardens and to purchase tickets. And don’t forget to stop by for a tour of the John Wornall House, 6115 Wornall Road, as you visit the gardens on June 7. Thanks to the generosity of Kansas City foundations, citizens and the Museums’ board members, the house’s façade has been completely restored, ensuring that this local historic treasure will stand strong for the next 100 years and longer. An historic herb garden is a focal point of the property.

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Above: Salvia SallyFun™ Snow White

Below: Tiarella ‘Sugar and Spice’

Below: Sedum Dazzleberry

Below: Coleus ‘LifeLime’

Below: Dianthus ‘Apple Slice’

Sedum photo by Chris Hansen.

Above: Hibiscus; Below: Cuphea ‘Flamenco Samba’


The Kansas City Gardener / May 2014

Thirsty for Color

May 2014 / The Kansas City Gardener

Sabine suggested three perennials that may bloom up to two months with lasting great foliage value. For shady sites, mass foamflower like Tiarella ‘Sugar and Spice’ as ground cover or feature individually. The interesting twotone leaves have finger-like lobes. To tolerate full sun, consider Dianthus or Sedum. Some outBasil photo courtesy of Lori Peterman.


hopping in May at garden centers guarantees containers of satisfying color to quench our visual thirst. After a depressing winter and increasingly evident drought impact, we deserve some instant gratification! This often includes shopping for oneself along with Mother’s Day gifts. In early April I needed a morale boost after my neighborhood suffered significant hail damage, requiring countless new roofs. I was relieved to hear repairs were speedy to upper layers of greenhouses at nearby Farrand Farms. The “kids” now running the family business were my high school classmates, and Keith has been a valued guest speaker for my college students in recent years. While walking through the public greenhouses there, I instantly thought of my friend Carolyn when I saw the tables of tropical hibiscus already blooming. Though she loves all flowers, she always features these on her deck. The impact of these bright ruffled trumpets is undeniably WOW! Another friend Doris likes the deepest red hanging baskets of cascading geraniums, on hooks on either side of the garage contrasting her white house. Some people prefer pots of geraniums or petunias sitting on front porches. My mother insists on pink mandevilla to twine through white porch railings. Already blooming, large portable classics like these also quickly increase the curb appeal of houses with “For Sale” signs posted. Anyone renting may feel a more personalized sense of home with plants in containers reflecting their own taste. For recently moved homeowners with significant space to fill up fast, I advise including some

‘Cardinal’ to provoke conversation. We noticed massed borders of it in the Heartland Harvest Garden at Powell Gardens beginning a couple years ago, with visitors eagerly asking “What’s THAT??” Lori Peterman of Pantry Garden Herbs described it as “Aptly named for its large, beautiful scarlet flowers, making a bold statement in the garden.” Birds, bees and butterflies Angelonia photo courtesy of All-America Selections.

Leah Berg

annuals in the budget. It’s vital to space properly newly planted shrubs and trees. Avoid overcrowding by including annuals as satisfying “filler” until woody plants grow to mature sizes. Annuals also help call attention to conscientious watering needs of newly transplanted shrubs. Apply these strategies while assessing older established landscapes for losses to drought, with disappointing removals and replacements to face. Newly planted perennials need adequate spacing, too, so weave annuals throughout strategically. While at Farrand Farms, I noted varieties to recommend to several landscape clients with Sabine Green’s input. The diverse palette of sun-tolerant coleus make outstanding easy-care filler tapestries in landscape beds. We both love ‘Sedona’ but she called my attention to newer ‘Chocolate Covered Cherry.’ Chartreuse ‘LifeLime’ provides excellent foliage contrast for many annuals. Sabine recommended Cuphea ‘Flamenco Samba’ which requires no deadheading, a ruffled burgundy and purple newer “batface” variety of a hummingbird favorite. Fans of tropical hibiscus should find this exotic partner appealing. She especially liked performance of Sallyfun™ Snow White last year. Anyone spending time outside at dusk really notices light reflected by white flowers or silvery foliage. We value the cooling effect on our moods when summer heat rises. “Moonlight Evening Gardens” makes a great design theme. Many professional gardeners I know recommend angelonia for low-maintenance, high-performing filler. I noticed the whites and lavenders increasingly in commercial landscape settings last year. Look for increased use of Angelonia Serenita™ Pink this year, named an All-America Selections® winner. Consider unique and aromatic herbs for landscape filler like Basil

Angelonia Serenita™ Pink

Basil ‘Cardinal’

are attracted to large blooms from late spring to early fall. It can get bushy and up to 20” tall, so it makes a notable border or backdrop for other selections. Lori recommends it for floral arrangements as well as for its aromatic and edible values. Planting too early backfires with many temperature-sensitive annuals that need consistently warmer nighttime soil temperatures that come around Mother’s Day. Perennials may go in the ground safely in April with pansies and cool season vegetables like kale, chard, and lettuces that also make pretty ornamental companions. Continue planting well into June and later with proper watering and care. Phronsie Farrand-Wood mentioned how often anxious customers call for reassurance: “May is usually the best time to begin planting for our area, don’t think it’s too late to get started!”

standing choices with low-profile, bluish-gray foliage may survive winter nearly evergreen. Dianthus ‘Apple Slice’ has fragrant bicolor flowers worth including in a tiny vase, but try growing at eye level topping a retaining wall or anywhere easy to sniff. The Sedum SunSparkler™ Dazzleberry reminds me of a great older trailing variety with a less catchy name: ‘Lidakense.’ Dense raspberry flowers dominate many weeks, but attractive foliage merits placement near paved walks. Review more outstanding selections reflecting field trial results in my November 2013 article “Big Bang Annuals” (kcgmag. com/magazine/). 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. 23

Private gardens opened for public viewing during popular Kansas City garden tour




ix private gardens will be open to the public during the Johnson County K-State Research and Extension Master Gardener Public Tour, May 16 and 17. Kansas City’s premier garden tour is a biennial event, and the only opportunity to tour some of the most beautiful private gardens

in Kansas City. It is a perfect weekend excursion for anyone passionate about gardening. Each garden is owned and maintained by an Extension Master Gardener. The homes are selected for their individual qualities, and represent solutions to many gardening challenges commonly found in

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our region. This year’s gardens feature something for everyone, including eco-friendly water retention systems, a secret hide-a-way, deer proof plants, shimmering poolside retreats, drainage solutions, wildlife habitats and edible landscapes. This tour is popular because the owners are passionate about gardening and have transformed standard suburban lots into their own personal oasis. The garden owners and Extension Master Gardener volunteers will be on hand to answer questions. Visitors receive information about the garden’s development, along with educational tips to take home and incorporate into their own landscapes. Photography is encouraged. This year’s six garden designs include something for everyone: Villa but Not Vanilla (photo 1) This garden owner gets straight A’s for adapting and accommodat-

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ing to life challenges. Drainage problems? Fixed! Physical limitations? Raised beds. Problem solved! Committed to a healthy butterfly and pollinator population for generations to come? Check! This garden sanctuary has been customized not only to meet the owner’s needs but play host to all types of wildlife. Come, listen and learn from this experienced gardener. Upon arrival you will be enchantingly beckoned to, “Come into the garden, my flowers want to meet you.” Class Act (photo 2) “Here comes the sun/it’s alright” might be a favorite song of this garden owner. You will see the results of a three-year transformation — from a heavily shaded, over-matured and unruly landscape to a pristine, stunning garden and pool oasis that will delight all that see it. You’ll be amazed at the incredible attention to detail and


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lovely setting this garden owner has created. Handsome garden art deftly blended with a variety of plants that are so happy in ‘just the right place’ make this garden a must see! It will be hard to resist lounging poolside while visiting.

gardener knows what works to make a beautiful garden retreat and it shows! See birdfeeders and birdhouses and very special mirrored garden windows that reflect the beauty all around this inviting garden sanctuary.

Catch it While You Can (photo 3) Waste not, want not. When it comes to water, not a drop is wasted by this creative and resourceful

Experimental Gardener (photo 6) TLC = Thrilling Transformation! From a blank slate three years ago to outstanding! You could never


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5 gardener. A clever cistern and pump system collects water for use in her garden. A beautiful dry creek bed, a grotto, plants and flowers of all types, and a delightful koi pond are features of this charming garden retreat. Enter this garden and you will be greeted by a gentle waterfall, melodic wind chimes and birds chirping happily. This captivating garden has something for all the senses of those who visit! Designed to a Tee (photo 4) Dear, oh DEER, what is it that the deer don’t eat!! Come and see what this garden owner has figured out the hard way! Planters and pots, hanging baskets and fences all make this garden bordering the golf course work like a charm for these garden owners who love to entertain.... and it shows! Beautiful flowers mixed with treasured antique pieces grace this garden that has a personality as charming as the garden owners. You will be tempted to sit on the deck, enjoy the view and catch a glimpse of golfers passing by. I’ve got a Secret (photo 5) Hidden treasures and imagination abound in this enchanting garden, lovingly tended by this garden owner for over 40 years! There is a surprise around every corner including a ‘secret garden’ where you will enter another world filled with special treasures and garden delights. This experienced

May 2014 / The Kansas City Gardener

6 imagine how quickly a garden can transform. You will see the results of great planning, determination and hard work (and life lessons learned) from this adventurous gardener. Raised beds sporting favorite edibles and a host of interesting garden art will capture your imagination. You will see every type of plant, from the commonplace to the extraordinary, when you visit this lovely garden that has something for everyone! While on the garden tour you will have the opportunity to purchase handcrafted garden art handmade by the Johnson County Extension Master Gardeners. New this year are mosaic balls and stones. Each piece is uniquely different and sure to be a conversation piece in your garden. Back by popular demand are the sand-cast leaves and hard to find pollinator boxes. The local and national hosta expert will also be selling many of the most popular and latest varieties of this shade loving plant. This popular event is only held every other year. Tour tickets for this springtime, rain-or-shine event are $12 prior to May 1 and $15 after. Tickets are now available through Johnson County Extension, Johnson County Hen House Market after May 1 or any of the six gardens days of the tour. Maps and directions are provided with each ticket. To learn more, take a virtual tour, at or call (913) 715-7000.

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Editor’s note: This is a partial list of 2014 All-America Selections winners. To see all winners, and to learn more about All-America Selections, visit Photos and content courtesy of AAS.


ll-America Selections (AAS) was founded in 1932 by W. Ray Hastings, as a way for home gardeners to learn which

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new varieties were significantly improved for better garden performance. AAS includes a network of over 40 trial grounds all over North America where new, neverbefore-sold varieties are grown and evaluated by skilled, impartial AAS Judges. Only the best performers are declared AAS Winners. AAS continues as the oldest, most established international testing organization in North America.

