Posts Tagged ‘Gardening’

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Saranac Lake’s Daffest Coincides With Mother’s Day

IMG_6423Springtime in the Adirondacks can get a bad reputation sometimes, thanks to the black flies and muddy trails. For my family, spring is an opportunity to witness change, even if that change comes with some bug bites and dirty shoes.

We have played hard during the winter. Now we’re looking for some colorful indicators that the cold weather is behind us and summer is around the corner.

Native wild flowers, like marsh marigolds or the trout lily, are part of Mother Nature’s subtle approach to brightening spring.  The thousands of bright yellow daffodils planted for Saranac Lake’s Daffest are the much bolder approach by humans. » Continue Reading.


Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Lake George Garden Club Perennial Plant Sale May 21st

lake george perenial saleThe Lake George Community Garden Club’s Annual Perennial Plant Sale will be held in Shepard Park in Lake George Village on Saturday, May 21th from 9 am to 2:30 pm.

The sale offers hundreds of high-quality perennial plants grown and dug from our member’s zone 4 and 5 gardens.

Garden club members will be available to share planting instructions, tips for successful gardening, and other information. Special features of the sale include dish gardens, painted clay pots, and garden art objects all created by Garden Club members. » Continue Reading.


Saturday, April 30, 2016

Paul Hetzler: Consider The Dandelion

dandelion by greg humeApril showers bring May flowers, but not all posies are a welcome sight. Although it is quite possible they arrived on the Mayflower, dandelions do not get the esteem they deserve as plucky immigrants that put down firm roots in a new land, or as a vitamin-packed culinary delight, or as a multi-purpose herbal remedy.

On this latter point, dandelion is so well-respected that it garnered the Latin name Taraxicum officinale, which roughly means “the official remedy for disorders.” There are many reported health benefits of dandelion, including as a liver support and for alleviating kidney and bladder stones, as well as externally as a poultice for skin boils. I don’t pretend to know every past and present medicinal use of the plant, and I strongly recommend consulting a respected herbalist, as well as your health care provider, before trying to treat yourself. » Continue Reading.


Thursday, April 7, 2016

American Hazelnut: A Tasty Treat For Native Landscaping

american hazelnut in bloomWhile many people might be familiar with store bought European hazelnuts, or the popular spread Nutella which is made from hazelnuts and chocolate, the American hazelnut is also a tasty treat if you are lucky enough to beat the birds and other critters to it! The ½” edible nuts ripen in the fall, but the flowers typically bloom in April. » Continue Reading.


Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Garden, Landscape Symposium Set For Fort Ticonderoga

garden symposiumThe King’s Garden at Fort Ticonderoga will present its Fifth Annual Garden & Landscape Symposium on Saturday, April 9, 2016. This day-long symposium, geared for both beginning and experienced gardeners, provides insights from garden experts who live and garden in Upstate New York and Northern New England.

This one-day program focuses on practical, easy-to-implement strategies for expanding and improving your garden or landscape. The programs are offered in an informal setting that encourages interaction between presenters and attendees. » Continue Reading.


Monday, February 22, 2016

Forest Product Biochar Enriches Soils, Improves Productivity

enriching soils with biocharAt this time of year, many a gardener’s daydreams turn to the springtime promise of sprouting plants. Seed catalogs start arriving in the mail months before the soil will be thawed and drained enough for planting, and we use this downtime to plan for the coming season.

At Green Fire Farm in Peacham, Vermont, Michael Low is also planning, not only for this year’s crops, but for biochar to help those crops grow. He harvests about 50 cords of low-grade wood each year on his 67-acre homestead, and turns the wood into his own version of black gold. Biochar is charcoal used for agricultural purposes. Its advocates laud its potential to retain soil nutrients, sustain moisture levels in both drought and heavy rain conditions, and sequester carbon in the ground. For evidence of biochar’s usefulness, they point to the terra preta of the Amazon region, where biochar-enriched soils have maintained high fertility for thousands of years. » Continue Reading.


Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Front Yard Forestry: Cabling Weak Trees

Front yeard foresteryOne of the ways Mother Nature keeps the forests healthy and strong is by “letting” trees with poor structure split during high wind or ice load events. Such trees become decayed and die young. Those with better genetics (or better luck) are the trees that reach maturity. This selection process is great for woodlands, but it doesn’t work quite the same way for trees growing in yards, streets and parks.

Trees often develop imperfections. The vast majority of these are benign, but some can be dangerous. To avoid breakage of large limbs and associated flying lawsuits and debris, trees with obvious defects are often removed. But since many problems are a result of human activities, it hardly seems fair to cut down a mature shade tree if there’s an alternative. » Continue Reading.


Sunday, January 3, 2016

Winter Gardening: Reading, Houseplants

DiffenbachiaCornell3002Here are a couple of books to consider reading this winter from the comfort of a cozy chair as you wait for spring to come.

Anyone interested in growing any kind of plant should be glad to receive How Plants Work, the science behind the amazing things plants do by Linda Chalker-Scott, a professor of horticulture at Washington State University. This is not a how-to garden book but instead a book to help you understand and appreciate how plants grow. The author has a very readable writing style and explains the whys of many gardening practices and plant functions. She also debunks several garden myths about nutrient supplements and management practices. Every serious gardener should read this book this winter! » Continue Reading.


Monday, November 23, 2015

Lake Pleasant Green Infrastructure Demonstration Projects

This rain garden is a landscaped depression that captures and absorbs stormwater from the Hamilton County Soil and Water Conservation District’s driveway and roof. My coworkers and I completed the installation of green infrastructure demonstration projects at the Hamilton County Soil and Water Conservation District office in Lake Pleasant including a rain garden, a bioswale and two rain barrels.

Local homeowners and municipalities have the opportunity to see the benefits of stormwater pollution prevention practices. The projects are designed to protect and preserve water quality as essential aspects of public health, a vibrant local economy and a flourishing ecosystem. » Continue Reading.


Monday, November 2, 2015

Master Gardener Program Planned

MG'sApplications for the January 2016 Master Gardener Training Program are now being accepted at Cornell Cooperative Extension in Warren County.

The course includes weekly presentations by Cornell University faculty, Cooperative Extension staff, and local experts on a wide range of garden topics. A binder of important resources that supplement the course lectures is provided. » Continue Reading.


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