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Container Gardening Simplified

Kevin Eberhard, Head Horticulturalist from the Joliet Park District presents the basics of container gardening at the Three Rivers Library.

Victoria Collett has never had her own garden. She just bought a house in and said she wants to begin gardening, which for her is a family tradition.

"My grandma loves to garden," she said.

Collett took advantage of the container gardening workshop at the Minooka branch of the Wednesday night. Registration was required for the workshop and it had filled to capacity at least a week before the event.

Kevin Eberhard, Head Horticulturalist at Bird Haven Greenhouse, gave all of the tips and information for the attendees. All of the plants he educated attendees about are available for sale at the greenhouse May 4 - 6.

When Eberhard told his audience that cigar flower Cuplea will attract hummingbirds to their gardens attendees all took in an excited collective breath.

The container gardening event took place at the Minooka branch of Three Rivers Library Wednesday night.

"If you had hummingbirds before, they will come back," he said.

Eberhard was on hand to share plants that work well in containers and to share tips for sucessfully gardening in containers.

One example was how to keep verbenas, which are susceptible to powdery mildew, from developing it.

"That happens if the plant is wet into the evening hours," he said.

He offered additional tips to attendees.

  • Water the dirt of your plant. Do not spray the foliage or flowers. Water needs to get to the roots of the plant.
  • if you don't have the space to bring an entire plant in over the winter, take a tip cutting, about three inches, and plant it.
  • If you do not have the ability to place a plant near a window over the winter, but a light with one cool, white and one warm, white florescent bulb and keep it about 6 inches above the plant for about 12 hours a day.
  • Don't discount foliage in your mixed pot. Foliage is crucial.
  • Hummingbirds are attracted to anything tubular. The flowers do not have to be red.

The annual plant sale at the greenhouse is from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., May 4, 5 and 6.

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