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Gardening

Healthy porcelain garlic, after a successful growing season..
Healthy porcelain garlic, after a successful growing season..

How to harvest and keep garlic

Garlic is easy to plant, and doesn't usually require a whole lot of attention as it grows. It comes up, nice and green, first thing in the spring, like daffodils. Timing the harvest is trickier, though. And treating it right can help keep the bulbs fresh and firm for months.

Cooperative Extension's Amy Ivy has the do's and don'ts.  Go to full article
Artist Wayne Brown, Barbara Beekman, and Cindy Quakenbush install the new sculpture in the Butterfly Garden. Photo: Natalie Dignam.

Butterfly garden blooming with new additions

Ripe berries and growing tomatoes may be the focus for most gardeners right now, but last week a different kind of flower bloomed in the garden outside of the NCPR in Canton.

A new sculpture stands about eight feet tall among the fragrant perennials in the EJ Noble medical Building's butterfly garden. It's topped with a yellow flower and a big, iron butterfly.

The garden has a small waterfall and is even in the shape of a butterfly. NCPR summer intern Natalie Dignam met with the creator of the garden, Cindy Quackenbush, and Barbara Beekman, who commissioned the new sculpture.  Go to full article
Phosphorus used in gardens can contribute to algae blooms in lakes, like this one in 2012. Photo: Lake George Waterkeeper

For lawn and garden: the do's and don'ts of fertilizing

It's illegal to fertilize a lawn with phosporous in New York State. The Department of Environmental Conservation sent a press release around last week with that reminder (more information on this here.

There are exceptions, dependent on a soil test. Cooperative Extension horticulturist Amy Ivy has lots of good information this week about that, and about fertilizers and fertilizing in general.

Top takeaways: don't fertilize your lawn till September anyway; do fertilize vegetables if they looked peaked; do fertilize flowers; don't fertilize woody herbs like thyme, sage and such; and as always, know your soil. Here's more information from Amy Ivy.  Go to full article
Invasive wild parsnip. Avoid contact; avoid a nasty rash. Photo: <a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/dmills727/3644070846/">Douglas Mills</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

Beware the invasives; and small strawberries are good too!

Right about now, the roadsides can look more like flower gardens than some gardens do. Wonderful abundant mixes of color, texture, height: all the qualities you look for....  Go to full article
Several types of hanging basket. Photo: <a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/ken_yasuhara/6116652111/">K. Yasahura</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

How to keep flower boxes and baskets looking their best

It's hard for a gardener to complain about this stone-summer weather. Heat, sun, plus a little rain here and there are a great combination to kick plants into high gear for...  Go to full article
Tomato plants starting up a trellis. Photo: <a href="https://farm4.staticflickr.com/3648/3650652836_ca568ea7e6_o_d.jpg">Charles Dawley</a>, Creative Common, some rights reserved

Some tomato tips before the season kicks into high gear

Even if you don't have a garden, you can grow tomatoes in a sunny spot on your front steps or patio. They're one of the most popular vegetables. But they take some...  Go to full article
Rose chafer beetles at work. Photo: <a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/50352333@N06/4647992672/">Jason Sturner</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

First the blooms, then the bugs

Aren't the peonies lovely? And the first roses to bloom so pretty and fragrant? Along with the iris and the first day lilies, they give gardeners an early-summer shot of...  Go to full article
After removing the early weeds, mulching between rows will slow their return. Photo: <a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/90738513@N00/2522983940">Linda Beaverson</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

Weeds, you say? Get 'em when they're little

The tiniest weeds might just be you're most important job right now. It's like the old "pound of prevention" saying. You can deal with a million weeds in a very short time,...  Go to full article
Part way done: some perennials back in place, soil amendment continues. Photo by Martha Foley

Out with the bad: taking control of the perennial garden

The first step can be the hardest when you've got a major Quackgrass infestation, or an "aggressive" perennial that's taking over. In Martha Foley's garden this spring, it...  Go to full article
They start small, but they don't (hopefully) stay that way. Make sure to leave enough space for you transplants to thrive. Photo: Martha Foley

Plants need their space too

It's tempting, all that nice open space in the garden. But as you plant the six packs of annuals, or divide and distribute the perennials, or arrange the rows of beets and...  Go to full article

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