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Cucumber Pick a Bushel F1 Excellent heat tolerant pickling cucumber which can be picked at the gherkin or spear stage and processed. The large yields of cucumbers can also be enjoyed fresh in salads and slaws. Semi-bush plants can be planted in the garden or in patio containers. Radish Rivoli Upright healthy leaves with fruit that is an even-colored bright red. Uniform roots are very round and about 1 1/2” inches in diameter. Interior texture is smooth and dense with bright white color, even when roots get large. Exceptional quality and taste when picked young, but still tasty if allowed to sit in garden longer, giving gardeners an extended harvest opportunity. Bean Mascotte The first AAS winning bean since 1991, this compact variety is perfect for today’s small-space gardens. Mascotte is a bush type bean that produces long, slender pods

Tomato Mountain Merit that stay above the foliage for easy harvest. This bean also has white showy flowers for ornamental value during bloom time. Judges appreciated the crunchiness and taste of this bean as well as the plentiful harvest all season long. The Mascotte root system is ideal for patio containers and window boxes, and this versatile variety performs well in garden beds too. That means you can raise delicious beans in any outside space. The French Mascotte (like its English translation “mascot”) is a symbol of good luck and was chosen for the variety’s gardenerfriendly habit. Tomato Mountain Merit F1 Mountain Merit was judged by growers in the Heartland region as a superior tomato because it is such a nice all-around tomato, perfect for slicing and sandwiches. With a 4-5 week harvest window, these dark red fruits grow on a compact, uniform plant and offer good resistance to multiple diseases common to home grown tomatoes.


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Gardeners Connect Garden Party Photos by Judy Aull.


broad paver-lined entry area will lead Gardeners Connect members to a garden imbued with Old World charm when Judy Aull opens her garden June 7 for a Gardeners Connect Garden Party. Gardeners Connect members are invited to gather from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. to view the garden and exchange gardening ideas. Refreshments will be served. The Aulls just west of Loose Park. The brick pavers at the Aull garden draw a visitor to a sweeping vista behind the English Tudor home, with a gazebo over an 18th century English stone fountain, a 19th century English wall fountain and a 19th century French wrought iron fencing. Off to the side leads a pebble pathway to more private pockets of gardens. Judy has been transforming the garden since 1998, when she and her husband came to the home. Before she hadn’t gardened much but on a visit with a friend to the herb garden at the John Wornall House Museum she became inspired to be a gardener. She became a John Wornall House Museum volunteer, and her gardening aspirations led her to become a Jackson County Master Gardener in 2007. She is a former board member of Gardeners Connect. Judy’s garden showcases quite a few hydrangeas, and it is nice to see such a good selection of them in the landscape: • H. arborescens ‘Annabelle’ (It has big rounded heads of flowers that may be in bloom in mid-June for the Garden Party. It’s a natu-

rally occurring cultivar discovered in the wild near Anna, Ill. Judy says she loves to cut flowers in August and September to bring inside. ); • H. paniculata ‘Grandiflora’ (It’s nicknamed PG or peegee for the initials of the last two words of its botanical name. The flowers are somewhat cone-shaped.); • H. paniculata ‘Limelight’ (It’s claim to fame is its chartreuse-tinged, cone-shaped flower heads.); • H. macrophylla ‘Lady in Red’ (It has red stems and red veins.); and • oakleaf hydrangeas and others. One stand out is H. macrophylla ‘Bailday,’ which is marketed under the trade name Light-O-Day. It is a sport of the Endless Summer hydrangea. Light-O-Day has whiteedged leaves that make it stand out whether it is blooming or not. Another variegated shrub in Judy’s garden is Osmanthus heterophyllus ‘Goshiki.’ The cultivar name means “five colored” in Japanese and refers to the colors on the leaves: cream, pink, orange, yellow and white. The leaves are shaped like the familiar holly leaves, though this is a false holly. One way to tell false holly from the

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true hollies is the leaf arrangement: false holly leaves are opposite one another while true hollies have alternate leaves. The ‘Goshiki’ forms a compact evergreen mound that gets up 3? feet tall and about a little bit wider. Of course, all shrubs do not a garden make. There are many nooks as well as wide swaths for planting perennials too. Green liriope lines her pebble paths. “I think it kind of ties it all together,” she said. She has many hostas but also a precious green-and-white variegated Jacob’s ladder that starts the spring with pink-tinged leaves. She also has a variegated Solomon’s seal that she said she loves. Another treasure is Ligularia x ‘Little Lantern.’ She has blogged about this one. Unlike other ligularias, this is a dwarf, reaching only 20 inches tall when most ligularias grow 3-4 feet tall. ‘Little Lantern’ blooms in July and August, producing large, conical heads of bright-

yellow flowers. “Oh, they’re beautiful,” she said. Ligularias need plenty of moisture, and Judy passes along the advice of garden writer Tracy Disabato-Aust, who suggests putting a plastic garbage bag in the planting hole, punching holes in bottom it before filling with soil and then planting normally. This helps keep water from draining away too quickly. Judy also adds a couple inches of mulch to retain moisture and cool the roots. Judy also has a clump of Japanese forest grass, Hakonechloa macra, which seems to grow well but is kept well in check by two their two dogs, a Labrador retriever and an border collie/English sheepdog. She said. “They both run right to it and chew on it.” For directions to the Garden Party and to become members of Gardeners Connect, please check out or look in your Gardeners Connect newsletter.

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May is for Plant Lovers

Spring Plant Sale, Bonsai Exhibit, Iris Weekend and more at Powell Gardens


owell Gardens, Kansas City’s botanical garden, brims with inspiration for gardeners throughout the month of May— from the Spring Plant Sale to weekend showcases of bonsai, succulents, iris and more. Admission, unless otherwise noted, is $10/ adults, $9/seniors and $4/children 5-12.

reception. Guests will enjoy light appetizers and a cash bar. At 5 p.m. sharp, the members-only sale begins with an assortment of perennials for sun and shade, annuals, trees, shrubs and more. See the full list at To learn more about becoming a member, see join.

Cocktails & Creative Containers: Members-Only Plant Sale Preview & Reception 4-7 p.m. May 2 (Reception at 4 p.m.; plant sale open 5-7 p.m.)  Powell Gardens’ acclaimed horticulture staff will share how they create hypertufa containers and the secrets to filling them with pleasing plant combinations with Friends of Powell Gardens at 4 p.m. Friday, May 2, during a member-only

Powell Gardens’ Spring Plant Sale 10 a.m.-5 p.m. May 3-4 During the first weekend of May garden enthusiasts shop Powell Gardens’ only plant sale of the year for a wide range of perennials, annuals, herbs, vegetables, trees, shrubs and some of Powell Gardens’ own best performers. Powell Gardens’ knowledgeable horticulture staff will be on hand throughout the sale to help

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with selections. Garden admission applies: $10/adults, $9/seniors and $4/children 5-12. See for details. National Public Gardens Day Celebration 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Friday, May 9 Powell Gardens joins in the national celebration of the importance of America’s public gardens by offering FREE admission on this day. Watch NPGD for details. Spring Bonsai Exhibit 10 a.m.-4 p.m. May 10-11 Learn about the living art of bonsai during the Bonsai Society of Greater Kansas City’s spring exhibit at Powell Gardens. See a variety of stunning trees and talk with growers. Each afternoon, there will be a presentation on designing and caring for bonsai trees. Society members will be available to answer questions throughout the exhibit. The exhibit is included with regular Garden admission. Iris Weekend at Powell Gardens 9 a.m.-6 p.m. May 10-11* Stroll through the Gardens to “Iris Hill,” where hundreds

Cody Hogan, Chef de Cuisine at Lidia’s Kansas City, kicks off the Garden Chef Series at Powell Gardens at 2 p.m. Sunday, May 18, 2014. of award-winning irises await. *Please note: mid-May is usually peak bloom time for irises, but it does vary with the weather—check for updates or call 816-697-2600 before you head out. Mother’s Day Performance & Brunch at Powell Gardens 11 a.m.-3 p.m. May 11 Powell Gardens celebrates Mother’s Day with a reservation-

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Wendy Hix 913.481.5416 • Tate Foster 913.406.6804 The Kansas City Gardener / May 2014

Spend A Summer Evening with the Missouri Prairie Foundation on June 26 The Bonsai Society of Greater Kansas City brings its spring exhibit to Powell Gardens on May 10-11.

The Kansas City Cactus & Succulent Society will offer a show and sale at Powell Gardens on Saturday, May 17.

only brunch in Café Thyme and an outdoor concert by Brookside Brass on the lawn from 1 to 3 p.m. To make brunch reservations call 816697-2600 x209 or visit Visitors also may bring picnics to be enjoyed in the performance area only. Garden admission applies: $10/adults, $9/ seniors and $4/children 5-12.

City Cactus & Succulent Society’s show and sale at Powell Gardens. Society members will display spectacular show plants and offer a variety of cacti and other succulents for sale. Members will be here all day to answer questions about caring for these plants. Learn more about the Kansas City Cactus & Succulent Society at kccactus. com.

Armed Forces Day — Free Admission for Active and Retired U.S. Military 9 a.m.-6 p.m. May 17 Active and former U.S. military members who present their military ID at the gate will receive free admission on Armed Forces Day.

Garden Chef Series Demo 2 p.m. May 18 The 2014 Garden Chef Series kicks off with Cody Hogan, an avid gardener and Chef de Cuisine at Lidia’s Kansas City. Chef Cody will prepare a tasty dish featuring fresh ingredients from the Heartland Harvest Garden with a limited number of samples available. The Garden Chef Series continues most Sundays through the season. Demos are included with regular Garden admission of $10/ adults, $9/seniors and $4/children 5-12. See for the schedule.

Kansas City Cactus & Succulent Society Show and Sale 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday, May 17 When it comes to plants with interesting shapes, textures and colors, it’s hard to beat cacti and other succulents. Whether you are a succulent aficionado or just starting to learn about these plants, you won’t want to miss the Kansas


njoy an hors d’oeuvres buffet and drinks and meet a bee specialist at the Prairies & Pollinators: A Special Evening to Benefit the Missouri Prairie Foundation. The event will be held from 5:30 to 8 p.m. June 26 at Posty Cards, a greeting card manufacturer whose headquarters has achieved the platinum level of Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED). The building is nestled in two acres of native plants at 1600 Olive Street in Kansas City. Native pollinators are critical to sustaining our natural world and our food supply. Mike Arduser, a 23-year veteran biologist with the Missouri Department of Conservation and native bee expert, will share information about native bees,

butterflies, moths, and other pollinators and why prairies are so critical to pollinator species and humans. Proceeds from the event benefit the Missouri Prairie Foundation, a 48-yearold land trust that protects 2,600 acres of prairie, administers the Grow Native! program, and works every day to educate and advocate for the conservation of priceless and imperiled prairie resources and the use of native plants. The evening is hosted by Posty Cards in partnership with Greenability magazine. Door prizes will be given, and free prairie and native landscaping information will be available. The cost is $75 per person. Make reservations at www. or call 888-8436739.

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It’s different, it’s better. You’ll love the unique presentation of our healthy ‘homegrown’ flowers and plants of all kinds. You’ll be amazed at the organization and how neat and clean the greenhouses are. Our smiling staff and easy shopping will make your visit a pleasure. Come and celebrate spring with us.

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See unique Italian home on St. Joseph Area Water Garden Society Tour


his Italian style home was built in 1924 in St. Joseph, Mo., and we are excited to announce that it will be one of the locations on the St. Joseph Area Water Garden Society Tour. It was built for W.H. Tobin of the Western Tablet Company and Eugene Meier was the architect with Cousins-McDonald Building Company the contractor. The home originally contained living and dining rooms, breakfast area, sunroom, and service areas on the first floor, four bedrooms and two bathrooms on the second floor. It also had a two-car garage that was entered from the alley behind the house. A newspaper article in the St. Joseph Gazette, dated Dec. 9, 1923, stated the cost to build the home was approximately $25,000. It may not seem like much in today’s real estate market, but back then it was a large amount of money to spend on a house.

