Tuesday, December 15, 2009

OOPS, the camera setting was on

B&W from this past weekend, but here is a sneek peek at some really fun, and different for growing your vegetable plants in next spring. We hope to have some of these at the Wichita Garden Show nest March, but you can watch the progress here.

January 27, 2010
Well the straw bale project has not gone as planned. First off, the bales are in an unheated greenhouse, and I think they will start to break down faster in a warmer area. The greenhouse is now being filled with perennials for this seasons sales and the bales are going outside, where it will be even colder. As the spring season warms, I think the straw bale project will progress, we'll see.

BUT, Jeremy found these grow bags in jumbo sizes which will work really nice for an affordable, reusable, planting area. This is a 100 gal container planted in Square Foot Garden soil recipe, more on that in a later post. In the center is a 'Cherokee Purple' tomato and planted around is 9 herb plants. Our plan is to have this planter at the Wichita Garden Show the first weekend of March.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

God's Artwork

I just thought you would like to see my backyard pond waterfall. I leave the pump on 24/7/365. Today, with the temps in the teens, made a great ice falls.

It's Tomato Time at Johnson's

I don't know if I have ever seen greenhouse tomatoes as nice as these. A local greenhouse grower had some extra space in his production greenhouse that he was heating and decided to try some hydroponic tomatoes. I think one of the things that make these tomatoes special is that he grew garden varitety tomatoes, not hydroponic varieties. I would guess he had some seed left over from his spring bedding plant crop and grew what he had. We have all eaten grocery store, or reataurant tomatoes that are pale red at best. These things have flavor! They are harvested at their peak, not weeks early and let ripen in a box.

These plants have also been grown without the use of pesticides. I don't know for sure, but many organic growers use preditory insects in their greenhouses for insect control.

We will have these for sale this week, and hopefully for the next several weeks, if supply holds out. Avoid getting the tomatoes grown across the border and #1, help a local grower and #2, enjoy the best tasting tomatoes you can get in December.

Monday, November 23, 2009

It's Christmas tree season

The past few Christmas seasons we have had the opportunity to supply the lighted Christmas tree at Friends University in Wichita Kansas. The Concolor fir that we supplied again this year came from the Cimmaron NM area. If you have had the opportunity to visit Philmont Scout ranch as a scout or a leader, you know the area. We loaded the 25' tree this morning on our flatbed truck, delivered, set up and lit the tree today. Check back and I'll post a photo of the tree at night illuminated.
The photo added at the top of the page is another Concolor fir that we delivered to Southwestern College in Winfield Kansas. I need to make a road trip some evening and get some night shots of the trees, check back.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Johnson's Christmas Open House

If you have been out in the wonderful weather wem have been having this weekend and have missed our Spring Open House, be sure to stop by on Sunday for the last day. Special prices on Christmas items, and good things to snack on while you shop. Hours on Sunday are 12-5

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Planting the Kansas Keukenhof

It is late October, many think it is too late for gardening, nothing could be further from the truth. Our good Friend, Piet Stuifbergen (our Dutch bulb supplier from The Netherlands) thinks that October/November is the perfect time for planting these Spring-flowering miracles. We still have an excellent assortment of bulbs to select from, whether it is tulips, daffodils, hyacinths, crocus, any of the misc. bulbs. I started my project today by pulling out the geraniums in our flower bed. Tilled the soil with a Mantis tiller, leveled the soil and then planted the bulbs. I like to till the soil 6" deep which will make the planting go much easier. If the area you are planting in is not tillable, then a bulb planter works well. I planted a variety of Species crocus 'Gypsy Girl' in bunches of 6 along the border. These 4-6" tall, yellow with black striped bulb should bloom by March. Next came Gregii Tulip 'United States' This mid-season tulip has yellow and red flowers that will grow to 18". Behind these in the rear come a bunch flowering, Single Late Tulip called 'Antoinette' which is a reverse of the 'United States', red and yellow flowers. Over the top of all the bulb to bloom for 3 seasons in a Yellow Pansy with a dark blotch called 'Colossus Yellow' I fertilized the area with Ferti-Lomes Start-N-Gro Plus, a slow release fertilizer with a weed preventer, which will keep the area weed-free all winter. Most importantly I watered the area 3 times to get the bulbs moist to start the root development. Check back and see what other bulps I get planted, maybe I'll have a showing next spring of my 'Kansas Keukenhof'

