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Archives for December 17, 2016

Museum garden restoration efforts boosted by private donation

A donation to the Friends of the Kaminski House by Georgetown County residents David and Kathryn Kossove has paved the way for the completion of the museum’s garden renovation.

The Friends used the couple’s donation of $21,000 to match funds generated from a Capital Campaign that allowed the renovations to begin. The Kossoves presented the check Dec. 14 to Friends President Frankie Hills and Georgetown Mayor Jack Scoville.

“It has taken months to raise the matching funds needed to complete the restorations and upgrades,” Hills said. “We retained Waccamaw Landscaping to design upgrades on the gardens between the house and the Sampit River and the firm will be completing the work by the end of the year. …

“This will begin the end of a journey that was started in 2013 when bricks were taken off the house and reused to pave the garden … before, the garden was just dirt and mud, and today it is a beautiful edition to the house.”

The terrace garden will be named the Kathryn and David Kossove Garden, and Scoville said the couple represents the epitome of Georgetown generosity.

“Kathryn and David are two of the finest residents and business owners we have in Georgetown,” Scoville said. “They came here in 1999, and by 2005 they were heavily invested in Georgetown.”

The Kossoves own Augustus Carolina Fine Home Furnishings and Augustus Carolina Outdoor Living on Front Street in Historic Georgetown.

David Kossove said the monetary gift he and his wife gave to the museum reminded of him of why they moved to Georgetown.

“We felt like this was a very unusual city – almost a diamond in the rough along the South Carolina coast,” David Kossove said. “We wanted to make a commitment to leave Georgetown a better place when we leave this earth than it was when we arrived here. …

“Kathryn and I believe that our donation will help sustain the work in the gardens, and there’s no better place to support than one of the oldest homes in Georgetown.”

Hills said the garden will enhance the museum’s ability to use the space for public programs and rental events.

“The terrace garden,” she said, “will also secure a sustainable revenue source for the museum.”

Constructed circa 1769, the Kaminski House Museum was home to many prominent Georgetown residents. Harold and Julia Kaminski were the home’s last residents, and upon her death in 1972, Julia left the home and its contents to the City of Georgetown. The home opened as a museum in 1973 and was operated by the city of Georgetown for many years. The Friends of the Kaminski House assumed management of the house in 2013.

Article source: http://www.southstrandnews.com/museum-garden-restoration-efforts-boosted-by-private-donation/article_107100e6-c2e2-11e6-adf7-57b7497d268e.html

Museum garden restoration efforts boosted by private donation

A donation to the Friends of the Kaminski House by Georgetown County residents David and Kathryn Kossove has paved the way for the completion of the museum’s garden renovation.

The Friends used the couple’s donation of $21,000 to match funds generated from a Capital Campaign that allowed the renovations to begin. The Kossoves presented the check Dec. 14 to Friends President Frankie Hills and Georgetown Mayor Jack Scoville.

“It has taken months to raise the matching funds needed to complete the restorations and upgrades,” Hills said. “We retained Waccamaw Landscaping to design upgrades on the gardens between the house and the Sampit River and the firm will be completing the work by the end of the year. …

“This will begin the end of a journey that was started in 2013 when bricks were taken off the house and reused to pave the garden … before, the garden was just dirt and mud, and today it is a beautiful edition to the house.”

The terrace garden will be named the Kathryn and David Kossove Garden, and Scoville said the couple represents the epitome of Georgetown generosity.

“Kathryn and David are two of the finest residents and business owners we have in Georgetown,” Scoville said. “They came here in 1999, and by 2005 they were heavily invested in Georgetown.”

The Kossoves own Augustus Carolina Fine Home Furnishings and Augustus Carolina Outdoor Living on Front Street in Historic Georgetown.

David Kossove said the monetary gift he and his wife gave to the museum reminded of him of why they moved to Georgetown.

“We felt like this was a very unusual city – almost a diamond in the rough along the South Carolina coast,” David Kossove said. “We wanted to make a commitment to leave Georgetown a better place when we leave this earth than it was when we arrived here. …

“Kathryn and I believe that our donation will help sustain the work in the gardens, and there’s no better place to support than one of the oldest homes in Georgetown.”

Hills said the garden will enhance the museum’s ability to use the space for public programs and rental events.

