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Tomatoes: the apples of most eyes

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Posted on May 22, 2018 in Backyard

By B. Rosie Lerner Most gardeners would agree that tomatoes are the most popular crop for home growing. But what gardeners can’t agree on is what tomato is considered “the best,” since taste is such a personal matter. The diversity of cultivars available makes it easy for anyone to grow tomatoes — even if all… Continue reading.

Celebrate Arbor Day

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Posted on Mar 29, 2018 in Backyard

by B. Rosie Lerner There’s no better way to celebrate Arbor Day than to add beauty and value to your home landscape with a new tree. Trees can also provide shade and wind protection for many years to come if given the proper start. The last Friday in April is both the national and the… Continue reading.

A magnet for butterflies and bees

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Posted on Feb 28, 2018 in Backyard

By B. Rosie Lerner The Perennial Plant Association  selected its 2018 Perennial Plant of the Year: Allium “Millenium” (yes, that’s Millenium with just one “n”). This announcement continues to show the focus on pollinator habitat these days — Allium Millenium is appropriately referred to as a butterfly and bee magnet! Millenium is a hybrid Allium… Continue reading.

Winter Wasps

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Posted on Dec 19, 2017 in Backyard

In the dead of winter, we often find wasps on the carpet in our basement, but not always. Sometimes a dead wasp is on the windowsill, other times in a light fixture. We might see dying wasps crawling around lethargically or even attempting to fly. Like a lot of social insects, paper wasps survive subfreezing… Continue reading.

How to care for your Christmas amaryllis

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Posted on Nov 30, 2017 in Backyard

by B. Rosie Lerner Amaryllis is a popular holiday gift plant, but it may have the lucky recipient wondering about its proper care. Amaryllis is a tender bulb that won’t survive outdoors even in the mildest of Indiana winters. But it can be grown indoors to provide a dramatic show of color during dreary winter… Continue reading.

Sweet potato or yam?

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Posted on Oct 30, 2017 in Backyard

by B. Rosie Lerner Will you be eating sweet potatoes or yams at your Thanksgiving dinner? While many folks use the terms interchangeably, they are distinct. Botanically speaking, the sweet potato is known as Ipomoea batatas and belongs to the morning glory family (Convolvulaceae). True yams belong to one of several species of Dioscoreain (Dioscoreace),… Continue reading.

Bringing houseplants in from the cold

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Posted on Oct 03, 2017 in Backyard

by B. Rosie Lerner Many houseplants thrive during the long, bright summer days, especially when properly moved outdoors. But these plants may have some trouble adjusting back to indoor conditions when colder weather strikes. Common indoor plants often are native to the tropical or subtropical climates and cannot tolerate cold temperatures. Houseplants should be brought… Continue reading.

Bringing houseplants in from the cold

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Posted on Sep 22, 2017 in Backyard

Many houseplants thrive during the long, bright summer days, especially when properly moved outdoors. But these plants may have some trouble adjusting back to indoor conditions when colder weather strikes. Common indoor plants often are native to the tropical or subtropical climates and cannot tolerate cold temperatures. Houseplants should be brought back inside before the… Continue reading.

Still time to plant veggies

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Posted on Aug 31, 2017 in Backyard

By B. Rosie Lerner Fall is an excellent time to grow many vegetable crops in Indiana. The gardener can take advantage of cooler temperatures and more plentiful moisture, and fall gardening allows you to harvest produce after earlier crops have faded. Many vegetable crops are well adapted to planting in late summer for a fall… Continue reading.

When tree roots surface

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Posted on Jul 31, 2017 in Backyard

By B. Rosie Lerner Much to the dismay of homeowners, landscape trees sometimes grow roots on top of the surface of the lawn or possibly even buckle sidewalks and driveways. These surface roots can be quite a nuisance to lawn mowers and human feet. There are several reasons why the roots come to the surface…. Continue reading.

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