Since construction, the home has undergone a major renovation turning the open terrace over the garage into a beautiful sitting room with a built-in Italian fountain, back yard was redone to add a walk-out deck from the breakfast room, and the maid’s quarters were added to the back of the home.

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Removing a covered porch dramatically changed the front entry and a new porch was added by the fountain sitting room. The tile roof is trimmed with copper gutters and is low with wide projecting eaves over the plain stucco walls with decorative details over the doors and windows. The garden conforms to the Italian architecture of the house with beautiful terraces and ornamental shrubbery. Two sides are bordered by stonewalls and the other two with low fences and a bush hedges. Over the past 90 years there have been many changes to the garden area. Two oak trees and a tulip tree were added; a row of juniper trees were removed and replaced with short needle pine trees; hedges were removed and the grass area opened up. The oak trees are now extremely large and shade most of the yard. With the changes to the shade areas, some of the plants needed to be replaced with plants that could tolerate the shade better. More hostas, bleeding hearts, rhododendrons, hydrangeas, and astibes have been added. Granite walkways in the yard lead from the driveway to the fountain terrace. There are two water features, a centrally located fountain and a dipping pool in the rear corner of the garden. The fountain was built with large granite slabs and rock walls. It measures approximately ten feet across by ten feet in length. It remains today just as it was built with the exception that a

recirculating pump has been added rather than having the water make a single pass. The water is pumped to the base of the first step where is runs out over the step and cascading to the next step and then to a large platform step and then cascading back to the holding pond. The dipping pool is a sixteen-foot figure eight pool with two depths with a shallow end of 2 feet and a deep end just over 3 feet and a step down at the mid point of the pool rather than a smooth transition. The original floor of the pool has a painted mosaic design that can still be seen today. Since the pool’s construction, a waterfall has been added to the deep end to add interest, as the dipping pool is not used as a pool any longer. The garden was lit with floodlights and post lights to add interest. Only the post lights remain today. The garden and home have a series of very large pots at the front door and behind the fountain that are used to added color and interest during the growing seasons. The two pots by the front door were designed for the house and require specialized supports if they ever need to be moved. They set on bases that allow for excess water to drain in a controlled manner. St. Joseph has many turn-of-thecentury homes and many residents of St. Joseph residents have ponds. These ponds cover a wide variety of styles from traditional fishponds to decorative ponds to ponds that don’t have visible water reservoirs. Each year the St. Joseph Area Water Garden Society has a tour of local ponds. The Society is pleased to have new pools, like the one at this home, on the tour along with a variety of others that include formal, rustic, and natural ponds, along with a wide variety of fish and plants. Don’t miss this year’s tour; tickets will be available starting June 1st at Westlake Ace Hardware, Earl May Garden Center, or by calling 816-233-2026. This year’s tour will be Saturday and Sunday, June 21 and 22, from 1 to 5 p.m. each day. Tickets are $7.00 for adults; please call 816233-2026 for further information. The Kansas City Gardener / May 2014

Many Faces of Wanvisa, Water Garden Hardy Lily Diane Swan


ater Lilies are one of the oldest plants on earth with evidence in fossils that date back to European Pre-Ice Age. These early lilies had the same basic form as water lilies of today. In the 17th century, the discovery of water lilies in the jungles of South America was documented by botanists. Water lilies were found in fresh water lagoons. The popularity quickly spread throughout Europe and North America for use in water gardens. Hybridizers are responsible for almost all the varieties that are available today. Through experi-

mentation and breeding, they have come up with many new varieties for pond owners to choose from. So it is very unusual that one of the most unique hardy water lilies was not hybridized. Dr. Napchai Chansilpa, of Thailand, a water lily hybridizer, introduced this lily to the 2010 IWG”S Symposium. He did not hybridize this unique lily. He rescued it from an unspoiled pond of Joey Tomocik lilies grown in Thailand. He saved this natural variation from being thrown out as a mutant. For three years, he grew the Wanvisa determined that the flower and pad variations were consistent and it could be propogated. Five hundred plants later he was satisfied that it would remain unique with all of its special properties. In 2010 the Wanvisa won the best New Water Lily competition. A cat-

egory that tropical lilies usually won. Wanvisa also won ‘Best in Pond’, the first Hardy lily to win since the competition started in 1997. The Wanvisa is a salmon-pink lily streaked with creamy yellow variations never before seen in lilies. The Wanvisa is like having a variety of lilies all in just one plant. It has dark speckled lily pads which makes it stand out in the pond. It boasts different shades of pink-salmon (from pale to deep

shades), varying amounts of creamy yellow (from small streaks to over half yellow), and different degrees of speckling. If you’re looking for a hardy lily for your pond, consider including Wanvisa. This ever-changing, award winner is a winner in any pond. 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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The metro’s Exclusive pond retailer The fun, friendly place to shop for your pond! We are carrying a LARGER selection of pond products this season, from filters to pumps and MORE fish! NOW offering delivery within the KC Metro and to the outlying areas of South Johnson County. Ask about the details. Come see our complete line of pond supplies, liner, fishes and large selection of aquatic plants.

he Blue Springs Historical Society Garden Tour is hosting six gardens with special events at each site on Saturday, June 21, 2014 from 9:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. One garden will be Death by Chocolate with an eclectic smaller garden and chocolate treats to delight you as well as a historic get-away raffle to win. Another garden is Bedazzle and Bejeweled. You will be dazzled at the beauty of this well-coiffed yard while shopping for unique jewelry as well as learn how to create a beautiful and easy garden decoration. Gone with the Wind Garden is an estate size garden with magnolia trees and many other beautiful plants. You will learn how to drought proof your potted plants while sipping lemonade under the gazebo. There is Beauty and the Brownfield. A master gardener has carefully planted this space to utilize its beauty.

There is the Heritage Garden where you will see heritage plants as well as learn what a heritage garden is. The WEE bus will be on hand to tour and work at the computers as well as children will plant a seedling to take home. You can snack on bagel bites. There will be oil paintings by Donna Drake on the front porch. The next is The Secret Garden that is a water garden with a local poet, Eve Brackenbury, her book of poems, the local illustrator, Phil King, and his illustrations from the book as well as new works. The Mid Continent Library will be on hand to have story time with the children. There is Plumpop gourmet popcorn company giving out samples and many other surprises for the participants. If you are interested in sponsoring an ad or attending this great event, please contact Bebe or Debbie at 816-224-8979.

Make plans to attend our

Annual Peony Festival in May and tour the fields of 10,000 plants. Bring your family and camera!

140 varieties of peonies

in 2 gal pots ready for spring planting. Visit our website:

Fruit Trees • Berry Plants Vegetable Seeds and Plants

Aquascape, Pondmaster, Microbelift, Tetra, PondGard & more Specializing in Imported Japanese Koi & Fancy Goldfishes Full line of aquatic plants; lilies, lotuses & marginals

Check our website and Facebook for more information.

816-842-5012 • • 1557 Swift Ave., KCMO 32

10001 E. Bannister Rd., Kansas City, MO • 816-763-4664 The Kansas City Gardener / May 2014

The Versatile Pepper Plant By Marie Bremerkamp


he pepper plant is rated the second most popular plant in American home gardens. This compact plant is perfect for a vegetable garden, raised bed, or container. The mature pepper plant has brilliant colors of red to orange, purple, white and almost black and can add contrast to any vegetable garden or flower bed. Peppers vary in sizes of big to blocky and narrow to skinny. Classification of peppers is based on sweet to hot flavors. The hotness or mildness of peppers depends on the amount of capsaicin it contains. The Scoville Scale is a method of quantifying the peppers ‘spiciness’ through determining the concentration of the chemical compound capsaicin. In 2012 the Chile Pepper Institute claimed the title with the Trindad Moruga Scorpion at 1.2 million Scoville units, but this was surpassed in 2013 by the Carolina Reaper developed by the Puckerbutt Pepper Company at 1.5 million Scoville units. The sweet peppers on the Scoville Scale rates at zero to 1000 units. The best known are the bell, pimento, relleno, and sweet banana peppers. These peppers are best known for their sweet to tangy taste, in addition providing excellent nutritional value, being low in calories, good source of vitamins C, A, B6, and K, and potassium.

Peppers require a warm growing temperature. A good time estimate to plant peppers in this area is about 2 weeks after planting tomatoes due to their cold sensitivity. Ideal temperature is 70 to 80 degrees F daytime and 60 to 70 degrees F at night. Temperature greater than 90 or less than 50 degrees F will result in blossom drop. Plant in full sun in well drained loamy soil with a pH ranging from 6.0 to 7.0 (soil testing is helpful). Fertilizers containing a 1-2-2 ratio are used for peppers plants (examples are 5-10-10 or 8-16-16). Select transplants that have a sturdy stem with 3 to 5 sets of dark green leaves. Avoid the plants that have blooms or fruit on them, as the pepper production will be low.

Heartland Hosta & Shade Plant Society

Annual Spring Hosta and Shade Plant Sale Saturday, May 10, 9 a.m.-2:30 p.m.

Faith Lutheran Church 4805 W. 67th St. (67th & Roe), Prairie Village, KS Featuring a great collection of lovely new hostas and other shade perennials, including but not limited to, a nice selection of Heucheras, numerous Fern varieties, Brunnera, Berginia, mini hostas and heucheras, so great for Fairy Gardens! You will not want to miss this sale!! There will be a free gift for children over age 4, who are accompanied by a parent or guardian. The Public is Welcome!! Come and bring a friend. For info call – Gwen 816-228-9308, 816-213-0598.

Peppers have a shallow root system and will quickly become susceptible to moisture stress. Without enough water, blooms and small fruit will drop off. Watering is very crucial during transplanting, flowering and fruit set. Mulching will aid in soil moisture loss. Be ready to apply after the plants are established.

There are so many varieties of peppers that there is probably one grown to match everyone’s specific needs and taste. Eat it raw as a snack; add it in recipes to give a specific flavor; roast it, freeze it and use at a later date; dry it for grinding into a powder; pickle it; combine with other fruits and vegetables for sauces or salsa; and use it to make jelly, as in jalapeno jelly. Please join the Master Gardeners of Greater Kansas City at their annual Plant Sale on Saturday, May 10, 2014 in the parking lot of the Bass Pro Shop. We’ll be under one huge tent located on the corner of MO-291 and I-70 in Independence, Missouri. A variety of these versatile pepper plants will be on sale, along with many other plants for your garden. Marie Bremerkamp, member of Master Gardeners of Greater Kansas City.

