Usually by this time of year, I've already placed on-line orders with Klehm's Song Sparrow and Plant Delights nurseries. This year I've decided to hold off buying anything to see what the garden is like after last year's drought and this winter's storm damage.
Instead I've decided to put my garden money into me. My plan is to attempt to become a better gardener by taking a couple of classes at Olbrich Botanical Gardens. Though I always check out their listings it's been a while since I've actually signed up for anything.
Maybe it's age or maybe the result of the brutal 2012 garden season, but it seems like it's time to update my skills. When I mentioned I was considering these two classes, a gardener with more experience than me said she's signing up for them also. I guess I'm not alone in thinking it's time for a little garden refresher course and that Olbrich is the place to get it. Here's what I'm taking:
"SPRING INTO GARDENING: GET READY FOR THE SEASON": Thursday, April 4 , 5:30-7 pm
This is a late afternoon/early evening walk through the outdoor gardens with one of the Olbrich horticulturists, Samantha Peckham. She'll tell us some of the best ways to get our gardens ready for the season. What I am particularly interested in hearing will be her time-saving tips since I feel I often do things the slowest way possible. And she'll share sustainable techniques — another area where I am weak.
"GARDENING BESIDE THE EXPERTS HANDS-ON WORKSHOP": Friday, April 12, 9 am-12:30 pm
This class is literally a chance to work side-by-side with Olbrich's horticulturists. Nothing beats seeing how the pros work up-close and personal like this. Again, this is all about learning the techniques and tricks they use to make Olbrich's' gardens beautiful as well as sustainable. This class offers enough time to give participants a chance to rotate throughout Olbrich's numerous specialty gardens. We'll learn basic skills like how to divide perennials and prune trees and shrubs. Dress to be outdoors and to get a little dirty during this hands-on workshop. This class takes place rain or shine, so I am hoping for good weather but will dress for the worst in full gardening gear.
These two programs probably will be a bit similar but I like the idea of a garden walk-through, after which I can walk through my garden and make connections with what I've just learned. And then I can find out how to do these tips and tricks hands-on. Space is limited for both of these classes, so register early. I've already got my confirmation notice so I am much more able to cope with our wintry weather knowing I have something to look forward to in April!
Find a list of all Olbrich's class offerings here.
Note: If I was doing my usual on-line shopping, the tree above would be at the top of my Klehm's wish list. You can find lots of posts on Klehm's Song Sparrow via my categories list. Find info on Plant Delights by typing their name into the search box.