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Archives for July 30, 2014

Keep growing with season-extending gardening tips for fall

(BPT) – Warm weather, continued care and robust plants have yielded a bounty of beautiful, fresh vegetables – and personal satisfaction – from your garden this season. As the weather cools and fall approaches, it is not time to hang up your hat, gloves and trowel for the year. Autumn provides optimum weather and ample opportunity to keep growing and harvesting delicious, healthy produce well into the season.

Some gardeners assume that when fall arrives and kids return to school, they’ll have less time to garden, and may experience less success from their garden plots. But cooler temperatures and fall conditions can actually make gardening easier and more enjoyable. Many of fall’s best-producing vegetables are also colorful, making them great additions to flower beds and containers.

If you loved summer gardening, you can keep your garden growing right through fall. Here’s how to make the most of fall season gardening:

Size up the soil

Most vegetable plants require full sun for six or more hours a day, and because fall provides a bit less sunlight than summer, you may need to relocate your plot to make the most of shorter days. If moving your garden isn’t an option, you can still take full advantage of sunshine by planting veggies in containers or by creating a raised bed in a sunny spot.

If you’ll be reusing your summer garden plot, remove any leftover debris. Don’t forget to pull up weeds before they go to seed. Fluff any compacted soil with a garden fork. Next, test the soil to see if any amendments are needed. Even if your soil is in good shape, adding a 2-inch layer of bagged compost or a balanced, natural fertilizer like Bonnie Plant Food can give plants a boost.

Be prepared for frost. Keep materials on hand to protect plants when frost threatens, such as floating row cover, a cold frame or a cloche. On frosty, cold nights, move container plants to a protected spot. Not sure when frost will arrive in your area? Check out the USDA frost map on the Bonnie Plants website.

Pick your plants

While crops like strawberries and tomatoes have faded to sweet summer memories, many plants thrive in fall. To ensure a successful  harvest, it’s important to pick the right plants and  give yourself a jump start by using transplants, rather than starting off with seeds. Planting six-week-old transplants ensures you’ll have the best opportunity to take advantage of fall’s shorter season, and you’ll harvest sooner than if you plant from seed.

Producers like Bonnie Plants provide garden retailers with transplants intended to grow well during the specific growing season and are suited for your geographic region. Seasonally appropriate transplants ensure you’ll have greater success in your garden. An added bonus of fall planting is that many cool crops are also packed with nutrition and are among the healthiest vegetables you can eat.

Choose hardy crops that can withstand light frost and temperatures as low as 25 degrees. Hardy Bonnie favorites for fall include:

* Broccoli – This versatile veggie is packed with vitamins K, C and A, and is a good source of folate.

* Cabbage – A staple of Oktoberfest celebrations across the country, cabbage comes in several varieties, all of which are high in beta-carotene, vitamins C and K and fiber.

* Kale – Some varieties of kale, like Winterbor Kale, actually taste better when kissed by frost. A prolific producer, kale thrives in fall gardens and is a good source of vitamins A, C, K and B6, as well as manganese.

* Leeks – Prized by gourmets for their milder flavor, leeks are frost-tolerant in all but the coldest planting zones. The health benefits of all onions are well documented, and leeks also add a pop of bright color to culinary dishes. 

* Spinach – This nutrient-rich green does as well in fall’s cooler temperatures as it does in summer heat. Spinach will continue to produce throughout the season, providing a tasty source of vitamins A, C, K and E, as well as the minerals iron, potassium and magnesium.

The end of summer doesn’t have to herald the end of your garden harvest and enjoyment, or a return to the grocery store produce aisle. With the right fall crops, you can achieve a satisfying, healthful harvest throughout the fall. Visit to learn more about fall gardening and cool-weather crops.

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Pyrmont Bridge garden plan could separate cyclists and pedestrians

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Planning Minister Pru Goward said the ‘‘extraordinary and exciting project’’ would be accompanied by seven months of food events, including a final harvest celebration before it is taken down in April.

‘‘This is the first time in Australia, and possibly the world, that a major tourism precinct has collaborated on a composting program of this scale,’’ Ms Goward said.

Drawing visitors to Darling Harbour: The proposed temporary fruit and vegetable garden.

Drawing visitors to Darling Harbour: The proposed temporary fruit and vegetable garden. Photo: Supplied

As the garden grows, the compost will be drawn from food scraps collected from a range of local businesses, including the aquarium, diverting more than a tonne of organic waste from landfill each day.

But the scale and design of the project has raised immediate concerns about how pedestrians and cyclists on the increasingly busy heritage structure will negotiate their way around it.

‘‘It’s a very large and very intrusive installation on a very busy thoroughfare,’’ said Bicycle NSW’s Sophie Bartho, who noted the bridge ‘‘already has a history of congestion and conflict’’.

‘‘What we’ve requested is to see the traffic and safety reports so that we know that the appropriate due diligence has been done, because this is a really important access point for the city.’’

The Pedestrian Council’s Harold Scruby said the proposed traffic management plan could make safety on the bridge worse.

