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Saturday, October 01, 2016
Thursday, September 29, 2016 11:20 AM
Fall is officially here, with nights longer and cooler and meals becoming a bit more substantial after a summer’s worth of grilling and salads. More time is spent in the kitchen these days as I try to incorporate warty carrots, potatoes . . .
  • Belfast Creative Coalition will host “Cultivate: Belfast Area Farm & Art Tour” on Saturday, October 8, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
  • Autumn has come on slowly this year, with no early frost and a gradual cooling in the evenings and early mornings. In the middle of the day, temperatures have been just about perfect for working outside. . . .
  • My fellow gardeners, this has been a strange and magical growing season. While spring showed up early and mild, there were a couple of surprise cold snaps, such as the one that completely decimated fruit tree crops in Connecticut . . .
  • Discussions of fall planting for spring displays often begin and end with bulbs — daffodils and tulips. And it’s true that when we picture the return of spring to sad, brown New England we picture drifts of daffodils or . . .
  • When I walk through the garden at this time of abundant harvest, I can’t believe that we ever worried or agonized over emerging seeds and vulnerable seedlings. Corn is nine feet tall, tomatoes toppling from their cages . . .
  • Late August is the perfect time for planting new perennials and fruit trees in the garden: the severe summer temperatures are cooling down, rains fall a bit more reliably and there’s plenty of time for the new selections . . .
  • By late August both gardeners and gardens are somewhat the worse for wear, especially after a summer like this, with drought and record heat. It’s tempting to toss in the trowel and call it a season, but wait . . .
  • Succulents, including sempervivums, sedums, aloes, kalanchoes, echeverias and other fleshy-leaved varieties, have become increasingly popular in recent years. While once found primarily in the crevices of stone walls . . .
  • Summer is putting on its final burst, the late daisies and early goldenrod dusty and drooping in the heat. We also are drooping by the end of a 90-degree day. Now is the time when dinner need only be . . .
  • I often think that planting blueberries in Maine is, as in the British idiom, like bringing coals to Newcastle. Why bother growing them when Maine has 44,000 acres of wild blueberries in cultivation throughout the state . . .
  • The smallish island of Vinalhaven has what may be one of the more unusual Maine garden clubs: no slate of officers, no dues, no meetings. If you want to open your garden up for visitors, you tell a coordinator . . .
  • Summer afternoon — summer afternoon; to me those have always been the two most beautiful words in the English language,” said the oft-quoted Henry James. I feel he might have improved . . .
  • So far it’s shaping up to be a hot, dry summer. Rainfall has been scant, with temperatures more resembling those of July and August rather than late June. In general, a garden needs at least one inch . . .
  • After a week of unseasonably cold, wet weather it was a relief to return to days filled with warm breezes and sunshine. Garden paths dried out, the lawn mower came out of the shed, and it was possible to . . .
  • In a few days it will officially be midsummer, but we hardly need a date on the calendar to tell us spring has, before our eyes, morphed into summer. The myriad shades of green that mark the leafing . . .
  • It’s frustrating, after we endure endless months of winter and mud season and are finally rewarded with perfect gardening days — warm sun and light zephyrs — to find we are expected to share . . .
  • Sunflower seedlings pop up in our garden each spring, scattered by the goldfinches and chickadees who feed on the fat seed heads in the autumn. The seedlings are free for the taking . . .
  • You’ve heard of weekend warriors, athletes who plunge into strenuous activities on Saturday and Sunday, then limp, aching and groaning, into work on Monday. Gardeners can easily fall prey . . .
  • I got an SOS call from my gardening partner in northern Vermont recently. The unpredictably cold spring had delivered a hard frost and the tips of his onion plants were all white. . . .
  • Gardeners from Maine to Masachusetts are complaining about the cold and rainy month of May thus far, or at least the ones I know are. As if damp and cloudy weren’t bad enough . . .