Nursery Tour of Montana.

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by Sarah Kmon

The worms are wiggling and the daffodils are out. So are the little blue flowers that I don’t know the names of. So is the hose that I use for anything from washing muddy boots to filling up the dog’s water bowl – even though the dog wont touch the water, but instead, the orphan calf drinks out of it – even though she is supposed to drink out of the stream.

Sorry, I took a tangent. My thoughts are about as organized as my garden.

It is time (if you procrastinate like me) to be thinking about your garden. If you aren’t a procrastinator, you have been thinking about it for a while.

I know nothing about gardening. All that is in my garden is the product of somebody else’s work. But that doesn’t stop me trying.

I need help. Along this fenceline

we had a pear tree die from “winterkill” (which means it froze) and I need to replace it.

More specifically, I need a new tree here.

I’d also like to add some mulch to my flower beds and vegetable garden and plant some pretty geraniums in the small bed by the front door.

Where do I go to get the information I need and the plants I need?

I will take you on a tour of four local (sort of) nurseries that would all help me answer this question as well as the other gardening queries I might have.

Starting with Big Timber. Blake Nursery is open Mon-Sat 9-5.30 and Sun 12-5. Blake Nursery offers coupons on their website to help you save on items that you need, and their newsletter alerts you to special sales. They also have many educational articles to help you through your gardening season.

In Great Falls, Forde Nursery. The nursery is open now through July: Mon-Fri 9-6, Sat 8-5, and Sun 11-4. Forde Nursery is offering seminars throughout the summer. April 21st (tomorrow) is Gardening Smart followed by the effects and management of Noxious Weeds. April 28th is Pots for your Porch – The Art of Container Gardening. I love seminars.

In Belgrade, Wagner Nursery (open 10-5) is having a Bareroot Tree and Shrub Sale April 23rd – 27th. OMG. This is exciting to me for two reasons. One, the tree I need that I told you about. I have no idea what kind of tree would be appropriate for that spot in the yard. In Meagher County. In Montana. Two, the tree that I don’t need but I want. I am leaning towards an Autumn Blaze Maple. But again that is because I know nothing about them.

Last but local, The Garden Shop, in White Sulphur Springs is run by Pat. She doesn’t have a website but this is her phone number: 406-547-3822. She provided the flowers for my wedding, and gave me hints on how to make the tubs look as good as I could get them. This was the result

I need to become educated, but until that happens (and it will with the help of these four nurseries) I will continue dreaming, planting, pruning, weeding, picking the wrong shrubs, and filling up the calf’s dog’s water bowl until I get it right.

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