Remembering 'The Wisconsin Gardener's' Shelley Ryan

Join Wisconsin Public Television as we celebrate the life and career of the late Shelley Ryan, beloved host and producer of The Wisconsin Gardener.

Portrait of Shelley Ryan
Shelley Ryan

For 21 years, Shelley Ryan inspired thousands of gardeners to express creativity in their own homes, lawns, gardens and landscapes. As a Master Gardener, Ryan’s vast knowledge of gardening in Wisconsin’s range of seasons made her a trusted source for green thumbs across the state.

Ryan endured a long battle with breast cancer, and in 2013, she announced to viewers her cancer had spread and that the 21st season of The Wisconsin Gardener would be her last. She died earlier this year after completing work on the series.

Now, Wisconsin Public Television commemorates Shelley Ryan’s life and career with a special that features memorable moments and guests from throughout The Wisconsin Gardener’s 21 seasons. The Wisconsin Gardener: Celebrating Shelley Ryan airs 7 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 2 and is streaming online nowJoin us in celebrating Shelley Ryan and the contributions she made during her decades of service to gardeners throughout Wisconsin.

The following is a list of episodes featured in the special, in order of appearance. Search for full segments and watch online on The Wisconsin Gardener webpage.

Ep. 1303 – Huitlachoche, Bad Plants Go Good, Emerald Ash Borer, Growing Plant Communities
Ep. 704 – Dividing Iris/Iris Borer
Ep. 1803 – Growing an Edible Wall
Ep. 2102 – Vertical Gardening
Ep. 1204 – Concrete Leaf Sculptures, Multi-colored Asian Ladybeetle
Ep. 1402 – Secret Gardens
Ep. 2002 – The Fossil Record of Ancient Gardens
Ep. 1301 – Dyeing with Herbs/Scarves
Ep. 1104 – Making a Whimsical Garden Statue
Ep. 1906 – Eat Local at La Merenda Restaurant, Vegetable Diseases, Eagle Heights, How to Grow in a Burlap Bag
Ep. 2103 – Junkyard Garden, Artful Shade Garden, Moss Roses, Drought Long and Short Term Effects
Ep. 1903 – A Rock Quarry Garden, Plants for Clay
Ep. 2005 – A Terra Cotta Sculpture Garden, Sisson’s Peony Gardens, Allen Centennial Gardens
Ep. 1603 – Preserving the Harvest, Bounce, Ridges Sanctuary
Ep. 1901 – How Not to Take Care of Container Plants, How Not to Plant Trees
Ep. 1704 – Cancer Announcement, Tree Peonies
Ep. 2001 – How to Buy Plants That Will Live
Ep. 1904 – Riverside International Friendship Gardens, A French Garden in Alma, Growing Lotus Plants in Sturgeon Bay
Ep. 1701 – A Northern Wisconsin Garden, Winter Greenhouses, West of the Lake Gardens, Children’s Garden at Green Bay Botanical, West Madison Agriculture Research Station
Ep. 803 – Creating With Gourds
Ep. 1801 – Longenecker Gardens
Ep. 101 – Rock Gardens
Ep. 1002 – Let’s Go Shopping
Ep. 304 – Native Prairie Plants
Ep. 204 – Bug of the Month, Tent Worms
Ep. 1001 – A Wisconsin Tropical Garden, A Dinosaur Garden, A Horticulturalist Garden
Ep. 2004 – Cicada Killer Giant Wasps
Ep. 1706 – Controlling Buckthorn & Honeysuckle
Ep. 1002 – Staking Perennials
Ep. 2101 – Anderson Japanese Gardens

3 thoughts on “Remembering 'The Wisconsin Gardener's' Shelley Ryan”

  1. Will the special be shown again for those of us
    Who were not able to see the program? And will there be re-runs of The Wisconsin Gardener?
    Shelly was my favorite Gardener to watch.

    Thank you
    Terri Guilete

    1. Hi Terri

      The special did repeat a few times (sorry for the late reply) and repeats one more time 3:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 11 on The Wisconsin Channel. You can watch all past segments of “The Wisconsin Gardener” and the “Celebrating Shelley Ryan” special anytime online at wpt.org/wisconsin-gardener.

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