“The terrace garden,” she said, “will also secure a sustainable revenue source for the museum.”

Constructed circa 1769, the Kaminski House Museum was home to many prominent Georgetown residents. Harold and Julia Kaminski were the home’s last residents, and upon her death in 1972, Julia left the home and its contents to the City of Georgetown. The home opened as a museum in 1973 and was operated by the city of Georgetown for many years. The Friends of the Kaminski House assumed management of the house in 2013.

Article source: http://www.southstrandnews.com/museum-garden-restoration-efforts-boosted-by-private-donation/article_107100e6-c2e2-11e6-adf7-57b7497d268e.html

Gardening Tips: Looking after your Christmas Poinsettia (From …

Pollok Park CM

Article source: http://www.eveningtimes.co.uk/news/14970662.Gardening_Tips__Looking_after_your_Christmas_Poinsettia/

Gardening Tips: Looking after your Christmas Poinsettia (From …

Pollok Park CM

Article source: http://www.eveningtimes.co.uk/news/14970662.Gardening_Tips__Looking_after_your_Christmas_Poinsettia/

Gardening: Tips for taking care of a Christmas cactus

Q: My wife inherited a half-dead Christmas cactus. Half of it is blooming, but the other half has almost turned brown. Can I cut the brown stub off without killing it? Possibly at the stem segments?

— Matt

Q: I saw your article. I am trying to find a Christmas cactus that is in a hanging basket. I have checked Dan Schantz. Do you know anyone that has them in Allentown or surrounding areas?

— Joanne Oswald

Yocco's Opens Sixth Eatery

Caption Yocco’s Opens Sixth Eatery

Yocco’s opens its sixth eatery in the Valley.

Yocco’s opens its sixth eatery in the Valley.

Scott Baio contends he was assaulted

Caption Scott Baio contends he was assaulted

Actor Scott Baio contends he was assaulted at an event in Thousand Oaks over his support for President-elect Donald Trump.

Actor Scott Baio contends he was assaulted at an event in Thousand Oaks over his support for President-elect Donald Trump.

'Star Trek: Discovery' casts a new lead

Caption ‘Star Trek: Discovery’ casts a new lead

Sonequa Martin-Green is joining Starfleet as Lt. Cmdr. Rainsford on the upcoming CBS All Access series “Star Trek: Discovery.” (Dec. 15, 2016)

Sonequa Martin-Green is joining Starfleet as Lt. Cmdr. Rainsford on the upcoming CBS All Access series “Star Trek: Discovery.” (Dec. 15, 2016)

VIDEO: Telephone interview with David Hajdu

Caption VIDEO: Telephone interview with David Hajdu

Telephone interview with music critic David Hajdu, a Phillipsburg native, who talks about writing his new book, “Love for Sale”.

Telephone interview with music critic David Hajdu, a Phillipsburg native, who talks about writing his new book, “Love for Sale”.

I find that they are quite easy to grow — if you give them limited water and lots of light. I’ve killed a few, but I over-watered, forgot to water or left them out to freeze so it isn’t really surprising.

Getting them to flower can be a bit trickier, although benign neglect is helpful. Mine flower if I leave them alone in the waning autumn light of fall and remember to give it a little splash of water.

They both grow best with bright but indirect light and soil that is kept moist but drains well. To get them to flower, give the cacti less water and about 12 hours of darkness in November.

They also need exposure to temperatures below 55 degrees to encourage flower budding. This is easily accomplished with a visit outdoors until the nights cool to about 45 degrees. Leggy plants can be pruned back by pinching off the stem at any segment.

So, the answer to Matt’s question is to pinch, not cut, off segments at the joint. His wife should also check her growing conditions to avoid developing these brown parts.

I don’t know where to send Joanne for a hanging pot of Christmas cactus. She can, of course, buy a moderately large plant and have it repotted into a hanging basket.

If you know of a local source for a hanging basket of Christmas cactus, let me know and I will pass the information on to Joanne.

Waxed amaryllis

I’ve noticed some waxed amaryllis bulbs this season. The wax covers the bulb and is usually in white, red or green, although I have seen a few waxed and then decorated with fake snow.

The idea is that the bulb can be grown without soil or even a container. The bulbs are often just placed on small, flat plates.

