Saturday, February 27, 2021

GardenDC Podcast Episode 48: Chinese Kitchen Garden


This episode we talk with Wendy Kiang-Spray, author of "The Chinese Kitchen Garden," on growing Asian vegetables. The plant profile is on Snowdrops and we share the first spring blooms and news on upcoming gardening events.* 


BTW, YOU can become a listener supporter for as little as $0.99 per month!
See how at: https://anchor.fm/gardendc/support

*I am giving a free talk on Cool Season Edibles hosted by Homestead Gardens THIS coming Wednesday 3/3 at 7pm. Register at - https://homesteadgardens.com/upcoming-events/.

The episode is posted at: 

The GardenDC podcast is also available on -

We welcome your questions and comments! You can leave a voice mail message for us at: https://anchor.fm/kathy-jentz/message Note that we may use these messages on a future episode.

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Wednesday, February 24, 2021

Plant Profile: Snowdrops (Galanthus sp.)

Snowdrops (Galanthus sp.) look delicate, but these tiny flowers are quite tough. The milk-white color of these small blooms is lovely set against a green backdrop of groundcovers or small shrubs.

They are one of the earliest plants to flower in the Mid-Atlantic  US. Their common name is a nod to the fact that they can come up through snow and ice and are not fazed by either.

Galanthus nivalis is the most common snowdrop and widely available in garden centers and plant catalogs. There are other varieties that you can collect and some can be quite pricey. Galanthus nivalis f. pleniflorus ‘Flore Pleno’  is a lovely double form and Galanthus ‘Atkinsii’ is known for the green heart-shaped mark at the top of the inner petals. 

Snowdrops are in the amaryllis family and grow from tiny bulbs. They are native to southern Europe and Asia Minor. They are hardy from USDA Zone 3 to 7.  Like many early-blooming bulbs, they can be grown in deciduous shade spots, but not under evergreen shade. They prefer soil that is well-draining.

Plant the bulbs in autumn about 2 inches below the soil level. They look best in masses and drifts. If you have an especially rare or interesting selection, then plant that in a spot where you can easily view it and keep an eye on it.

If you have them planted in your lawn or among other perennials, let the snowdrop foliage die off naturally and do not cut it back prematurely. The energy for next year’s flowers is collected in that foliage. They do not generally need fertilizing, but you can give them a fertilizer designed for use on tomatoes to encourage more rapid growth, if you like.

Snowdrops increase slowly in clumps and it is worthwhile to dig and divide them after their bloom cycle and the foliage is starting to die back. This can be done every 3-5 years or so. Plant them right away as the snowdrop is one bulb that hates to be left to dry out.

Snowdrops - You Can Grow That!

The video was produced by Washington Gardener Magazine.

Visuals by Khloe Quill
Audio by Kathy Jentz

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Saturday, February 20, 2021

GardenDC Podcast Episode 47: Pollinator Victory Gardens

This episode we talk with Kim Eierman founder of EcoBeneficial about adding a Pollinator Victory Garden to your home landscape. We share how to support the garden media before it is gone. The plant profile is on Wintersweet and news on recent and upcoming gardening events. 


BTW, YOU can become a listener supporter for as little as $0.99 per month!
See how at: https://anchor.fm/gardendc/support

The episode is posted at: 

The GardenDC podcast is also available on -

We welcome your questions and comments! You can leave a voice mail message for us at: https://anchor.fm/kathy-jentz/message Note that we may use these messages on a future episode.

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Thursday, February 18, 2021

Win a Pair of Digz Gardening Gloves in the February 2021 Washington Gardener Magazine Reader Contest

For our February 2021 Washington Gardener Magazine Reader Contest, Washington Gardener is giving away five pairs of Digz Gardening Gloves (retail value of $5 and up each). 

   Gardening can be tough on your hands. Luckily, Digz Gardening Gloves are here for anyone with a passion for plants. This incredible line of gardening gear makes sure your digits stay safe while you get to work in the soil (or even making your next crafting masterpiece). The gloves are available in a variety of colors and hand-drawn patterns, and also have touchscreen-compatible fingertips in case you need to snap a pic in the flower beds. Adjustable wrist strap creates a more secure fit and prevents dirt and debris from getting inside the gloves. Washable and durable.

   To enter to win a pair of Digz Gardening Gloves, send an email to WashingtonGardenerMagazine@gmail.com by 5:00pm on Sunday, February 28, with “Digz Gardening Gloves” in the subject line. In the body of the email, tell us what your favorite article was in the February 2021 issue and why. Include your full name and mailing address. The winner will be announced by March 2. 

