Enchanted Spring, Fairies, Cicely Mary Barker & The Matthei Conservatory!

May FairyMay Fairy

We're all ready to get outside, but it's still a little too cold - so take your coat off and visit the Matthei Conservatory for the lovely, fun and springy Enchanted Spring Display celebrating Cicely Mary Barker's Flower Fairies. Find fairies hidden in the conservatory, smell the hyacinth, dapple amongst the daffodils and other gorgeous spring bulbs all over the conservatory, and make a fairy sachet! Or make your own fairy container garden, and start some seeds for your own garden. This special display runs through March 31, for complete information on the display click here. And for complete details about the Matthei Conservatory including hours/location click here. On Wednesdays the Conservatory is open until 8:00 PM and admission is FREE! And don't forget that AADL has many of Cicely Mary Barker's Books Finally, make sure you visit the downtown library fairy door too!

Think local food

Interested in learning about local food and gardening resources or becoming more self-sufficient in your own food production and consumption? Then check out the new website of the Local Food Summit. The site features a calendar of gardening and food related events sponsored by such local organizations like Growing Hope, Leslie Science Center and Project Grow. The site also provides discussion forums on everything from books on farming, food issues, "edible" schoolyards and a local foods exploration group. As the weather, hard to believe, gets warmer, check out our great collection of gardening books including some on local food issues.


Pulp Tree

Project Budburst: Tracking Climate Change In The Garden
Organic Gardening Magazine February/March 2009 Page 47
In the Ann Arbor Ypsilanti Reads book "Seeing in the Dark: How Amateur Astronomers are Discovering the Wonders of the Universe" we learned about how amateur astronomers help professional astronomers. Similarly, gardeners can help scientists track climate change. Project Budburst is "a citizen's research program developed to monitor the ways in which climate change is impacting the leafing and flowering of hundres of plant species nation-wide."
Climate change : what it means for us, our children, and our grandchildren
Cool it : the skeptical environmentalist's guide to global warming
The Michigan gardener's companion : an insider's guide to gardening in the Great Lakes State

Gardening anyone?

It's 7 degrees out but it's never too early to start planning your next garden. And if you don't have space or it's too shady in your backyard, check out Project Grow, a group that provides area residents organic gardening space. People need to register for a plot. These sites, usually composed of 10-15 plots each, are very popular, bringing people together who may not otherwise know each other even though they live in the same neighborhood. So read the website or pick up a newsletter which contains an application at the Library and other spots around town starting in February. To read up on other community garden projects, check out the Library's books on the subject.

Panelists to Discuss Community Agriculture

corn on the cobcorn on the cob

A panel discussion is coming up 6-7 p.m. Monday, Nov. 17, on “Community Agriculture, Community Health: Connecting Healthy Eating, Community Gardens, and Access to Lower Cost Produce," presented by Project Healthy Schools. Panelists will be Sharon Sheldon, of the Washtenaw County Public Health Department, who works with the community advisory board of the Downtown Ypsilanti Farmers Market; Amanda Edmonds, founder of Growing Hope; and Deb Lentz and Richard Andres, coordinators of the Community Supported Agriculture program at Tantre Farm near Chelsea. The panel discussion will be in Danto Auditorium in the U-M Health System’s Cardiovascular Center, 1500 E. Medical Center Drive. If you’d like to go, contact Jessica Moorman, tessimo@med.umich.edu, 975-3063.

Bringing the Green Indoors

Winter is quickly approaching, and the trees and plants outside are gradually losing their green. This year, instead of simply sinking into a five month depression, I've decided to bring the green indoors by growing some nice houseplants. But what houseplants should I get? They must be easy to take care of, attractive, and above all, resistant to my Black Thumb of Death. Fortunately the library has a whole section dedicated to the fine art of Houseplantery. Here's what I'm reading.

Houseplants: The Green Thumb Guide to Easy Indoor Gardening
This book has it all. Beautiful color photographs of all the plant types, general care tips, and suggestions as to which plant will thrive in which environment.

Houseplants by DK Garden Guides
A cool little book that focuses on pictures of the plants. Great for finding the plant that looks best to you.

What Houseplant Where
This book has lots of information on what plants to get if you have a particular spot in your home in mind.

Happy horticulturing!

Experience Fall Colors without Driving to the UP

Nichols ArboretumNichols Arboretum

Want to experience the changing of colors in the trees without travelling to northern Michigan? The University of Michigan’s Nichols Arboretum is right here in Ann Arbor and features the annual transformation among its array of foliage. Even if you have visited “The Arb” before, it can become an entirely new landscape in the autumn season. They suggest visiting during the early morning or late afternoon to take a stroll through this parkland that has been around since 1907. Of the three entries into the Arboretum, the Geddes Avenue entrance incorporates the highest elevation in the area with the park’s “ceremonial gates” to provide a breathtaking panoramic view.
To learn more about autumn’s annual transformation, check out Autumn leaves: a guide to the fall colors of the northwoods. For the Arboretum’s hours of operation, take a look their website or call (734) 647-7600. Nichols Arboretum, 1600 Washington Heights, Ann Arbor, MI 48104

Bonsai Auction - Wednesday, Sept 24 - 7:00 PM

The Ann Arbor Bonsai Society will be holding a auction at the U-M Matthaei Botanical Gardens, 1800 N. Dixboro Rd. Items featured will include bonsai equipment, trees, and pots provided by club members. Once you have your bonsai, be sure to check-out the wide selection of books on growing bonsai here at the library.

Fall is in the Air

Just because fall is sneaking up on us doesn't mean we need to quit gardening!

Have you asked yourself these questions recently?

1. Do I prune my shrubs in the fall or do I wait until spring?
2. When is it safe to pull out my annuals?
3. Can I divide my perennials now?
4. Do I fertilize my plants for the upcoming winter?
5. Do I cover any plants in my garden before winter comes?

In his book Month-by-month Gardening in Michigan, author James A. Fizzell discusses the most effective planting techniques like how and when to prune, and gives us information on the best season for fertilizing. He leaves no branch unturned as he covers annuals, bulbs, herbs, vegetables, houseplants, lawns, perennials, roses, shrubs, and trees!

So, take the guesswork out of gardening, get your hands on a copy of this fabulous book, and make nice with your garden all year round!!

You've Never Seen Prices Like These!


That's right, folks, the City is lowering the prices on Compost. They're overstocked and ready to deal. Prices are discounted 12-20% on cured compost while supplies last. Pick up your compost at the Drop-Off Station or W. R. Wheeler Service Center and help your garden grow. Let the composting begin.

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