It should be noted that these amaryllis bulbs are sealed with enough nutrients and moisture to produce beautiful blooms. However, since the bulbs do not produce roots or take up water, they are one-season wonders. They will not grow beyond this season.

This is a pricey novelty but may be a good option for the non-gardener who likes flowers or just a new look for the season. The bulbs are available online from Jackson Perkins (jacksonandperkins.com) and Breck’s (brecksgifts.com) as well as other retailers.

I tend to go a more traditional route. My amaryllis bulbs were purchased on special at my local hardware store. I grow them for the season, keep them alive until spring and then put them out for the summer —trying to remember to water them during dry spells.

Then, when the greens die back in the cool weather, I bring them in and after a few weeks they sprout again. The growing bulbs are moved near a window with bright indirect light, watered and enjoyed for another season.

My kitchen table is currently home to eight potted bulbs from previous years. Since the ones in the store usually bloom earlier than my saved bulbs, I usually buy a bulb or two in December. Come February, my kitchen will be filled with magnificent blooms from my saved bulbs.

Forced hyacinths

I’ve also noticed some inexpensive forcing glasses with pre-chilled hyacinth bulbs in the stores. While hyacinths are quite attractive, the smell can be overpowering indoors so they are generally banned from inside my home in the spring.

A single bulb seems OK, a novelty in December and not as overpowering as an overfull pot normally sold at Easter. The glass is usually clear and round at the bottom. It tapers to a neck, then flares out again. You fill the glass with water until it reaches just to the neck. The hyacinth bulb rests on the flare and the roots grow into the water. Keep the water just touching the bulb.

Store the vase in a cool dark place until the hyacinth is about three inches above the bulb. Move the vase into a bright, cool area and enjoy the bloom in a few weeks. Forced hyacinth bulbs should be discarded. While the bulb may survive, it will take several seasons for the plant to recover enough to bloom again — if ever.

If you want to force your own hyacinth bulbs, pot them up and then store them outside or in an unheated garage. They need eight to 10 weeks of temperatures at or below 40 degrees before they will bloom.

If you choose to pre-chill your bulbs in a refrigerator, note that you should not store them with apples. The ethylene gas released by the apples as they continue to ripen will interfere with your bulbs’ development.

Sue Kittek is a freelance garden columnist, writer, and lecturer. Send questions to Garden Keeper at grdnkpr@gmail.com or mail: Garden Keeper, The Morning Call, P.O. Box 1260, Allentown, PA 18105.

This week in the garden

Planting:

•Pot up any leftover spring-flowering bulbs and store them in a cool area with temperatures around 40 degrees or cooler for 8 to 12 weeks, then bring in for forcing.

Seasonal:

•Purchase gifts and gift cards for gardeners on your Christmas list

•Clean, check and repair decorations before installing, discarding all that are damaged. Secure all displays so they don’t blow away.

•Keep pathways clear of dead plants and leaves.

•If you are purchasing a live potted or burlapped Christmas tree, find an appropriate planting spot, dig it out and store the soil, covered or in a container in the garage.

•Allow plants to set seed as food for wildlife.

Lawn:

•Rake, blow or mulch fallen leaves on the lawn.

•Keep new lawns watered until the ground freezes.

Chores:

•Store empty terracotta, clay or plastic pots in a dry, protected area to avoid cracking.

•Disconnect, drain and store hoses.

•Bring in or wrap large statuary to avoid winter damage.

•Mark off beds, new plantings, plants that are late to break dormancy in the spring and delicate plants. Stay off them when decorating or dealing with snow removal.

•Use a humidifier, humidity trays or misting to increase the humidity around your houseplants.

•Clean and fill bird feeders and birdbaths regularly. Clean up spilled seed and empty hulls.

Article source: http://www.mcall.com/features/family/mc-garden-christmas-cactus-20161216-story.html

Gardening: Tips for taking care of a Christmas cactus

Q: My wife inherited a half-dead Christmas cactus. Half of it is blooming, but the other half has almost turned brown. Can I cut the brown stub off without killing it? Possibly at the stem segments?

— Matt

Q: I saw your article. I am trying to find a Christmas cactus that is in a hanging basket. I have checked Dan Schantz. Do you know anyone that has them in Allentown or surrounding areas?