Sunday, October 11, 2009

My dog had fleas

I am sure you have heard, and probably even sang a few measures of that catchy tune at some point. Our 11 yr old Golden knows first hand what it is like to have fleas. Last fall was the first time Bailey had ever experienced fleas. Last fall I noticed there seemed what I thought was dirt in her coat. Upon closer examination, I saw these tiny insects crawling in her fur. You can imagine what the specs I was thinking was dirt, we won't go there. I knew that we sold several versions of Permethrin, a safe insecticide used in most flea and tick controls for animals. It is even used in clothing that you purchase which has an insect label. I checked the label on Hi-Yield Indoor/Outdoor Broad Use Insecticide and sure enough it had animals listed on the label. this product has 24 pages of uses for all types of insect control in the landscape and inside pest control as well. It is low odor which is nice when using on our pets, and around the home as well. My method of application for Bailey was a Ferti-Lome Air-O-Matic hose end sprayer. If you have swine, poultry, beef cattle, horses, sheep, goats, or a dog, try Hi-Yield Indoor/Outdoor Broad Use Insecticide to control fleas and other insects.

How did the product work on Bailey? Well, last fall it only took 1 application to control the fleas. I am confident that today's spraying will do it for this season as well.

Monday, September 28, 2009

I'm sure all you faithful customers were tuned in to Saturday's radio program on KNSS 1330 and didn't miss a thing that was discussed, but for those of you who were working out in their yard or doing the Race for the Cure we've decided to post some of the questions that were called in. In fact, we may just decide to do this weekly so stay tuned!

Q) Is now a good time to 'dead head' my mums?
A) If the blooms are past their prime you can go ahead and snip off the flower, but realize once this is done, they won't bloom again this year.

Q)Would it be a good time to give acid plant food to Hollies?
A)Yes, now's a great time! You can either use ferti-lome Tree & Shrub Food or Fox Farm for Acid Loving Plants!

Q)I've got a fescue lawn with bermuda grass that creeps in, how can I kill the bermuda?
A)This is a common problem in fescue lawns. The best products to use are Turflon Ester or Bayer Bermuda Grass Control.

Q)When do I plant new grass, and what can I use to control broadleaf and grassy weeds?
A)Now is the perfect time to plant new grass, we've got a great selection in the stores now.
Kill broadleaf weeds with ferti-lome Weed Free Zone after you've mowed the new grass twice, and use Baricade in the spring. You will also want to use ferti-lome All Seasons Crabgrass Preventer to prevent grassy weeds.

Q)I've got stickers in my yard, what can I use to control them?
A)A great product to use is Hi-Yield Turf & Ornamental Weed & Grass Stopper. This product provides a superior control of broadleaf weeds and annual grass weeds in established lawns and ornamental turf.

Q)I've just rebuilt a porch where wasps used to reside. If I paint the ceiling of the porch sky blue will it deter the wasps from building nests?
A)While we're not sure if wasps can actually see color, we would recommend using Hi-Yield Indoor/Outdoor Insecticide. You can spray the product using the Air-O-Matic Hose-On Sprayer around the perimeter of the porch to control unwanted pests. This product also helps control fleas, ticks, mosquitoes, caterpillars, cicadas to mention a few.

We hope you will find this information helpful! If you have questions please don't hesitate to ask us . Remember, if you've got a question, there are probably 10 other people wondering the same thing so don't hesitate to ask!
Also, tune in on Saturday Mornings from 8-9 a.m. for Johnson's Radio Show with Marty and Jeremy Johnson. They'll give great advice and answer questions callers call in with. You can call the show at 436-1330!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Fresh look

We've done some rearranging at Johnson's Garden Centers.

