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Archives for July 28, 2017

What time is is Gardeners’ World on BBC Two tonight, is Monty Don presenting and what’s happening in the show?

GARDENERS’ World is loved by green-fingered viewers for its top tips and expert advice.

Here’s the lowdown on Monty’s latest show from Longmeadow.

Gardeners World is returning to BBC Two in time for the spring

Gardeners’ World is returning to BBC Two in time for the spring

When is Gardeners’ World on BBC Two and what’s it about?

Gardeners’ World is back on screens TONIGHT (July 28) at 9pm on BBC Two.

There are also repeats on the Saturday and Sunday afternoons.

The show will see Monty Don give some vital advice on pruning your summer fruit trees, and recommends plants that will continue flowering into autumn.

The series was first introduced in the 90s and came back almost 10 years later in 2007.

It is described as being a “gardening show packed with good ideas, tips and advice”.

Over the series, Carol Klein shares her heroes of gardening, the people who have impacted the way we garden for the last 50 years.

Is Monty Don presenting Gardeners’ World?

Monty Don presents Gardeners’ World alongside Carol Klein, Rachel de Thame and Nick Bailey.

The much-loved presenter once wanted to be rock star, but has spent over 20 years as a TV gardener, appearing on This Morning and Channel 4’s Real Gardens.

Monty Don is coming back to present the gardening show

Monty Don is coming back to present the gardening show

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Gardening tips and chores for August | Newsday

Jessica Damiano
Jessica Damiano, Newsday columnist

Jessica Damiano is a master gardener and journalist with more than 25 years experience in radio, television, print and online media.

She has worked on Newsday’s interactive endeavors since 1994, and currently is Deputy Editor overseeing’s Lifestyle and Entertainment coverage.

Jessica enjoys toiling in her garden — a never-finished work in progress — and helping local gardeners solve their horticultural problems in her Garden Detective column, which appears every Sunday in Newsday.

Her Garden Detective column and blog have been awarded Press Club of Long Island Society of Professional Journalists Awards.

Jessica lives in Glen Head, NY, with her husband John, daughters Justine and Julia, dogs Maddie and Miguel, and a whole bunch of perennials, vegetable plants and weeds.

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It’s August, and the tomatoes are finally ripening on the vine, the perennials are rampant and, surprisingly, my spring pansies are still holding on. Weeds, too, are digging their heels in, a constant reminder that the garden doesn’t ever go on autopilot, even if it appears that way. Here are 31 tips and chores to ensure the garden doesn’t look tired by month’s end.

1. Resist the urge to let zucchini grow big; they’re tastier and more tender if picked when small.

2. Sanitation is important for a healthy garden: Clean up fallen fruit from around trees to prevent pest infestations.

3. To help avoid heat wilt, mist leaves of hybrid tea roses with liquid seaweed.

4. Send a photo of yourself with your tomatoes, along with your growing strategy, to The 2017 Tomato Challenge is just two weeks away!

5. For best flavor, harvest herbs in midmorning just after the dew has dried.

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6. If you need to relocate evergreens, it’s safe to do so from now through October.

7. When watering the lawn, remember: Less frequent deep waterings trump daily sprinkles on established turf.

Jessica DamianoEnter the 2017 Great LI Tomato Challenge

8. For a second harvest this fall, plant cool-season crops like lettuce, radishes, spinach and peas now.

9. Keep mower blades set to 3 or more inches. Grass blades are leaves, which need to photosynthesize; cut them too short and they’ll stress.

10. No need to panic if your evergreens’ innermost branches begin to brown. It’s normal for older branches to shed this time of year.

11. Re-edge beds to give a fading garden a face-lift.

12. Harvest rose hips for tea or jam — as long as you haven’t sprayed your plants.

Home and Garden19 clubs where gardeners can share their passion

13. Transplant spring-flowering bulbs that are crowded or needed elsewhere in the garden.

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14. Turn off pond pumps when electrical storms are in the forecast.

15. If cabbage heads split, harvest immediately or they’ll become inedible.

16. Monitor moisture levels in containers often; potted plants may need to be watered twice a day.

17. Harvest onions when their tops flop over, but let them cure in the sun for a few days before storing indoors.

Jessica DamianoStinkhorn mushrooms in the garden? ‘Shameless’

18. Join me at 7 p.m. for the Great Long Island Tomato Challenge at Newsday (235 Pinelawn Rd., Melville). Bring your biggest homegrown tomato and you might be crowned king or queen.