Straight From Our Farm Stop by our Farm Direct Store this spring. We will have special low every day pricing on select plants grown at our farms. locally grown • hand picked • extraordinary selection


100 years of serving Kansas City

311 East 135th St. • Kansas City, MO 64145 (We’re on the sunny south side between Wornall & Holmes.)

816-941-2332 Spring Hours begin April 1st Monday through Saturday 8 to 5, Sunday 10 to 5. May 2014 / The Kansas City Gardener


The Hort NetWORK

A Professional Organization of Green Industry Professionals in the Kansas City area Hort NetWORK Board of Directors Education, Programs and Membership Development Bill Malouche National Nursery Products – Kansas City Mary Werth Suburban Lawn & Garden, Inc. Tony Collins Aftin Property Solutions Brian Ritter Professional Gardening, Inc. Julie Spalding Hermes Nursery Susan Mertz – Non-voting Communications & Marketing Administrator Loma Vista Nursery and Botanical Shots and 34


he Hort NetWORK is a professional organization governed by a volunteer Board of Directors, offering networking and educational opportunities for the green industry professional in the Kansas City area. Our organization is composed of professionals in all aspects of the green industry with 21 corporate sponsorships and over 100 members. Membership is open to any individual, company, allied business or organization in the Kansas City area green industry. FOR THE TRADE PROFESSIONAL The purpose of the Hort NetWORK is to offer a unified platform for the exchange of ideas, sharing and discussing common challenges, and promoting relationships within a diverse community of green industry professionals in the Kansas City area. The Hort NetWORK strives to educate our members and to promote quality and professionalism in the green industry. Typically we meet four times a year at various locations in the city. Some of our meetings are networking socials, others are edu-

cational. The Hort NetWORK also promotes events from other green industry associations and organizations in the area. For more information visit our website: or email us: support@hortnetwork. org FOR THE CONSUMER The Hort NetWORK membership consists of local green industry professionals including retail garden centers, landscape designers, landscape installation and construction services, landscape and turf management services, irrigation and outdoor lighting services, marketing specialists, and suppliers of horticultural and hardscape products. Our membership also consists of organizations that help provide public, horticultural education. If you need HELP or ADVICE from an industry professional, consider a member of The Hort NetWORK. For more information visit our website: www.hortnetwork. org to see our Hort NetWORK Membership Directory and Information Guide. The Kansas City Gardener / May 2014


re you a home gardener with a LANDSCAPE PROJECT and need HELP or ADVICE from a green industry professional? Or, are you a trade professional looking for like-minded peers for EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES and NETWORKING? Then consider The Hort NetWORK, a professional organization for green industry professionals in the Kansas City area. In addition, we are a resource for homeowners looking for a green industry professional. Listed here are our current members. If you’d like to know more about any of these member’s businesses, feel free to give them a call. To connect with a professional or for membership information, go to The Hort NetWORK Membership Directory at Belton Parks & Recreation 16400 N Mullen Rd, Belton, MO 64012 816-331-0336

Green Lawn, Inc 6906 Martindale Rd, Shawnee, KS 66218 913-393-2238

Bird’s Botanicals 8201 E 23rd St, Kansas City, MO 64129 816-252-4478

Green Spectrum Marketing, LLC 9209 W 145th Pl, Overland Park, KS 66221 913-406-4770

Bonnie Barrett Gardens 12401 Delmar, Leawood, KS 66209 913-486-1107

Greenleaf Garden Services PO Box 7527, Shawnee Mission, KS 66207 816-916-5171

Loma Vista Nursery 12905 W 143rd St, Olathe, KS 66062 913-897-7010

Botanical Shots 15403 W 79th Terr, Lenexa, KS 66219 913-744-9403

Happy Yards KC LLC 8201 Wenonga Rd, Leawood, KS 66206 913-221-3542

National Nursery Products – KC 4502 W 63rd Terr, Prairie Village, KS 66208 913-362-0503

Brian P Ritter Professional Gardening, Inc 5519 Norwood, Fairway, KS 66205 913-558-7310

Heinen Landscape & Irrigation PO Box 1617, Mission, KS 66222 913-432-5011


CMG Landscapes & Gardens 12361 Mackey St, Overland Park, KS 66213 718-237-1261

Hermes Landscaping 13030 W 87th St Pkwy, Lenexa, KS 66215 913-888-2400

Gardeners Connect/Garden Center Association 6911 NW Blair Rd, Parkville, MO 64152 913-302-4234

Container Creations 9165 W 194th Terr, Bucyrus, KS 66013 913-302-7646

Hix and Son Aquatics 2305 W 96th St, Leawood, KS 66206 913-481-5416

Kauffman Memorial Garden 4800 Rockhill Rd, Kansas City, MO 64110 816-932-1200

Creative Outdoor Spaces 7135 Cherokee Dr, Prairie Village, KS 66208 913-432-1577

House of Rocks, Inc 1725 Merriam Ln, Kansas City, KS 66106 913-432-5990

Overland Park Arboretum 8909 W 179th St, Bucyrus, KS 66013 913-685-3604

Dirt Clods Landscaping, LLC PO Box 442092, Lawrence, KS 66044 816-351-9188

It’s My Nature 9629 Lee Blvd, Leawood, KS 66206 913-269-6941

Powell Gardens 1609 NW US Hwy 50, Kingsville, MO 64061 816-697-2600

Don Archer Garden Design 4408 SW Gull Point Dr, Lee’s Summit, MO 64082 816-797-9874

Karen Lyman Fine Gardening 9828 Sagamore Rd, Leawood, KS 66206 913-648-2787

Distributor/Wholesale Bailey Nurseries 2700 Princeton Blvd, Lawrence, KS 66049 303-523-4542 Emerald Prairie Nursery / White Wind Farms PO Box 184, US Hwy 169 & K-68 Hwy, Paola, KS 66071 913-980-5700

The Kansas City Gardener PO Box 8725, Prairie Village, KS 66208 913-648-4728

Service Aftin Property Solutions 12534 S Lincoln, Ste 197, Olathe, KS 66061 913-620-6063 Arbor Masters Tree and Landscape 8250 Cole Pkwy, Shawnee, KS 66227 913-927-8651 Bartlett Hauber Landscaping 12917 2nd St, Grandview, MO 64030 816-943-8118

May 2014 / The Kansas City Gardener

Down to Earth Gardening 2507 W 98th St, Leawood, KS 66206 816-616-2325

Landworks, Inc 9317 Woodend Rd, Edwardsville, KS 66111 913-422-9300

Dr Grow 9804 Pembroke Ln, Leawood, KS 66206 913-486-5024

McCarter Landscape Lighting 11829 W 138th St, Overland Park, KS 66221 913-634-3948

Essential Extras, Inc P.O. Box 16942, Kansas City, MO 64133 816-923-5865

Metamorphosis Landscape Design, LLC 11730 E 71st Ct, Kansas City, MO 64133 816-309-9383

Grass Pad 425 N Rawhide, Olathe, KS 66061 913-764-4100

My Spirit Stronger, LLC dba MSS Landscape 18050 Canterbury Dr, Stilwell,KS 66085 913-636-9653

Nancy’s Mighty Mouse Land & Stone ‘Scaping 3732 Jefferson St, Kansas City, MO 64111 913-515-5543 Nick’s Greenleaf Gardens 13315 E 147th St, Kansas City, MO 64149 816-322-1614 NiteLites of Kansas City Outdoor Lighting PO Box 24083, Overland Park, KS 66213 913-871-1299 Pat Friesen & Company, LLC 9636 Meadow Ln, Leawood, KS 66206 913-341-1211 Red Cedar Gardens 7895 W 183rd St, Stilwell, KS 66085 913-897-2286 Red Oak Landscaping, LLC 20978 Floyd St, Bucyrus, KS 66013 913-533-2217 Richard Clayton Barrett, ASLA 7128 Nall Ave, Overland Park, KS 66208 913-362-1200 Schlagel & Associates, PA 14920 W 107th St, Lenexa, KS 66215 913-492-5158 StoneRidge Outdoor 19309 K 68 Highway, Paola, KS 66071 913-963-3723 Suburban Lawn and Garden Inc PO Box 480200, Kansas City, MO 64148 816-941-4700 Sweetbay 5009 W 70th St, Prairie Village, KS 66208 913-486-5438 The Greensman, Inc 7213 Troost Ave, Kansas City, MO 64131 816-523-1516 Water’s Edge 847 Indiana, Lawrence, KS 66044 785-841-6777


The Bird Brain

answers your backyard birding questions

ooray – beautiful weather has arrived. Breathe deeply, enjoy the springtime air and listen to the birds sing. If you’re a nature lover – this is one of the best ways to relax and rejuvenate. Our Certified Birdfeeding Specialists are busy answering questions about nesting, feeding, watering and identifying everyone’s backyard visitors. Following are some of the most frequently asked questions:


Q. Please share some info about bat houses. Where should I place one? A. A bat box should be hung 12’ to 15’ above the ground – the higher the better. It should receive at least 6 hours of sun (morning sun being the most important). The house should face south to southeast. There should be nothing below the house, as the bats drop out like parachutes and need the open area to take flight. Houses are either nurseries (inhabited by females and their young) or bachelor pads (inhabited by males). The bats will decide – you will not have a say. Bats play a vital role in maintaining the balance of nature. A single bat will eat hundreds of mosquitoes in an hour. Fantastic! No need for pesticides.

Q. My tube feeders are really dirty and crusty. What is the best way to clean them? A. To clean tube feeders, soak them in a solution of 50/50 water and white vinegar. Use a longhandled bottle brush to scour the crevices. Rinse well, allow the feeders to completely dry and fill them with fresh seed. Using vinegar (as opposed to bleach) is environmentally friendly.

Q. Can I mix my own hummingbird nectar? A. Absolutely, that’s what we all do. To create your own nectar solution; • Mix four parts water and one part ordinary table sugar to create the perfect nectar solution. (Example: 1 cup water to 1/4 cup sugar) • Change the nectar and wash your feeder in hot water every

Doc & Diane Gover

three to four days (more often in hot weather). • If you plan to store extra nectar in the refrigerator, be sure to boil the water first before creating and storing your nectar solution for up to two weeks. • NEVER add red food coloring, honey, sugar-in-the raw or artificial sweeteners to the solution. Hummingbirds are quite bold, so place your feeders close to the house so you can enjoy all of their antics. Q. I really want to keep feeding my birds during the spring and summer but the starlings and grackles are driving me crazy. Is there a way to keep them from crowding my feeders? A. Try the safflower solution. Safflower is a small white seed that has high oil content. Many

favorite backyard birds – including cardinals, jays, grosbeaks, chickadees, house finches, doves, woodpeckers, titmouse and nuthatches – savor safflower. Starlings and grackles typically do not care for this thick shelled seed. Start by offering safflower sparingly in your seed feeders – DO NOT mix with other seeds. The starlings and grackles will kick the seed to the ground – looking for the seed blend that they had been devouring. They will soon realize that the buffet is closed and move along. This will then allow your favorite birds a chance to return to the feeders. This entire process takes patience on your part. It is a tried and true offering in many yards in the Kansas City Metro. Hopefully these simple tips will help you enjoy your backyard even more. If you have any questions, please stop by the store, our Certified Birdfeeding Specialists will be glad to help you. Doc and Diane Gover own and operate Wild Birds Unlimited of Leawood at 11711 Roe Avenue, Leawood, Kansas. Contact them at 913-491-4887.


Dirt • Rock • Mulch • Pavers • Retaining Wall • Flagstone • Wall Stone


(816) 525-1111 or (816) 554-DIRT 1820 NE County Park Rd, 11/4 mi. East of Hwy 291 on Colbern Rd, in Lee’s Summit, MO

Like us on To Receive Specials & Sales 36

The Kansas City Gardener / May 2014


garden calendar n LAWNS

• Core aerate zoysia to reduce thatch layer. • Sod or sprig zoysia lawns. • Fertilize zoysia with high nitrogen fertilizer to promote green up and summer growth. • Mow zoysia at 1 to 2 inches tall. • Fertilize bluegrass and tall fescue if watering regularly in summer with a slow-release fertilizer. • Mow bluegrass and tall fescue at 3 inches. • Withhold early summer watering until needed to promote more drought-tolerant lawns. • Let clippings fall to return needed nutrients to the turf. • Keep mower blade sharp for a clean cut. • Spot treat summer broadleaf weeds such as spurge or clover to control. • Sweep walks and drives after fertilizer and pesticide applications to reduce runoff.


