Hello, it's 01:22AM November 27, 2014

LatestHomeAndGarden

Carol Barany: Leave those leaves alone

Whenever I see a stray plastic bag of leaves on the curb, I want to bring it home with me. Leaves are one of nature’s most helpful gifts. For me, more desirable than a garden without an errant leaf in sight is a garden with rich living earth, teeming with organic matter. If you value tidiness more than soil fertility and meticulously scoop up every fallen leaf, you’ve taken away the vital material that soil needs to r …

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Carol Barany: Time to save your succulents

If you enjoy creating dazzling ornamental gardens in containers, you’ve probably discovered tender succulents. These days, Echeverias, Aeoniums, Crassulas, Kalanchoes and Graptoverias are coveted and collected. The brilliant colors and amazing sculptural forms are irresistible, and you can never have too many. But vulnerable to even a light frost, these plants must be overwintered indoors. If you haven’t brought yours …

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Food-scrap recycling gaining ground

Karen Rozmus stood in front of a room full of municipal and county officials and experts on solid waste disposal and talked about my cantaloupe rinds. Not my cantaloupe rinds specifically. But the food scraps of the 725 households in Oak Park, Ill., participating in the village’s food scrap composting program, one of which is mine. I listened proudly at the recent Transforming Waste in Chicagoland symposium, organized …

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Shedding light on ‘Ask This Old House’

BRECKSVILLE, Ohio — When Steve Fening wanted to install landscaping lighting at his house, he didn’t call an electrician. He contacted “Ask This Old House.” Fening emailed the PBS show in August after reading it was planning a trip to Northeast Ohio and was looking for homeowners to appear on the program. In late September, an “Ask This Old House” crew spent the day at his home, filming a segment on landscape lighting …

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WSU Extension/Master Gardeners: Think garlic in October

October is a great time to start thinking about ordering and planting your garlic, which will be harvested next summer. Did you ever wonder how garlic got its name? The word comes from the Old English garleac, which means “spear leek.” Garlic is a root crop and member of the onion family, as are shallots, chives and leeks. Native to Central Asia, garlic is a centuries-old staple in the Mediterranean region as well as …

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Master Gardeners: Plant kale that’s pretty and edible



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Carol Barany: Turn annuals into perennials with a little work this winter

For more than 40 years, my sister-in-law, Kit, has enjoyed sumptuous summer pots brimming with the blooms of peach, coral and scarlet geraniums, each one a precious heirloom propagated from plants that belonged to her mother, Lou, and a neighbor, Mrs. Chapman. Overwintering geraniums is something most frugal gardeners did in the past, increasing their collections by graciously trading over the backyard fence. Busy …

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Clean out your closets for profit

We had such a glorious summer that the transition to fall feels seamless this year. But it won’t be long until the weather turns frigid. Are you ready? Now is the perfect time to do a thorough closet cleaning so you’re prepared for cooler temperatures. For many people, making decisions about what to keep and discard is difficult. Harder still can be figuring out what to do with the unwanted items. Fortunately, the burg …

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How to rid gardens of pests without pesticides

Pesticides are generally just not good. They kill beneficial bugs as well as bad bugs, and adversely impact our environment, especially bee and butterfly populations, according to experts. Most of the United States is experiencing dramatic losses in honey bees. Nationally, over last winter (between October 2013 and April 2014), 23.2 percent of managed honey bee colonies died, according to the eighth annual national su …

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In the Garden: Gardens need care ahead of first frost

Frost is nature’s way of bringing the gardening season to an end. Honestly, there have been years when I hoped Jack would arrive in mid-August, bringing an early dormancy for the garden and a tired gardener. This year, I wish this warm, glorious growing season would linger for months. The reality is that the first frost will arrive by mid-October, most likely on a night of clear skies and calm winds that allow radian …

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Gardening gadget works as both a bucket, watering can

The growing season is just a memory, but it’s not too early to start planning for next year. Heck, if you have houseplants, you won’t even have to wait until next year. That preparation can go beyond what vegetables and flowers to plant and on to new garden implements, particularly cool new garden implements. Behold: Colapz. Colapz, by Colour Wave, is a combination bucket/watering can for the gardener with space limit …

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Photos/video: Fall comes softy to Yakima Valley

Summer is fading and being replaced by crisp, shorter days and cool breezes. For the farmer, the landscaper and the gardener, autumn brings new experiences and new challenges each year. Soon the Valley will be covered in a rainbow of colored leaves, but for now, the changes are much more subtle and small. …

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Smelly pests are invading Yakima-area gardens

We have had a number of questions in the Master Gardener Diagnostic Clinic about “stings,” discoloration and sunken areas that turn pithy under the skin, especially on tomatoes and peppers. Adult stink bugs are a well-known family easily recognized by their shield-like shape, five-segmented antennae and for producing a most disagreeable odor when provoked. They come in various shades of green, brown and black. There …

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