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19. Want free plants next year? Take cuttings of geraniums and wax begonias, and root indoors now. Then care for them as houseplants until spring.

20. Harvest beets when 2 inches wide. You can saute and eat the leaves, too (this is not the case for tomatoes or carrots, which have toxic foliage.)

21. Order spring bulbs now, before the best ones sell out. They’ll be shipped in time for fall planting.

22. Collect seeds from day lilies, spider plants, rose campions and other perennials that produce pods. Store in a paper envelope in the fridge, away from fruit, until spring.

Home and GardenGreat LI Tomato Challenge winners through the years

23. This is the best time to renovate the lawn. Remove dead patches, aerate, apply compost and seed. Water deeply once, then sprinkle twice a day until 3 inches tall.

24. Don’t let weeds go to seed; pull them out by their roots.

25. If houseplants kept outdoors for summer have outgrown their containers, repot now.

26. If you can, leave standard and plum tomatoes on the vine until fully ripe; they’ll taste better. Cherry tomatoes ripen just fine on the counter.

27. Divide crowded daylilies after they’ve stopped blooming.

Jessica DamianoThis year’s LI Tomato Challenge contestants so far

28. Divide and transplant overgrown and crowded peonies, keeping “eyes” no more than an inch or two below the soil surface.

29. Plant a clover cover crop in cleared-out vegetable beds for a burst of natural nitrogen next spring when you turn it over.

30. Shop end-of-season sales for plant deals — but be choosy; they’ve been sitting in pots all season.

31. Move outdoor potted plants into the shade to ease them into a move indoors next month. Water as usual.

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4 Season Gardening Tips from Ellen Ashley

Whenever Cindy Loman posts new content, you’ll get an email delivered to your inbox with a link.

Email notifications are only sent once a day, and only if there are new matching items.

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Sonoma County garden events for week of July 29

SEBASTOPOL: Annual plant sale

Who isn’t smitten by the delicate little pendulum blossoms of the fuchsia plant?

Gardeners can pick up a few for themselves on July 29 at the annual plant sale put on by the Sebastopol Fuchsia Society.

All of the plants for sale are grown by members of the society. There will be plenty to pick from, including hanging baskets and uprights in various colors. 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Sebastopol Center for the Arts, 282 S. High St., Sebastopol. Admission is free. 707-838-9429.


SEBASTOPOL: Exchange garden tips

Swap garden tips with fellow green thumbers at the Garden Roundtable in Sebastopol on July 29.

The 11 a.m. gathering is a chance to get and give information and help with gardening challenges.

It is put on by the Community Seed Exchange, which meets the last Saturday of every month (except November and December) at St. Stephen’s Church, 500 Robinson Road, Sebastopol. The exchange maintains a seed library with more than 200 varieties of vegetables, flowers, grains and herbs. It shares the seed at no charge with the hope that people will grow them and return seed from their harvest to the library. The library will be open from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. the day of the roundtable. For information call 707-829-0868 or email


SONOMA: Learn how to prune

Garden guru Maile Arnold will help unlock the mysteries of pruning during a talk Aug. 3 before the Valley of the Moon Garden Club.

Arnold will give a PowerPoint presentation for the home gardener on pruning many varieties of plants and trees, showing photos of specimens before and after pruning and giving tips on the time of year to cut back.

Through years of experience Arnold has learned that some varieties of plants within the same family and with the same common name, need to be pruned differently in order to thrive.

Arnold grew up in Hawaii. Her own Sebastopol garden is full of flowers. She and her husband Warren, a stone sculptor, maintain a mini-farm on 5 ½ acres in Sebastopol. They raise goats for milk and cheese, chickens and sheep and grow all their own fruit and vegetables. They do all of the work themselves.

The meeting is at 7 p.m., with a meet and greet starting a half hour earlier. Visitors are welcome. There will be a plant drawing and refreshments. Sonoma Veterans’ Memorial Building, 126 1st St. W., Sonoma. 707-935-8986.


SANTA ROSA: Fruit tree sale

Instead of just stocking up on fresh fruit at the Farmer’s Market, why not tote home your own tree?

The California Rare Fruit Growers garden club will be holding their annual Fruit Tree Sale at the Original Santa Rosa Farmers Market on July 29, with heritage apple, plum, peach, cherry and other trees for sale at $20 each. Most are about 2-3 feet tall and rooted in 5 gallon pots. Small trees planted in big holes will outgrow big bare-root trees within a couple of years. Members also always bring a few unusual plants for sale so prepare for surprises.

