Energizing Your Future

Ready to GrowSmart and start planning your spring planting?

It may be cold outside, but that balmy spring planting weather will be here before we know it. Now is the perfect time to start planning your garden and landscaping projects!

If you like colorful outdoor spaces, you may want to attend “Create a Garden Filled with Flowers from Spring through Frost” presented by nationally known gardening expert Melinda Myers at the 2020 PBS Wisconsin Garden & Landscape Expo at the Alliant Energy Center in Madison. Her presentation is on Saturday, Feb. 8, at 12 p.m., and Sunday, Feb. 9, at 12:45 p.m.

“You don’t need a huge yard to enjoy flowers from early spring through the end of fall,” says Myers. “Just pick a few key flowers that peak at different times, design for maximum impact and enjoy the many benefits including the birds, butterflies and bees they attract. And, be sure to incorporate perennials, including some native species, with multiple seasons of interest even in fall and winter.”

Since 2014, ATC has partnered with Melinda Myers to help landowners learn about compatible vegetation near transmission lines. Trees and shrubs are an important part of the landscape. But trees, shrubs and transmission lines can be an unsafe combination. Transmission lines can sway or sag, and tall or nearby vegetation can compromise the safety and reliability of the electric transmission system. ATC’s Grow Smart program helps property owners and communities identify low-growing, beautiful, native vegetation that can be planted the smart way – a safe distance from transmission line rights-of-way.

In collaboration with Melinda Myers, we have developed two guides to identify low-growing vegetation that supports pollinator habitats and is safe to plant in our rights-of-way. These suggested plants have deep root systems that are both beautiful and help attract bees, butterflies and birds. View or print the Grow Smart Planting Guide or Grow Smart Pollinator Guide and bring it to your local garden center.