In The Perennial Gardener with Karen Strohbeen, Karen shares the beauty and bounty of her garden, and offers information useful to
both the novice and seasoned gardener. The Perennial Gardener with Karen Strohbeen is airing this spring. Check your local listings for more information.
#101, Mixed Gardening
The line between the natural landscape and the garden blurs as Karen uses the diversity of nature to play with shape, texture, density, height, timing and color in designing her garden. Drawing on her artistic talent, she creates a constant backdrop of foliage to support the coming and going of seasonal blossoms from early spring to late fall. PLANT LIST
#102, A Short Walk
For gardeners, a visit to a nursery is like a day in the park. Karen visits Harlan Hamernik on the 40th anniversary of his Bluebird Nursery in Nebraska. Almost everything a gardener could want is in stock at the nursery, including perennials, annuals, trees, shrubs, garden benches, playful stepping stones and a surprising pond with a rock-hard surface. Harlan and Karen demonstrate how to make a garden in a basket. PLANT LIST
#103, Box Gardening
Joined by gardening expert Mark Kane, Karen demonstrates that ample space is not a requirement for a satisfying and successful garden. Box gardens, good for the gardener with limited grounds, are also valuable for testing the growing characteristics of individual plants and playing with design schemes. Even in a one-square-foot stone trough, Lindsay Lee and Karen create a miniature alpine garden. PLANT LIST
Gardening with Natives
Another source of plant materials for the personal garden is wildflowers, which are reemerging as popular ornamentals in American gardens. Karen and friends, including a professional grower of native wildflowers, introduce these new again plants and discuss how they can be acquired ethically and responsibly. PLANT LIST
Surprise Lilies and Other Passions
Brent Heath, one of America's foremost bulb experts, takes Karen on an exploration of the vast realm of bulbs. Which end is up when planting Greek windflowers? How does one plant a river of daffodils? Brent and Karen offer new planting ideas for these favorites of the ancient world.
Imaginative garden objects add a point of focus and often a sense of intrigue to a garden. Karen visits artist, designer and gardener Steve Hesse whose garden is just a bit on the wild side. PLANT LIST
#107, Seeds and Things
This episode explores the almost limitless sources for procuring plants and how to acquire them inexpensively. Karen takes an "anything goes" approach to the many plant choices home gardeners have today. Those choices range from flowering perennials, annuals, biennials, trees, shrubs, grasses and more. Karen visits Ed Rassmasson, owner of The Fragrant Path seed company. PLANT LIST
Onions, in all their varieties, are a beautiful complement to any garden and are actually bulbs of many differing sorts. Karen, together with Brent Heath, explains how, when and where to plant them. Also thrown into the onion bulb mix are the use of alliums, tulips and daffodils to add punctuation to the overall design of a garden. PLANT LIST
#109, The Magic of Witch's Broom
Harlan Hamernik opens his garden to Karen and offers tips and techniques for keeping dwarf conifers at their best. Also explained is the unique role of witches' brooms. PLANT LIST
#110, The Generous Garden
Propagation of plants adds to the many ample sources of plant materials, often right out of one's own garden – and the cost is just the labor. The keys to propagation are knowing a plant's characteristics, the peculiarities of the climate and how to use tools properly. Karen and her friends show how to divide plants, collect and start seeds and encourage established plants to self-seed. PLANT LIST
#111, Good Food
Lively law professor Neil Hamilton engages Karen in an animated conversation about good food – how to grow it, prepare it and procure it.
#112, Pots, Pots, and More Pots
Master stylist and garden photographer Dick Finalo utilizes brilliant-hued annuals to create a flourishing garden in many different pots. Like many gardeners, he has an appreciation of old and rusty objects.
#113, Carrying On with Sage
There are many different types of sages. Karen examines their variety and the unique combinations that can be achieved in a garden. Gardeners Doug and Karen Weir Jimmerson give Karen a tour of their garden shortly after a tornado plowed through it, and they offer Karen cuttings from their sage bushes. Karen also looks at the culture and propagation of sages. PLANT LIST