Getting Ready for Fall!

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It’s late summer and the tendency is to slow down our gardening efforts. We are harvesting from our veggie gardens, but with the shorter days and kids back at school, our gardens aren’t the high priority they once were.

But transitioning from summer to fall can be incredibly rewarding, and I’d hate for you to miss the opportunity of enjoying the unique joys of this season – not to mention getting your bulbs in for spring.

So here are some items that you should think about as summer turns to fall:

Great fall perennials: The classic, of course, is the wonderful mum, but there are also “tall fall” sedums, Rudbeckia, and gorgeous asters in pinks, whites, and purples.

Cool season veggies: We have a great environment in Northern Arizona for favorites like spinach, broccoli and kale. This is when they need to be planted so they can flourish.

Ornamental grasses: Try some Micanthus, Red Fountain Grass or Japanese sweet flag to put the thrill back in your “thrill, fill, spill” container. (Thrill is your centerpiece, fill is to fill it in and spill are the plants you add to spill over the sides.)

Bulbs for spring: Bulbs will be in stock in early September. Start thinking about where you want to see those tulips, irises, and crocuses next spring and stock up on bulbs next month.

I hope you have an awesome time finding those fall jewels that will extend your enjoyment of this year. Remember, there are still several weeks for you to enjoy the color (and flavor) that can come from your own backyard.

Happy gardening!

Psst – While I’ve got you thinking about fall, here’s a Save the Date for your calendar: Warner’s Nursery will be holding its Family Fall Festival on Saturday, October 20. Full of activities for the kids, refreshments, and lots of fun. Another reason to love fall.

Summer: It Ain’t Over Til It’s Over

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All the signs of the end of summer are popping up.

The mornings are getting crisp; the kids are getting ready to head back to school; and some of those lovely flowers you planted in your garden are looking a little – well, done.

But don’t give up on summer yet! We haven’t even gotten to Labor Day Weekend, for goodness sakes!

These are actually some of the best days of summer – the monsoon rains have made everything seem cool and fresh. Your veggie garden is overflowing. You’ve probably already had your vacation and are refreshed and rejuvenated.

Here are some ways that my family and I are planning to celebrate these last weeks before gearing up for fall:

    1. Barbeque – Since the monsoons have arrived, it’s finally felt safe to really enjoy a barbeque; the first part of summer was so dry and the danger of wildfire so prevalent we really couldn’t. It’s a great excuse to gather the kids in the backyard for a few games while dinner is on the grill.
    2. Freshening up the garden – Most of your garden is probably doing fine, but it’s likely that some of your annuals have either exhausted their blooms or gotten overwatered in the monsoons. Grab a few six packs of things like portulaca or diamond frost euphorbia and use them to patch up sections of your garden. They are great late summer plants and can tolerate any end of season hot spells we get.
    3. Hiking – We are lucky to live in a place where we are spoiled for choice in terms of hiking. Buffalo Park. Fat Man’s Loop. The Arizona Trail. And if you are looking for a great hike with a purpose, there’s still time to sign up for the American Cancer Society ‘Climb to Conquer Cancer’ fundraiser on August 18 – six and a half miles of scenic beauty up Snowbowl Road with a party at the top!
    4. Spend every moment you can outside. No, summer isn’t over, but it is in limited supply. The days are getting shorter, the temperatures will soon drop and the holidays will be here before you know it. So make hay while the summer sun shines.

I hope you fully enjoy this last phase of Summer 2018. Remember, if you ever need assistance with your garden or outdoor space, we’re here to help.

Happy gardening,

Early Bird Specials This Saturday

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Set the alarm Friday night and make sure to get to Warner’s between 8 am and 11 am for our  Early Bird Special on August 4th.

  • Buy 2, get 1 free pottery item (including saucers)

  • 15% off any one tree

  • Buy 2, get 1 free annual flower (any size)

  • 30% off all roses, grasses and butterfly bushes

See you bright and early on Saturday for our Early Bird Sale!

Slowing Down to Enjoy the Summer

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Around this time every year, it occurs to me that possibly the most important thing about your garden space is not how it looks or what you are growing, but that it be the place where you take full advantage of how summer seems to slow things down and make our lives less hectic.