• Plant new trees and shrubs. • Prune spring flowering shrubs after bloom to shape plant and encourage flowers next year. • Mulch around young trees and shrubs to conserve moisture and control weed growth. • Water young ornamentals as needed. • Remove tree wraps for summer growth. • Remove tree stakes in place more than one growing season. • Fertilize trees to help increase growth rates. • Caution, use line trimmers around trees and shrubs so as not to damage tender bark.


• Plant tomato, pepper, and eggplant transplants in early May. • Seed sweet corn, cucumbers, squash, beans and other warm season vegetables. • Lightly cultivate soil with a hoe to control weed growth.

• Mound soil around potato plants to encourage tuber formation. • Harvest fresh asparagus until the spear size decreases. • Remove rhubarb seed stalks to encourage leaf growth. • Plant kitchen herbs for summer use in dishes or food preservation. • Treat fruit trees with needed pesticides to control insects and disease. • Thin heavy fruit set on apples to increase fruit size and next year’s crop. • Harvest salad crops and enjoy. • Keep broccoli, cauliflower and cabbage well fertilized for big yields. • Add a pollinator bee box to the garden, helps improve crop fertilization.


• Plant annual flowers for summer color. • Continue to plant and divide perennials. • When planting annuals, pinch center stem to encourage branching and more blooms. • Mulch perennial and annual gardens for weed control and moisture retention. • Begin pinching chrysanthemums and other perennials for a more compact plant. • Do not remove foliage from spring bulbs until it dies down naturally, this develops stronger blooms for next year. • Plant container gardens and hanging baskets using a good quality potting mix. • Keep a garden journal for permanent reference. • Watch for weed growth and control while small for ease of removal.


• Move plants outdoors for summer by gradually increasing exposure to sunlight. • Fertilize plants to promote summer development. • Rotate plants to develop a well-rounded plant. • Wash dusty leaves in the shower under room temperature water. • Four to 6 inch cuttings are a great way to start new plants. • Repot plants into a 1-inch larger pot. • Check for insects.

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.


Debbie’s Lawn Busters

Offering the wildest variety of quality backyard bird feeding supplies.

Custom Designed Landscaping Installation & Maintenance

Bird Seed | Feeders Bird Baths | Nest Boxes Binoculars | Field Guides Nature-Inspired Gifts

Established 1975



Customer Satisfaction Guaranteed 816-392-4433 k 816-618-3674

Planting flowers or a garden? Then you need to have your underground facilities marked! Missouri law requires that any person making or beginning any excavation notify MOCS. Placing a locate request is free and easy! Call 1-800-DIG-RITE (800-344-7483) or 811. For more information, visit

4480 S. Noland Rd. • Independence, MO 64055 • (816) 478-9399 May 2014 / The Kansas City Gardener

One free, easy call gets your utility lines marked AND helps protect you from injury and expense. Safe Digging Is No Accident: “Always Call Before You Dig in Kansas” Call 811, 1-800-DIG-SAFE, (800-344-7233) or visit us at

Improving our planet one customer at a time.


Garden Center Open Daily

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

a great garden begins with locally grown plants annuals • edibles • roses • trees • perennials • shrubs Club Meetings

African Violets Club of Greater Kansas City Tues, May 13, 6pm; at Loose Park Garden Center, 51st and Wornall, Kansas City, MO. Membership meeting. 816-784-5300

mulch • topsoil • compost • herbicide • fertilizer FILL A CONTAINER May 3 & 10, 9am – noon

5901 NE 96th St, Kansas City, MO

Bring in a container and get creative! We have annuals, ornamentals and flowering shrubs perfect for container gardens. FREE Rose Bush for Mom - May 10


(while supplies last)

Join us on June 1 in The Laura Conyers Smith Municipal Rose Garden! CHRYSLER IMPERIAL in the foreground is always a good bloomer. MARIJIKE KOOPMAN, the pink rose in the background, has had very strong canes and great bloom. Go to Earth Right website for details on how to use Earth Right products on roses.

On Rose Day enjoy the beautiful garden, activities, attend the Rose Show and talk about your roses with Rose Society members and Park Director Judy Penner. Hope to see you there - 52nd Street between Wornall and Summit. For those who would like to volunteer in the rose garden, contact Loose Park at 816-784-5300. Volunteer training is being conducted May 15 and May 22. SUPER STUFF Accept only Original Often Copied Earth Right Products NEVER for the health and DUPLICATED beauty of your lawn and garden! Earth Right Products proudly supports The Laura Conyers Smith Municipal Rose Garden. In the rose garden all of our products have been applied (including our professional products). We hope you have as much fun in your garden as we have at the park. MADE IN THE HEARTLAND! To have Earth Right products applied at your location: Tobin Lawn & Landscape (816) 765-5565 or Sonshine (816) 525-7111



Clears Ponds Quickly- Healthier Ponds Maintains Clear Water Supply Relieves Murky Conditions SAFE FOR YOU & WILDLIFE TOO

1 Pint Treats 8,000 -16,000 GAL

Bonsai Society of Greater Kansas City Sat, May 3, 9am-3pm; at Loose Park Garden Center, 51st and Wornall, Kansas City, MO. Workshop. 816-784-5300 Greater Kansas City Gardeners of America Mon, May 5, 6pm, presentation at 6:30pm; at Loose Park Garden Center, 51st and Wornall, Kansas City, MO 64112. Speaker is herbalist Lynn Johnson Soulier, president of Gardens of Delight, Parkville. Lynn will discuss Pain Relief through Herbs and Aromatherapy. Learn the herbal remedies to help provide comfort for tight muscles, strained ligaments, stiff joints; all the ailments of active gardeners. Additional information contact Vince Vogel at 816-313-8733 or Non-member guests are always welcome. Greater Kansas City Herb Study Group Wed, May 14, noon; at Loose Park Garden Center, 51st St and Wornall, Kansas City, MO. Becky Stevens, of the Kansas City Fiber Guild, will present “Using Indigo as a Dye.” For luncheon reservations please call 913-592-3546. Visitors are welcome. Heart of America Gesneriad Society Sat, May 17, 10am; at Loose Park Garden Center, 51st and Wornall, Kansas City, MO. Membership meeting. 816-784-5300 Idalia Butterfly Society Sat, May 10, 5:30pm Pot-luck Dinner, 7pm Presentation; at Prairie Village Community Center, 7700 Mission Rd, Prairie Village, KS. Free to the public. Native Pollinators: Meg Mullet. Learn the secrets to attracting huge flocks of pollinators to your garden for mutual benefit. These hard-working animals help pollinate over 75% of our flowering plants, and 70% of our crops. Johnson County Master Gardener Meg Mullett will present an introduction to several of our native pollinators, including recommended techniques we can use and plants we can grow to encourage them to live in our gardens. Questions? Contact Independence Garden Club Mon, May 12, 6:30pm; at the Sermon Center, fourth floor, corner of Truman and Noland Rds. Also look for us at the Strawberry Festival June 7, 1500 N Liberty, in Independence. We will be selling a large variety of plants and flowers. Refreshments will be served. For more information call 816-373-1169 or 816-812-3067. Visit Johnson County Rose Society Thurs, May 8, 7pm, at Prairie Village Community Center, 7720 Mission Rd, Prairie Village, KS. Topic “What’s Bugging my Roses?” Are you wondering what those spots all over your rose leaves might be? Or do your rose buds seem to have “failure to thrive syndrome”? ARS Consulting Rosarian and Master Gardener Laura Dickinson will present a program about diseases and pests which are common to roses. We’ll get help learning preventative measures for common problems, identifying ailments and pests, and how to treat them when they do occur. Members and guests are welcome to take advantage of the “Consulting Rosarians Corner”. The Consulting Rosarians will also give timely tips about caring for roses “This Month in the Rose Garden”. All JCRS meetings are free and open to the public. Refreshments will be provided. For more information about the meetings, programs, and

membership, please visit www.rosesocietyjoco. org. Also on Facebook at JoCoRoses. Kansas City Cactus and Succulent Society Tues, May 6, 6-8pm; at Loose Park Garden Center, 51st and Wornall, Kansas City, MO. Leo Chance of Hardy Gardens. All welcome. 816784-5300 Kansas City Rose Society Thurs, May 15, 9am; at Loose Park Garden Center, 51st and Wornall, Kansas City, MO. Groomers training, new groomers welcome. 816-784-5300 Kaw Valley Herbs Study Group Tues, May 13, 7pm; at Unitarian Fellowship of Lawrence, 1263 N 1100 Rd. We explore all aspects of an herb: growing & harvesting, historical lore, culinary virtues, and aromatherapy, household, and cosmetic applications. 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. Lenexa Field and Garden Club Tues, May 13, 7pm; will tour the St Paul United Methodist Church’s Community Garden, 7740 Lackman Rd, Lenexa KS 66217. Learn more at Mid America Begonia Society Sat, May 17, 1pm; at Loose Park Garden Center, 51st and Wornall, Kansas City, MO. Membership meeting. 816-784-5300 Northland Garden Club Tues, May 20, 7pm; at Sherwood Bible Church, 4900 N Norton, Kansas City, MO (just south and west of Penguin Park). This month features our annual Plant Exchange. In addition to plant exchanges, there will be plants for sale at reasonable prices. Olathe Garden & Civic Club Wed, May 7, 8am and will continue until all is sold. Annual plant sale held at 18505 W 114th St in Olathe. Access to 114th St is from Ridgeview Rd. There will be a short club meeting during the day. There will be lots of starts from member’s gardens and interesting gardener items. Any questions, call Joan Shriver 913-492-3566. Overland Park Gardeners of America Mon, May 12, 7pm with program at 7:30pm; at Colonial Church, 71st and Mission Rd, Prairie Village, KS. Program: Care of Creation. Loretta Craig and Margaret Del Debbio give voice to life affirming practices that make us feel connected to soil and to each other. Join us for spiritual gardening and why it matters. We will talk about Sacred Sanctuaries, Contemplative Harmony, Sacred Seeds, Soul of Soil, Plant Wisdom, and Gardening: a Participation in Grace. Everyone is welcome to attend. Contact Sallie Wiley 913-2365193 for additional information. ShoMe African Violets Club Fri, May 9, 10:30am; at Loose Park Garden Center, 51st and Wornall, Kansas City, MO. Membership meeting. 816-784-5300

Events, Lectures & Classes May 45th Annual Plant Sale Apr 30-May 3; Hours: Wed 1-6:30pm, Thurs 9am-6:30pm, Fri 9am-6:30pm, Sat 9am-3pm; at Gomer’s Square, 99th & Holmes. Sponsored by Greater Kansas City Gardeners of America, the longest running plant sale in Kansas City! Wide selection of flowering annuals and peren-

