Published Dec. 8, 2019, in the Wyoming Tribune Eagle, “Gift and New Year’s resolution ideas for Cheyenne gardeners.”
By Barb Gorges
Here at the end of the year you may be looking for gardening gift ideas for you or someone else. And are you preparing to make New Year’s resolutions to learn more about gardening? Here are some ideas.
From Garden Design magazine:
How about terrariums? You can make them out of large glass jars or fill antique-looking leaded pane structures with small tropical houseplants. Read up on them at https://www.wikihow.com/Make-a-Terrarium.
Who knew Crocs come in many rubber-boot styles? But we shouldn’t be out digging in our gardens in the mud because it promotes soil compaction.
Plans for the famous Wave Hill garden chairs are available from http://www.danbenarcik.com/ for $25-$35. Even I could build one, just straight cuts and screws.
Bib-style garden aprons exist, made of canvas and with bigger pockets than kitchen aprons. Keep tools handy and shirt fronts clean!
Insect house, beehive house, insect hotel, insect habitat—these are all names for assemblages of hollow sticks you can buy. Insects beneficial to your garden can hide their eggs in them.
Anything with flowers on it will probably appeal to the gardener on your gift list—especially a plant.
There is a cornucopia of beautiful garden books. If you buy a how-to book for you or someone here, just remember to ignore advice to add lime to soil since Cheyenne, unlike many parts of the country, already has alkaline soils. Check out the Timber Press imprint at https://www.workman.com/.
Nature into Art: The Gardens at Wave Hill by Thomas Christopher, Timber Press
The 6th annual Cheyenne Habitat Hero Workshop is all day Feb. 29 at Laramie County Community College. Denver Botanic Gardens’ international plant explorer Panayoti Kelaidis’s topic is “Rethinking Wyoming Landscaping: Learning from the Natives.” His talk is followed by “Native Plant Gardening 101” taught by the Cheyenne Habitat Hero Committee members. Registration is $25 (including lunch) at https://www.brownpapertickets.com/.
Register for Master Gardener training taught by Laramie County Extension horticulturist Catherine Wissner. It begins Jan. 6 for 10 weeks, two evenings a week. See https://lccc.coursestorm.com/ (search “Master Gardener”). It’s held at Laramie County Community College. You’ll also find two one-session LCCC non-credit gardening classes taught by Catherine listed at that same website.
The Seed Library will have several events at Laramie County Library. Check details at https://lclsonline.org/events:
–Jan. 25, 2-3:30 p.m., “Pumpkin Growing 101” featuring Andy Corbin, Wyoming’s most recent giant pumpkin growing champ.
–Feb. 27, evening, “Winter Sowing Workshop” and “Give-Take Seed Swap.”
If you are a green industry professional, employed in landscaping, lawn or tree care, attend the free Cheyenne Green Industry Workshop Jan. 24. Register through the City of Cheyenne’s Urban Forestry Division: http://www.cheyennetrees.com/events.
Several organizations schedule lecture series or occasional talks in the spring. Check for updates:
—Cheyenne Botanic Gardens, https://www.botanic.org.
—Laramie County Master Gardeners, http://www.lcmg.org/.
—Laramie County Conservation District, https://www.lccdnet.org/.
—Prairie Garden Club, https://www.prairiegardenclub.com/.
Last year I went on Road Scholar’s “Victoria and Vancouver: Glorious West Coast Gardens” (#2679) tour (I’ll be giving a public talk about it at Laramie County Master Gardeners’ meeting Jan. 16, 409 Pathfinder Bldg., LCCC, 7 p.m.). It runs several times every summer.
Another is “Topiaries, Pleasure Gardens and Botanical Gems in Philadelphia and Beyond” (#21967) which runs several times in spring and fall. You can look up the details at https://www.roadscholar.org/. Pop the course number in the search box.
You can also devise your own tour. Did you know that if you are a Cheyenne Botanic Gardens member, they have agreements with more than 300 U.S. gardens through the American Horticultural Society’s reciprocal admissions program, even though they don’t charge admission themselves?
That means CBG members visit free instead of paying $11 at the Gardens on Spring Creek in Ft. Collins which has recently added five acres of new gardens and a butterfly pavilion, or $12.50 at the Denver Botanic Gardens. I spend my savings at the gift shops!
Master Gardener wish list
“What’s on your wish list?” I asked several Master Gardeners recently:
“Narrow spade,” said Kathryn Lex. It would be handy for inserting new plants in her established garden. She can read up on spades at https://www.gardentoolcompany.com/pages/garden-spades-choosing-the-right-one.
“More seeds,” said Michelle Bohanan. She’s on the Seed Library committee.
“No frost after Mother’s Day,” said John Heller. I think he needs a greenhouse.
“Tomatoes ripe by July 4th,” said Catherine Wissner. Wait, she has a high tunnel already. Maybe she wants a traditional glass greenhouse.
“No hail,” they all said. Make that a glass greenhouse with chicken wire over it for protection.