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Preview: Gardening Conversations: Four seasons of gardening with Cooperative Extension horticulturist Amy Ivy. Matha Foley hosts

Gardening Conversations: Four seasons of gardening with Cooperative Extension horticulturist Amy Ivy. Matha Foley hosts

Latest North Country Public Radio regional news by topic. Topic=gardening.

Copyright: ℗ & © 2016, North Country Public Radio

Clean out the garden, fill up the compost bin

Mon, 03 Oct 2016 00:00:00 -0400

(Oct 3, 2016) The gardening season is closing down. Cooperative Extension's Amy Ivy sets out priorities for what to clean out and how. Much can be added to the compost bin, but not everything. Watch out for diseased plant tissue especially, and some woody stems that just don't break down well. [full story]

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A difficult year for NY apple growers

Mon, 26 Sep 2016 00:00:00 -0400

(Sep 26, 2016) The apple harvest is underway, and it’s been a disappointing year for many apple growers in our region. Drought, hail storms and fire blight are some of the reasons for a difficult season.Cornell Cooperative Extension fruit specialist Anna Wallis is keeping an eye on the harvest in some of the Champlain Valley’s orchards this month. [full story]

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Can you plan for an unpredictable growing season?

Mon, 19 Sep 2016 00:00:00 -0400

(Sep 19, 2016) The change of seasons has gotten less and less orderly over the past few gardening years. Instead of watching for frost, most gardeners in the region are still worrying about drought. Where there was water for the garden, tomatoes are still ripening, annual flowers still blooming. Where there wasn't enough water, perennials are stressed and sad, lawns are brown instead of lush with fall growth.Horticulturist Amy Ivy says a gardeners has to have a more varied set of "tools" to make the most of up-and-down, lengthening growing seasons. [full story]

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Cool nights are good news for the orchard

Mon, 12 Sep 2016 00:00:00 -0400

(Sep 12, 2016) The combination of warm days and cool nights is perfect weather for the apple crop, but the dry season means that gardeners should still be watering, even though the growing season is winding down.Cornell Co-operative Extension horticulturist Amy Ivy and Martha Foley parse the weather report for what gardeners needs to know as summer closes out. [full story]

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Not just your garden variety scarecrows in Canton

Wed, 07 Sep 2016 00:00:00 -0400

(Sep 7, 2016) Gardens in the Canton area this season were "peopled" with the help of a group of youngsters. As part of a series of summer activities at Taylor Park, teens and pre-teens took part in a scarecrow workshop with the finished straw folk given to local farmers and gardeners.Co-sponsored by the village recreation department, LittleGrasse Foodworks and TAUNY, the Creating Scarecrows workshop was run by high school students as a way to give them an opportunity to experience a leadership role and a way for the younger students to contribute to the community in a positive way. [full story]

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Self-seeding flowers, herbs can help fill your garden

Mon, 05 Sep 2016 00:00:00 -0400

(Sep 5, 2016) One characteristic of a sustainable garden is that it produces at least some of its own seed. There are flowers, herbs and vegetables that self-seed. Some produce seeds so readily that as long as you give them time to flower and mature, and set seed, you'll always have free plants growing in your garden.Amy Ivy, horticulturist with Cornell Cooperative Extension in Clinton and Essex counties, says self-sowers may be annuals, biennials, or perennials. With a bit of light management, each generation can be coaxed into providing seeds for many seasons. And gardeners can collect and save seeds until the following year. [full story]

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How to be smart about weeds

Mon, 29 Aug 2016 00:00:00 -0400

(Aug 29, 2016) Weeds pose a special threat this time of year. They are going to seed. Imagine, some can drop hundreds of thousands of seeds, right in your garden. According to Cooperative Extension's Amy Ivy, it's smart and efficient to just cut down the annuals, like pig weed, now. That will stop them from seeding the garden, and won't disturb the soil as pulling them up would. Do pull the grasses; their roots are a problem. But as with other pests, the first step is to identify the problem accurately. [full story]

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Good options for corn: homegrown, or not

Mon, 22 Aug 2016 00:00:00 -0400

(Aug 22, 2016) Sweetcorn can be an easy, interesting and delicious crop for a home gardener. It likes heat and humidity, so Adirondack conditions aren't ideal. And there's one thing you really need to know: plant at least four six-foot rows. Horticulturist Amy Ivy explains why, and shares other fun things about sweetcorn — like, what the silk is for.On the other hand, really good sweetcorn is widely available at farm stands and farmers' markets across the region. Stock and freeze some for winter! [full story]

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Picking cukes, herbs, flowers often to encourage a longer season

Mon, 15 Aug 2016 00:00:00 -0400

(Aug 15, 2016) Horticulturist Amy Ivy says if you’re pulling cucumbers and beans out of your garden - keep at it! Amy says picking cukes, snipping basil leaves and cutting zinnias actually promotes a bigger harvest. [full story]

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A dry year keeps diseases down, but...