We replaced some of the tables with brick flooring in the greenhouses at two of our locations for a more friendly atmosphere and creative displays.

We're excited about the new look, and hope you will be too!

Oh, and speaking of new looks, the Monrovia boutique at Johnson's East has been given a fall look that includes new nursery stock!

Stop by any of our three locations to check it the new displays, colorful fall mums, pansies and nursery stock.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Homegrown Tomatoes

We were without homegrown tomatoes for about 4 weeks this summer after our only hot spell seemed to not let our tomatoes set fruit. Well we had a cool, moist month of August and now we have an abundance of tomatoes. I always label my plants so I can see which ones do the best, but usually they all grow together and I have a hard time finding the labels. I do know the Jet Stars are really loaded right now. I would just recommend plant as many varieties as you can, and enjoy the color, and taste of the different varities.

Seeding Cool Season Lawns

Today was the perfect day to seed a cool season lawn. I had a couple of areas to plant seed, different reasons in each area. The first area had been sprayed with Hi-Yield Super Killz-All about 4 weeks ago, and then again 3 weeks later, to make sure the bermuda grass was dead. Another area were just spots in an existing lawn that were just void of any grass. In this area I set a rototiller about 2" deep and loosened the top layer of soil. Another area, the exitsting fescue was just thin, and needed thickened up. I think in this area, my sprinkler system misses this area, so I will need to address this issue to get good germination.
The key points in getting a good lawn, is to plant the best seed available. We sell Gard'N-Wise premium Fescue blend. We recommend planting 8 lbs per 1000 sq ft. This blend is selected from varieties that have done well in KSU turf research. There is no weed seed in this blend, and it has a high germination percent.

Secondly, it is important to get good seed to soil contact. This is done by using a lawn comber (we rent at the stores) to make a shallow slit in the soil, through the thach, about 2" apart. Small areas can be raked with a garden rake, or use a rototiller as done for small areas.

Thirdly, it is important to use Ferti-Lome New Lawn Starter to get the new grass plants growing. A follow-up application of Ferti-Lome Winterizer in 4 weeks will keep the plants growing this fall, and a final application of Winterizer in November will be the last feeding for the season. If weeds germinate with the newly planted seed, (as happens when the soil is disturbed) Ferti-Lome Weed-Free-Zone with Fertilizer may be used at this time to kill weeds and winterize the lawn

Finally, keeping the area watered to get the seed to germinate is important. Normally a light watering twice a day will get the seeds up and growing.

If you get the lawn planted in the next month you will be fine. The sooner you are able to get it growing though, the faster it will get established this fall. Once this is done, then next week you can plant pansies, mums, and asters. Then in October, the spring flowering bulbs can start going into the ground.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Ready, Set, Fertilize

For many years, we have been telling customers that to have the best looking lawn on the block, they needed to fertilize in the fall. I thought it would be interesting to link you to the source of that information, Kansas State University (GO CATS). KSU has information on about anything you ever wanted to know about for your lawn, garden, landscape. Here is the link to the 'Fertilizing Turfgrass Report' that give us the research.
For cool-season lawns, most of the fertilizer should
be applied in the fall. Fescue, bluegrass and ryegrass
benefit most from fall-applied nitrogen applications.
September is the most important time. Nitrogen applied during
September helps thicken the stand, and encourages
development of a healthy root system. A November
application (at about the time of the final mowing of
the season) helps the turf build food reserves. This
enables the lawn to green up earlier in the spring, without
encouraging the excessive shoot growth that often
accompanies early spring Nitrogen applications.