Those briefed on the project last week, including Mr Scruby, were told it proposed to funnel bike traffic along the northern side of the garden and pedestrian traffic to the south. But that is still being debated.

‘‘By putting the dedicated [bike] path in not only will the cyclists increase speed quite dramatically coming off it onto the western side, which will then become a shared path again, they’ll have real problems in working out how pedestrians are going to cross the dedicated path,’’ Mr Scruby said.

Mr Bakker – who was ‘‘almost cleaned up myself’’ by a bike while inspecting the bridge – said pedestrians would also be able to travel through the centre of the garden.

“I’ve made it two metres smaller than what the temporary fences were when the monorail was getting pulled down and no one really complained at that time,” Mr Bakker said.

SHFA said a shared path, rather than dedicated pedestrian and bike paths, was now being put forward as an option.

The bridge is increasingly busy with cyclists coming to and from the city from the inner west off the Anzac Bridge.

‘‘The shared path traffic management proposal will include designated zebra crossings at various points to allow for tourists who wish to take photos from both sides of the bridge,’’ SHFA said.

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The Secret Garden review – ingenious design in an alfresco setting

You take your chances with outdoor theatre, and it isn’t far into this alfresco adaptation of Frances Hodgson Burnett’s novel that umbrellas begin sprouting round the arena. But there’s nothing wrong with the British climate for once: brightly coloured brollies are an integral part of Jessica Curtis’s design, which is an ingenious means of summoning a garden from nowhere, even if fast-growing fungi seem to have been substituted for the tall, untended grasses described in the book.

The infrastructure of Grosvenor Park theatre becomes more impressive by the year. What began as a few raked seats around a flowerbed has evolved into a fully enclosed amphitheatre that echoes Chester’s Roman foundations, and Kate Saxon’s production proves to be a delightful way to fill it. Burnett’s novel can feel a bit preachy (it was, after all, a fictional treatise on the principles of Christian Science), but Jessica Swale’s adaptation does not shy away from the procreative theme, with a full and frank discussion revealing that what separates boys from girls is their “dangly bits”.

The redemptive aspect of the tale is very well told. Starved of light and restrained in callipers, young Colin Craven believes he will always be an invalid until exposure to the garden enables him to see, walk unaided and take up the accordion (the last does not strictly occur in the novel, but like the rest of the cast, Max Gallagher is an accomplished musician). Jessica Clark transforms the mealy-mouthed Mary Lennox into a more engaging character than she appears in the book, and Gary Mitchinson gives a convincing impression of Dickon’s ability to communicate with animals. Then again, he hardly needs to bring any charm, as Toby Olié’s characterful puppets are charming enough in their own right.

• Until 24 August. Box office: 0845 241 7868. Venue: Grosvernor Park Open Air Theatre, Chester.

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Upgrades to Louisiana Ave. sought

City of Perrysburg officials are proposing a $2.3 million beautification and renovation project along downtown Perrysburg‘‍s Louisiana Avenue that would feature a local landmark, the statue of Commodore Oliver Hazard Perry, in the center of a new roundabout at Front Street.

The project would include installation of brick at intersections with Third and Second streets, and along the roundabout. Small fountains and a waterfall are planned beneath the Commodore Perry statue that is to be relocated from the entrance of Hood Park beside Front Street, to the middle of the proposed Front Street and Louisiana Avenue roundabout. 

“We’‍re proud of our heritage and are taking an afterthought on the side of the road and putting it in the center of attention,” Mayor Mike Olmstead said today about the relocation of the statue. 

An artist’s rendering of proposed improvements to Louisiana Avenue.


Plans call for landscaping to be installed along the middle of Louisiana Avenue, replacing a median lane. That would allow pedestrians to just cross one lane at a time on Louisiana Avenue. 

There will be an open house to talk about the new plan Aug. 7 at the Perrysburg Municipal Building. A time for the meeting has not been set. The economic development committee will take a vote on whether to recommend the plan on Aug. 20, and the proposal could have a first reading during a city council session Sept. 2 before a Sept. 20 vote on the new plan.

Mayor Olmstead said he wants construction to begin next spring with completion by this time next year. 

A second phase of the plan proposes renovation of Hood Park. Estimates and ideas are still being worked through, but it would try to create an elevated area near the river for tables and benches, possibly an area for performances, and overlooks of the Maumee River. City officials are hoping estimates and plans come together to include that in the request to the city council. 

Last year under former Mayor Nelson Evans, a $26 million riverfront renovation was proposed. It included a theater, zipline course, restaurants, relocating the statue, and much more. Mayor Olmstead thinks this is a more realistic plan moneywise, while still gaining access to the riverfront for residents and visitors to the city.

Contact Matt Thompson at:, 419-356-8786, or on Twitter at @mthompson25.

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Memorials Donated to Library

The Daviess County Collector of Revenue announces properties for sale due to unpaid taxes.

For a complete listing, click HERE

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Jersey City’s historic Apple Tree House remains closed, waiting to serve …

Behind a gated fence on Academy Street sits Jersey City’s historic Apple Tree House — the famed property believed to be a meeting place for George Washington and the Marquis de Lafayette during the Revolutionary War.

