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Ken’s Library

Ken's library

Ken’s Library

Ken’s library is a small book collection at our Ronks location. Our library is available to you while you are here! Feel free to sit at our table and browse through the pages or roam the store to look for new plants. Please, return all books and magazines before checking out. Thank you!

 


This post features one of our favorite books written by Kerry Ann Mendez.

 

Back Cover Excerpt

“..provides proven strategies for growing gorgeous, low-maintenance perennial gardens in shade. It is written from a do-it-yourself, roll-up-your-sleeves and tell it straight, gardener’s point of view.”

Review

Working at Ken’s Gardens I often see confused looks on a customer’s face. It’s no secret. No matter how hard you try, gardeners often look lost and helpless while browsing for shade perennials. Shade spots are tricky and this book will help!

There are 52 lists for every gardener with even the smallest ounce of shade. Big or small, your approach to shade gardening will be confident and well informed. Your Way Out of the Dark is must have for ALL home gardeners living in Lancaster County and the surrounding areas. The book covers climate zones 3 – zone 7. (Click here to find out if this book is for your growing location.)

Each list has 10 plant suggestions. This book has suggestions for all seasons; spring, summer, fall, and winter. It even has a list for “challenging sites” like dry shade or moist shade.

Most of this book contains lists of plants, detailed descriptions, and multiple variety suggestions. There are parts where Kerry Ann Mendez breaks down tough shade lingo. All suggestions come from experience with Kerry’s own shade garden and she explains how to take care for them too. Beyond this, she writes her answers in a straightforward way that anyone can find humor in. This makes the book not only informational, but a joy to read.

Remember to check out this book in the Ken’s library!


More on the Author:

  • Sign up for Kerry’s free newsletter by going to her home page. You will find a ‘SUBSCRIBE TO NEWSLETTER’ link under ‘PRODUCTS AND SERVICES’.
  • Kerry Ann Mendez will be hosting a webinar titled ‘Radical Perennials: Non-Stop Color! No-Fuss! Environmentally Responsible!’. It will be October 27, 2017. Gardeners who are unable to see the live session are still able to sign up for the webinar at $7. Price includes downloadable documents.  Perennials featured will have hardiness Zones ranging from 3 – 8 or 9.  There will also be a form on the webinar that Master Gardeners and Landscape Architects can print to submit for continuing education credit hour consideration. Details and registration can be found here.
  • Kerry is also scheduled to speak at The 13th annual Great Gardens and Landscaping Symposium on April 22, 2017.  This event is popular for all gardeners in the Northeast. In previous years, this event has sold out so early registration is recommended. Special group and Master Gardeners rates are available. Find more information about the Symposium by clicking on the link above.

Easter Resurrection Garden Tutorial

Hi there! Easter Sunday is coming up, and we have made some Easter Resurrection Gardens to honor the holiday.

An Easter resurrection garden is a symbol of Jesus rising from his tomb. They portray the scene that Mary Magdalene saw, a tomb with a stone to be rolled away on Easter Sunday.

Resurrection gardens are typically made with rye grass, or can be made more decorative with preserved moss and violas. Here we will be showing you how we make both types resurrection gardens.

Start with your container, I love how terra cotta bowls and saucers look for these. A deeper bowl is great for a viola type garden, while a saucer works well for the grass type gardens. You can always combine grass and violas with moss, but go with the deeper dish.

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Materials:

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  • florist wire or jute twine (to create the crosses)
  • small terra cotta pot
  • large river rock
  • pebbles
  • the ground cover and plants of your choice

 

 

 

If your container has a drainage hole at the bottom, you will want to cover it up so that no dirt or water leaks through. Newspaper, cardboard, and duct tape all work well to prevent anything from falling out.

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(Optional: lay an inch of gravel at the bottom to help with drainage before adding soil.)

 

Next, fill your container with soil nearly to the top. Set the terra cotta pot into the soil on an angle to have it look like a tomb like so:

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Add some more soil to cover the end of the small terra cotta pot.

Next add your moss or seed. If you are adding seed, rye grass takes 7 days to grow (the fastest out of the grasses). You will want to mist the soil with water before adding seed to help the seeds stick. Sprinkle the seed to cover, but not completely so that there is no soil visible. Mist again once you’ve finished adding seed.

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Create a well for the violas in the soil. Squeeze the bottom of the viola pack to pop them out, and massage the roots before placing the flowers into the well. Add or move soil to finish adding the violas. Preserved moss can just be laid on top of the soil, gently spread out the moss to get a more spread and even coverage.

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The crosses are next, tie the twigs together with ample twine or wire and cut any excess. Purple string is also a great optional touch. Add the crosses to the garden, some small pebbles surrounding the base of the crosses aides to stabilize the crosses. Spread pebbles in front of the tomb as well, enough to cover the soil.

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For the finishing touch, add your large river rock in front of the terra cotta “tomb”. You can write any Easter sayings that you wish, bible verses or a simple “he arose” with a permanent marker.  Roll the river rock from the tomb on Easter Sunday to symbolize that Christ has risen.

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Ken’s Gardens joins you in gratitude for Christ’s sacrifice and the joyful renewal it brings God’s children this Easter!