In every walk with nature, one receives far more than he seeks.

Hello, again!

As we get towards the end of the school year and close to Memorial Day weekend, the talk of vacations tends to be common. It’s always good to get away and experience new places, different cultures, regional foods, languages - and plants!

When we visit other regions with different plant hardiness zones it’s interesting to see not only what plant material is used in landscaping, but the native plants as well. We visit Colorado to not only enjoy the mountains of the Rockies, but the forests also. The desert of New Mexico is a favorite destination for Angie and me with the drought-loving and heat-tolerant plants that flourish in the dry heat there.

I recall riding my bike in northern New Mexico a few years back. Being the plant person I am, the flora is always on my mind. Catching a glimpse of a mutated conifer in the corner of my eye, I stopped to get the exact location to check it out later. Again, it’s the different plants that add to the experience.

Jeremy reminds us often of their first trip to Disney years ago. They enjoyed all of the characters, the rides and all that the theme park had to offer. But what really stuck out to him was the plants - horticulture! Sure, he’d grown up around plants, but it was evident that attention to detail and abundance of plants was a focus of Disney’s park model. While subtle to most, it was evident that plants are what set the park apart from just a parking lot with amusement park rides. I have no idea what the line item on Disney’s financial statement is for landscaping, but I’m sure it’s substantial.

Because tropicals love warm climates, they make great plants in our region as options for summer foliage and color. With sources in Florida, Jeremy works with the nurseries to supply our stores with plants for not only containers, but our landscape beds as well. While not winter hardy, they perform well all summer and fall long. Stop by the stores to find multiple varieties of Boston ferns, upright palms, several options of tropical hibiscus from bush to tree form, and many other beautiful tropicals.

ferti-lome Garden Cote is my favorite fertilizer for containers. It’s a polymer coated, time-release fertilizer. Lightly mix it into soil, water in, and it'll feed your plants for up to 6 months! We even like to mix it into houseplant soil when re-potting. Garden Cote is activated by moisture and soil temperature. Balanced NPK and micros encourage longer lasting and greener flowering plants with more blooms. Use Garden Cote on annuals, perennials, garden vegetables, trees, shrubs, bulbs, citrus, and berries.

We’re offering a new option in organic gardening, a line of products from Down to Earth. They have a complete line of natural and organic fertilizers, soil amendments, composts and potting media that work with the microorganisms, fungi and organic matter in the soil to feed plants and stimulate growth. Their natural fertilizers are carefully blended from the best sources of organic nutrients in ideal proportions without the use of synthetics, growth stimulants or low-quality fillers like poultry waste.

Down To Earth’s Vegan Mix 3-2-2 contains essential nutrients derived from plant materials and natural minerals, with no animal products or by-products. Designed to continually nourish your vegetables, herbs and flowers throughout the growing season, add Vegan Mix in combination with high-quality compost to build soil tilth and improve plant growth, quality and yields.

We hope you’ll stop by to see us soon. Spring is an exciting time to be at the garden center!

Your friend in the garden,

Marty Johnson
Owner - Johnson's Garden Centers