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The 2006 Prairie Garden available NOW!
by Audrey Hosegood
March 26, 2006

The 2006 Prairie Garden is available now at bookstores and garden centres across the prairies. Featuring Myth, Magic & Meditation this issue promises to speak to your inner gardener. The Prairie Garden Committee, with Guest Editor Stefan Fediuk explores how we are rejuvenated through gardening or by experiencing a garden’s therapeutic energy. Stefan has served the greater Winnipeg area in a horticultural capacity for the last 20 years. He hopes this issue will validate our perceptions about the ability of gardens and gardening to uplift our spirits as well as encourage us to create our own personal outdoor sacred space. This issue's focus on our gardening customs and traditions has led to an interesting variety of stories about special prairie gardens, and includes folklore and myths about our prairie native and garden plants.

Feature articles comprise two-thirds of this edition and emphasize contemporary philosophy and historical influence in the fields of horticulture, gardening and garden mythology with a prairie flavour. Susan Hurrell’s historical chronology of the Green Man recognizes a masculine counterpart to temperamental Mother Nature. Other articles focus on specific aspects of gardening and plants with religious overtones of ancient and contemporary origins.

Orysia Tracz, translator of three publications from Ukrainian into English, provides two articles on Ukrainian folklore and folk medicine.

Of course, no document on the mystical could be complete without a few ideas on magic. Sherry Halcrow, in her article entitled “Practical Magic with Common Garden Plants,” identifies prairie flora to help you create your own witch’s garden. Betty Braaksma describes creating your own medieval garden in “Backyard Camelot: Recreating a Medieval Garden.” On the lighter side, and in the style of the ancient Druids when both trees and humans had souls, Jim Kohut, President of, presents an imaginative story of a dinner party with personified prairie trees.

Complimentary to this story are “Trees: Their Mystery, Magic and Myths” by Michael Allen of Viburnum Tree Experts and “Trees in Winter” by Dr. Bill Remphrey of the University of Manitoba.

The 16-page colour section includes photos of some special gardens, among them Georgina Contant’s Winnipeg garden and the English Garden at Assiniboine Park. This year’s featured insect – the dragonfly – is portrayed to accompany an article by Dr. Terry Galloway of the University of Manitoba. Canadian hybridized roses are highlighted, and discussed in Anne Jackson’s article about our “Love Affair with Roses.” African violets, this year’s featured houseplant, are illustrated as is the winner of The 2005 Prairie Garden Award for Excellence: Honeywood (Dr. A.J. Porter) Heritage Nursery. Images of forbidden, poisonous and moon garden plants are also featured as are black flowering plants and peonies.

The traditional General Gardening section looks at a wide variety of topics and includes heritage vegetables, hints on composting, and growing clover as an alternative to a traditional lawn. Learn more about how to control vegetable pests from Julie Soroka of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada. Ruth Asher reports on the North American Lily Conference held in Winnipeg last July (2005). Some special prairie gardeners who died recently are remembered. Two new gardening books especially for Albertans are reviewed: Perennials for Alberta and Best Garden Plants for Alberta. (Lonepine has since published similar titles for Saskatchewan and Manitoba.) All this and much, much more!

Be prepared to be entertained by the 2006 edition of The Prairie Garden. This is the 67th year for this digest-sized gardening annual published by The Prairie Garden Committee, a group composed entirely of volunteers. The Prairie Garden has a standing order list of gardening enthusiasts who receive this book as soon as it comes off the press each year. To order, or to be placed on the standing order list, send your request along with a cheque or money order for $11.95 ($9.00 plus $2.95 shipping and handling) to: The Prairie Garden, P.O. Box 517, Winnipeg, Manitoba, R3C 2J3. Orders may also be placed by telephone: (204) 489-3466, fax: (204) 489-1644, or by email at: For more information, visit our Web site: or contact the Editor, Audrey Hosegood, at (204) 944-9907 or by email at the address above.

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