Pacific Northwest

September, 2004
Regional Report

Order Bulbs

Order your spring-flowering bulbs, such as daffodils and tulips, now so you'll receive them in plenty of time to plant. Bigger is always better in terms of bulb size. Smaller bargain-priced bulbs are usually inferior and produce smaller and fewer flowers.

Take Rose Cuttings

You can root cuttings of your favorite roses now by snipping 6- to 9-inch lengths of healthy stems and removing all but the top two or three leaves. Insert the cutting 4 to 6 inches deep in moistened growing medium and place in a bright area out of direct sunshine. Firm the soil around the cutting, water well, and cover with an inverted glass jar to conserve moisture. Remove the cover when new growth is visible.

Harvest Eggplant

Eggplant is ready to harvest when the fruit is fully colored and of mature size for that variety. Seeds should be white and the tissue firm. If the seeds are brown and hard, the fruit is past eating quality. Harvest earlier next time.

Harvest Melons

Harvest cantaloupes when the fruits pull easily from the stem. Harvest honeydews when the blossom end is slightly soft or springy. Harvest watermelons when there is a hollow sound when thumped, the skin loses its shine, and the bottom "belly" turns yellow.

Plant Cover Crops

As you harvest the last of your vegetables, plant a winter cover crop, such as annual rye, red clover, or hairy vetch, to enrich your garden soil. A cover crop decreases soil erosion during the winter and adds organic material when incorporated into the soil in spring.

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Special Report - Garden to Table

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