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Gardeners Can Survive Winter

By Carol Siddall, Master Gardener

This time of year, gardeners me included, are looking through seed catalogues and their gardening magazines. I have come across some interesting and fun information I thought I would share with you.

Winter blues? Try growing a few herbs indoors. They are fun.

Grow ones like rosemary and thyme to go into winter soups.Grow the popular micro greens. All you need is a sunny spot, lettuce seeds and in a few days, you will have greens full of nutrients to eat.Take an avocado pit and let it sprout. Also try a pineapple top. Kids will love to see what happens.Buy a new houseplant. Nothing lifts your spirits like a new, never had before, houseplant.Try an air plant. They practically grow themselves because they don't require soil to grow. In our neck of the woods, they do need to be sprayed about once a week with water. I put mine outside in the summer which they love.

Did you know?

Those pesky but adorable squirrels are great stealers of food.Squirrels are fast, speeds up to 20 mph.Their talent for reaching seemingly inaccessible bird feeders, is due to their ability to rotate their hind feet 180 degrees.A squirrel's four front teeth grow about 10 inches a year. Gnawing keeps them short. They bite off small limbs of our pine trees!

Did you know it is time for a very important annual chore we often over look? It is time to remove vines from our trees. Vines can cover a canker or decayed area on a tree that could cause trouble.

Circling vines such as wisteria can wrap so tightly around the trunk that the vine stems can strangle a tree over time. Trumpet vine and English Ivy are other ones that can strangle.

Vines can also shade trees when they overtake the tree foliage. Aggressive vines can cause tree decline and death. English Ivy caused the death of a tree in our neighborhood.



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