MARCH HAPPENINGS

 Our Promise Tree fundraiser events always prove to be a great time for all who attend while raising money to keep our club running.  …And  March brought us Linda Sadlock’s, “Soup’s On” Promise Tree event, where thirteen of our members  got to enjoy Linda’s cooking and hospitality.  Linda set up tables in her lovely dining room and in her bright sun room.  On display, she had pots of blooming spring bulbs which were planted last fall and stored in her garage, per Art Scarpa’s instructions.  In addition to all the delicious soups, Linda served 2 types of bread, including her delicious irish soda bread.   After lunch we all lingered for conversation with tea & coffee.

Soups on DR Soups on Sun Room

 Click below to link into your favorite recipes from Linda’s  “Soups On” event:

Pizza Soup

Mulligatawny Soup

Pumpkin Black Bean Soup

 Sauerkraut-Sausage Soup

  Bulgarian Red Pepper Stew

Irish Soda Bread

 ♦♦♦♦♦♦

Our St. Patrick’s Day Meeting informed us about Hostas and Companion Plants brought to us by Real Fallu.

♦♦♦♦♦♦

POT SWAP

At our next general meeting on April 21, 1916

Free to a good garden!

BRING YOUR UNWANTED:

GARDEN TOOLS

PLANTERS,

DECORATIVE POTS,

VASES,

GARDENING BOOKS,

CLAY POTS,

GARDEN ART,

ANYTHING “GARDENY”

TRADE YOURS FOR SOMETHING NEW TO YOU.

ALL ARE FREE!

*Please, NO plastic nursery pots, chemicals, or dirt

Brought  you by the Environment & Conservation Committee

 

 

 

Hort Moment

Ready to Try Some Winter Sowing?                                            Young Basil, Seedling, Germ Bud, Keimling, Sämling, Basilikum

March is a great time to experiment with winter sowing – a low effort germination  method that allows you to start a lot of seedlings for just pennies.

Here are the benefits:

 It’s easy!

The concept is simple – sow seeds of hardy annuals or perennials into homemade mini-greenhouses and then just place them outside to wait for spring.  Your seeds won’t mind the winter temps; in fact, they require freeze & thaw cycles in order to germinate.

It’s economical!Prepping containers

No need to buy expensive germination set-ups or rig up grow lights. Mother Nature will take care of the lighting. All you need is a few recycled household containers and a knife or scissors. The easiest container to use is an aluminum carryout container with the clear plastic lid. Also effective are milk jugs or large plastic soda bottles.  In a pinch, you can use cardboard milk or juice containers and a plastic bag.

It’s gratifying!

That long slog through mud season will be a little more fun when you can look forward to your tiny seedlings sprouting to announce the arrival of gardening season.

Here’s the process:

  1. Select the right seeds. Hardy annuals that can handle frost and may even need cold stratification to germinate are Bachelor Buttons, Poppies, Violas, Snapdragons, Calendula, Petunias, Sweet Alyssum, Amaranthus, and Cleome. Half-hardy annuals can tolerate some chilly weather but may be damaged by frost.  Marigolds, Love-in-a-Mist, Four O’Clocks, Cosmos, Petunias, and annual Salvias can be started in early spring. Perennials include Foxglove, Gaillardia, Rudbeckia, Sunflowers, Snapdragon, and Echinacea. Any flower that has self-seeded over the winter in your garden is a good candidate.
  1. Prepare your containers, fill them with potting soil, and sow your seeds.  You can find detailed instructions at http://www.wintersown.org/How_to_Winter_Sow.html
  1. Find a good location for your containers. They’re meant to go outside in the cold, the rain, and the snow.  Protect them from strong winds and bright afternoon sun. A somewhat sheltered location that gets morning light is ideal. Placing your containers in cardboard boxes or old propagation trays with drainage holes keeps them upright and allows snow and rainwater to drains out slowly.
  1. Now just sit tight and wait. As the weather warms, the flats will freeze and thaw repeatedly as spring approaches. Just when winter is about to break and you’re still getting nightly freezes, the first of your flats will begin to germinate. The seeds know when it is safe to come up, so don’t worry about the frosts. On an above-freezing days open them up and, if they look like they need a drink, give them one and then close them up again.
  2. As your seedlings grow, gradually open their containers to more light and air. Eventually you’ll have more open area than covered, and your seedlings will be hardened off and ready for transplanting.

Marigold seedlings

Compiled from Dave’sGarden.com & WinterSown.org.