Iowa PBS presents Gardening With Steil

Anticipation is growing for Iowa PBS’s upcoming gardening special. Gardening With Steil premieres on air and online Sunday, March 1 at 2:30 p.m. as part of Festival 2020. The program will be rebroadcast Saturday, March 7 at 1 p.m. on Iowa PBS’s main channel, with additional airings on Iowa PBS WORLD .3 and Iowa PBS Create .4.

From growing succulents, air plants and mini hostas to designing terrariums and cutting gardens, Gardening With Steil will intrigue, inform and entice viewers to add a little garden goodness to their lives. The program features host Aaron Steil, the assistant director of Reiman Gardens at Iowa State University, and co-host Cindy Haynes, associate professor and consumer horticulture extension specialist at Iowa State University, as they travel across the state and share current garden trends.

“We wanted to explore a variety of topics growing in popularity within the gardening community and beyond,” said Iowa PBS Senior Producer and Director Andrea Coyle. “These concepts are accessible and applicable to anyone interested in gardening. Whether you live in an urban or rural area, Gardening With Steil has something for you.”

Viewers will join Haynes as she travels to In the Country Garden and Gifts in Independence, Iowa, to meet with owner and industry expert, Josh Spece. There she learns about succulents, air plants and mini hostas. Steil then shows viewers how they can “bring the outdoors in” using these unique plants in a couple of fun projects.

Gardening might be a hobby for some viewers, but using science can help gardens and surrounding ecosystems thrive. Gardening With Steil explores becoming a citizen scientist with volunteer Stephanie Fox from the Iowa Butterfly Survey Network. Nathan Brockman, curator of the Christina Reiman Butterfly Wing, also shares tips and tricks for attracting and protecting pollinators like butterflies, bees and birds.

Viewers will also learn how to design a cutting garden to ensure they always have fresh flowers on hand while maintaining garden beauty all season long — and how to arrange these beautiful cut flowers using some unexpected plants from their own backyards.

In addition to Iowa PBS’s statewide broadcast, viewers from across the state and beyond will be able to livestream Gardening With Steil on, Facebook and YouTube. The program will also be available on demand on and the PBS Video App.

Gardening With Steil is presented by Iowa PBS as part of Festival 2020, Iowa PBS’s only extended pledge drive of the year. With programming airing on Iowa PBS .1, Iowa PBS WORLD .3 and Iowa PBS Create .4, Festival 2020 takes place February 23-24, February 28-March 9 and March 14-15.