Standing in the middle of Cesar Chavez Street during the Cinco de Mayo festival on Saint Paul’s West Side is like standing in the busy market streets of Mexico.

Every spring without fail, hundreds of vibrant green hosta leaves emerge from the cool soil of Saint Paul’s Rice Park. What may seem like an annual rite of springtime passage to most is actually the result of a labor of love by the women of the St. Paul Garden Club.

For the 27th year, the Friends School Plant Sale at the Minnesota State Fair Grandstand will offer 2,500 varieties of plants at competitive prices. The Mother’s Day weekend-long event draws about 20,000 people each year, as one of the largest plant sales of its kind in the nation.

There’s something fairy-tale-like about Cottagewood. With its peninsula chock full of lake homes and tidy yards, the charming Cottagewood Store and hometown events, it’s a place that practically screams “Minnesota nice.”

There was a large storm last summer. Linda Burkard was in her cellar listening to the wind, and heard a tree fall. She was certain that spelled the end of the neighborhood fairy garden. When she went outside to check the damage, the fairy garden was safe.

  1. Walk around: Tour your garden, and picture where everything will go. Be careful not to step on emerging perennials.
  2. Clean: Remove any sticks, leftover leaf litter, dead wood and anything that will not turn green.

A glance outside the window brings an unfortunate realization: it’s raining cats and dogs. Despite the lack of sunshine, constant rain showers result in beautiful blooms come May.

Making the most of local resources has always been a priority for Long Lake. From developing new kinds of produce to supporting local farming, the city makes an effort to embrace its community as a supply system.

Are you ready to spruce up your garden, deck or porch for the spring? For the avid gardener, ferns make a great addition in shady areas where regular annuals won’t grow.