The Kansas City Gardener / May 2014

nials, including plants to attract pollinators and butterflies. And we have lisianthus. No sun? No worry! We’ve got a wide selection of shade plants. Bothered by deer? You won’t be with our assortment of plants the deer won’t touch! Ready to grow your own vegetables? We’ve got tomatoes (lots of heirlooms), peppers, cucumbers, zucchini, okra, squash, melons, pumpkin and eggplant. All proceeds from this sale fund horticulture scholarships at K-State, University of Missouri and JCCC, as well as grants awarded to local community gardens. Support your community and grow the best. Call Brad Lucht at 816-941-2445 for additional information. Wyandotte Co Extension Master Gardeners Annual Plant Sale Fri, May 2, 9am-4pm and Sat, May 3, 9am-Noon (or as long as we have remaining inventory); at Wildcat Room, Wyandotte County Extension Office, 1200 N 79th St, Kansas City KS. The WyCo Master Gardeners will be offering tomatoes, sweet and hot peppers, eggplant, herbs, and various other vegetable and fruit plants started by the members; and collections of perennials, annuals, Kansas native wildflowers, and ornamental grasses. New to the sale this year will be succulent plants, and garden miscellany (a potpourri of gently used books and gardening supplies). Master Gardeners will be on hand to help you with your selections and to answer all your gardening questions. 913-299-9300 Annual Dahlia Root Sale Fri, May 2, 1-4pm Members only preview (good reason to join for only $5/yr); Sat, May 3, 8am3pm Open to the public; at Loose Park Garden Center, 52nd St and Wornall Rd, Kansas City, MO. The Greater Kansas City Dahlia Society will hold its annual root (tuber) sale. Overland Park Arboretum Plant Sale Open to the public Fri, May 2, and Sat, May 3, 9am-5pm, with a preview sale and reception for Friends of the Arboretum (FOTA) members on Thurs, May 1, 4-7pm. Sale features native plants, annuals, perennials, certified organic herbs and veggies, hanging baskets, planters and a huge selection of hostas. Join FOTA and receive members’ 10% discount. Johnson County Master Gardeners will be on hand to help shoppers. Sale Tents are located in the field off parking area. The Arboretum is located a about 1/2 mile west of Hwy 69 on 179th St. www. 19th Annual Spring Dig Plant Sale Thurs-Sat May 1-May 3; at 6837 Nieman, Shawnee, KS. Location is Shawnee Presbyterian Church. To benefit Cross-Lines Community Outreach, Inc. Sale will be held rain or shine. The sale is under a tent. There will be beautiful annuals, perennials, hostas, herbs, hanging baskets, patio planters, and tomatoes. Stop by and pick up a lovely plant for Mother’s Day. Hours Thurs and Fri 8am to 7pm and Sat 8am to 1pm. For further information 913-281-3388. Container Gardening Exhibit at Arboretum May 2-18 during OP Arboretum hours, 8 am to 7 pm. Imaginative containers designed and built by various garden organizations, as well as Arboretum volunteers and staff, and displayed throughout the Botanical Gardens. Guaranteed to expand your perception of what a container garden can be. Visitors may cast a ballot for their favorite container. The first two days of the exhibit coincide with the Plant Sale. The Arboretum is located about 1/2 mile west of Hwy 69 on 179th St. Visit FOTA website at Farmers Market & More Sat, May 3, 9am-2pm; at Rosehill Gardens, 311 East 135th St, Kansas City, MO 64145. Rosehill Gardens will be hosting a farmers market once a month. Come see what this new event will offer, like farm fresh eggs, art, food, and crafts. Plus there will be an on-site pet adoption hosted by Kansas City Pet Project. For more info, call 816-941-2332. Garden Irrigation Workshop Sat, May 3, 9:30am; at Gardner Community Garden, behind 555 W Main St, Gardner, KS. Topic: Garden irrigation and timely water-

ing. Open to the public. Free. Registration not required. Water-Wise Gardening Sat, May 3, 10am-noon, at Powell Gardens. Learn about drought tolerant plants and cultural strategies to minimize the watering needs of your landscape. Discover how to take advantage of natural microclimates and put the right plant in the right place. This class includes a lecture and tour to observe some of these plants and ideas in practice. Participants should wear walking shoes, sunglasses, and sun block. $19/person, $14/Members. Registration required by Apr 28. To register call Linda Burton at 816-697-2600 ext. 209. Or register online at Heartland Peony Society Tour Sat, May 3. Tree peonies should be at peak bloom when the Heartland Peony Society embarks on a tour of four member gardens. See what grows best in this area, and pick your favorites. A motorcoach will take us to each garden where society members will be on hand to answer your questions. Lunch will be provided by Hillsdale Bank BBQ at the last stop on our tour. Bring your cameras and questions, everything else will be on the bus. Cost $25. Reservations required. Contact Mike Moore 913-783-4554. Central Missouri Master Gardener Plant Sale Sat, May 3, 7am-12pm; Jaycee Fairgrounds Pavilion, 1445 Fairgrounds Rd, Jefferson City, MO. Huge plant sale featuring new introduction annuals, perennials, natives, hanging baskets, vegetables, herbs, tomatoes and tropicals all grown by the Master Gardeners. Free admission. Like us on facebook at facebook/central missouri master gardener plant sale or call 573-295-6263. Annual Citywide Plant, Seed, Bulb Exchange Sat, May 3, 9:30am-noon; at Anita B Gorman MO Dept Conservation Discovery Center, 4750 Troost, Kansas City, MO. Bring labeled, potted plants to trade with other gardeners. Bring 2 trays, take home 2 trays. You take home approximate amount to what you bring to the event. But even those who come with none will go home with a few. Please no GMO seedings, invasives, weedy types, or super common varieties (orange daylily, baby redbud, common violet, loosestrife, etc.) Bare root items will be restricted to bulbs, tubers, rhizomes, or peonies. Cuttings may be brought in that are rooted but need to have a container with water to keep them hydrated. If you have a folding table or a pop up shading gazebo it is advised to bring them since we don’t know how big the crowd will be this year. Bring your own trays or boxes to carry your plants around. Boxes are not provided. There will be heirloom veggies, herbs, berries, trees, natives, ground covers, annuals, perennials, and houseplants. Any questions to or 816-356-9892 Olathe Garden & Civic Club Plant Sale Wed, May 7, 8am; 18505 W 114th St, Olathe, KS. Sale begins at 8am and goes until everything is gone! Most plants come from member’s gardens and will include perennials, annuals, shade and sun plants..a great way to increase your gardens! Iris Show Sat, May 10, noon-4pm; at Jacob Loose Park Garden Center, Kansas City, MO. Sponsored by The Greater Kansas City Iris Society, an affiliate of the American Iris Society. Admission to AIS approved shows open to the public at no charge. For more information, please contact Debbie Hughes at Herb Gardener’s Plant Sale Sat, May 10, 9am-1pm; at Wyatt Park Christian Church, 27th and Mitchell, St Joseph, MO. Annual Herb Sale presented by Herb Gardener’s Club of St Joseph. Come early for best selection of herbs, perennials, plants of every kind. Master Gardeners of Greater Kansas City Annual Plant Sale Sat, May 10, 8am until sold out; at Bass Pro Shops, at the corner of MO 291 and I-70 in Independence, MO. Last year the sale closed by

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May 2014 / The Kansas City Gardener

To GROW A Better Garden, Shop With A STAR Ellen Barredo Bowood Farms Ted Bergman Willow Landscaping Sheri Bohrer Forrest Keeling Nursery Dave Brakhane Pleasantview Landscaping

Kristopher Fuller Full Features Nursery & Landscape Center Matt Hagemann Meyer Landscaping Staci Hentges Longfellow’s Garden Center

Kim Lovelace-Young Forrest Keeling Nursery Henry McCormick Carson’s Nursery Anne McKinstry McKinstry Plant Sales Rain Miljan Hillside Landscaping

Mark Brakhane Pleasantview Landscaping

Sandra Hillermann McDonald Hillermann Nursery & Florist

Bob Call Longfellow’s Garden Center

Aaron Jung Horticultural Impressions

James Prinster A. Waldbart & Sons Nursery

Jeff Coffey Jeff Coffey’s Landscaping

Glenn Kristek Wickman Garden Village

Cynthia Collins Hartke Nursery

Joe Krygiel Baxter Gardens West

Don Sherman Hillermann Nursery and Florist Inc

Mike Curran Summer Winds

Gregg Larsen Gregg Larsen Landscaping

Damon Doherty Hillside Landscaping

Roland Lenzenhuber Forest Lawn Nursery

Steve Dorrell Carson’s Nursery

John Logan Logan Landscape & Design

Janet Dueber Longfellow’s Garden Center

Alice Longfellow Longfellow’s Garden Center

Susan Ehlenbeck MO Dept. of Agriculture

Eric Lovelace Forrest Keeling Nursery

Doug English

Nikki Pettit Wickman Garden Village

Kevin Sir Bowood Farms Arlene Trombley Summer Winds Jim Van Valkenburg Sherwood’s Forest Donald Walls Hartke Nursery David Wehmeyer Hillermann Nursery & Florist Inc Lynn Young Baxter Gardens West

Missouri Certified Green Industry Stars is a Missouri State certification program designed to: • Raise the standards of the state’s Green Industry’s Professional Horticulturists • Assist the public in identifying Certified Green Industry Horticulture Professionals who have been tested on Basic Principles of Horticulture, Environmental Stewardship Ideals and Best Management Practices as they apply to the state of Missouri.

To locate and shop with a Missouri Certified Green Industry Star, consult the Membership Directory at: 39

Upcoming Garden Events places to go, things to do, people to see (continued from page 39) noon due to the huge demand for the reasonably priced, healthy plants. Hint: Come Early! The Master Gardeners will publish a plant list for the sale, view by going to the website at www.mggkc. org, or call 816-252-5051 with any questions. Annual Spring Hosta & Shade Plant Sale Sat, May 10, 9am-2:30pm, at Faith Lutheran Church, 4805 W 67th St, (67th & Roe) Prairie Village, KS. Presented by Heartland Hosta & Shade Plant Society, featuring a great collection of lovely new hostas and other shade perennials, including but not limited to, a nice selection of Heucheras, numerous Fern varieties, Brunnera, Berginia, mini hostas and heucheras, so great for Fairy Gardens! You will not want to miss this sale! There will be a free gift for children over age 4, who are accompanied by a parent or guardian. The Public is Welcome! Come and bring a friend. For info call – Gwen 816-228-9308, 816-213-0598.

19th Annual Union Hill Garden Tour Sunday, June 8 11am-4pm


esidents of the historic Union Hill neighborhood would like to invite you to attend their 19th Annual Garden Tour, Sunday, June 8 from 11 a.m. – 4 p.m. This lovely downtown oasis is tucked away between Crown Center and Hyde Park and filled with beautiful Victorian and turn of the century homes dating from the 1870’s. Neighbors take pride in creating and maintaining a variety of breathtaking landscapes throughout our neighborhood. Begin the tour at 31st & Grand Avenue. Spend the afternoon winding your way around historic Victorian homes, as well as brand new infill homes, which evoke the charm and ambiance of 19th century Kansas City. Gardeners and volunteers will be along the route to help navigate and answer questions. Save your ticket stub and stop by the new Barrel 31 Restaurant 40

& Bar in Martini Corner at 31st & Oak, at the end of the tour route. Enjoy a discounted Flower Power Brunch and Lunch with drink specials on their newly remodeled patio. Free parking is available in the KCPT lots at the corner of 31st Street and Grand Avenue. We will again offer raffle gifts from area businesses and garden centers. Garden related merchandise will also be offered for sale. Admission is $10 for adults and $8 for seniors over 60. Children under 12 are free. Half of this year’s proceeds will benefit the neighboring historic Union Cemetery, Kansas City’s oldest public cemetery. For more information on the Garden Tour, please visit us on Facebook at: or send us an email at We look forward to see you on the tour.