— Joanne Oswald

Yocco's Opens Sixth Eatery

Caption Yocco’s Opens Sixth Eatery

Yocco’s opens its sixth eatery in the Valley.

Yocco’s opens its sixth eatery in the Valley.

Scott Baio contends he was assaulted

Caption Scott Baio contends he was assaulted

Actor Scott Baio contends he was assaulted at an event in Thousand Oaks over his support for President-elect Donald Trump.

Actor Scott Baio contends he was assaulted at an event in Thousand Oaks over his support for President-elect Donald Trump.

'Star Trek: Discovery' casts a new lead

Caption ‘Star Trek: Discovery’ casts a new lead

Sonequa Martin-Green is joining Starfleet as Lt. Cmdr. Rainsford on the upcoming CBS All Access series “Star Trek: Discovery.” (Dec. 15, 2016)

Sonequa Martin-Green is joining Starfleet as Lt. Cmdr. Rainsford on the upcoming CBS All Access series “Star Trek: Discovery.” (Dec. 15, 2016)

VIDEO: Telephone interview with David Hajdu

Caption VIDEO: Telephone interview with David Hajdu

Telephone interview with music critic David Hajdu, a Phillipsburg native, who talks about writing his new book, “Love for Sale”.

Telephone interview with music critic David Hajdu, a Phillipsburg native, who talks about writing his new book, “Love for Sale”.

I find that they are quite easy to grow — if you give them limited water and lots of light. I’ve killed a few, but I over-watered, forgot to water or left them out to freeze so it isn’t really surprising.

Getting them to flower can be a bit trickier, although benign neglect is helpful. Mine flower if I leave them alone in the waning autumn light of fall and remember to give it a little splash of water.

They both grow best with bright but indirect light and soil that is kept moist but drains well. To get them to flower, give the cacti less water and about 12 hours of darkness in November.

They also need exposure to temperatures below 55 degrees to encourage flower budding. This is easily accomplished with a visit outdoors until the nights cool to about 45 degrees. Leggy plants can be pruned back by pinching off the stem at any segment.

So, the answer to Matt’s question is to pinch, not cut, off segments at the joint. His wife should also check her growing conditions to avoid developing these brown parts.

I don’t know where to send Joanne for a hanging pot of Christmas cactus. She can, of course, buy a moderately large plant and have it repotted into a hanging basket.

If you know of a local source for a hanging basket of Christmas cactus, let me know and I will pass the information on to Joanne.

Waxed amaryllis

I’ve noticed some waxed amaryllis bulbs this season. The wax covers the bulb and is usually in white, red or green, although I have seen a few waxed and then decorated with fake snow.

The idea is that the bulb can be grown without soil or even a container. The bulbs are often just placed on small, flat plates.

It should be noted that these amaryllis bulbs are sealed with enough nutrients and moisture to produce beautiful blooms. However, since the bulbs do not produce roots or take up water, they are one-season wonders. They will not grow beyond this season.

This is a pricey novelty but may be a good option for the non-gardener who likes flowers or just a new look for the season. The bulbs are available online from Jackson Perkins (jacksonandperkins.com) and Breck’s (brecksgifts.com) as well as other retailers.

I tend to go a more traditional route. My amaryllis bulbs were purchased on special at my local hardware store. I grow them for the season, keep them alive until spring and then put them out for the summer —trying to remember to water them during dry spells.

Then, when the greens die back in the cool weather, I bring them in and after a few weeks they sprout again. The growing bulbs are moved near a window with bright indirect light, watered and enjoyed for another season.

My kitchen table is currently home to eight potted bulbs from previous years. Since the ones in the store usually bloom earlier than my saved bulbs, I usually buy a bulb or two in December. Come February, my kitchen will be filled with magnificent blooms from my saved bulbs.

Forced hyacinths

I’ve also noticed some inexpensive forcing glasses with pre-chilled hyacinth bulbs in the stores. While hyacinths are quite attractive, the smell can be overpowering indoors so they are generally banned from inside my home in the spring.

A single bulb seems OK, a novelty in December and not as overpowering as an overfull pot normally sold at Easter. The glass is usually clear and round at the bottom. It tapers to a neck, then flares out again. You fill the glass with water until it reaches just to the neck. The hyacinth bulb rests on the flare and the roots grow into the water. Keep the water just touching the bulb.