Ferti-Lome's Winterizer contains 5 lbs of Nitrogen, applied to a 5,000 yard will apply recommended ammount of fertilizer. My suggestion would be to do an application each of the next 3 months.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Jalapeno pepper grills

Earlier this year at the Wichita Garden Show, we were lucky to come across a new vendor, Ed Bright from Honey's Jalapeno Grills. Ed designs and manufacture unique grills for cooking jalapeno peppers on your grill, or in your oven. We invited Ed to attend our Chile fest promotion this year, and lucky for us he had an open weekend in his busy show schedule. Jeremy was smart enough to get one of Ed's grills in March at the Garden Show, but by the time I went back to purchase a grill, Ed was sold out. I did pick up one of Ed's grills today at the east store, and this evening put it to good use. This is the best cooking gadget I have found for jalapeno peppers. I normally stuff a pepper with cheese, wrap it with bacon and lay it on the grill. When using Ed's grill, all of the cheese stays in the pepper, not running out as I have normally had occur. Go to http://www.honeysjalapenogrills.com/ and see Ed's grills. We hope to be able to stock the grills at our stores soon.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Green Chile Stew

Nancy goes out of town to a Garden Center conference and I become Mr. Food in the kitchen, (it is sooooo good). After cleaning out the crock pot from the Green Chile (sauce) I made, I went into Green Chile Stew mode. I don't think this recipe made it into our new Green Chile cookbook, but it is a keeper. I used medium heat Chile, so it does have a bite to it. Here is the recipe.

Green Chile Stew

20 fresh diced rosasted Hatch Green Chile peppers

1 lb. ground beef

1 red onion

6 red potatoes, cubed

15 cups water (seemed like too much, but it isn't)

4 tbsp Old Wesport Special Blend Seasoning

(available at Johnson's soon)

2 tsp garlic

1/2 cup rice (optional)

1/2 cup carrots (optional)

salt to taste

Brown ground beef. Put all ingredients in a large pot. Bring to a boil for 15 minutes and then a slow boil for 1 1/2 hours. Serve with tortillas and plenty of your favorite beverage to cool down the fire.

Be sure to stop by Chile Fest this weekend, August 22 and 23 for samples of everything Green Chile.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

The first Green Chile sauce of the season

With the 2009 Johnsons's Chile Fest soon upon us I thought it was time to make the first batch of Green Chile Sauce of the season. Most chile heads just refer to it as Green Chile. I came upon this recipe from another chile head from , Joyce Benedict. Joyce and her husband Ken, own Great Plains Landscape and Design Co. a Garden Center/Landscape company in Beloit Kansas. Several years ago, Ken was telling me about Joyce's wonderful Green Chile, and shared the recipe. We have had it in our Green Chile Recipe book for several years and it continues to be my favorite Green Chile recipe.

Joyce's "Secret" Award-Winning Green Chile Sauce

1/2 to 1 cup chopped onion

2 tablespoons butter

2 tablespoons flour

1 1/2 cup chicken broth

2 cups Hatch Green Chile, roasted, peeled, seeded and chopped

2 cloves garlic, minced

Dash cumin (or your favorite seasoning)

Saute' onions in butter. Addd flour to make a paste. Stir in broth, chile, garlic and cumin.

Use this sauce to spice up hamburgers, brats, eggs, soups ... anything that needs a kick!

The 'Secret' part of the recipe has been out for several years now, and after making and enjoying this Green Chile, I am sure you will give an award as well.

Monday, August 17, 2009

It's Chile Time!

Last week we traveled to pick up our first batch of Hatch Green Chiles! We've brought back a truckload and have them stored in our cooler waiting their turn at the roaster. You won't want to miss out on the excitement, in fact, join us this weekend, August 21-23 for Chile Fest! We're cooking up some dishes that contain green chile for you to samples, and will have frozen margaritas for you to wash it down with - yes, they're virgin of course. You'll also be able to find our 2009 cookbook at all of our 3 locations. And just to get you in the mood, here are some photos of the chiles along with our Head Chilehead, Marty.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Orie said early August is

the ideal time to plant your fall seeds for a great fall garden. I had pulled out what was left of my spring garden when I harvested my potatoes. I had tilled in Cotton Boll Compost to enrich the soil and let it set for about 3 weeks. Today I tilled again (to get rid of the crabgrass that had germinated) and planted Blue Lake bush green beans, Crimson Giant radish, Detroit Dark Red beets, Nantes Half long carrots, and I also found some onion seeds on the seed rack so I thought I would give it a try. I planted the beans in 2 rows, but I am going to try the scatter method on the others and see how that works. When our broccoli and other fall seedlings arrive I'll plant some additional items. Stay tuned

Monday, August 3, 2009

Cut your watering frequency in half.