Macro Photography Sat, May 10, 9am-1pm; at Overland Park Arboretum & Botanical Gardens, 8909 W 179th St, Overland Park, KS. Enrollment limited to 10. Designed for those who want to get a better understanding and hands on instruction with close-up photography. Carol Fowler and Dave Shackelford, local photographers and members of the FOTA Photography Committee, will conduct the instruction outside so you can practice closeup photography of flowers in the Arboretum. Bring your tripods, macro lenses, extension tubes and any other macro equipment you have, as well as spare batteries. We will spend a couple of hours outside and reconvene inside to review your photos after a short lunch break (feel free to bring a sack lunch or purchase one at the Arboretum café). As a group, we will review photos. Make sure your camera batteries are fully charged and you have lots of space on your memory card. Please bring your card reader so your photos can be downloaded for viewing when we return to the classroom. $25 class fee, no refunds. Arboretum admission fees apply (FOTA members free). Enroll at Garden Pest Control Workshop Sat, May 17, 9:30am; at Gardner Community Garden, behind 555 W Main St, Gardner, KS. Topic: Garden irrigation and timely watering. Open to the public. Free. Registration is not required. It’s Raining Barrels! Sat, May 17, 10am–noon; at Powell Gardens. Learn why and how to use a rain barrel. Plus, you will get to make your own rain barrel to take home. Your rain barrel will be made with a 55-gallon barrel, so bring an appropriately sized vehicle to haul it home. $62/project, $54/ members. Registration required by May 13. To register call Linda Burton at 816-697-2600 ext. 209. Or register online at www.powellgardens. org/AdultClasses. Container Gardening for Beauty, Convenience Sat, May 17, 10am-1pm; at Hoot Owl Hill Gardens, 30750 Osawatomie Rd, Paola, KS. Master Gardener Lenora Larson will present Container Gardening for Beauty and Convenience. Do you covet those expensive nursery-made hanging baskets and pots? You can do it better! A container garden, whether in sun or shade, can provide easy care beauty from May to October if your container meets the plants’ needs. Learn how to design a lush container, using annual and perennial flowering plants and foliage. This presentation will review the basics of container gardening, then apply those principles in a handson demonstration. Enjoy this country setting which includes a gourmet lunch prepared from the garden’s bounty. Weather permitting, a tour of

the gardens will follow. Please call 913-271-7451 for reservations or sign up and pay for the class at Bird Walk - Learn, Listen & Identify the Birds Sat, May 17, 8am; at Overland Park Arboretum & Botanical Gardens, 8909 W 179th St, Overland Park, KS. Class is free but admission fee required to the Garden. Admission fee waived for FOTA members. Join Mike Stokes, a true nature enthusiast who began his birding career in his early twenties. He has been an active member of the Burroughs Audubon Society, Squaw Creek Leadership team and the Kansas Rare Birds Committee. He enjoys leading bird walks and sharing his love for the outdoors with people of all ages. Please dress appropriately (closed toe shoes and long pants are recommended). Bug repellent and binoculars are encouraged. The walk is limited to 25 adults so you must preregister. Register by going to Plant Share for area residents Fri, May 16, 8-10am; in Liberty, at Rotary Plaza, corner of Gallatin and Franklin Streets, 1 block west of the Liberty Square. The Liberty Town and Country Garden Club is sponsoring a Plant Share for area residents. Garden club members will share plants from their personal gardens with the community. Area gardeners are also encouraged to bring their own divided perennials, shrubs or annuals to share. No early birds please. The plant share is an annual community service provided by the Town and Country Garden Club which has been in existence in Liberty since 1947. Master Gardeners of Johnson County Missouri Spring Plant Sale Sat, May 17, 9am-3pm: On the grounds of the Johnson County Historical Court House Museum, in Warrensburg, Mo. The sale will be in the parking lot behind the museum located at the corner of Main and West Market Streets. The sale is on West Market Street. Many varieties of garden, vegetable, fruit and house plants will be available. For more information, call 660-429-2015. Explore the Arboretum’s ECO Systems Sat, May 17, 10-11:30am; at Overland Park Arboretum & Botanical Gardens, 8909 W 179th St, Overland Park, KS. What makes the Arboretum such a great natural area? With so many different species? Learn about some of the distinct natural areas found on the Arboretum property. You will smell and feel the temperature changes as you walk along the trails….starting with a short presentation inside and followed by a walk on the chipped trails. Join Lynda Ochs, a resident expert on the ECO systems and natural areas here at the Arboretum for this exciting topic. Please dress appropriately (closed toe shoes and long pants are recommended). Fee $5.00 per person, no refunds. Arboretum admission fees apply (FOTA members free). Enroll at Herb Garden Tower Sun, May 18, 2-4pm; at Powell Gardens. Build a vertical herb tower that’s perfect for small spaces. Plus, plants are more accessible and watering is easy. All materials including potting mix, power tools, herbs and step-by-step care instructions. Bring garden gloves. The finished planter will measure about three feet tall. $42/project, $37/ members. Registration required by May 13. To register call Linda Burton at 816-697-2600 ext. 209. Or register online at www.powellgardens. org/AdultClasses. Wine Tasting Wed, May 21, 6-8pm; at Overland Park Arboretum & Botanical Gardens, 8909 W 179th St, Overland Park, KS. This is the first of 4 scheduled wine tastings on the terrace of the Arboretum in 2014. Join us for good wine and appetizers on this the first wine tasting of the year. $25 per person, no

The Kansas City Gardener / May 2014

refunds. Arboretum admission fees apply (FOTA members free). Enroll at Loch Lloyd Garden Tour Thurs, May 22, 10am-noon, Luncheon at noon. Loch Lloyd Country Club. Come for a Scottish Holiday. Visit Six of our lovely gardens. Wander through an enchanted Fairy Garden. Visit our Tranquility Garden and Labyrinth. Enjoy some Scottish shortbread and tea while being charmed with a bagpipe serenade. Tickets for the tour: $12 at the registration desk. Lunch tickets $15. There will be raffle items, garden items, gifts and Scottish treasures at our market. Lunch will be served at the Clubhouse, lower level and patio. Reservations for lunch must be made by May 19. Call 816-322-1022. Contact Anne Watkins 816 322-1799 for further information. Artists Sketch-Crawl in the Arboretum Thurs, May 29, 9am-12:30pm; at Overland Park Arboretum & Botanical Gardens, 8909 W 179th St, Overland Park, KS. No charge to paint or draw, but admission fee required to the Gardens. Admission fee waived for FOTA members. Bring your own art supplies (pencils, pen, ink, markers, colored pencils, crayons, watercolor paints, and paper) and enjoy a morning creating art in the many lovely gardens at the Arboretum. We’ll meet in the Visitor’s Center at 9:00, create outside until 11:30, then gather again in the Visitor’s Center for lunch and an informal sharing of our morning’s efforts. Bring your own lunch or purchase a sandwich at the Garden Café. We will meet rain, working in the Visitor’s Center, or shine. Limited to 20 people. Register by going to and follow the prompts. For information only, please contact the volunteer coordinator at 913-685-3604. Hands on Flower Photography Sat, May 31, 9am-1pm; at Overland Park Arboretum & Botanical Gardens, 8909 W 179th St, Overland Park, KS. Enrollment limited to 10. Want to improve your camera skills shooting beautiful garden scenes as well as get to enjoy the beauty of the Arboretum? This class is focused on hands-on-photography instruction outside, with members of the Arboretum’s Photography Committee as the instructors. There will be plenty of chances to ask questions with both group and individual instruction. Bring your camera (film or digital and camera manual), lenses, tripod, memory cards, spare batteries and knee-pads (if desired). After a short lunch break (feel free to bring a sack lunch or purchase one at the Arboretum café) we will, as a group, review photos. Be sure to bring your card reader so the photos can be loaded onto a computer for review. $25 class fee, no refunds. Arboretum admission fees apply (FOTA members free). Enroll at www. When to Harvest Your Garden Workshop Sat, May 31, 9:30am; at Gardner Community Garden, behind 555 W Main St, Gardner, KS. Topic: Garden irrigation and timely watering. Open to the public. Free. Registration is not required. Kansas City Rose Society Rose Show Sat, May 31 and Sun, Jun 1; at Loose Park Garden Center, 51st and Wornall Rd, Kansas City, MO. “Everything is Coming Up Roses.” All rose growers are invited to bring roses to the show on Sat, May 31. You do not have to be a member of the KCRS to enter roses in the show. There is a Youth Class for exhibitors 17 years old and younger. No entry fee. Sat, May 31: 8:30am preparation area opens at Loose Park Garden Center; 9:30am-12:30pm Entries received; 12:45–4pm Judging; 4-5pm Show open to exhibitors and members of the Kansas City Rose Society. Sun, Jun 1 Rose Day 1-5pm Show open to the public. Rose Day activities will be held in the Laura Conyers Smith Municipal Rose Garden at 3pm. Go to www.kansascityrosesocity. org for more information.

June Insect Control, Organic & Otherwise Thurs, Jun 5, 11:30am-1pm (you’re welcome to bring your lunch); at Sunflower Meeting Room, Wyandotte County Extension Office, 1208 N

May 2014 / The Kansas City Gardener

79th St, Kansas City KS. Sponsored by the Wyandotte County Extension Master Gardeners. Presented by Bob Baurenfiend, Kansas State University Entomologist. Before you reach for a chemical spray to kill what’s bugging your garden, come find out the best ways to control those garden pests. $5.00 fee. Registration not required. 913-299-9300 Spice Up the Herb Garden Container Sat, Jun 7, 1-3pm; at Powell Gardens. Plant a zesty 18-inch herb container to “spice up” your patio garden with some Powell Gardens’ favorites. Plus, take a guided tour of the herb gardens in the Heartland Harvest Garden, and learn tips and tricks for growing herbs. Tastes and samples will be included. Bring gardening gloves and wear comfortable walking shoes. $39/person, $32/members. Registration required by Jun 2. To register call Linda Burton at 816-697-2600 ext 209. Or register online at www.powellgardens. org/AdultClasses. Wornall/Majors House Museums Garden Tour Sat, Jun 7, 9am-4pm. The Wornall/Majors House Museums, the nonprofit that oversees the historic John Wornall and Alexander Majors Houses, will open the garden gate to six of the most stunning and prestigious garden spaces in Kansas City. Garden Tour tickets are only $25 per person if purchased by Jun 1; tickets sold from Jun 2 through the day of the event are still a bargain at $30. And the fun starts a day early, on Fri, Jun 6, from 6:30 to 10pm, for Garden Tour patrons. Patron party tickets are only $100 ($80 for Museum members). Rain or shine, the Garden Tour takes place from 9am to 4pm on Sat, Jun 7. 20th Annual Hermann, MO Garden Tour and Plant Sale Jun 7-8, 9am-5pm; Hermann, MO. Two Tours in 2014: the popular Town Tour, a walking tour of gardens in downtown Hermann, and a Country Tour, a driving tour to country gardens. Each tour is $10; ticket price includes visits to at least four private gardens and the Garden Demonstration Area. Town & County Garden Tour Combo ticket for $15. Garden Tours may be spread over Saturday and Sunday and, except for groups of 10 or more, do not need to be reserved ahead of time. New garden-themed Flea Market at the Plant Sale. Special Ticket By-Reservation-Only Luncheon/Silent Auction on Jun 6 and European High Tea in a lavender garden on Jun 7. Visit the Hermann Garden Tours website at for up-to-date events, ticket prices, contact numbers and photographs. Visit the new FAQS page for answers to all your questions. Like us on Facebook at Hermann Garden Club Tours 2014. Call Hermann Welcome Center at (800) 932-8687 for questions about lodging/ restaurants or go to Union Hill Garden Tour Sun, Jun 8, 11am-4pm. The 19th Annual selfguided tour starts at 31st Street and Grand Avenue. Walk through over a dozen residential and community gardens. Free parking is available in the KCPT lots at 31st Street and Grand Avenue. Admission is $10.00 for adults and $8.00 for seniors (over age 60). Kids under 12 are free. Half of this year’s proceeds will benefit the neighboring historic Union Cemetery. Attendee may enjoy a discounted Flower Power Brunch & Lunch at the new Barrel 31 Restaurant & Bar at the end of the tour. This is one of Kansas City’s most unique garden tours in a historic Victorian neighborhood, just south of Crown Center. For more information, visit us on Facebook at: or email Evening Garden Tour Fri, Jun 13. Join us on the evening of the full moon for The Moonlight and Mint Juleps garden tour of Marla Galetti, hosted by the Northland Garden Club. Visitors will get an opportunity to tour the one acre garden which was professionally lighted by Natural Accents Outdoor Lights. Beginning at twilight, guests will be able to study the vast specimens of plants while enjoying a

