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Member Since: 02/06/2014



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Re: Tools of The (Gardening) Trade

Several invaluable tools come to mind: Good watering hoses and watering cans with spray heads make keeping the garden hydrated workable. All gardens should be situated close to a water source. A wheel barrow makes moving loads in and out of the garden doable, as well as mixing ingredients for soil amendments. A garden knife comes in handy for weeding, transplanting, pruning, dividing and scraping clean one's shoes or boots. It need not be expensive--an old kitchen knife will do--but the Japanese garden knife "huri huri" is worth the price, especially one with a serated edge. Gloves make for a healthier garden and well-cared for hands. A broad brimmed hat keeps the sun off. And finally a kneeling pad keeps one's knees from beginning an unpleasant conversation about sticks and stones in the garden. Pads are cheap and knees are dear.

Re: Pineapple Sage (Salvia elegans)

Pineapple Sage makes a great addition to the scent garden and its late blooms sparkle in the autumn when the last of the pollinators like to visit. It continues even through mild frosts here in the Midwest. I like to prune and pot up a couple of plants and place them where we'll brush by during the cold weather months--the citrusy aroma is a real tonic when it's cold and snowy.

Re: Tomatoes: Request for Reader Recommendations

For a delicious, prolific, long-lasting small tomato, Cabernet can't be beat. Italian Stripe is a beautiful red with yellow streaks, and tasty too. Opalka continues to be a personal favorite for paste to rival Amish Paste. All my 15 different varieties did especially well when planted with compost in the hole and two applications of compost tea during the growing season.