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A white clematis in the author's garden. (Henry Homeyer photograph)

Notes From the Garden: Patriotic Blooms Outlast the Booms of July 4th

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Among my earliest memories is one from a Fourth of July celebration back when I was just a tadpole — in 1949, perhaps. My sister and I sat on the hood of our parents’ 1938 Buick, a big black sedan, and watched fireworks way past my bedtime. Red, white and blue rockets zoomed skyward, filling us with awe. Now, all …

Some Plants Need a Pinch to Grow On Each Year

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

I was presenting at an outdoor gardening event recently when a woman walked by wearing a T-shirt that said, “No Pinching!” Maybe she had young kids, or was a kindergarten teacher. Clearly she was not an experienced gardener. Pinching plants is good, and now is the time to do it. Let’s start with fruit trees. Many apple trees are loaded with small fruit …

Tips to Extend Life Of Home Appliances

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Show your workhorse appliances a little TLC, and they may stick around a bit longer. Replacing a refrigerator or oven range can take a bite out of your budget, as can buying a new washer or dryer. To make sure your appliances stand the test of time and continue to perform, follow these pointers: Keep Your Fridge And Freezer Clean Besides regularly cleaning …

Charcoal or Gas?

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Among outdoor grilling fans, no rivalry burns hotter: gas grills vs. charcoal grills. We asked some grilling experts to weigh in on this searing question as the spring/summer grilling season arrives.. Gas Is Convenient Aaron Nelson, owner of Quality Grill Service in Indianapolis, said grills powered by gas …

Notes From the Garden: For Mother’s Day, Consider Annuals

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Okay, Mother’s Day is coming right up, and you haven’t bought her anything. Instead of getting another electric waffle iron or promising to wash her car, just like you did last year (but haven’t done yet), head to …

Notes From the Garden: Spring Is for Wildflowers

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Wildflowers have wowed me since I was a little boy. I remember seeing pink lady-slippers in a pine woods in Hingham, Mass., when I was just 2 years old and being awed by them. My mom wouldn’t let …

Notes From The Garden: Parsnips and Sorrel Are Early Garden Treats to Harvest Now

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

On April 15 — tax day — I celebrated getting my taxes done by eating my first food of the spring from my vegetable garden. Just a day or two after the snow melted I dug into the …

Replacement

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Peter Henderson plants a spruce outside his home in White River Junction on Monday. “Hopefully, a snow plow won’t hit it this year,” he said. Henderson said he plans to plant peas next week if the weather cooperates.Valley …

Notes From the Garden: Until the Soil Dries Out, Resist the Urge to Dig, Till and Rake

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Spring has been slow in showing its colors. Snowdrops, usually up in early March at my house, were a month late. Crocus, the early ones, and winter aconite (a flower that is a nice school-bus-yellow color) are finally blooming. But everything is slow, and the ground is still …

Notes From the Garden: The Subtle Floral Art of Ikebana

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Some people collect salt and pepper shakers, others license plates or stuffed teddy bears. I collect different species of flowers that I grow in my garden. Although I lost track long ago, I grow well over 100 species …

Notes From the Garden: Starting Seeds Indoors

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

After arguably the coldest, snowiest winter on record, I am ready for spring. OK, maybe the winter of 1934 was colder. So what? I still have snow, and my woodpile is pathetic. I am picking up sticks and …

Notes From the Garden: The Gentle Horticultural Art of Kokebana

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

This time of year I am champing at the bit, all set to garden, but without much I can do outside. So I was delighted to visit a friend in Maine who was experimenting with an art form/planting technique that was new to me: kokebana. This is a …

Notes From the Garden: Apple Tree Pruning Starts Late This Year

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Often the snow on the hilly south side of my house has melted by early March, allowing snowdrops to push their little noses out of the ground and permitting me to pick buds that open up indoors. That …