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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 66° Avg high temp 75° Avg low temp 55° Highest recorded temp 102° Lowest recorded temp 26° Nbr of above 70° days 23

Clear or Cloudy Avg nbr of clear days 8 Avg nbr of cloudy days 14

Rain and Snow Avg snowfall 0” Avg rainfall 4.5” Avg nbr of rainy days 11 Source:

From the Almanac Moon Phases First Quarter: May 6

Plant Above Ground Crops: 4, 5, 11-14, 28, 31

Plant Root Crops: 14, 15, 18, 19

Full Moon: May 14 Last Quarter: May 21 New Moon: May 28 Source: Harris’ Farmer’s Almanac

Control Plant Pests: 21, 24, 25

Transplant: 4, 5, 13, 14

Plant Flowers: 4, 5, 28, 31


Master Gardeners of Greater Kansas City present Fifth Annual Plant Sale


he Master Gardeners of Greater KC are hosting their fifth annual plant sale on Saturday, May 10. This year’s event will be held at the Bass Pro Shop located at I-70 and MO 291 in Independence, Mo. The sale will begin at 8 a.m., rain or shine, until all plants are sold. Proceeds from the sale are used to support Master Gardener programming including the Gardener’s Gathering educational talks open to the public, the annual Spring Seminar, Speaker’s Bureau presentations and over 20 special projects and demonstration gardens. Thousands of plants including herbs, grasses, annuals, perennials and vegetables will be for sale. Many selected for heat and drought tolerance. Master Gardeners will be on hand to help with plant selection. Unique handmade garden art will be for sale. A small sample of some heat and drought-tolerant selections offered for sale: Herbs include creeping red thyme. This perennial makes a beautiful ground cover with deep lavender-red blooms. A stunning use of this herb is to plant it between stepping-stones in your garden. A nice variety of culinary herbs will be offered including globe basil, which grows quickly into a perfectly round shape that closely resembles boxwood. The marvelous broad leafed annual grass pennisetum Vertigo® grows 24-36” tall and can make quite an architectural statement in a border or as a specimen in a large urn. Other fun grasses are fiber optic grass, carex toffee twist and pennisetum ‘Fireworks’ a pink and white variegated grass that can reach 24x24” and works well in pots as a thriller. Trailing vinca Cora® Cascade™, a workhorse in the


summer garden, grows 6-8” high and can spread 32-36” wide. The ever popular Zahara zinnias really hold up to the summer sun and work well in front of the border or in containers. Ornamental pepper Basket of Fire features a heavy crop of 2-3” peppers that range in color from creamy white to red and branches 24x24” in containers. Hummingbirds and butterflies will be attracted to ‘Butterfly Red’ Penta. Try pairing penta with Cuphea Bat Face named for it’s resemblance to a bat: dark purple flower is the face and red lobes are the ears. Butterflies will appreciate our great selection of annual and perennial milkweed plants. Look for Monarch butterfly caterpillars in the late summer. A large selection of heirloom and hybrid tomatoes, sweet and hot peppers, unusual heirloom eggplants and other veggies will appeal to human tastes. Neat foliage plants include mahogany splendor hibiscus. Give this plant a lot of room to grow, it will easily reach 36” high and wide and is often mistaken for a Japanese maple. Combine annual grasses with the ornamental pepper purple splash for a hardy combo that will thrive through autumn. Include Persian shield, coleus wasabi, red head and honey crisp in your containers and experience stunning color without any flowers! Don’t pass up an opportunity to win one of the wonderful raffle items including a $1200 garden design by Christopher Dabner, the Greensman, one night stay at the Raphael, Silpada jewelry, 4 Royal’s tickets, Chief’s memorabilia and much more. Tickets will be available the day of the sale or from Master Gardeners. A complete list of plants and raffle items are posted on our website:

Upcoming Garden Events places to go, things to do, people to see (continued from page 41) non-alcoholic freshly made mint julep. Automatically timed lights will lead you through the garden once darkness has descended. Additional lighting has been added by Marla to make the garden a magical place for an evening stroll. Hours are 8-10pm. Reservations and tickets, $10 may be acquired by calling Dee West, Northland Garden Club President at 816-4554013. Check the website at for further information. Terrarium: Jungle in a Jar Sat, Jun 14, 10am-noon; at Powell Gardens. Design your own “adventure-scape” in a chic terrarium. Plant and learn to care for your own 12-inch tall tropical terrarium. Materials provided include potting media, jars, plants and some decorative elements. Bring your own bobbles and trinkets if desired. Gardening gloves are recommended. $47/person, $42/members. Registration required by Jun 9. To register call Linda Burton at 816-697-2600 ext 209. Or register online at www. Gardeners Gathering: What Your Backyard Tree Wants You to Know Thurs, Jun 19, 6:30pm; at Country Club Christian Church, 6101 Ward Parkway, Kansas City, MO. Gardeners Gathering presented by The Master Gardeners of Greater Kansas City. Featured speaker Chuck Conner, Missouri Department of Conservation Urban Forester. Many landscape trees in the Kansas city area are suffering from the effects of drought and the threat of exotic tree pests. Join MDC Urban Forester Chuck Conner as he discusses ways to properly care for new and mature trees in Kansas City area landscapes. Free and open to the public. No registration required. Door Prizes. For information call 816-665-4456. Weston, MO Garden Tour Jun 20-21, Fri-Sat, 9am-4pm. Enjoy the gardens of Weston at the Cottage Gardeners of Weston Garden Tour. You’ll see small space, grand and walk-by gardens as you stroll around the historic district. Tickets in advance, $10. Information at or send name, address, phone e-mail, and check to Cottage Gardeners, PO Box 102, Weston, MO 640980102. Days of the tour, $12 at Renditions, 522 Main Street, Weston, MO 64098 Phone 816640-2300

Building Hypertufa Garden Art Sat, Jun 21, 9am-1pm; at Hoot Owl Hill Gardens, 30750 Osawatomie Rd, Paola, KS. Come prepared to get your hands dirty as we discover the joys of sculpting with hypertufa, a mixture of Portland cement, coir and vermiculite. In this 4-hour workshop each person will create an embellished garden planter or sculpture to take home (or pick up the following day). Several recipes for the medium will be discussed and written instructions provided for your further explorations. Wear your grubbiest work-clothes and prepare to have fun! A gourmet box lunch will be provided. Please call 913-271-7451 for reservations or sign up and pay for the class at Blue Springs Historical Society Garden Tour Sat, Jun 21, 9:30am-3pm. Six gardens with special events at each site. If you are interested in sponsoring an ad or attending this great event, please contact Bebe or Debbie at 816-224-8979.

July Moonlight and Mint Juleps Tour Jul 11. The second night garden tour of the summer sponsored by the Northland Garden Club is at the Liberty home of David and Sharon Cleveland. Tour begins at 8pm and ends at 10. 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 web site at for further information. 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 NABA-certified Butterfly Garden. Class led by Brenda Wrischnik, 30 years experience as a certified instructor. 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 flowBeginners welcome! 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

Promote your gardening events, workshops and classes! Send details to: The Kansas City Gardener P.O. Box 8725, Prairie Village, KS 66208 E-Mail: Deadline for June issue is May 5.

The Kansas City Gardener / May 2014

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May 2014 / The Kansas City Gardener

Meet Sherry Himes of Green Streets Market. Company: Green Streets Market Owners: Danny and Sherry Himes, with our sons Dustin, Nathan and Bryan Himes Established: July 2010 How it all began: We purchased an existing garden center that was getting ready to close. I was able to follow my love of gardening and also keep alive a small business that had been in operation for over 45 years. And having childhood memories of my mother bringing me here, made this endeavor that much sweeter. That nostalgia continues today with a seed counter from the early 1900’s and old crocks for our bulk seeds. Many of our customers remember buying seed with their parents when they could not see over the counter and now their children enjoy looking at all the seed. We have almost 250 varieties in crocks. Operation: Open year round, Green Streets Market is a retail garden center. More importantly, we are a small family business with a passion for gardening. We want our customers to have a shopping experience not just a quick purchase. We emphasize personal service and quality products. Getting to know our customers is important and many quickly become friends. Products offered: Much of our space is devoted to a large variety of perennials and hardy unique shrubs. Many old favorites such as peonies, iris, clematis, garden phlox, bleeding hearts, hosta, foxgloves, roses of all kinds. We have quality grown bedding plants including many heirloom tomatoes, Proven Winners annuals and specialize in making custom baskets and planters. Garden seed in both the bulk and packaged along with organic seed and fertilizers. Fruit trees and shrubs, both shade and ornamental trees and many landscaping standards like boxwoods, evergreens and other must have shrubs like caryopteris, crepe myrtles and oakleaf and panicle hydrangeas. In the fall we carry mums, pansies, and fall vegetable plants along with locally grown pumpkins and gourds. In winter you’ll find fresh wreathes, Christmas trees and fresh cut greens. My favorite garden: While I’ve never met a garden I didn’t like, I love mine the most. Containing gifts from family and friends, as well as souvenirs from garden adventures, I have the opportunity to revisit these encounters. It’s like visiting old friends. It’s my sanctuary. What every gardener should know: Don’t worry about following color fads. Go with what you love. Your garden should reflect what you love and the style of your home. Also, be patient. The satisfaction and beauty of a garden is watching it grow. Contact information: 112 E. Green Street, Clinton, MO 64735; 660-885-3441;; search for ‘Green Streets Market’ on Facebook. 43


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The Kansas City Gardener / May 2014

Profile for The Kansas City Gardener

KCG 05May14  

herbs, garden tours, irrigation, roses, water lilies, birds, native groundcovers

KCG 05May14  

herbs, garden tours, irrigation, roses, water lilies, birds, native groundcovers