Proceeds from the sale go toward rescuing rare fruit trees and funding agricultural scholarships.

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August gardening tips

Susan Moore Sevier is part of the Tulare-Kings Master Gardener program. Visit, email or write UC Cooperative Extension Master Gardeners, 680 N. Campus Drive, Suite A, Hanford, CA 93230.

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The real dirt: Is the garden ready for planting?

Plants are placed after all the infrastructure is in place.

Plants are placed after all the infrastructure is in place.
Submitted photo by Eve Werner

Our conclusion to this series on garden design basics leads you through the final steps needed to create your new landscape. Eager as you may be to get your plants into the ground, this ultimate preparation phase is as important as all of the others. To save time and money, we recommend that the last thing you do is go shopping for plants.

Timing: The time of year you plant affects plant success. Most natives, in fact most plants in general, thrive best when planted in our cool seasons, fall through early spring. Milder temperatures and (fingers crossed) rain, allow them to establish sturdy root systems that will help them tolerate the summer heat. Plants that are completely cold-hardy in our area can be planted at any time during our cool seasons. For plants that are marginally hardy, install in early fall as very cold temperatures may stress these new plants.

Bulbs, in particular iris, are an exception to the cool-season planting rule, as they do best when divided and replanted in late July or early August.

Infrastructure: Before digging any holes for plants, complete the installation of your infrastructure, including all hardscape, irrigation lines and drainage facilities. Build berms, install focal point(s), pour concrete, place landscape rocks; all of this comes before the living elements are added. Planting beds can be outlined with rocks at the same time as planting, if the rocks are relatively small and placing them will not disturb the plants.

Irrigation: Before planting is also the ideal time to test your newly installed or revamped irrigation system: make sure that flow and volume are correct, and that emitters for hydrozones (if included in your design) are properly sized. Resources for learning more about drip irrigation include the Butte County Master Gardener website at

Soil Preparation: Critical to plant survival and success is the health of your soil. We touched on soil structure and type briefly in part one of this series. The ideal soil ratio is 25 percent air, 25 percent water, 5 percent organic matter, and 45 percent mineral matter.

Now it is time to consider soil tilth, which means the physical condition of the soil, especially in relation to its suitability for growing plants. In its ideal healthiest state, soil is alive with millions of organisms per teaspoon. Within that teaspoon live 100 million to 1 billion bacteria, several yards of fungal filaments, several thousand protozoa, and from 10 to several hundred nematodes.

Our job as gardeners is to ensure that the inhabitants of the soil food web are fed and cared for. Their needs are the same as those of any living being: air, food, water and protection from abuse.

Air: Compaction is the bane of healthy soil. It reduces space for air and water movement and creates anaerobic conditions, which in turn attract and feed detrimental bacteria, fungi, and protozoa. Try to protect your soil from heavy foot traffic and heavy equipment during hardscape installation. Lay down wide boards to distribute the weight more evenly in areas that experience a lot of foot and wheelbarrow traffic. Keep heavy equipment use to a minimal, restricted area if possible.

Food: Organic compost and mulch provide nutrients to soil. Nutrients from organic mulches are leached into the soil through rains and irrigation, while organic composts are manually incorporated into the soil itself. Composted organic materials improve air and water movement, improve soil structure, reduce surface crusting and soil erosion, and increase water absorption and infiltration. Organic mulches reduce soil erosion, reduce annual weeds, and reduce evaporation and runoff.

Good examples of organic mulches include leaves and the various sizes of wood chips.

Water: The texture of soil directly affects its ability to hold or shed water. Soils with a high proportion of clay drain poorly, creating waterlogged environments low in oxygen. This is hard on the roots of most plants and on the organisms which thrive in healthy soil.

Soils that are too sandy allow water to leach nutrients below the root zone and have a low water holding capacity allowing moisture stress to occur more quickly.

Amending either soil type with compost can help: adding compost to clay soil increases aeration and water infiltration; adding compost to sandy soil increases its water and nutrient holding capacity.

Protection from abuse: Compaction is not the only form of soil misuse. Erosion is a culprit as well: Overwatering bare soil can cause runoff and reduce the nutrients in the soil. Applying mulches and/or incorporating groundcover plants can protect soil from eroding on a slope. Create mini-berms around plants on slopes, and add terraces to steep yards during the hardscape phase of garden preparation.

Neglect is another form of abuse. Check plants on a regular basis to catch pest infestations or signs of stress. Irrigation systems need regular check-ups too, as small rodents and problems with water pressure can wreak havoc on water lines and emitters.

