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Good Growing

Keeping you growing with good ideas
Bloodroot (Sanguinaria canadensis) exudes a bright orange-red sap
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Keep an Eye Out for These Winter-Blooming Plants

You have to hand it to those Olympic athletes; they sure do make it look easy. Watching the 2018 Olympics with my family has inspired us to take to the slopes, that is, our small sledding hill. We took advantage of a snowy weekend and got in some much overdue sled riding. In the joyful moments of barreling headfirst down a steep hill with a six and four-year-old on my back, one doesn't think of...

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Leafy Greens in the Garden

Posted by Kari Houle - Articles

I have come to the realization that my favorite plants are foliage plants – from pothos to huechera to lettuce and spinach. Spring is on the horizon which means it's going to be spring vegetable planting time before we know it and that includes some of those favorites. Leafy green vegetables are some of the easiest vegetables to grow. They start readily from seed, can provide extend har...

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Does Sand Improve Clay Soil Drainage?

My childhood home sat atop a bluff overlooking the Mill Creek Valley near Quincy. The view over bucolic farm fields and pastures likely was the kicker for why my parents purchased the property. It is a view that still holds me in a trance whenever I'm visiting my folks. However, the bluff upon which our house resided, was comprised of thick, red, gumbo clay! My parents would send me out...

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Updates and New Varieties

Posted by Kari Houle - Articles

So let's just say my re-obsession with succulents (that I mentioned back in December) has kind of exploded into lots of new plants in my house. I also discovered that the window I had my first new batch of succulents in wasn't providing enough natural light and they were beginning to stretch. Even though I wrote about being mindful about lighting and stretching – look what ended up happening. W...

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Fresh Produce Food Safety and Food Safety Training for Specialty Crop Growers

Fresh Produce Food Safety Another food illness outbreak linked to fresh vegetables has made the headlines. The pathogen E. coli 0157:H7 caused 24 illnesses and two deaths in the United States and Canada. Canadian health officials have declared the outbreak over, and have placed the blame on romaine lettuce. The US Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has not been able to l...

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Spring Soil Preparation

Posted by Kari Houle - Articles

In the last month, I've received calls and emails asking about what should be done to prepare the garden soil in the spring once the grounds is no longer frozen and ready to be worked for the new gardening season. Questions such as – what fertilizer should I apply, can I apply manure to my garden, if I do apply manure should it raw or composted, what about peat moss or should I use regular comp...

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Winter Bird Feeding with Suet

To say our weather has turned cold is an understatement. Last week, while sledding with my children my pants froze! We did not last long on the sledding hill that day. When I open the door to let out our dog Murphy, he looks up at me with what I can only describe as a "You've got to be kidding me" facial expression. Despite the dogs and his owner's hasty retreats out of the cold, there...

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