I ususlly set my timer on my lawn irrigation system on the manual setting and not the daily setting when we have frequent rains. I just don't like paying the electric bill to run the pump when it is raining. If I had city water, I know I would not like to pay that bill. I normally wait until my lawn tells me it is thirsty. Most turf areas have dry spots or as some put it, hot spots, those areas for some reason or another dry out sooner than the remainder of the lawn. Core aereation helps the water penetrate the soil. These areas may be lacking in organic matter which can be added with an application of Natural Guard Soil Activator.

A product that will reduce the frequency of watering has been available only recently from Ferti-lome called Aqueduct L&G Professional Water Management The unique thing about Aquaduct is that it ensures quick penetration and reduces run off. If you have clay soils, it will aide in the absorption of water as well. It will increase fertilizer retention, reducing the potential of nitrates leaching into ground water. This university tested product will treat 5,000 sq ft. for only $14.98 in a easy to apply hose end sprayer.

If you want to cut your watering from 4 to 2 or 3 times per week, apply Aqueduct to your lawn, and also landscape and flower areas and end the dry spots.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Can the Abundance

Do you have an abundance of tomatoes from your garden, and don't know how in the world you're going to eat them all before they go bad? Well, if you love homegrown tomatoes, and don't want them to go to waste, why not can them and enjoy them throughout the year? Here are some guidelines for canning taken from the Kitchen Gardeners International website:
1. Visually examine canning jars for nicks, cracks, uneven rims or sharp edges that may prevent sealing or cause breakage. Examine canning lids to ensure they are free of dents and sealing compound is even and complete. Check bands for proper fit.

2. Wash jars and two-piece caps in hot, soapy water. Rinse well. Dry bands; set aside. Heat jars and lids in a saucepot of simmering water (180°F or 82°C). DO NOT BOIL LIDS. Allow jars and lids to remain in hot water until ready for use, removing one at a time as needed.

3. Fill boiling-water canner half-full with hot water. Elevate rack in canner. Put canner lid in place. Heat water just to a simmer (180°F or 82°C). Keep water hot until used for processing.

4. Select fresh tomatoes at their peak of quality and flavor. Use firm tomatoes free of cracks, spots and growths. Prepare only enough for one canner load. Wash tomatoes; drain.

5. Place tomatoes in wire basket and lower into a large saucepot of boiling water. Blanch tomatoes 30 to 60 seconds or until skins start to crack. Remove from boiling water. Dip immediately into cold water.

6. Slip off skins; trim away any green areas; cut out core. Leave tomatoes whole or cut into halves or quarters.

7. For tomatoes packed in water, place tomatoes in a large saucepot, adding just enough water to cover. Boil gently 5 minutes.

8. Remove canning jar from hot water with a jar lifter; set jar on towel. Add 1 tablespoon bottled lemon juice to each pint jar, 2 tablespoons bottled lemon juice to each quart jar.

9. Carefully pack tomatoes into hot jar, leaving 1/2-inch headspace. Ladle boiling water or cooking liquid over tomatoes, leaving 1/2-inch headspace. Add 1/2 teaspoon salt per pint jar or 1 teaspoon salt per quart jar, if desired.

10. Slide a nonmetallic spatula between tomatoes and jar; press back gently on tomatoes to release trapped' air bubbles. Repeat procedure 2 to 3 times around inside of jar.

11. Wipe rim and threads of jar with a dean, damp cloth. Remove lid from hot water using a lid wand. Place lid on jar, centering sealing compound on rim. Screw band down evenly and firmly, just until resistance is met-fingertip tight.

