Archive for October 2009

"Cover Chicago Garden in Black Plastic"

While looking over the stats for my MrBrownThumb garden blog I noticed that someone recently visited after searching for, “cover Chicago garden in black plastic.” The gardener must have been looking for information on weed deterrents. I’ve seen people use black plastic bags, which are different than the landscaping plastic you’ll find at your local... Read more »

The Botany of Desire Documentary

WTTW 11 will be airing The Botany of Desire, a two-hour documentary, based on the book by Michael Pollan on Wednesday October 28, 2009. The narrator, in the PBS preview released on YouTube, describes the plants being highlighted as; “Four plants that have traveled the road to success by satisfying human desires.”  These four plants... Read more »

Container Garden Spider Check

Over the weekend as I was emptying out my container gardens and placing the containers underneath the stairs for the winter I got a few surprises. I know spiders are beneficial insects to have in the garden, but I can’t help be creeped out by spiders. As I was putting the pots away I kept... Read more »

How to Become a Master Gardener in Chicago

The deadline for applying for the Master Gardener certification in Cook County for 2010 is November 1, 2009. The certification program is a great learning opportunity for gardening enthusiast and beginners. I asked Ron Wolford, University of Illinois Extension Urban Horticulture/Environment Educator, to tell me about the program and why it would be of interest... Read more »

Urban Gardening Classes in Chicago Fall '09

The Wicker Park Garden Club is hosting a number of lectures and workshops this fall and winter for those interested in learning about urban gardening. You can attend these in place of the urban farming classes around Chicago this fall if your interests in gardening don’t extend to growing your own food. November 2nd 7-8:30... Read more »

Illinois Rain Garden & Schoolyard Habitat Grant

Two grant programs available to Illinois residents that have deadlines of November 30, 2009. The first is the Rain Garden Initiative. If you’re a teacher or youth group leader who wants to engage kids by teaching them about wildlife habitat, see the Illinois Schoolyard Habitat Action Grant Program. Another opportunity for teachers (includes home-schooling teachers)... Read more »

Urban Chickens in Chicago

Did you catch the backyard chicken segment on Chicago Tonight? Rich Samuels profiles four people in the Chicago area that keep backyard chickens. Linda Nellett Northwest side of Chicago, Juliet Martinez, Southwest side of Chicago, Helen Standen of OakPark and Laurie Zoloth  of Evanston. Laurie Zoloth, bioethicist at Northwestern University, is currently violating Evanston’s ordinance... Read more »

Propagating Plants Through Cuttings

Propagating plants through cuttings and growing them inside during the winter to plant out in your garden next spring is an easy way to save a few dollars. When I started gardening taking cuttings, or clippings as some call it, always intimidated me until I discovered how easy it was to do. For this example... Read more »

Organic Greenhouse Perennial Giveaway

On Tuesday, October 13, 2009 the Kilbourn Park Organic Greenhouse will receive a donation of 1,000 1 gallon perennials plants from Elite Growers to distribute to gardeners and community gardeners in Chicago. Kilbourn Park Organic Greenhouse needs volunteers to help upload the truck starting at 10 a.m. From 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. the plants... Read more »

Weekend Gardening Chores

Like always I’m waiting until it is really late in the season to start on my fall gardening chores. This weekend I plan to tackle several of them and get them out of the way. Today I’m bringing in my houseplants that are still outside, if you live in an outlying suburb of Chicago there... Read more »