UPDATE:

We had a BIG response to this contest. The 5 winners are:

·         Ed Yemola, Drums, PA

·         Claudia Hosky, Washington DC 

·         Christine Little, Stevensville, MD 

·         Johanna Kearns, Washington DC 

·         Anamaria Anderson, Arlington, VA

Congratulations and enjoy!

Monday, February 15, 2021

February 2021 issue of Washington Gardener Magazine –Winning Garden Photos, Wintersweet, Comfrey, Low-light Houseplants, and much more

The February 2021 issue of Washington Gardener Magazine is out.

Inside this issue:
·         21 Award-winning Garden Photos
·         Comfrey – A True Super Plant!
·         New Hardy Begonia Series Introduced
·         UN Extends Year of Plant Health
·         6 Houseplants that Thrive in Low Light
·         A Virtual Seed Swap Day
·         What to Do in the Garden this Month
·         Wintersweet Plant Profile
·         Smithsonian’s Botanical Illustrator
·         Big Changes for University of Maryland’s Big “M”
and much more…

Note that any submissions, event listings, and advertisements for the March 2021 issue are due by March 5.

>>  Subscribe to Washington Gardener Magazine today to have the monthly publication sent to your inbox as a PDF several days before it is available online. You can use the PayPal (credit card) online order form here: http://www.washingtongardener.com/index_files/subscribe.htm


Monday Motivation

 

"To plant a garden is to believe in tomorrow."
- Audrey Hepburn

Saturday, February 13, 2021

GardenDC Podcast Episode 46: Garden Clubs in the 21st Century

This episode we talk with Cherie Lejeune, President of National Capital Area Garden Clubs (NCAGC), about the current state of and future of garden clubs. The plant profile is on Daffodils (Narcissus sp.) and I share some recent and upcoming gardening events. 

Also mentioned in this episode:

~  Thursday, February 18, 4pm
"Flowers and Plants Introductions for the New Growing Season"
Interested in how new plants evolve and make it to the garden centers each spring? Follow the path: e.g., hybridization, environmental suitability, and test gardens. Then be introduced to the “Stars for Spring 2021!” Speaker: Kathy Jentz, Editor, Washington Gardener Magazine.
Fee: $10. Register at: 
https://ncagardenclubs.org/event/district-iv-fundraiser/
Hosted by the National Capital Area Garden Clubs District IV. The presentation will be via Zoom and available on demand for 10 days afterwards.


BTW, YOU can become a listener supporter for as little as $0.99 per month!
See how at: https://anchor.fm/kathy-jentz/support

The episode is posted at: 
https://anchor.fm/gardendc/episodes/Episode-46-Garden-Clubs-in-the-21st-Century-eq9thg

The GardenDC podcast is also available on -

We welcome your questions and comments! You can leave a voice mail message for us at: https://anchor.fm/kathy-jentz/message Note that we may use these messages on a future episode.

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Saturday, February 06, 2021

GardenDC Podcast Episode 45: Seed Starting Tips

This episode we talk with Barbara Melera of Harvesting-History.com about the seed industry "seed shortage" and seed starting tips. The plant profile is on Hen-and-Chicks (Sempervivium sp.) and I share some upcoming gardening events. Summer Creek Farm is this episode's sponsor.

Also mentioned in this episode:

~  Thursday, February 18, 4pm
"Flowers and Plants Introductions for the New Growing Season"
Interested in how new plants evolve and make it to the garden centers each spring? Follow the path: e.g., hybridization, environmental suitability, and test gardens. Then be introduced to the “Stars for Spring 2021!” Speaker: Kathy Jentz, Editor, Washington Gardener Magazine. Fee: $10. Register at: https://www.paypal.com/donate?hosted_button_id=L4L7AZ6RG55QQ
Hosted by the National Capital Area Garden Clubs District IV. The presentation will be via Zoom and available on demand for 10 days afterwards.

Friday, February 19, 9:30am
GreenScapes Symposium
Leveraging native plants to restore the environment. Keynote by Doug Tallamy.
Register at activemontgomery.org.

~  Saturday, February 20, 9:30am
17th Annual EcoSavvy Symposium – Virtual Program  
Join in from the comfort of your own home or office. In this year’s symposium, “Integrating Storm Water Management in Landscape Design.” Fee: $26. Register online at www.fairfaxcounty.gov/parks/parktakes (code ITG.QARB).