12. As each jar is filled, set it onto the elevated rack in the boiling-water canner. Water in canner should be kept at a simmer (180°F or 82°C). After all jars are filled and placed onto the rack, lower rack into canner. Water must cover the two-piece caps on the jars by 1 to 2 inches. Add boiling water, if necessary.

13. Put lid on canner. Bring water to a boil. Start counting processing time after water comes to a rolling boil. Process pints 40 minutes, quarts 45 minutes, at a gentle but steady boil for altitudes at or below 1,000 feet above sea level. For higher altitude areas, consult your local extension office.

15. After jars have cooled, check lids for a seal by pressing on the center of each lid. If the center is pulled down and does not flex, remove the band and gently try to lift the lid off with your fingertips. If the lid does not flex and you cannot lift it off the lid has a good vacuum seal. Wipe lid and jar surface with a clean, damp cloth to remove food particles or residue. Label. Store jars in a cool, dry, dark place.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

It's over until next year, I can't wait.

Well, Moonlight Madness is over for another year. It is one of those long days that we all love. The Johnson's employees all get excited and do a great job. I used to think a 24 hour sale would be fun to try, but I think I would be the only person working the late shift. We did have a customer ask at about 11:30 pm 'Why is this the only day you stay open until midnight'? I think my first response was something about getting to old or something like that. I hope you made it by this year and enjoyed the fun.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Moonlight Madness Hourly Specials

2-3pm - 3 cu. ft. Cypress Mulch only $4.99, reg. $7.98.
3-4pm - 4.5" Butterfly Garden Perennials only $1.99, reg. $4.98.
4-5pm - All pots & pottery 50% OFF! Includes Terra cotta, glazed, plastic, concrete, etc.
5-6pm - 2 cu. ft. Cotton Boll Compost only $3.99, reg. $6.98.
6-7pm - Bayer Bermudagrass Control for Lawns, RTS qt., $10 OFF, reg. $32.98.
7-8pm - 3 cu. ft. All Bark Cedar Mulch only $5.99, reg. $8.98.
8-9pm - All garden tools 30% OFF.
9-10pm - 2 cu. ft. Cocoa Mulch $5.99, reg. $9.98.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Cotinis nitida - Green June Beetle

Nancy notified me that there 'were these giant bugs attacking our corn plants' today. As I approached the corn patch, there were dozens of swarming beetles. These 1" long insects, Cotinis nitida were flying around the corn stalks, some resting on the top portion of the plants. They actually are pretty impressive. I didn't think that they were doing the garden much good, and decided they needed to go. I sprayed the plants with Hi-Yield Indoor/Outdoor insect spray containing Permetherin, a safe insecticide that can be sprayed today and the fruit harvested in as little as 1 day. At first I didn't know if my attempt to control the insects was working because the swarm was still active. After putting up my spray equipment, I went back to collect a sample of the insect and they had all but vanished. I consulted with Sedgwick Co Extension Agent, Bob Neier and he informed me that these insects feed on the fruit of vegetables. The large grubs that they come from live in compost or mulch piles.
The key to insect control is to used an insececticide that is labeled for the insect and plant to be sprayed on, use the proper sprayer, and wear proper safety clothing. Follow the directions carefully and the product will work for its intended use.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Get ready for the Madness!

When: Saturday, July 18
What: Moonlight Madness - 12 hours of savings!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

I love Summer

Long warm days, Summer has got to be the best time of the year, at least today I think it is. I'll probably say the same about Fall in October. Harvesting fresh vegetables out of the garden has got to be hard to beet (no pun intended). We harvested tomatoes, zucchini and yellow squash, cucumbers, dug onions, potatoes and yes, beets. I hope you are able to be harvesting out of your garden as well. If not, consider planting a fall garden starting August 1st. For now, enjoy the Summer.

Friday, June 19, 2009

The Fungus Among Us!!

