Bob Dluzen

Bob Dluzen

As a result of being a gardener for more than 40 years, 30 of those as a professional, Bob's gardening has become an integral part of his life. "It's the ever-changing seasons and the wide variety of plants and gardens that keeps me intrigued," he says. Bob lives and gardens in rural Monroe County.

Quilt Gardens tour

It’s not often in this blog that I write about places to go. Recently, we visited the Quilt Gardens, a really fun, ongoing garden tour in the Elkhart, Indiana, region. Volunteer gardeners from that area installed more than a million annuals in 18 gardens. Flowers and colorful foliage plants are arranged to reproduce quilt patterns … Continue Reading →

Wild bees need love, too

By now, most people are aware of the declining honeybee population. What is not as well know is wild bees are having the same problems. Wild bees are important because in many instances they are more efficient at pollinating some crops than are honeybees. They are also highly adapted to pollinating wild flowering plants, making them … Continue Reading →

Liking that lovage

Every once in a while we’ll be making something that calls for celery, such as potato salad or chicken soup. I’ll check the fridge only to find out there’s no celery in the crisper drawer. Not to fear, there’s a perennial plant growing in the garden that’s always on standby for such an eventuality — … Continue Reading →

The case of the missing apples

At a social function I attended  this past weekend, the conversation turned to gardening. A friend mentioned his apple trees were being raided by an unknown animal. This animal was very stealthy, so stealthy in fact, that it left virtually no trace of ever being there. The thief left no footprint despite the fact that … Continue Reading →

Finding a sphinx moth pupa

Butterflies and moths overwinter in different forms depending on the species. For example, the famous monarch overwinters as an adult, swallowtails in the chrysalis stage. Other species of moths or butteries spend the winter as as eggs or as pupae. Earlier this week I was filling up a plant container with growing mix that I … Continue Reading →

Try growing spring-planted garlic

Garlic is normally planted in the fall. Planting at that time of the year allows the garlic bulb to be exposed to several weeks of cold temperatures, which stimulates bulb production. Missing the fall date can be disappointing, it means waiting an entire year before planting a crop. If you are the type of person … Continue Reading →

An intensive method to build garden soil

In my last post I discussed a hands-off style of flower gardening that works some in established gardens. In those cases the soil is usually in pretty good shape after having had plants growing in the same spot for many years. Not everyone is fortunate enough to have such a garden space. Sometimes the soil in … Continue Reading →

A flower garden that plants itself

A friend of mine once told me his method of flower gardening was to see what comes up then just pull out the weeds. That actually is a viable way to approach it, especially if you have a personality type that doesn’t mind a bit of disorder. For a while my friend was moving into … Continue Reading →

Wood ashes for the garden

If you enjoy regularly using your fireplace or wood stove, you know that a fair amount of wood ashes can be accumulated over a heating season. Under the right circumstances, those ashes can be an excellent fertilizer for your garden. Wood ashes contain about 10 percent potassium, one of the three major elements needed by plants … Continue Reading →