Weed Control: After hardscape installation and before planting, consider sheet mulching, an effective and long-lasting method to control weeds, particularly in a new landscape. Details are available here: (enter sheet mulching as your search term).

In sheet mulching, layers of newspaper and/or cardboard are covered with a thick layer of shredded or chipped bark, suffocating even the most persistent weeds. Plant holes are then dug into the covered area per your garden design.

In general, applying mulch at a recommended depth of four to six inches will help control weeds. Hand pulling weeds, early and often before they seed, will save you time and grief down the road.

Now you can go shopping. Happy Gardening!

This series of Real Dirt articles summarizes the presentation Butte County Master Gardener Eve Werner created for the Butte County Master Gardeners Spring 2017 Workshop Series. Please watch our website for our Fall 2017 Workshop Series. For more information about the Butte County Master Gardener Program, please visit

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You Can Grow It: Caroline’s Foothill Garden

BOISE – Growing flowers, fruits and vegetables here in Idaho can test your gardening skills, with the weather, the weeds and the bugs. But if you live in or around the foothills at the edge of the Treasure Valley, the steep hillsides and the wildlife can make growing a garden especially challenging.

Today on “You Can Grow It,” garden master Jim Duthie visits with a Boise foothills gardener who has found a successful way to grow a garden on a steep hillside, and at the same time, protect it from the hungry deer that want to snack on her vegetables.

Idaho gardeners sometimes face a variety of challenges, one of them being the wildlife in the foothills, and also, the vertical landscape. We’ve got some ideas that you may be able to use.

Living along the Boise foothills offers incredible views of the city and the Treasure Valley below, but it can be difficult to grow a garden on the steep hillsides.

So, Caroline Bryan and her husband Thor came up with a garden design that not only works well for their vertical landscape, but also protects their plants from the deer and other wildlife that would turn her garden into a vegetable smorgasbord.

“So the first year we built one bed and came out one morning to find all of our plants just mowed over by the deer,” said Caroline. “So we frantically went and got chicken wire and made this little – we called it the covered wagon – where we could lift it up and get in, and so that seemed to work and keep the deer away. So the following year, my husband built these beautiful covers to keep the deer out, and it’s been very successful.”

The design is attractive and practical.  The frames are built into the steep hillside, and are enclosed with wire mesh that keeps the deer out, but allows pollinators to get in. The garden is accessible through full-size doors, so Caroline can easily get inside and work in the garden.

There are also large hinged windows that allow access to the garden from the outside of the frames. 

“My husband really came up with the idea for the structures, and I think he went on the internet also and just kind of got an idea how to build that structure to enclose it and keep the deer out and make sure we could get in and access the fruits and take care of it,” she said.

That solved the problem with the deer and the steep terrain, but then there was another challenge.

“Water. Trying to keep the water from coming out into the grass.”

They solved that problem by lining the lower walls of the garden beds with fabric weed barrier.  It still lets the water through, but holds the garden soil in.

The deer can’t get to Caroline’s garden now, but they do make a meal off some of the neighbors’ vegetables.

“And it’s kind of give and take in the neighborhood here, the way we share. The deer kind of munch on Bob and Cheryl’s tomatoes up there. However, the squash bugs seem to have taken to my plants and theirs have been saved. So I’m sacrificing my squash plants this year, and they’re having some lovely squash. So they share their squash with me when it comes up.”

And Caroline shares her tomatoes with them.

“Yeah, and I just keep killing squash bugs, and it seems to work out very well.”

Caroline, who hails from New Orleans, says it’s been a new experience coming from the South and learning to grow a garden here in Idaho, and to deal with the changing seasons. But she’s still managed to grow a taste of home in her hillside garden.  Like okra, a staple in southern vegetable gardens, but maybe not so common here in Idaho.

“It’s nice to have the little cucumbers growing in here, growing up that trellis, and then this is a volunteer butternut from last year that just popped up.”

But her favorite crop is her tomatoes.

“Because I love to make the spaghetti sauces and just cook tomatoes.”

“I’m glad I did so many tomatoes this year, because as short as the season seems to be, I’ll get a lot, because instead of just doing a few tomato plants, I’ll have a whole bunch all at once.”

There are lots of stairs around the side of her house up the hill to the backyard, and Caroline has made good use of the space, planting a large herb garden along one wall of the house, which is easily accessible from the steps that lead up the hill to the garden.

Caroline has had a career as a professional athlete, and she and her husband maintain a very active lifestyle.   Growing her own garden has been important because she is health conscious, and likes the fact that she is eating fresh food that she grows herself. 

