FARGO -- People who enjoy tending their yard or garden have much in common.
I’ll bet I’m not the only one whose garden hose never kinks within easy reach, but instead knots itself way back by the spigot. We’ve all discovered that rabbits prefer ruining the plants most dear to us, and leave untouched those we value less. We treasure the first ripe tomato of the season as though we hit the jackpot.
And everyone’s yard and garden tasks are ruled by the cyclical seasons of nature. We know apple trees are best pruned during a certain month. We start our tomato plants indoors from seed on the appropriate date. We know when to seed zinnias indoors and start cucumber plants in peat pots for earlier fruiting. Grass is best seeded during a specific time slot each year. Even rhubarb has certain preferred dates for care.
The when-tos of gardening are as important as the how-tos. Even the best gardening methods often fail, if the time’s not right. The nicest tomato plants are of little use if they languish from being seeded way too early indoors.
Remembering all gardening’s preferred dates is a big job, but I’ve been working on a solution to help our memories. One day while gardening, an idea popped into my head: Wouldn’t it be great to have a gardening calendar hanging on the wall reminding us of the when-tos of lawn and gardening clearly marked on each month’s dates? If such a calendar hung on the wall and as I turned each new month, I would see that it was time to start tomato seeds indoors, prune apple trees, fertilize the lawn, mulch tomato plants or divide rhubarb.
Well, we’ve now invented that calendar, and Forum Communications’ 2019 Growing Together Gardening Calendar is rolling off the presses. I’ve been so excited, I could barely keep from spilling the beans as I’ve worked on this for the past two years.
How does one go about composing a gardening calendar? Well, I racked my brain to remember all the date-sensitive tasks from 50-plus years of garden enjoyment. Then, I scoured information from North Dakota State University and the University of Minnesota to be sure all the information meshed.
The beautiful 12-month wall calendar is graced with local gardening photos by Forum Communications photographers. It’s filled with nearly every "when-to" needed by gardeners, and the dates are tailored specifically for our Upper Midwest gardening region of North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota, Wisconsin and Montana.
A big "thank you" to Baker Garden and Gift, Fargo, and Gate City Bank for sponsoring the production of the calendar.
Besides enjoying the calendar ourselves, they’ll make inspirational and useful gifts for gardeners on our Christmas list. Order calendars online at https://www.inforum.com/2019gardencalendar. Calendars may also be purchased at The Forum building, 101 Fifth St. N., Fargo.
Don Kinzler, a lifelong gardener, worked as an NDSU Extension horticulturist and owned Kinzler’s Greenhouse in Fargo. Readers can reach him at email@example.com.