Gardening Tips by Bob Beyfuss

"Gardening Tips" is a column about all things flora written by Bob Beyfuss of the Cornell Cooperative Extension.

Gardening Tips: April 8, 2015

Easter Lilies
I hope you either gave or received an Easter Lily this year. There is about a 95 percent certainty that your plant originated on a narrow and not very long strip of Pacific Coast Highway that joins Oregon and California. I have driven this road a number of times and it is a very beautiful drive, with the majestic Pacific Ocean on one side and coastal redwood forests on the other side. Occasionally one can spot whales or seals frolicking in the surf. The redwood forest is perhaps the most beautiful environment I have even had the pleasure of visiting. The area offers a climate of year-round mild temperatures thanks to a protective bay, deep, rich, alluvial soils, and abundant rainfall - the exact measure of ingredients needed to produce a consistently high quality bulb crop.

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Gardening Tips: April 1, 2015

Time to Start Seeds
Before I begin this week’s column I want to alert you to an upcoming educational program that my friend Rick Burstell, at Cornell Cooperative Extension of Greene County has put together. Rick is perhaps the most knowledgeable person I know regarding Lyme disease and he has worked very hard to educate as many people as possible about the risks of contracting it. Lyme disease and other tick borne ailments are among the most serious threats to the health of us who live or visit the Hudson Valley/Catskill Mountain region. I would be willing to bet that every single person who reads this column has been a victim or knows someone who has been afflicted by this terrible disease. So save this date and spread the word.


Gardening Tips: March 25, 2015

Maple Syrup Part 2
I should have prefaced last week’s column by acknowledging that much of the sugar maple forests of our region still have snow that is “butt deep on a tall Indian.” “Butt” is not the exact word that the reader used, but this is a family newspaper. I recall using snow shoes to move through the woods in order to tap my trees in previous years and then wondering later on in future summers why I tapped them so far above the ground?


Gardening Tips: March 18, 2015

Maple Syrup Part 2
I should have prefaced last week’s column by acknowledging that much of the sugar maple forests of our region still have snow that is “butt deep on a tall Indian.” “Butt” is not the exact word that the reader used, but this is a family newspaper. I recall using snow shoes to move through the woods in order to tap my trees in previous years and then wondering later on in future summers why I tapped them so far above the ground?


Gardening Tips: March 4, 2015

Herbs: Part Three
Before I begin this week’s column, I want to wish George Story a slightly belated happy 95th birthday. George, the founder of Story’s Nursery in Freehold, Greene County, turned 95 on February 22. He was named after George Washington, who shares the same birthday. Many kids today don’t know when Washington’s birthday occurred, which old folks like me grow up knowing because we got a day off from school for both he and Lincoln. Now we celebrate “President’ Day” in lieu of Washington’s and Lincoln’s actual birthdays.