Now I realize that’s a little ironic for me to say – summer is our busiest time. The whole Warner’s team is going full speed ahead at the nursery and  I’m working some of my longest days during this season.

But in other ways, summer allows me to kick back.

First off, my three boys are home and my husband and I aren’t juggling endless logistical questions (Whose picking them up from school? Can you take them to practice?) And – big bonus – for a few blessed weeks, we don’t have to be the heavies who hound them about doing their homework. Yay!

Summer always makes me feel like I have more time to do things (I think this has to do with sunset being later – it feels like I get an extra hour or two to my day!) The pace just feels more manageable. Even if I’m putting in a lot of time in our own garden, the work just feels peaceful and relaxing.

Best of all, that work creates a space that lets you reconnect. Inviting friends over for a glass of ice tea or lemonade (or, let’s be honest, wine and beer) is awesome, and you get to show off all your hard work.

A nice outdoor space is also a great way to get the kids outside and away from the various digital screens. Our boys may hate the yard work, but they love the lawn games and water balloon fights we have in our backyard.

A couple of Sundays ago, my family was having breakfast under the arbor in our yard and my 16-year-old said, out of nowhere, “I really love our yard.”

That reminded me again why we all work to create these wonderful outdoor spaces – to take advantage of summer, slow down our hectic lifestyles and get back to what’s real and important; face-to-face time with loved ones in a relaxing and beautiful space.


Free Outdoor Plant Care Seminar Saturday, July 21

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Join us on Saturday, July 21, at 10 am for a FREE Outdoor Plant Care Seminar!

We’ll be talking about proper planting techniques, how best to water your outdoor plants, and proper fertilizer use to keep your plants blooming and producing.

Come to us with all your questions about flowers, shrubs, veggies, trees and more. We look forward to seeing you there.

Arboretum Native Plant Sale July 14

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Join us at The Arboretum at Flagstaff on Saturday, July 14 when we’ll be part of their huge Summer Native Plant Sale from 11 am to 3 pm.

The event is free and includes admission into The Arboretum, where you can see the awesome Butterfly House and join in the Penstemon Walk. There will also be fun activities for kids, so bring the whole family.

In addition to the best native plants in town, there will be food (Wil’s Grill) and beverages (Lumberyard Brewing) for sale and live music from Lucky Lenny and Slugs from Space.

Preview for Arboretum members is from 9 am-11 am and the event opens to the general public at 11 am.

Creating A Special Space in Your Garden

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Part of the true joy of gardening is watching individual plants grow, flourish and provide beauty (and sometimes really great eats!)

But the other thing you cultivate when you create a garden is a special space – a green, leafy outdoor oasis. It makes your garden and yard another “room” where you can unwind and enjoy life with your family.

Here’s what that room looks like at my house.

My yard has a bit of everything, and we’ve set it up so there are little surprises tucked into every corner. There’s a greenhouse for me to putter in and an outdoor chess set to play with. We make sure there are different seating areas where you will have a different view of the pretty flowers, so anyone can find a spot to just hang out and enjoy.

Water features are a big part of our backyard. There’s a waterfall and stream for the kids and dogs to get in when it’s hot.  I like to have running water for the birds, so we made a boulder with a hole on top that bubbles water. They love it! They also play in the stream, bathing and drinking out of it.

There are endless choices for what you can include in your backyard oasis. It can be rustic or elegant, modern or traditional. Just make sure the elements make you and your family happy and make it easy for you to enjoy the outdoors.

Flagstaff is beautiful in the summer and it seems silly to travel somewhere else when you can, with just a little effort, create your own paradise to enjoy all summer long, literally in your backyard.

Warner’s Blood Drive July 6

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Join us for the Summer Drive to Save Lives and donate blood on Friday, July 6 at Warner’s Nursery. We’ll have the cool and comfortable bloodmobile bus from United Blood Services in our parking lot at 1101 E. Butler Ave. from 10 am to 3 pm.

This year, the need for donations couldn’t be more urgent. Donations of blood have decreased by 30% worldwide over the past decade. Much of that is due to older donors not being able to give anymore and new donors not stepping up to take their place. The problem is compounded in summer when people are on vacation or busy with projects.

