U of M Extension teams with WCCO for Smart Gardens

By Sam Bauer

It’s 8 a.m. inside the WCCO-AM studios and callers are already in the queue, seeking expert help from University of Minnesota Extension and Master Gardeners as “Smart Gardens” begins.

And expertise is available in droves during “Smart Gardens,” WCCO’s new hour-long hit show covering gardens, lawns and more. A sampling from a recent show:

  • Will blood meal really repel squirrels? Callers report good results.
  • What’s a good fruit to plant in southern Minnesota? Consider a Saskatoon berry.
  • Where should I plant a rhododendron? Anywhere between part shade and full sun, in moist, acidic, well-drained soil.

A trio composed of Julie Weisenhorn, state director of Extension’s Master Gardener program, Mary Meyer, Extension horticulturist at the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum, and Sam Bauer, Extension turfgrass specialist, take turns as host Denny Long’s weekly guests on “Smart Gardens” on 830 on the AM dial. They’re occasionally joined by colleagues or graduate students in horticulture.

“This is what we were looking for,” says Long, a ‘CCO veteran familiar to listeners throughout the state. “We like having Extension here because people know they’re getting trustworthy information. It’s great – and it’s proven wildly popular.”