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Friday, July 20, 2018
  • It might seem premature to be talking about insect activity with gardens still in the planting stages but, like rust, bugs never sleep. We've already given up on getting any early greens unless they're grown under hoops covered with . . .
  • If you'd asked me as a child the best way to eat rhubarb, I'd have said, first, snitch a cup of sugar from your mom's kitchen, then snitch a big stalk of rhubarb. Lick the rhubarb stalk, dip the end in sugar, then eat. Grownups seem . . .
  • Who wants to write about gardening in the spring? Spring isn't the time to write about gardening; it's the time to be out doing it. I try to sit at the keyboard, but the siren song of purple asparagus nosing out of the soil calls to me. . . .
  • That special day rolls around again this Sunday - Mother's Day, one of those holidays that has no strictures or huge demands to make of you. Show up at Mom's, have some food or not, give a gift that can be simple or elaborate . . .
  • True confession time: while those near and dear to me in Maine endure 45-degree days and even cooler nights, I'm still in southwest Florida, where spring temperatures are climbing into the high 80s, with humidity that makes . . .
  • Home & Garden: The Beginner Gardener
    Everyone is a neophyte gardener at some time in his or her life. The lucky ones learn at the side of a parent or grandparent at an early age; the rest of us pick it up as we go along. I'm in southwest Florida as I write this, surrounded . . .
  • April, far from being the cruelest month, can be a prime planting and planning season in Maine. As soon as the soil dries out, which may take a while this year, trees, shrubs, evergreens and perennials can be put in, as well as . . .
  • April's weather has been true to form, with cold showers that are said to bring May flowers, but one of the earliest flowers to put in an appearance, along with spring bulbs, are forsythia, whose vibrant yellow flowers actually precede . . .
  • It's time to put the harsh winter behind us and think about happier days ahead, to start seeds of warm-weather crops like tomatoes and their boon companions basil and peppers. Or, if you don't plan to grow your own seedlings . . .
  • The official beginning of spring, the day when the sun's path crosses the equator to the north and days become longer than the nights, was March 21. For those living in the Northeast, where this past winter saw a return to . . .
  • The worst winter in recent history has just dumped another load of what is now referred to as "a wintery mix" on Maine, so why are we thinking about lawns? Because now is the time to think and dream and plan about . . .
  • Despite lingering Arctic cold, the trees we observe on early morning dog walks are waking up, responding to the strengthening spring sunlight. Sap has begun to run in tapped maples whenever the temperatures climb above . . .
  • Call them crepes, latkes, blintzes or just plain pancakes. All are appropriate fare on Shrove Tuesday, also known as Pancake Tuesday and more familiarly known as Mardi Gras, which occurred earlier this week. Mardi Gras . . .
  • If you're eager to start growing something inside, and who isn't, now is the perfect time to plant onions from seed. Because a gardener can start onions in several ways - from seeds, plants or sets - it can be confusing to decide which method to select. . . .
  • Even though the snow drifts above the windowsills and spring seems very far away, signs of its arrival abound. Branches cut for forcing take very little time before buds poke out and begin to unfurl. The days are once again long enough . . .
  • On Valentine's Day, chocolate is required for all your loved ones, possibly with a few roses thrown in for added brownie points - wait, did I say brownie? I rest my case. Start your Valentine's Day chocolate fest at breakfast with . . .
  • During the extreme cold and wind of the past few weeks our major source of exercise and amusement has come from tending the home fires: filling stoves, carrying wood inside and ashes outside, stoking the furnace and sweeping up bark and kindling bits. . . .
  • Unless you are a hermit dwelling in a remote cave, you're either planning or have been invited to a party on February 2 to celebrate the 48th Super Bowl. While any football game technically lasts for only 60 minutes of play, split up into . . .
  • Travel along the back roads and highways of Maine after the recent ice storms was both beautiful and eerie: the ice-bound trees that arched over the roads made a winter wonderland, until you came to areas where the ice had . . .
  • The weather outside is frightful, but inside is made more delightful with a good garden-related book. Topping many lists of new publications from the past year is one that's started me dreaming of snowdrops and witch hazel. . . .
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