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Summer 2013 Newsletter

Beautiful Butterfly
Butterfly in Greenhouse   
Molly snapped this beautiful picture of a male tiger swallowtail butterfly in the greenhouse last week...we thought it seemed early for them,  but after doing a little research we discovered there are actually 3 generations of these butterflies - spring, summer and fall.

This is obviously a spring beauty...Paulette Hayward Ogard's  book, 'Butterflies of Alabama'  was an excellent resource!
Caring for Containers
summer planter
Container gardens in full sun will need a thorough watering once a day to keep them happy. If plants dry out too much between watering, you'll have lots of yellow leaves and dried up flower buds.

If this happens once every so often, the plants will be stressed but will recover. Simply remove yellow leaves, spent or dried up blooms, and resolve to be more consistent with your watering. Repeated bouts of drying out will eventually stress them too much, though, and after one too many times the plantings will not recover.

Shade plantings may require less rigid watering schedules, but be mindful of windy conditions, which can dry the top portion of the soil. Just as for plantings in the ground, mulch will help keep moisture where it's needed most and help keep plant roots cool.
mini garden w/red chair
just a few mini garden pieces
 Miniature Gardens - A Summer Project For The Kids...
For all you miniature gardening folks, we've gotten in some fun new pieces and even more are on the way! All new and things we've never had before...take a look at this web post featuring them in some minigardens to give you ideas for your own. They are so much fun and would be a great summer project with the kids! Take a look HERE for some we've created  in the past for more ideas.
Chilton County Peaches!
Market News
If you're driving to the beach or other destination, stop in before you go to check out our Market offerings - pack up some local peaches for a healthy and delicious snack for the kids in the car, or maybe some other fresh goodness will catch your eye...it's been working out well having all the fresh food at the entrance to tempt you!

We've also had an abundance of fresh, organic eggs from our suppliers in Leeds, Shannon Blount and Coop & Caboodle. It's also high season for blueberries and blackberries, and we are so fortunate to be able to get them from Petals From the Past down the road in Jemison! Summer freshness, indeed!
string of pearls
a waterfall of pearls...
        String of Pearls                  
String of Pearls, Senecio rowleyanus, is a native of South Africa. We have been searching for this plant for quite some time - and Jamie found it! Every so often folks will come in asking about it because they saw a picture of it somewhere...considering how easy it is to grow as a houseplant, we've never understood why it's not more widely available. At any rate, we have some now if you'd like to try it!
This easy plant is a succulent, so it needs bright light and would prefer to dry out completely between watering. When you come in for one, thank Jamie for finding it!
string of pearls
String of pearls is a tough little houseplant!
Best of Birmingham...
If you haven't voted in Birmingham Magazine's Best of Birmingham poll, here's the link! We hope we've earned your vote as Best Garden Shop!




Summer...it's finally here with its promise of lazy days, (At least on the weekends!) family outings and getaways to the lake, beach or mountains...enjoying time with family and friends is always time well spent!
If, however. you're planning on any extended time away from home, be sure to have someone check your plantings while you're gone. You certainly don't want to come back from a restful and relaxing break to find your spring gardening efforts all shriveled up! For extended periods away from home, cutting back your annuals before you leave won't hurt them a bit, and they'll be even prettier when you return. 

Remember to apply a good layer of mulch around your annuals and perennials to get them through the summer heat.



  Emmet O'Neal Community Garden Is Back!
Across the street, Billy and Dená have begun planting the Emmet O'Neal Community Garden with help from kids in the library's "Dig Into Reading" program. Take a look HERE to find out more...if you're in the area, and you see them in the garden please take a moment to say Hi - and feel free to pull a few weeds if you see them! So far they've planted a selection of peppers, tomatoes, corn and squash with much more to come!

Leah watering the garden
Billy shows Leah how to water new seeds
Through the spring many of you had questions about the Downy Mildew disease on impatiens. For more information on it (and the reason we haven't carried them this year) take a look at the link above. We are certain plant breeders are working overtime to come up with new impatiens that are resistant to this disease. In the meantime, we've tried to have a good selection of alternatives for you and hope you're having good luck with them. If you have questions about any new plantings this year, please don't hesitate to ask - we'll help in any way we can!


Meet our Staff
So many of you are long-time customers, so we feel like we're old friends.  But we thought our new newsletter would be a good time to continue to introduce our staff.    

Dená Hand, our market manager, assistant to Billy in the Emmet O'Neal Community Garden and all around cheerful presence in the shop, is no stranger to Oak Street.  

Prior to this, she worked many a Christmas as an  elf in the back of the shop, creating mailbox decorations, wreaths and general mayhem...she and Molly, her daughter, both are lending a hand now - and we're happy to have them on board!  

She is an avid gardener, also helping with the Avondale Community garden. At home, she has honeybees, raises chickens, and keeps her household going  with her endless energy and enthusiasm.  She has been haunting the farmer's market early in the morning for the best produce for you - say hi next time you're in! 

Recent Posts On Our Website


A Few Things You Might Have Missed
 Did you miss some web posts?  Here's a recap >


This is just a sampling of what is on the website. If you'd like to receive these posts as they appear, subscribe to our (almost) daily web posts so you can keep up with what's going on in the greenhouse, nursery and market - including the post on annuals that take our heat - some are shown in the picture below...

vinca  and zinnia bedding plants    

We appreciate your business and hope you have a wonderful summer!

Billy Angell
Kris Blevons
Oak Street Garden Shop and Local Market