“I am blessed to have everything I need, so supporting the society is my way of passing on my good fortune,” says Susan Peterson, MSHS member. Susan understands communities in need. After retiring from teaching for 42 years in 2011, she returned as a substitute teacher for the Anoka-Hennepin School System, the state’s largest. “I…

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For height, drama and a tropical look in northern gardens, nothing beats canna lilies. Native to tropical and semi-tropical areas of North and South America, canna lilies evolved along damp, semi-shady riverbanks. They are perennials in parts of the southern United States, but in northern climates they are annual plants for the back of a…

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There’s a comprehensive list of garden chores for April that MSHS published a year ago, recommending things like: starting seeds indoors applying pre-emergent herbicide to the lawn, if desired dividing perennials and putting out a pansy bowl for front-yard color. In this post, I want to focus on three garden chores for April to pay…

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Wondering what to grow in your cutting garden? Check out this list of best plants for a cut flower garden from author Susy Morris. For tips on growing cut flowers, check out this post. Annuals — These will bloom all season long and are the backbone of your cutting garden! Sweet peas have a wonderful…

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This article by Susy Morris originally appeared in the March/April 2019 issue of Northern Gardener. With farmers’ markets overflowing with beautiful bouquets of local flowers, it seems everyone is thinking about adding a cutting garden. Even a small 4-by-4 foot bed (see drawing below) can yield more than enough blooms, especially if you choose varieties…

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Many gardeners are adding perennials, shrubs and trees that support pollinators to their landscapes. But, how about your lawn? We’re seeing more interest in “bee lawns,” including support from the state of Minnesota  to encourage lawns that are good for pollinators and the planet. What is a Bee Lawn? Most lawns in our climate consist…

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Compost is one of those topics that makes a lot of sense once you’ve been gardening awhile, but can be confusing to new gardeners. So, here is all the information needed about compost for beginners. Check the end for links to even more information. What is Compost and Why Do Gardeners Use It? Compost is…

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One of the most important things cold-climate gardeners need to know is their plant hardiness zone. Cold hardiness zones are established by the U.S. Department of Agriculture every 20 years or so. The lower your zone number, the colder it is. The most recent cold hardiness zone map was released in 2012 and most of…

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The previous post discussed a couple of ways to build a basic raised bed garden, either for on your deck or in the ground. In this post, we’ll talk about how to build a raised bed with legs. If you are considering building a standing raised bed, stay on until the end of the post…

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Raised bed gardening is a great way to grow food or flowers, whether you live on a large lot or have only a balcony or deck for gardening. We’ve gotten many questions about how to build raised bed gardens. The good news is, it’s really easy (trust me, I’m not mechanical and I’ve built a…

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