Apr 19 2018

April 2018 Meeting – April 26

Filed under Meetings

The Latest and Greatest: The Lure of New Plant Varieties

Meeting Location: Faith Community Church, 910 Main Street, West Chicago

Meeting Time: 6:45PM Refreshments,  7:00PM Business Meeting,  7:15PM Program

Speaker: Jim Nau, Ball Horticultural Company

Every year the world’s breeders introduce a wide range of new plant introductions and this year is no exception. This presentation will cover a number of the latest including; annuals, perennials, vegetables, plus a few surprises. Information will include heights and sun/shade tolerance.

This program will be presented by Jim Nau, Corporate Archivist and Cultural Advisor for Ball Horticultural Company.

For 34 years, Jim Nau managed the greenhouses and gardens of the Ball Horticultural Company in West Chicago, Illinois. He is celebrating his 36th year during 2018. His current role is Curator of the Ball Horticultural Archives and Cultural Advisor to the Ball Horticultural Company.

Jim graduated from Iowa State University with a degree in horticulture and business. He is a Past President and judge for All America Selections as well the Past President of the Association of Specialty Cut Flower Growers (ASCFG). Jim is the recipient of the Perennial Plant Association’s Garden Media Award winner and has been a keynote speaker for Cultivate as well as several other Greenhouse Conferences. In addition, Jim received the Medallion of Honor award from All America Selections for Outstanding Achievement in Horticulture.

Growing and gardening are a passion with Jim. Cooking is also a passion. Besides his own cooking, he is a chili judge in the western suburbs of Chicago, tasting 16-20 chili’s at a time and evaluating cooks all over the Midwest.


Apr 19 2018

April 2018 News from Kruse

Filed under Kruse House

Spring in Illinois is usually like Spring in the other states in the Midwest. But this year is an exception with cold temperatures and snow. You never know, one day to the next what the weather will be like. It has already caused some changes in our schedule for potting parties but we still have enough time to prepare.

I have always had mixed feelings about Spring. I either like it hot or cold, and Spring has both in no kind of order. I recall a Spring when I was in high school when three of my friends and myself decided to take the morning off. We went back to school during the lunch hour and told our teacher that we had a flat tire and it took us all morning to get it fixed. She smiled and told us that we had missed a test while we were gone, but that she could give it to us right now. She told us to take seats apart from each other and take out a piece of paper. Still smiling she waited for us to get ready. She then said: “First question: Which tire went flat”

Fairy Garden Photo

Fairy Garden

Those of you who have been to my home know that I have an outside Fairy garden which I have had for about four years. It started out small but over the years it has grown. It has a number of Gnomes and Fairies and tree houses for them to live in. Fairy gardens have become very popular over the years, to the point that they have shows for them with all the latest items a Fairy or Gnome may need. Fairy Gardens have been around since about 1893. The Japanese built  little bonsai dish gardens and their popularity climbed from there. My Fairy Garden was built for my Granddaughter. She helps me keep  things under control, and keep track of the Gnomes and Fairies that tend to wander off. I used to have Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs on the back of my property. They were nicely painted and made out of cement. As they were so heavy I did not worry about them being stolen. As of today I have Snow White and Dopey, who is broken in half. How appropriate is that? I have found several in my neighborhood but have decided  that since they have relocated on their own I will just leave them there.

We are coming up on our annual Bloomingfest, and things from here on out are going to be very busy. I encourage all members to assist in this event and do whatever they can to help. This is a great way to meet and work with others in the club and get to know them. We have a lot of exceptional members. Remember that helping our club makes our club better. See you at the potting party.




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