Store the vase in a cool dark place until the hyacinth is about three inches above the bulb. Move the vase into a bright, cool area and enjoy the bloom in a few weeks. Forced hyacinth bulbs should be discarded. While the bulb may survive, it will take several seasons for the plant to recover enough to bloom again — if ever.

If you want to force your own hyacinth bulbs, pot them up and then store them outside or in an unheated garage. They need eight to 10 weeks of temperatures at or below 40 degrees before they will bloom.

If you choose to pre-chill your bulbs in a refrigerator, note that you should not store them with apples. The ethylene gas released by the apples as they continue to ripen will interfere with your bulbs’ development.

Sue Kittek is a freelance garden columnist, writer, and lecturer. Send questions to Garden Keeper at grdnkpr@gmail.com or mail: Garden Keeper, The Morning Call, P.O. Box 1260, Allentown, PA 18105.

This week in the garden

Planting:

•Pot up any leftover spring-flowering bulbs and store them in a cool area with temperatures around 40 degrees or cooler for 8 to 12 weeks, then bring in for forcing.

Seasonal:

•Purchase gifts and gift cards for gardeners on your Christmas list

•Clean, check and repair decorations before installing, discarding all that are damaged. Secure all displays so they don’t blow away.

•Keep pathways clear of dead plants and leaves.

•If you are purchasing a live potted or burlapped Christmas tree, find an appropriate planting spot, dig it out and store the soil, covered or in a container in the garage.

•Allow plants to set seed as food for wildlife.

Lawn:

•Rake, blow or mulch fallen leaves on the lawn.

•Keep new lawns watered until the ground freezes.

Chores:

•Store empty terracotta, clay or plastic pots in a dry, protected area to avoid cracking.

•Disconnect, drain and store hoses.

•Bring in or wrap large statuary to avoid winter damage.

•Mark off beds, new plantings, plants that are late to break dormancy in the spring and delicate plants. Stay off them when decorating or dealing with snow removal.

•Use a humidifier, humidity trays or misting to increase the humidity around your houseplants.

•Clean and fill bird feeders and birdbaths regularly. Clean up spilled seed and empty hulls.

Article source: http://www.mcall.com/features/family/mc-garden-christmas-cactus-20161216-story.html

Gardening column: Tips to grow perfect sweet potatoes

Sweet potatoes (Ipomoea batatas) aren’t just for holiday feasts anymore. They are available year round piled high in bins at the grocery store and as a potato choice on menus at favorite restaurants. They can be served cubed, boiled, fried, plain or with butter, brown sugar and cinnamon. Add these three ingredients to the hot, sweet inside of the roasted potato and you’ll think you are having a heavenly dessert.

For a delicious addition to meals at home, put a few whole washed and unpeeled in the crock pot and in about 2 1/2 hours on high, or 4 or more hours on low, they will be ready to eat either alone or as the vegetable alongside fried or baked chicken or pork chops. Add a side of applesauce or fried apples and you have a banquet. Am I making you hungry yet? There is nothing more satisfying anytime at all.

This high-in-potassium, vitamins-A-and-C-root vegetable is a dicotyledonous plant that belongs to the morning glory family Convolvulaceae. Watching this beautiful plant grow is a pleasure but the fun comes at harvest time when the green tops turn yellow and die back and you finally get to see what has been hidden from view all during the growing season. If you have children and would like to teach them to love gardening, definitely let them plant sweet potatoes.

Here are a few tips that should help you and your children enjoy sweet potatoes from your garden in the fall and winter of 2017:

• Sweet potatoes are frost sensitive root vegetables. They need to be planted after all signs of frost have past — usually in mid to late may.

• They prefer full sun and planted in plenty of rich well drained soil.

• Provide a garden bed that has at least 8 inches of compost or good soil mix in it, then plant at least 6 inches deep and 12 inches apart.

• You will be purchasing starts which are called slips. These can come from untreated potatoes you purchase from farmers markets or the store but it is recommended that for best results you purchase disease resistant cultivars from a nursery or mail order. Popular varieties are Centennial and Georgia Jet.

• If you start your root sprouts (or slips) indoors, prepare to do this at least 90 days before the last frost date in the spring so they will be ready for the garden.

