July, 2012
Regional Report

Remember Last Year's Poison Ivy Patches

Maybe you sprayed herbicide to kill poison ivy last year, just as I did. Maybe you even carefully removed the dead plants, as I did. Surprise! Poison ivy may be back, right there. In my yard, several poison ivy plants are showing their three, shiny green leaves on one red stem, just where I killed and pulled them out last year. I'm keeping an eye open for more. A word to you wise gardeners...

Pick, Pick, Pick Fresh Greens

The more we pick, the more the Swiss chard and kale and spinach and cut-and-come again lettuces grow new leaves for us to pick and enjoy and share with neighbors. Yummy...

Snack on Yellow and White Florets

With the season's heat, my kale and 'Wasabi' mustard greens are pushing colorful buds and florets. These are tender, tasty tidbits to nibble while gardening, add to a salad, slip into a sandwich, or garnish an omlette .... I hope you have some garden fresh, crisp buds and flowers to sample. You won't likely find them in a grocery store.

Fluff Up Mulch

By now, a lot of mulch may well be hard and dry on top. Rainwater will flow right over the crusty top. Water doesn't reach the soil, much less the deeper annual, perennial, shrub, and tree roots. Use a hoe or cultivator to break the crust and fluff up the mulch.

Try New Vegetables from the Farmer's Market

We are so fortunate that farmers and truck gardeners bring their freshly picked bounty to our neighborhoods and communities. Take the leap!!! Here's an opportunity to try something new -- heirloom Purple Smudge tomato, Yokohama squash, Dragon's Egg cucumber, Dinosaur kale, French melon. Mange!

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