Author Archives: Carol Becker

Get the Kids into the Garden

Planting a vegetable garden or a row of summer flowers gives kids even as young as 4 or 5 the chance to dig in the dirt, learn where food comes from and feel comfortable outdoors. To help our kids avoid having Nature Deficit Disorder, a documented problem these days, it’s best to start early!

Are You Planting Milkweed?

From New Terrain, a newsletter of Ball Publishing: As many as 1.8 billion additional stems of milkweed plants in North America may return imperiled Monarch butterflies to a sustainable population size, according to a recently published U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) study. Habitat plants in the Monarch’s Midwestern flyway are most important. “Milkweeds in corn and […]

Rain, rain, rain

We’ve had a lot of rain this spring, and this past weekend added another 3 to 5 inches in our area. While we wait for drier conditions, sunnier skies and warmer temperatures that are inevitable sometime this month, remember not to work the garden when it is very wet, and especially, do not walk on […]

Spring ephemerals! Spring what?

This term refers to spring wildflowers that appear quickly in early spring when sunlight, moisture and soil nutrients are just right. Ephemerals  bloom, fruit, die back, and then disappear completely from the garden before the spring season has even completed its run. Novice gardeners may think the plants have died, but they have not! Spring […]

Why Sustainability Matters

Sustainability will help us educate our children (and ourselves) about the needs of our land for the future, primarily these days by getting involved in programs to help the bees and butterflies survive. In so doing, we also protect our own survival as a species. This may seem surprising, but its true. Entomologist Doug Tallamy […]

It takes a village to help the Monarchs

Sage Advice pleased to be able to offer help to an energetic committee in Park Ridge Illinois that is working to increase awareness of sustainability in our home suburb! One of the major projects of the committee this year is their Milkweed Project. The goal is to distribute 500 milkweed plants throughout the community this […]

Daylilies always brighten the garden

We had the rare privilege of visiting recently with daylily expert Ann Redmon from Manhattan Kansas. Ms. Redmon has cross-bred many daylilies in her acerage to create new varieties, and has registered four of them. Pictured here is one of her registered lilies, called “Hannah Banana.” Daylilies are great in any garden. But remember, you […]