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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.

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Garlic? Spring bulbs? It isn't TOO late

Mon, 20 Nov 2017 00:00:00 -0500

(Nov 20, 2017) Raise your hand if you didn't get your garlic/daffodils/tulips in the ground before the cold set in. Fear not. With some tolerance for working outdoors in chilly soil, you still have a chance. Cooperative Extension's Amy Ivy and NCPR's Martha Foley are in the same boat, and share tips, and consolation.Also, make that pumpkin pie a butternut squash pie this year. They explain why, and have some great ways to make processing the raw squash a snap. [full story]

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You've got to trick bulbs into flowering indoors

Mon, 13 Nov 2017 00:00:00 -0500

(Nov 13, 2017) Word of the day from Amy Ivy: ver-nal-i-za-tion. noun. the cooling of seed during germination in order to accelerate flowering when it is planted.It's the whole thing in forcing spring bulbs to flower indoors. You've got to simulate winter's work by potting, watering and then keeping bulbs just above freezing for weeks before bringing them in to flower.Narcissus, paper whites, are the exception, not the rule, according to Amy. Bigger bulbs like daffodils require eight to 10 weeks of cold, smaller bulbs six to eight.Amy Ivy is a horticulturist for Cooperative Extension of Clinton and Essex Counties and joins Martha Foley for a gardening conversation each Monday on The Eight O'Clock Hour. [full story]

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Tulips and all - spring bulbs go in the ground now

Mon, 06 Nov 2017 00:00:00 -0500

(Nov 6, 2017) Now's the time to plant bulbs for spring flowers. Tulips, daffodils and all the littler bulbs go in the ground before it gets much colder.Cooperative Extension's Amy Ivy tells why she likes daffodils and what to do to protect tulips from underground critters that will eat them if allowed. She also shares which of the smaller bulbs will spread from the original planting. And she's got a rule of thumb to gauge how deep to plant. (Soil on top should measure 2X the size of the bulb.) [full story]

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It's prime time to compost

Mon, 30 Oct 2017 00:00:00 -0400

(Oct 30, 2017) Drifts of fallen leaves, plus the last round of lawn clippings, plus the remains of the frosted vegetable garden, plus a few shots of good soil - it all adds up to a great opportunity for compost.Whether you're a veteran with a chance to start a new bin, or a beginner wondering about the basics, Cooperative Extension's Amy Ivy has the how-tos and whys of successful compost. One basic rule: no animal protein and nothing oily. [full story]

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Warm fall? Get a headstart on spring

Mon, 23 Oct 2017 00:00:00 -0400

(Oct 23, 2017) Yes, it's still unseasonably warm. But parts of the North Country have had a killing frost.Perennials took a heavy hit in Cooperative Extension horticulturist Amy Ivy's garden.That prompted her to start the annual fall clean up, and some strategic weeding to get a head start on spring. [full story]

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Not too early, not too late - timing the garlic

Mon, 16 Oct 2017 00:00:00 -0400

(Oct 16, 2017) The thing about timing when to plant garlic, according to Cooperative Extension's Amy Ivy, is that you want to hit a sweet spot between too warm, and too cold. If the weather is too warm, the garlic might send up top growth. That's not good. Too cold, and the bulbs don't have time to establish some roots. That's not good either. That and lots more about how to plant garlic in this week's conversation. [full story]

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Don't waste those leaf piles!

Mon, 09 Oct 2017 00:00:00 -0400

(Oct 9, 2017) You know what they say: one person's trash is another person's treasure. So it is with the tons of leaves that fall on our lawns every autumn. As they are doing right now! Cooperative Extension's Amy Ivy argues that, despite the raking and the bagging and hauling, those leaves are solid gold for gardeners. [full story]

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Hot spell gives tomatoes a last gasp

Mon, 25 Sep 2017 00:00:00 -0400

(Sep 25, 2017) They might not look very pretty, but the extended spell of sunny, 80-something days this month has given garden tomatoes some extra ripening time. But it's given the diseases that attack tomato vines extra time, too.Cornell Cooperative Extension's Amy Ivy suggests picking fruit a little early, as it starts to ripen, to minimize damage. [full story]

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Just try it: bringing the flowers and herbs indoors

Mon, 18 Sep 2017 00:00:00 -0400

(Sep 18, 2017) Some potted flowers and herbs are a naturals to bring indoors for the winter.Last week, Cooperative Extension's Amy Ivy detailed her favorites: cuttings from her bright red geraniums.What about a hanging basket? Or a pot of parsley? Try it with care, she says, but watch out not to bring outdoor bugs, like aphids, in with them. [full story]

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So, what do you know about hunger in the North Country?

