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The Kitchen Garden: A few things for a small space

Thursday, June 13, 2019
by Ryan Drake | Horticulture Apprentice

So what’s going on in our kitchen garden? A few things for a small space: plant connections, pest control, space efficiency, distribution and maintenance!


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Tags: Garden Display and Design

June Resilient Plant

Sunday, June 02, 2019
by Josh Steger | Director of Horticulture

Spotted Beebalm, Monarda punctata

We’ve got another Wisconsin native coming your way!  Spotted Beebalm or Horsemint (Monarda punctata) is a perennial you won’t forget.  The flowers on this native are just incredible!  Whirled yellow blooms supported by rosy white bracts on the upper portion of the stem form spots as the flower matures.  Flowers will last from July through September making this a great plant to carry interest in your garden for months at a time.  The aroma of the Horsemint, as you guessed, smells like mint and is a pollinator magnet. Though the aroma may seem pleasant to insects and other pollinators; mammals find the scent too strong and stay away from eating it.  So if you have issues with wildlife eating your native plants, this one will be sure to last.

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Tags: Garden Display and Design

May Resilient Plant

Thursday, May 16, 2019
by Josh Steger | Director of Horticulture

If you’re looking for something that will perform all year in your garden, False Blue Indigo is your answer.  This plant has many great attributes in beauty, toughness and novelty uses, making this a great plant for resiliency.  Where do I begin with this one?

Baptisia australis is from the legume family Fabaceae and is native to Wisconsin! Baptisia can be found growing in meadows and prairies throughout Wisconsin.  Baptisia grow about 3 to 4 feet tall and 3 feet wide, taking on the size of a small perennial shrub.  Baptisia takes a good 2 to 3 years to get established.  Once established, they can form a 15 feet long taproot in the ground, making it almost impossible to move.  Having a taproot this long has many advantages. One, it makes the plant more likely to become resistant to drought by finding water sources deeper in the ground.  Two, being that it is a native plant to prairies and meadows, it can withstand harsh winters and controlled prairie burns in the spring. Lastly, within these roots microorganisms produce nitrogen, which is taken up by this plant and other surrounding plants.  

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Tags: Garden Display and Design, Green Initiatives

2019 Lunchtime Wellness Series

Wednesday, May 01, 2019
by Kaitlin McIntosh | Director of External Relations

How much of your day do you spend inside? If you’re like the average American, it’s 93% for your time, according to the Environmental Protection Agency.

Allen Centennial Garden’s program, Lunchtime Wellness, hopes to address this startling statistic by encouraging the UW community to venture outside during the lunch hour and enjoy free wellness activities in the Garden.

Entering its second year, Lunchtime Wellness provides free, nature-based wellness activities during the lunch hour. Seeing 50-100 participants per session last year, the Allen Centennial Garden is excited to bring this offering to even more members of the community. Activities will include making lip balm, flower pounding, meditation, dogs on call, plant propagation and much more.

This program kicks off Wednesday, May 1st and runs every Wednesday from 11:30am-1:00pm until October.

Schedule is subject to change:
May 1: Lip balm
May 8: Shower melts
May 15: Seed bombs
May 22: Propagating spider plants w/ Master Gardener Volunteers
May 29: Nature spray painting
June 5: Dogs on Call
June 12: Guided Meditation
June 19: Air dry clay print dishes or charms
June 26: Flower pounded bookmarks
July 10: Sun prints
July 17: Propagating snake plants w/ Master Gardener Volunteers
July 24: Learn how to press flowers
July 31: Lip balm
August 7: Sensory play dough
August 14: Guided Mediation
August 21: Guided Mediation
August 28:TBD
September 4: Propagate seedum plants w/ Master Gardener Volunteers
September 11: TBD
September 18: Votive holder w/ flowers
September 25: Paint a Pot
October 2: Lip balm

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Tags: Classes

Chanticleer Adventures!

Wednesday, April 24, 2019
by Josh Steger | Director of Horticulture

Josh, Director of Horticulture at Allen Centennial Garden went on a week long adventure as a Guest Gardener at Chanticleer in Wayne, PA. Check out what he learned along the way!

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Tags: Garden Display and Design

April Resilient Plant

Tuesday, April 02, 2019
by Josh Steger | Director of Horticulture

Carex pensylvanica, Oak Sedge

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Tags: Garden Display and Design, Green Initiatives

March Resilient Plant

Monday, March 11, 2019
by Josh Steger | Director of Horticulture

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Tags: Garden Display and Design, Exhibits, Green Initiatives

February Resilient Plant

Thursday, February 14, 2019
by Josh Steger | Director of Horticulture

2019 is the year of resiliency in the Garden. This year we are highlighting some of our most resilient plants we have at the Garden.  These plants are hallmarks of adaptability, utility and beauty in the Garden. Check out our first contender: 


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Tags: Garden Display and Design

2019 Theme: Resiliency

Friday, February 01, 2019
by Ben Futa | Executive Director

Throughout 2019, the Garden will explore resiliency. What does this mean for us – and for you – in the season to come?

First, let’s begin with how we define resiliency. For the Garden, this goes beyond a notion of sustainability. Resiliency is about restoration, regeneration, and adaptability in the face of adversity and pressure. As our climate continues to change, how can we – as gardeners of all experiences – wield our collective potential to make our communities stronger?

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Tags: Garden Display and Design, Exhibits, Green Initiatives

Celebrating 30 Years

Tuesday, January 15, 2019
by Ben Futa | Executive Director

The Garden celebrates a major milestone in 2019: its 30th Anniversary. A moment like this doesn’t happen by accident, nor does it happen often. Three decades of exceptional horticulture, outreach, and education is a tremendous achievement, one made possible by countless individuals who have shared their time, talent and treasure with us. From Ethel Allen (the “Allen” of Allen Centennial Garden) and her generous donation that kick-started the Garden’s construction and sustains us to this day, to our exceptional volunteers, UW students, faculty and staff, our Friends of Allen Centennial Garden members, our donors, our visitors from Madison and beyond and our colleagues in the horticulture industry –– thank you all for allowing us to celebrate this moment.

 Ethel Allen (center) at the dedication ceremony in 1989

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Tags: Exhibits

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Allen Centennial Garden
620 Babcock Drive
Madison WI 53706

Contact Info
Phone: 608-576-2501
E-mail: info@allencentennialgarden.org

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