Email Header 

Cal's News                     April 2011

Watch Us Gardening Videos

glass front installed lit up against the dark night


Follow Us

 View our videos on YouTube Find us on Facebook Follow us on Twitter
Join Our Mailing List!



We are excited to share our totally remodeled garden center with you.  Come soak in the sun and delight in the colors of Spring in Cal's new state-of-the-art greenhouse.  It is the only one of it's kind in Minnesota!



What to Do Now in Your MN Garden  


Let the clean up begin!  Get debris out of the way by picking up dead leaves, sticks, perennials left for winter interest, branches that have fallen, and rocks that have been heaved to the surface by frost.  


Prune & Feed Trees Prune dormant deciduous branches and feed your trees and shrubs their early spring feeding.


Test your soil to see if it needs additional nutrients or minerals, or an adjustment in acidity or alkalinity.  


Edge Your Beds Cut a clean edge where planting beds meet the lawn. Use a flat-bladed spade or a lawn edger, cutting deeply enough to sever grass roots growing into the bed. 


Annihilate emerging weeds.  When weeds begin growing in the flower garden, spray them with Roundup� Extended Control Ready-To-Use Weed & Grass Killer Plus Weed Preventer Pump 'N Go� Sprayer, which will kill existing weeds and prevent new ones from growing for up to 4 months. Be careful not to spray any desirable plants. The more weeds you eliminate now, the less competition your garden plants will have for sunlight, nutrients, and moisture.


Check if the Soil is Workable   The great thaw is on.  Soon you'll be able to pick up a handful of soil and squeeze it.  If it crumbles easily, you can start garden and flowerbed preparation. If it sticks together in a clump, it's still too wet to work in. 


Prepare Soil for Planting  When the soil is workable, begin preparing beds for flowers and vegetables. Remove dead plants, then work in your amendments.   If you don't compost your own, come to Cal's for packaged compost and peat moss there is a selection of  premixed amendment blends of rich, organic ingredients plus continuous-release plant food.  

three pansies Plant Feature of the Month

Are you ready to say "Good-Bye " to winter?  Cal's baskets and pots of pansies are the cold hardy instant spring color remedy. These happy faced flowers can withstand temperatures as low as 26 degrees.  Seems like an oxymoron calling such a brute of a plant by such a name.    


salt damage turf along curb What to Do About Salt Damage  We're relieved to see the snow plow trucks out when we need them.  Unfortunately, our turf doesn't feel the same way in the spring. Good news, damage is repairable.  If you notice dead brown grass between the road and your sidewalk, or along the edges of your driveway; it's time for action. As soon as you can this spring, flood the affected area to wash the salt or ice-melter off the grass and leach it through the soil away from the grass root area.  Give the ground area three heavy waterings, plant seed and apply Scotts� Turf Builder� Starter Fertilizer to speed up recovery. Unless the salt levels are unusually heavy, this procedure will correct the condition and you won't need to replace the soil.


seedlingsStarting Seeds at Home                 

Satisying is the only way to describe the experience of watching the seeds you planted in the dirt emerge as seedlings. 


Here's how to get started:

Choose a potting mix specifically formulated for seed sowing, such as Miracle-Gro� Seed Starter Potting Mix. You don't want disease pathogens that could damage young plants. A good potting mix will hold moisture and drain well, and have a fine texture that allows young leaves to emerge easily.


Choose Good Starter Containers Look for small trays or shallow containers 2-3 inches deep and something like plastic wrap or glass to cover them to retain humidity and warmth. Even the clam-shell containers from strawberries and cherry tomatoes from the grocery store work fine. The seedlings won't be in these containers long so they don't need to hold much soil mix.

Some Seeds Like It Warm Lettuce, beets, and spinach seeds germinate easily at room temperature. Warm-season plants, such as tomatoes and peppers, require a boost of heat to encourage sprouting. A sunny windowsill or the top of the refrigerator are commonly used to start seeds.

Choose Quality Seed Fresh seed is vital for good germination. Look for the "packed for" date on the seed pack. You'll also see the seeds' germination requirements - soil temperature, whether the seeds need dark or light to germinate, and how many weeks before the last frost to plant.


Timing Is Key Don't get too far ahead of Mother Nature. It's always better to set out stocky, healthy seedlings into the garden rather than ones that are weak and leggy from growing indoors too long. Start seeds of cool-season plants like lettuce, beets, kale, and spinach indoors 3-4 weeks before planting out. Grow heat-loving plants like peppers and tomatoes indoors 4-6 weeks before the last frost date of May 31.

Sowing Seeds Moisten soil mix to the consistency of a wrung-out sponge. Fill container with mix and tamp it down lightly. Sow seeds on soil surface taking care to space them from 1/8 to � inch apart depending on the size of the seed. Cover seeds with a thin layer of soil mix and press lightly.Soak seed tray in a shallow container of warm water until soil mix is thoroughly moistened but not saturated. Remove from water and allow to drain. Cover seed tray and place in warm area to germinate.

Keep an Eye Out for Growth Look at your seed container daily to check for signs of germination. As soon as the first leaves break through the soil, move them to a place with at least 6 hours of bright light and good ventilation. Then, remove the cover.

Water Seedlings Carefully, Evenly, and Consistently mist them.  Too much water encourages fungal growth. Yet, too little water dries out delicate roots, making your seedling wither. Test to see if your container is ready for water by weighing it. Lift it. If it feels light, it's time to water. If it's heavy, wait another day or two. Use a spray bottle to water them or set them in a shallow tray of water to soak the water from the bottom up for a few minutes.


When to Transplant Seedlings The first 2 leaves that emerge from the seed are called seed leaves or cotyledons. The third leaf to emerge is the plant's first true leaf. When the plants have 2 true leaves, it's time to transplant them from the seed tray into small pots of their own.


Upcoming Events

My Run the Inspiring True Story of Terry Hitchcock 1 Night Only Movie Event Nationwide Thursday, March 31 

Soul Surfer the Inspiring True Story of Bethany Hamilton Movie Premiere Thursday, March 31 Mall of America 7pm


Savage Chamber of Commerce Dining for Scholars Fundraiser Monday, April 4  Perkins



Grand Reopening Celebration Saturday, April 16 Cal's Market & Garden Center

  • $250 Door Prize Give Aways
  • 50 gift bags for the first 50 customers
  • Ribbon Cutting Ceremony 9am
  • Live Music & Wine Tasting Benefit for our local food shelf 4pm-6pm
  • Exclusive In-Store Specials
  • Gardening Workshops on the Hour
    • 10 am Blue Thumb Gardening with Native plants
    • 11 am Best Practices for Planting, Pruning & Gardening
    • noon How to Build your Raised Bed Garden & Grow Your Own Food
    • 1 pm Do-It-Yourself Feeding Your Turf  When, What & How
    • 2 pm Attracting Hummingbirds and Butterflies with plants 
    • 3 pm Container Design with Hot New Plants

Thank You for Gardening with Cal's,  

Bryan & Carina Peterson | Owners

6403 Egan Drive
Savage, MN  55378
Intersection of CT RDs 42 & 27
Store: 952.447.5215 

Save 40%
Get your Garden Started!  Enjoy 40 % OFF Yard & Garden Equipment Rental or purchase with this Cal's News Exclusive Offer.   Coupon Code: CNA
Offer Good: April 17-30, 2011