Wed, 13 Sep 2017 00:00:00 -0400

(Sep 13, 2017) As part of national Hunger Action Month, a St. Lawrence County organization seeking to end hunger is asking residents to take the SNAP Challenge. SNAP is the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program. The challenge is whether you can feed yourself and your family on $4.60 per person per day. GardenShare's booth at the Canton Farmers Market has more information. Todd Moe stopped by earlier this month to meet the group's two AmeriCorps VISTA members who are helping out this year. AmeriCorps VISTA is a service program designed to alleviate poverty. Maggie Smith and Brianna Blackburn agree that their work at GardenShare gives them a great insight in the issues of hunger and poverty in the North Country. Blackburn says she was surprised to learn that one in seven people are enrolled in SNAP, and nearly half of them are children. [full story]

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Still a chance for ripe tomatoes, and tips on taking cuttings

Mon, 11 Sep 2017 00:00:00 -0400

(Sep 11, 2017) Martha Foley is still hoping to see her tomotoes ripen in the next few sunny days. But the evenings are pretty cool, so blanketing your tomatoes at night may help the ripening along.One thing that can be done before the frost comes is to take cuttings from nasturtiums, coleus or geraniums and root them in potting mix. The new plants can bring some color into the house all winter long. Horticulturist Amy Ivy shares tips on taking and propogating cuttings.Martha and Amy talk each Monday morning about gardening on The Eight O'Clock Hour. [full story]

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Late summer relief in the garden, but still time to tidy up

Mon, 04 Sep 2017 00:00:00 -0400

(Sep 4, 2017) In the dogs days of late summer, the garden may look a little worse for wear. Now's the time to clean up, and keep weeding. Horticulturist Amy Ivy offers some advice about end-of-summer garden care. [full story]

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Turning tomatoes from green to ripe

Mon, 28 Aug 2017 00:00:00 -0400

(Aug 28, 2017) Got tomatoes? Got ripe tomatoes? Lots of gardeners in the region are complaining that while they can answer an wholehearted "yes" to the first question, the follow up is more of a problem.After a generally late start, and few hot spells this summer, we're beginning to run out of ripening time. Cooperative Extension's Amy Ivy reviews some practices that can help the process along. [full story]

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Think ahead: time to dry herbs and save seeds

Mon, 21 Aug 2017 00:00:00 -0400

(Aug 21, 2017) Tomatoes may be taking their sweet time this summer, but lots of flowers and herbs are cycling nicely through the season. Cooperative Extension's Amy Ivy offers tips on saving seeds for next year's planting season, and drying herbs and flowers to use and enjoy all winter. [full story]

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Keeping the late summer garden going strong

Mon, 14 Aug 2017 00:00:00 -0400

(Aug 14, 2017) It's high season at farmers' markets around the region, with a great selection of produce available. What about the backyard veggie garden?Horticulturist Amy Ivy has some tips for shaping up the scraggly plants and herbs this month, and late-summer reminders to be patient with ripening tomatoes and keep picking the cucumbers and zucchini. [full story]

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Midsummer in the flower garden: time for a makeover

Mon, 07 Aug 2017 00:00:00 -0400

(Aug 7, 2017) The annual and perennials look stellar in spring and early summer when their flowers burst forth and are at their freshest and most colorful. But by midsummer, they start to look bedraggled and a little lackluster. [full story]

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A taste of summer: jamming in a Canton kitchen

Fri, 04 Aug 2017 00:00:00 -0400

(Aug 4, 2017) Making jam from summer fruit is not as complicated as it might sound. It's a combination of fruit, sugar, a bit of lemon juice and some pectin. Of course, it's even easier when someone shows you how. So, Cornell Cooperative Extension's Learning Farm in Canton is opening up its new commercial kitchen to canning lessons this season. The classes begin next week and continue into November. Maria "Flip" Filippi, Extension Local Foods Program Leader, says she hopes the classes will help demystify the canning process and demonstrate how to safely preserve garden produce. Todd Moe got the sweet assignment of visiting the kitchen this week as Filippi and Nutrition Educator Melissa D'Angelo were canning some strawberry-rhubarb jam. [full story]

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What can go wrong as tomatoes take off

Mon, 31 Jul 2017 00:00:00 -0400

(Jul 31, 2017) Tomatoes got a cool, slow start this year, but with sunshine and warmer temperatures now, they're catching up. Of course, there are some key problems to keep an eye out for. Cooperative Extension's Amy Ivy reminds us about septoria and early blight, and the much more threatening late blight.And there's a caterpillar to look for: the tomato hornworm. It's wonderfully (or tragically) well camouflaged. You might just see the damage it's done first. [full story]

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Gaps among the veggies? Plant something for fall

Mon, 24 Jul 2017 00:00:00 -0400

(Jul 24, 2017) Midway through the summer season, there may be some space opening up in the vegetable garden. Maybe there's a row or two where the peas once were, or a patch left empty when the garlic was pulled. Or maybe a a spot just reclaimed from some gone-too-far weeds.Cooperative Extension's Amy Ivy says this is good space and this is the right time to plant something for fall; leafy greens would be a good choice. Think lettuce, kale, arugula, maybe even spinach. [full story]

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Garlic's a constant in an up and down summer

Mon, 17 Jul 2017 00:00:00 -0400

(Jul 17, 2017) It hardly seems like we've had enough "summer" for this, but it's mid-July, and time to harvest garlic. In fact, according to Cooperative Extension's Amy Ivy, other areas in the state have their garlic out of the ground already.This week, she's got tips on how to tell when it's really ready, how to get the bulbs out of the ground, and what do do to insure both good-keeping heads for winter use and a good crop for next year. [full story]

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