Let's Grow Stuff

Let's Grow Stuff

Winter Sowing: Native Seeds

Native plant seeds need a period of cold and wet in order to germinate.

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GREETINGS FROM THE GARDEN. Hosted by gardeners Ben Futa and Qwantese Winters, Let’s Grow Stuff is designed to help the beginning gardener learn the tools of successful vegetable and herb gardening. Each episode provides quick and easy techniques to make growing fun!

Let’s Grow Stuff is back with new episodes and blog posts in 2022 to help you plan and garden this growing season! Visit this page to stream on-demand or watch episodes on our PBS Wisconsin Facebook page or YouTube Channel

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Thu, Dec 1, 2022

Let’s Grow Stuff: Gifts for gardeners

When it comes to thinking of gifts for gardeners, I always put practicality first. Is this something a gardener can...

Thu, Oct 20, 2022

Let’s Grow Stuff: A proximity to plants on the balcony

Greetings from the balcony garden! Sig, here, one final time this season with some reflections on my foray into small-space...

Fri, Oct 7, 2022

Let’s Grow Stuff: Ben’s weekend wins for autumn

One of my favorite things about gardening is that it’s an endless form of job security; it’s a hobby that...

Thu, Aug 4, 2022

Let’s Grow Stuff: Feasts, failures and futures of Sig’s balcony garden

Greetings from the balcony garden! It’s Sig, here, crawling my way through the hot n’ heavy months of summer and...

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Meet the Gardeners

Co-host Ben Futa sits on a garden bench next to a weathered watering can with green shrubs and trees behind and around him

Ben Futa is the co-host of Let’s Grow Stuff and a professional gardener and horticulturist. He is passionate about connecting people to plants — and to one another — through public gardens. Ben grew up gardening on 5.5 acres in northern Indiana. For more than 20 years, he cultivated his green thumb under the enabling influence of his parents. A childhood hobby for gardening evolved into a professional passion for public horticulture through internships with the Lurie Garden in Chicago’s Millennium Park and Fernwood Botanical Garden in southwest Michigan. Ben’s experience shaped his outlook that public gardens are more than the sum of their plants: they must also embrace the “culture” of horticulture, creating gardens and programs with, rather than for, diverse audiences. He believes that gardeners, through their gardens, will save the world.

Co-host Qwantese Winters holds a house plant while standing in front of a vibrant pink and orange wall

Qwantese Winters is the co-host of Let’s Grow Stuff as well as a doula, urban gardener, herbalist and home cook. Her work aims to create space for diverse communities in the world of food growing — through education and accessibility, and the empowerment these two crucial elements bring. Qwantese was born in the suburbs of Chicago but grew up on the West side of Madison in Middleton, Wisconsin. After learning about her grandfather’s Gullah Geechee roots, she was inspired to bring her ancestral history of food growing, herbalism and medicine to her community. She joined the Troy Farms Urban Farmer Trainee program in 2019 to build growing skills. It was at Troy that she discovered her love of helping others see the connection between their culture and the land. Qwantese believes nature and its bounty are home to us all, and seeks to help diverse communities overcome the barriers that prevent the development of a healthy relationship with the land.

Funding for Let’s Grow Stuff is provided by American Transmission Company, Ganshert Nursery and Landscapes, Willy Street Co-op, the Focus Fund for Wisconsin Programming, and Friends of PBS Wisconsin.

Learn how easy it is to get started growing.
—Ben Futa