Mon, 01 Aug 2016 00:00:00 -0400

(Aug 1, 2016) According to the US Drought Monitor, almost 90 percent of New York State is abnormally dry. That includes most of the North Country counties. And three quarters of the state is in a moderate or severe drought. So, yes, it's very, very dry. If there's any silver lining, says Cooperative Extension's Amy Ivy, it's that dry conditions put diseases like late blight at bay. On the other hand, some insect pests are having a very good year. Leaf hoppers and cucumber beetles are among them. Amy has advice on when and how to spray. Especially with organic means, it's important to catch insects early. [full story]

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Right-sizing your garden

Mon, 04 Jul 2016 00:00:00 -0400

(Jul 4, 2016) Garden chores getting the better of your summer? Maybe it's time to "right-size." As Cooperative Extension's Amy Ivy says, gardening can be such a joy, it's just not right to let it be a burden, a giver of guilt. She and Martha Foley are down-sizing this year. Amy explains how to take a pause in the garden without giving up entirely. And she explains how to make soil even better for when you're ready to pick up again. [full story]

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Get the jump on garden pests

Mon, 27 Jun 2016 00:00:00 -0400

(Jun 27, 2016) It's hard to be prescriptive when it comes to all the creatures that threaten flowers, vegetables, shrubs, and trees at various times of the season. But Amy Ivy, horticulturist with Cooperative Extension, has some sound advice for dealing with pests: keep close track of the garden plants so you notice problems early; figure out what the problem is (what bug is it, anyway?); and, do no harm. [full story]

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Weather matters for gardeners in the North Country

Mon, 13 Jun 2016 00:00:00 -0400

(Jun 13, 2016) Although we can’t control the weather, Amy Ivy reminds gardeners they should pay close attention to it and be prepared to react quickly.We can’t make the wind stop blowing like it did over the weekend, but Amy suggests gardeners create a wind block or temporary hoop to help tender transplants survive windy conditions. From near-drought, to heavy rain, and then the heat that is forecasted for this week, Martha Foley and Amy discuss how gardeners can cope with the changeable North Country weather. [full story]

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Garden watering strategies to save time and plants

Mon, 06 Jun 2016 00:00:00 -0400

(Jun 6, 2016) Much of the region got a good dose of rain over the weekend, and farmers and gardeners will tell you it was a badly needed at the start of the growing season. Water is one of the essential ingredients in gardening, and horticulturist Amy Ivy shares some tips for smart ways to water plants when it's dry. [full story]

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Watering tips for the garden during this dry spell

Mon, 30 May 2016 00:00:00 -0400

(May 30, 2016) Memorial Day means gardening for many people. It's been a dry start to the growing season. Horticulturist Amy Ivy has some tips on watering young plants, seedlings, and trees at the start of the growing season. [full story]

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Thrillers, fillers and spillers in the window box

Mon, 23 May 2016 00:00:00 -0400

(May 23, 2016) The hunt for the perfect mix of annuals, herbs, and even perennials for containers is part of the fun for gardeners. But where to start? Horticulturist Amy Ivy says a good recipe to follow is the thrillers, fillers, and spillers concept. It's a technique that utilizes three different types of plants to create well-rounded window boxes, urns, and other container gardens. [full story]

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First steps to making your own hanging baskets and planters

Mon, 16 May 2016 00:00:00 -0400

(May 16, 2016) So, you want to make a flower box, urn, or hanging basket to rival the glorious arrangements in the greenhouse or garden center. Cooperative Extension's Amy Ivy can help, with information. Step one, like other gardening, is planning and preparation. Is the location too windy and/or sunny for a hanging basket? What's the right mix of potting mix, soil, compost, and other materials for the project? How big is the basket or planter? Lots of questions and answers in this week's conversation. Next week: strategies and design for what to plant, or, thrillers, fillers and spillers. [full story]

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Toughen up those transplants!

Mon, 09 May 2016 00:00:00 -0400

(May 9, 2016) Mother's Day weekend is the big one for retail greenhouses and garden centers in this region. But just because you walked out with flats of tender transplants, or a gorgeous hanging basket all in bloom, doesn't mean these pants are ready for outdoor life. Too much of any piece of our mix of up and down spring weather can take a toll: wind, rain, sun or cold. Same goes for the starts under the grow light in the basement. Cooperative Extension's Amy Ivy explains they all need to be toughened up, or "hardened off." [full story]

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Feels wrong, is right: dividing perennials

Mon, 02 May 2016 00:00:00 -0400

(May 2, 2016) Both the calendar and the forecast signal a key stage in the flower garden: dividing perennials. It can feel wrong to drive the point of a shovel into the heart of your lovely favorite, but the proof is in the pudding. Cooperative Extension's Amy Ivy says she's her sedum Autumn Joy has hundreds, maybe thousands, of descendants around the region, given away after being divided from the flourishing mother plant. Why do this, and how, in this week's gardening conversation. [full story]

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How to make your own good soil

Mon, 25 Apr 2016 00:00:00 -0400

(Apr 25, 2016) You've had your garden soil tested . . . now what? Cooperative Extension's Amy Ivy lays out the plan for making so-so soil better. And for more drastic areas, how to make your own good topsoil, from scratch. [full story]

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