 However, the house that holds historic value for the city and previously served as a funeral parlor, has been closed to the public for more than 15 years.

The city, which owns the brick house at 298 Academy St., has been working on a three-phase project to reopen the house to the public as a historic museum.

Despite being in the final stages of completion, the project to reopen the building to the public is at a standstill.

Members of the city’s George Washington Society believe that the house, built in 1740, is a valuable historical asset for area and hope that its long-awaited opening is drawing near.

“It’s such a gem, it truly is,” said Dr. Richard Winant, vice president of the George Washington Society. “It can bring so much to the community here in Jersey City.”

“We need to get this project completed, the building secured and the building occupied,” Winant said. “There’s so many people that could be affected by it — schools, colleges, community group — they need places to go. Different groups could go there to keep their interest alive in the community.”

While the building’s renovation is nearing its end, the final phase — landscaping — has not yet begun because the city has issues regarding the  elevator and plaster installation with the previous phase’s contractor. The Law Department is handling those issues, according to city spokeswoman Jennifer Morrill.

“The whole neighborhood is of great historic value and it is the key as far as we’re concerned to re-establish that as a point of interest for the community,” GWS member Joe Harkins said.

Located within feet of the walls of the original settlement called Bergen, the house was an apple orchard that provided the community with cider.

Legend has it that Washington and Lafayette met at the Apple Tree House sometime between Aug. 24 and 26, 1780, to discuss war strategy and dined beneath an apple tree in the front yard.

The home has already eaten up $4.1 million in funding for repairs that have taken decades of planning and preparation.

Meanwhile, the historic building has been broken into twice this year — once in April and again in June.

Phase III of the project will include landscaping and site work such as drainage improvements, curbing, driveway, walkways, lighting, a parking lot retaining wall and ornamental fencing. It will be funded by a $700,000 grant. The grant is split up with $100,000 coming from the Hudson County Open Space fund and $600,000 from UEZ funds to implement the plans, Morrill said.

There is still no completion date set, according to Morrill.

However, the city is currently looking to reduce the cost which will require the Historic Preservation Architect to revise the plans and submit to the State for review, Morrill said.

The first floor of the house will be maintained as a Historic House Museum that will be open to the public on a limited basis. However, it is unclear how the rest of the house will be used or who will occupy it.

The city is hoping for public guidance on how the house will function.

“We are constantly soliciting proposals and ideas,” Morrill said. “We have some ideas but we always want to try and get ideas from the community as well, once we are closer to occupancy.”

GWS Member John Hallanan is itching for the house to reopen, but not for his personal gain, instead he wants it for the future.

“We’re history people and we like to see that preserved, not for us, but for the next generation,” Hallanan said. “We can’t forget the past because the best guide for the future is the past.”

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Homeowners recognized for keeping Milan beautiful

July Milan Beautification Commission winners, Brittany and Scot Smith, are photographed in front of their home located 1044 Primrose. Photo by Joyce Ervin.

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Demonstration gardens: Good ideas for homeowners

A Master Gardeners plant display at the Washington County Fair. Blooming plants provide critical feeding stations for butterflies, bees and other insects.

A Master Gardeners plant display at the Washington County Fair. Blooming plants provide critical feeding stations for butterflies, bees and other insects. Photo submitted.

A popular stop at the Washington County Fair every year is the demonstration garden created by University of Minnesota Extension Master Gardeners.

This year, from July 30 to Aug. 3, visitors can see a cottage garden, native plants, vegetables, lavenders, ornamental grasses, perennials, annuals and herbs on the east side of the fairgrounds. Containers of flowers and other ornamental plants give visitors ideas for their own pots.

A “Monarch Waystation” is on display, with six varieties of milkweed and several nectar-producing annuals. Milkweed is the only plant monarch caterpillars eat; luckily, several beautiful varieties of milkweed are available for landscapes.

Last year a pollinator garden was added to the display to provide plants high in nectar and pollen for bees, butterflies, moths and hummingbirds.

Homeowners can use ideas from these two gardens to help stop the decline of monarch and other pollinators.

Visitors with garden problems can get help from diagnostic clinics from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Thursday and from noon to 3 p.m. on Saturday.

Bring plant and insect samples and photos for diagnosis by Master Gardeners. Volunteers will identify the plants or insects, diagnose common problems and make recommendations.

Four rain gardens show options for improving water quality when landscaping. One garden consists of all shrubs, another is garden perennials, and two areas contain native perennials.

These gardens are a cooperative effort of the Master Gardener Program, Washington Conservation District, Valley Branch Watershed District and Washington County Fair.
See the schedule for demonstrations and displays to plan your visit.

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Green gardens, green thumbs: Carroll Mansion Museum home to history, lavish …

Special to the Leavenworth Times

Posted Jul. 28, 2014 @ 12:01 am
Updated Jul 28, 2014 at 11:46 PM

Lansing, Leavenworth, Leavenworth County

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