• When planting, cover the slips with soil up to the leaves.

• They can be planted in hanging baskets, patio pots, almost anywhere where they are provided adequate sun and moisture and root room.

• Although the enemies of the sweet potato are weevils and fungal diseases, in northern areas such as ours, they are relatively disease and pest free.

• Sweet potato vines can be grown vertically on a trellis or if you have room, allowed to sprawl.

• They can serve as ground cover which could help keep the soil under and around other larger, taller plants in the garden cool and weed free.

• They have lovely blossoms reminiscent of the morning glory.

• Avoid using a high nitrogen fertilizer on the plants because it will stunt the root growth.

• In dry weather provide an inch of water a week, but do not over water or you will rot the roots.

Jane Ford is an Advanced Master Gardener. Email questions to bloominthing@gmail.com. She also answers gardening questions with horticulture educator Ricky Kemery noon-1 p.m. the second and fourth Thursday of each month on “The Plant Medic,” a radio show on 95.7fm. This column is the opinion of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the views of The News-Sentinel.

Article source: http://www.news-sentinel.com/living/Gardening-column--Tips-to-grow-perfect-sweet-potatoes

Gardening column: Tips to grow perfect sweet potatoes

Sweet potatoes (Ipomoea batatas) aren’t just for holiday feasts anymore. They are available year round piled high in bins at the grocery store and as a potato choice on menus at favorite restaurants. They can be served cubed, boiled, fried, plain or with butter, brown sugar and cinnamon. Add these three ingredients to the hot, sweet inside of the roasted potato and you’ll think you are having a heavenly dessert.

For a delicious addition to meals at home, put a few whole washed and unpeeled in the crock pot and in about 2 1/2 hours on high, or 4 or more hours on low, they will be ready to eat either alone or as the vegetable alongside fried or baked chicken or pork chops. Add a side of applesauce or fried apples and you have a banquet. Am I making you hungry yet? There is nothing more satisfying anytime at all.

This high-in-potassium, vitamins-A-and-C-root vegetable is a dicotyledonous plant that belongs to the morning glory family Convolvulaceae. Watching this beautiful plant grow is a pleasure but the fun comes at harvest time when the green tops turn yellow and die back and you finally get to see what has been hidden from view all during the growing season. If you have children and would like to teach them to love gardening, definitely let them plant sweet potatoes.

Here are a few tips that should help you and your children enjoy sweet potatoes from your garden in the fall and winter of 2017:

• Sweet potatoes are frost sensitive root vegetables. They need to be planted after all signs of frost have past — usually in mid to late may.

• They prefer full sun and planted in plenty of rich well drained soil.

• Provide a garden bed that has at least 8 inches of compost or good soil mix in it, then plant at least 6 inches deep and 12 inches apart.

• You will be purchasing starts which are called slips. These can come from untreated potatoes you purchase from farmers markets or the store but it is recommended that for best results you purchase disease resistant cultivars from a nursery or mail order. Popular varieties are Centennial and Georgia Jet.

• If you start your root sprouts (or slips) indoors, prepare to do this at least 90 days before the last frost date in the spring so they will be ready for the garden.

• When planting, cover the slips with soil up to the leaves.

• They can be planted in hanging baskets, patio pots, almost anywhere where they are provided adequate sun and moisture and root room.

• Although the enemies of the sweet potato are weevils and fungal diseases, in northern areas such as ours, they are relatively disease and pest free.

• Sweet potato vines can be grown vertically on a trellis or if you have room, allowed to sprawl.

• They can serve as ground cover which could help keep the soil under and around other larger, taller plants in the garden cool and weed free.

• They have lovely blossoms reminiscent of the morning glory.

• Avoid using a high nitrogen fertilizer on the plants because it will stunt the root growth.

• In dry weather provide an inch of water a week, but do not over water or you will rot the roots.

Jane Ford is an Advanced Master Gardener. Email questions to bloominthing@gmail.com. She also answers gardening questions with horticulture educator Ricky Kemery noon-1 p.m. the second and fourth Thursday of each month on “The Plant Medic,” a radio show on 95.7fm. This column is the opinion of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the views of The News-Sentinel.

Article source: http://www.news-sentinel.com/living/Gardening-column--Tips-to-grow-perfect-sweet-potatoes