~  Thursday, February 25, 6:30pm
Garden Book Club Meeting
Discuss “A Gentle Plea for Chaos” with Washington Gardener Magazine’s Garden Book Club via Zoom. Order your copy now at our Amazon link: https://amzn.to/2WOdS4m, then RSVP and see the event details at: https://washingtongardener.blogspot.com/2020/12/discuss-gentle-plea-for-chaos-with.html.


BTW, YOU can become a listener supporter for as little as $0.99 per month!
See how at: https://anchor.fm/kathy-jentz/support

The episode is posted at: 
https://anchor.fm/gardendc/episodes/Episode-45-Seed-Starting-Tips-eq0odr

The GardenDC podcast is also available on -

We welcome your questions and comments! You can leave a voice mail message for us at: https://anchor.fm/kathy-jentz/message Note that we may use these messages on a future episode.

PIN THIS FOR LATER!


Wednesday, February 03, 2021

Photo Sales and Reprint Permission

I just love this display this climbing rose on a garden gate in Georgetown, Washington, DC. I took the photo while attending the Georgetown Garden Tour years ago. It is an image I use in various talks as it can illustrate several principles and concepts in small space gardening, such as using climbing vines, creating welcoming entrances, and framing the view. It is also an image that I have seen stolen and used without credit on the Internet.

If you like this photo or ANY photo you see on this blog, in our social media posts, in the Washington Gardener Magazine, or on our web site, and want to purchase it, please contact me at 301.588.6894 or KathyJentz (at) gmail.com. 

If the photo in our publication was not taken by me, I'm happy to put you in direct contact with the original photographer. Our main staff shutterbug, Drena J. Galarza, has taken many wonderful shots for us -- as have Dan Weil and our other freelancers.

Note: Any photo seen in our publications -- online or in print -- requires our reprint permission to use them elsewhere. At a minimum, such as for educational purposes, we might ask you to credit Washington Gardener and to link back to this web site. Our prices for most uses are very reasonable and in many cases we will allow photo use in exchange for non-monetary compensation.

I hear horror stories about stolen images popping up all over the web and I understand that is the nature of the Internet beast. It is also why I post low-res images to this blog and our other online outlets. Almost all the photos you see from us have high-res and alternate versions.

I hope others will take the time to educate themselves on photo copyright law. (Google "Dunner Law" and "online images" for a good primer.)

- Kathy

Monday, February 01, 2021

DIY: Metal Flower


This metal flower idea came to me as a way to make inexpensive floral wall art. I plan on making several in different sizes to create a mural. I chose a waterlily shape and design for this one. You could adapt the petal shapes to be more rounded and make the flower into a rose or peony as you wish.

This craft is fairly easy to make, but due to the SHARP edges of the metal pieces I would not recommend this for children.

Level: moderate   Cost: inexpensive   Use: gift/decorative 


Materials:
- Center stamen piece*


Step 1:
Flatten your tins and cut off the edge/side areas.
Step 2: Cut out a bottom leaf base design.
Step 3: Cut out petal shapes. The shapes should be narrowed, tapered, or rounded off on each end. Make a minimum of 7-9 for the first layer that are about 6-8 inches long, then 5-7 for the middle layer that are about 4-6 inches long, and finally, cut 3-5 for the top layer that are shorter still.
Step 4: Paint the leaf base green and the petal shapes. I did a green base with a yellow wash on the leaf base. I painted the largest petals red, the medium ones a straight pink, and the smallest ones a pale pink.
Step 5: Glue the petals onto the leaf base starting with the largest layer to the smallest, Be sure to alternate them to mimic how flower petals grow.
Step 6: Glue in the center stamens*
Step 7: Pinch the ends of each leaves to curve up and look more natural.
*I used an old silk flower that I painted. You could use a bottle cap, a piece of costume jewelry, or anything you think would work. 


Tips and Care:
  • If you want this to last longer or be displayed outdoors, spray it with a clear sealant.
  • For outdoor use, glue it together with marine glue or gorilla glue and wait longer between layers for the glue to cure.
  • Glue a magnet or hanger on the back to display your flower. You can also just set it on top of a stack of books or tie it onto a gift package.
  • Your color scheme can be anything you like. I like the look of a layered effect, but you could make all the petals the same or each layer totally different. 
This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links, I’ll receive a few pennies from Amazon.
This is a monthly blog series on DIY projects for the beginning home gardener. Look for the other installments in this DIY blog series by putting "DIY" in the search box here at washingtongardener.blogspot.com

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