In addition to being a hero for giving a pint of blood at the Warner’s Nursery blood drive, you’ll also be eligible for some great prizes:

  • 15 percent off your entire purchase of regularly-priced items on Friday, July 6.
  • Entry into a drawing for a $25 Warner’s gift card.
  • Free one-day admission into the Coconino County Fair.
  • Entry into a statewide drawing to win a 2018 VW Tiguan.

For more information, you can contact us at 928-744-1983 or schedule your appointment at Use sponsor code “warners” to find our July 6 blood drive.

We hope to see you there!

Our Kitten & Puppy Crew

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We’ve always been lovers of animals here at Warner’s Nursery.

When we first started at our current location, we had two working cats – Sage and Cinders – whose job it was to control the mouse population. They not only worked at the nursery, they worked their way into our hearts. It became important for us, as a family business, to have animals around, because we always considered them a part of our family.

Our nursery pets have been both dogs and cats, some feral, some adopted from shelters, some that have just wound up on our doorstep, but we have loved them all – and so have many of our customers.

Here’s the 411 on the current members of our 4-legged crew:

Poncho Bob – I probably need to explain the name. He’s our feral kitty, found one day under the fertilizer pallet. The staff wanted to name him after Pancho Villa, the Mexican general (no idea why) and my sons wanted to call him “Bob” (again, no idea why). So in the mashup, he became Poncho Bob, but answers to Poncho. Insists on sitting in my office chair and leaving no room for me. I think we know who’s the boss in this relationship. Favorite activity: curling around my neck and having me wear him like a scarf. Second favorite activity – raiding our stores of catnip plants.

Cruzer – Many of you know our black & white cat. Cruzer is easily one of the most sociable animals we’ve ever had here at Warner’s. He greets customers and will tolerate total strangers carrying him around. Is adverse to you doing paperwork when you could be petting him instead (most of my staff has learned this the hard way). Also a big fan of hide-and-seek; he’s been known to hide behind plants – startling customers when they go to pick them up – or in our cabinet drawers in the office, which he knows how to open.

Oliver came to us after my sister, Marni, started talking about getting a dog. One of our regular customers works with Paw Placement and when I saw Oliver, I knew he was the one for her. He’s a crowd favorite (he still looks like a puppy, although he’s a grumpy old man when you touch his paws). Loves everyone. Like our original cats, a very good mouser. If he sneaks out of the office, he can usually be found at the registers, begging for a treat.

If Oliver is Marni’s rescue buddy, Kina is mine. A few years back we were having our Fall Family Festival when a customer came in with a litter of abandoned puppies that someone had just left outside her work in a box. Kina’s smart and funny and loyal to the family, but you might not see her around because she’s still a bit nervous around other humans and dogs. She has a reason to be nervous about other dogs; it feels like every time we go out with her, we get chased by dogs. We’ve theorized that maybe there’s a “hit” out for her in the doggy world; maybe she wasn’t abandoned at all, but is part of some canine witness protection program!

(No, I don’t give my dogs and cats human characteristics and make up elaborate backstories for them. Why do you ask?)

Our other little doggie girl, Bailey, a beautiful retriever, just came to us this past winter. She’s got the sweetest, most mellow temperament. If she sees a child, she immediately runs to them. She loves all animals too. Well, almost all; she’s still working on her relationships with the cats.

Our cats live on the nursery property and inside the nursery itself in cold weather, but the dogs go home each night with either me or Marni. I’m not quite sure what it says about me that I once left work and forgot my middle son, but I’ve never left without the dogs. (I have a good excuse though – I really, really thought my husband had already taken my son home.)

Because I spend so much time here, the nursery often feels like my “home away from home,” so having beloved family members here (my husband, Dan, working our landscaping business, Marni at the desk next to me, my sons either visiting or working here in the summer, and, of course, the critter crew) is very important to me.

And whether it’s kids running up to Bailey and getting greeted with licks and a wagging tail or Cruzer stopping by to say “Hey,” there’s nothing like a cat or dog to let you know you should chill, enjoy the moment, and have some fun.