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Article ThumbGarden Tool Maintenance

A Clean Tool is a Safe Tool

In the garden, everything has its season. Fall is the season for cleaning and preparing tools for spring. Dirt and rust are harmful to just about everything, but especially to garden tools that are often wet and dirty. We depend on our tools to be safe and effective. Dirt and rust make our tools less safe and make us work harder. Water may be great for the garden, but it is the enemy of our tools.


Article ThumbA Bit about Bees

For Denise Johnston, it started at the county fair. As a child, she’d make a “beeline” to the hive observation frame in the agriculture building, where she would become mesmerized by the bees’ activity. Then, about ten years ago, she met Bob Engle, the man behind the hives, at an antique tractor show.

He asked if she was interested in a class he was teaching. Johnston signed on to a series of five 3-hour classes detailing how to start your own hives. After attending all 15 hours, she ordered her first batch of bees. Now Johnston is secretary/treasurer/newsletter editor of the Northwest Indiana Beekeepers Association, sells her own honey and teaches classes. (nwibeekeepers.com)


Article ThumbBasement Bounty

Decisions, decisions. What’s a devoted gardener to do with brugmansia as winter approaches?

For opulence and tropical splendor there’s nothing like angel’s trumpet (Brugmansia). Tall, elegant, with draping fragrant bells of bloom, it can dominate a patio, balcony or an entry way like little else.

But here’s the rub. It’s not hardy in Chicagoland. So this raises the sticky issue of overwintering. Should you just toss the plant when winter comes? Some do. Others would like to save it for another year. But how?


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Departments
From the Editor - NovDec 2018

I’ve been thinking about the difference between renovating the kitchen and gardening...


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Features
Winter Reds

In a Chicagoland winter, we may or may not have snow. With snow, any garden can look good. Without it, we must pull out a few …


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Departments
From the Editor

In this issue our primary focus is on perennial gardens – beautiful perennial gardens.


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Blog
From Garden to Table

No one wants to think about gardening when the temperatures hover in the single digits and the wind is howling, but before ...


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Columns
The Birds Is Coming!

“And good English has went.” That’s how it was. At least that’s how I remember it. I am, unfortunately, old enough to have ...


questions

Besides mums, what are a few other plants you would recommend for containers for fall color?

I want to raise the level of my lawn as much as 2 feet in places. I now have a large quantity of somewhat composted wood chips and I am wondering if I can use them as fill to raise the ground level and provide a good soil in which to sow a lawn.

I recently moved to Chicago from Houston and I miss fresh picked figs. Is there any way to grow figs in Chicago short of installing a greenhouse? Will sunny windows do? I’m desperate.

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