Conditions are perfect for the development of the lawn disease known as brown patch. The disease needs warm humid conditions like we're experiencing now. From a distance the lawn looks as if it is suffering from a lack of water, but this is not the case. More times than not homeowners will see the lawn browning out and start watering and watering and water some more. This is a bad idea!! The moisture increases the humidity and makes conditions even more favorable for the development of the disease. Usually, if the lawn is allowed to dry out and weather conditions improve, brown patch won't kill the grass. It kills the leaf blade and after a couple of weeks it will grow out of it. However, if the weather conditions persist and we don't get a cool down it can infect the crown of the grass plant and kill it. As of today, the 10 day forecast looks favorable for brown patch and it is possible that we could see significant damage from brown patch.

How do you tell if it's brown patch and not just a lack of water? If you're watering a couple of times a week and you're lawn is turning brown, it is very likely it is brown patch. Look closely at the leaf blades. If you see brown spots on the leaf blade bordered by a dark brown or purplish margin, that is brown patch.

What can you do to lessen the severity or to prevent it in the first place? First, make sure you're mowing at the highest or second to highest setting on your mower. Make sure to not over water and don't water in the late afternoon or evening. An inch and a half of water, possibly a little more in extremely dry conditions is what your lawn needs to stay green. Also, and most importantly, make sure your lawn dries out between watering's. Try to have a couple of days between watering's to let the soil dry out. An application of Fertilome's F-Stop, a fungicide, will prevent the fungus from developing and reduce the severity if the disease is already present. I would apply it now and every 2-3 weeks through the summer months.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Biking Across Kansas 2009

I finally was able to get away for a week in early June to do the 35 edition of what is know of as BAK. Every year bicyclists start at the Colorado border and spend the next week riding across the state. Our adventure started on Friday, June 5th in Coolidge Kansas. We spent the night in Syracuse and on Saturday morning we headed east. The great thing about cycling is you get to really slow down and visit small town America. We spent nights in Garden City, Jetmore, St.John, Halstead, Eureka, Humbolt, Paola, and finishing at the Missouri border just east of Louisburg Kansas. People ask me which area I liked the best, and it is hard to select just one area. I think that the Flint Hills of Kansas are hard to beat. The wild flowers are simply amazing in Kansas. From the Gallardia blooming in western Kansas to the Butterfly milkweed in eastern Kansas, there are beautiful flowers from border to border.

One of the things that impressed me the most were the 3 wheelchair athletes that rode with us across the state. They were up early every morning, rowing their way across the rolling hills, and finishing ahead of us on most days. We forget how lucky we are with what God has blessed us with, our families, our health, and a free Country where we can ride across the state whenever we wish.

Jump on your bike, or in your car and visit some part our beautiful state. You will be truly blessed with the people, plants and towns that you come across.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Is your lawn brown?

If yes, you're not alone. A lot of lawns around town are suffering from heat stress. We went from mild wet weather to warm dry weather and the fescue grasses didn't like it. There are a couple of things that caused it. The soils have been wet all Spring long, which is not good for the roots. It deprieves the grass of oxygen and puts stress on the plant. Second, when it gets hot turfgrasses and other plants can't produce enough energy to survive. To compensate for this they start robbing food that they have stored in their roots to maintain the green color. This is a stressful process for your lawn and that is why we always recommend to mow at the highest setting, water when necessary, don't mow off more than a third of the leaf blade at any one time. These practices help to ensure that your roots are as healthy as possible and have stored as much energy as possible to survive the hot summer months. A break in the weather and your lawn should recover from this. A couple of things to remember: don't over water and raise up that mower!!

Monday, May 11, 2009

Congratulations Guyanne Weilert!

Guyanne Weilert of Wichita won the 1st annual Johnson's Spring Photo Contest!

Thanks to all who participated!

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Spring Photo Contest

Here are the entries for Johnson's Spring Photo Contest. Pick your favorite photo(numbered from 1 to 20) and vote in the poll at the right. Please, only one vote per customer!

Photo 1

Photo 2

Photo 3

Photo 4

Photo 5

Photo 6

Photo 7

Photo 8

Photo 9

Photo 10

Photo 11

Photo 12

Photo 13

Photo 14

Photo 15

Photo 16

Photo 17

Photo 18

Photo 19

Photo 20