“So if I’m not going to use it, absolutely, you know, the neighbors get it,” she said. “And it’s been a nice calming hobby.”

Made all the easier, thanks to a creative, attractive, and workable garden design.

Just a few ideas on what you can do with challenging areas of garden growing here in the Treasure Valley.

If you have some unique garden designs that you’d like to share with other viewers, Jim would love to hear about them.  Send us your pictures and a little description of your project to:

Facebook:  @ktvbJimDuthie



© 2017 KTVB-TV

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A garden design simplified

Everything you know about growing plants and garden design is revealed. Mine is open for review this weekend, July 29 and 30, from 7 a.m to 1 p.m. each day to benefit Dumb Friends League.

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This Charming Little Farm is the Best-Kept Secret in the Berkshires

Every weekend in the summer, the Berkshires of western Massachusetts fill up with visitors who drive from Boston and New York to go hiking, buy Shaker furniture, or catch a performance at Tanglewood, before shuttling frantically back to the city. But at the end of a dirt road near the village of Sheffield, the pace of life is slower. Here, Scottish Highland cows, fat black pigs, and heritage-breed chickens roam amiably among small vegetable plots. Farmhands chat about hay and tomatoes in front of a cabin hung with antlers. A marigold 18th-century farmhouse sits in a dell, its green window moldings a little crooked.

It was late afternoon when my family and I arrived at Moon in the Pond Farm, a 150-acre spread near the Appalachian Trail that is devoted to spreading the gospel of sustainable agriculture. Visitors come to purchase fresh meat and produce, take part in educational programs about organic principles, or just poke around. Rich Ciotola, one of the farmhands, ambled up to say hello. We’d come to buy food, but I knew I’d be chatting awhile first. That was okay. I’d been rushing, but now I felt myself begin to slow down.

Besides Ciotola, I’d come to see Dominic Palumbo, who started this place in 1991 after leaving a landscaping business in New York City. Years ago, when I worked as a farm intern in the Berkshires, this was my favorite place for meat — life-alteringly good bacon and pork butt, exquisite turkeys. This time, a leg of prosciutto hung on the porch. Palumbo and his nephew had cured it over the winter.

Palumbo introduced my son, Bennett, who is five, to Rex, an Australian cattle dog; Ulysses, a Scottish Highland bull; and Honeysuckle, a glossy black milk cow. As we passed the greenhouse, Palumbo bent to gather a few hazelnuts that had fallen from the tree he planted more than 20 years ago, then pointed out a bird in the sky and told Bennett how to tell the difference between a vulture and a hawk by the wing tips.

For Palumbo, Moon in the Pond is all about living in a connected way. Soon, the little farm made us feel more connected, too. We admired how everything in its ecosystem had its place. Chickens, let out to fertilize next year’s field with their manure, happily ate weeds from the vegetable gardens. In the farmhouse, an intern sorted seeds from the harvest to be planted next spring.

After throwing sticks for Rex to fetch, we got on the road with fresh sage and pork, two dozen speckled eggs, and a Mason jar of fresh yogurt made from Honeysuckle’s milk that tasted of hay and sunlight and rich, whole fat. Bennett declared it the most delicious thing he’d ever eaten.

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Stu Velky promoted to manager of In The Garden

(Fort Myers, Fla. – July 24, 2017)  – Stu Velky has been promoted to manager of In The Garden, Sanibel’s retail garden center and outdoor showroom. Velky joined In The Garden in July of 2015 as a nursery specialist.

“Stu knows our garden center and our customers well,” Lisa Walsh, owner of R.S. Walsh Landscaping and In The Garden, says. “Among his talents, he is very familiar with tropical fruit and food-related plants that grow in our subtropical paradise. We are looking forward to his ideas to enhance the garden center.”

Velky has more than 15 years of experience in horticulture and environmental education in Florida, Cameroon, Botswana, Costa Rica and Ecuador. He obtained his Bachelor of Arts in Environmental and Growth Management Studies from Rollins College. He earned his Masters in International Affairs from America University’s School of International Service and his Masters in Natural Resources and Sustainable Development from the United Nations University for Peace.

R.S. Walsh Landscaping is a family-owned and operated, full-service landscape design-build Company specializing in landscape design, installation, and maintenance. In The Garden – Sanibel’s Retail Garden Center Outdoor Showroom – is a tropical outdoor showroom, retail garden center and plant nursery showcasing the latest in landscape design and outdoor living ideas.

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