April 16, 2016
Get intimate with the weather. For the next two weeks, we walk the line between frost and not frost in or near the city. Any time the forecast calls for freezing overnight temperatures, run out and cover your transplants and newly sprouted seeds with plastic, straw, newspaper tents, milk jugs, bed linens, or store-bought row cover. Exposure to the cold will probably not kill your little babies, but it will seriously set them back. Remember to remove the covers each day so plants aren't crushed by the weight or cooked by the sun. If you were silly enough to have planted tomatoes already, be prepared to sit out all night with a campfire, curled up around them to keep them warm.
July 31, 2015 |
The late July heat is blooming inside the Camden County Community Greenhouse, but the volunteers seem unfazed. Tina McHugh and Christine Pike fill wheelbarrows with ungainly petunias destined for the nearby compost pile. Steve Politowski arrives with tools so he can help finish the roof on the new potting shed. And Jane Elkis Berkowitz is ready for a plant propagation class. "The power of the flower," Freeholder Michelle Gentek-Mayer says. "It goes very far. " The once-abandoned greenhouse at the Lakeland complex in Gloucester Township will yield 15,000 flowering plants this year to beautify the county's park system and public buildings.
April 28, 2015 |
VINELAND - This has long been a place where people tend to talk a lot about how things used to be. So fond are some of the recollections at a local pizzeria about "old Vineland" one might think the wide main street, Landis Avenue, was paved with something other than macadam back when people traveled from Philadelphia and New York to shop here. Over a latte at a vendor's stall at the new farmers' market, they'll froth on about the miles and miles of neighborhoods of once well-kept homes with the big front yards filled with flowering fruit trees.
March 15, 2015 |
My farm-to-table fantasy? I harvest eggs, milk and honey with my own hands and eat the fruits of my labor, aglow in the setting sun. Yet I'm a city slicker with a short attention span. So where's the happy medium for a potential urban farmer like me? Renting. Yes, just in time for spring, you can rent chickens for eggs (with an option to adopt if you come to love them) or goats for grazing your lawn (they don't bite). You can even rent your own honeybee colony to buzz about on your rooftop or in your backyard.
June 7, 2013 |
If having flowers on the table can make a meal seem twice as delectable - as erudite food writer Michael Pollan asserts - then how many times tastier might that meal be with the flowers in it? Many common blossoms are both decorative and flavorful additions to salads, entrees, and desserts. Further, they are full of phytochemicals, from A (antioxidants) to V (vitamins). They also are among the most ephemeral of ingredients - what I call "hyperseasonal," mementos of a fleeting moment in a plant's life cycle.
January 14, 2013 |
For many in Harleysville, it is probably best recognized as the former Price farm. The original 200-acre tract was settled in 1721 by Jacob Price, a preacher among the Dunkards, a mainly German conservative sect that immigrated to Pennsylvania in the early 18th century. Today, the prominent farmstead, with its main house and six buildings, sits on 7½ verdant acres and is the cherished home of Joyce Sherman and Jim Pepe. The owners have been hands-on, devoting the better part of two decades to restoring, preserving, and annexing onto the property while being committed to a green lifestyle.
April 13, 2012 |
Ever had a gardening question you thought was so dumb you couldn't bring yourself to ask it? I know, there's no such thing as a dumb question. At least, that's the approach taken by Teri Dunn Chace, author of The Anxious Gardener's Book of Answers (Timber Press, $12.95), who's written a very basic book for newbies and others who wonder about things like ... Can I plant old bulbs? Why is my compost not cooked yet? How come the grass died? Chace tackles these and 97 other gardening mistakes in 24 chapters, alphabetically arranged.
February 24, 2012 |
Buy onion sets. I like to get mine in the ground no later than St. Patrick's Day and preferably by the first or second week of March. In Pennsylvania, snows that occur in late March or early April are known as "onion snows" because they usually arrive just as new onion shoots emerge. If you started your onion seeds indoors earlier, put the young plants out in a cold frame to harden off before planting. This is just as it sounds: The leaves get harder from the colder night temperatures, while the plants stay warm and protected.
February 12, 2012
Sunday Chamber music The venerable Philadelphia Chamber Ensemble plays works by Jean Francaix, Paul Ben-Haim, and Brahms at 2 p.m. at Old Pine Street Church , Fourth and Pine Streets. Tickets are $25. Call 215-542-4890. . . . The Miami String Quartet plays works by Beethoven, Dohnanyi, and Schubert, with guest Lydia Artymiw , piano, at 3 p.m. at the Independence Seaport Museum , Columbus Boulevard and Walnut Street. Tickets are $23; $10 for students. Call 215-569-8080.
November 27, 2011 |
WOODLAKE, Calif. - When Manuel Jimenez first set eyes on the land below a levee, thick with brush and weeds, the onetime fieldworker envisioned a place where youngsters could escape the temptations of gang life and learn about the Central Valley's most vital industry. But, like many places in California's farming belt, this Tulare County town of 7,280 flanked by citrus groves had few resources. Best known for its annual rodeo, Woodlake has been devastated by gangs. More than 40 percent of its families, many Latino immigrant farmworkers, live in poverty.