Gardening Tips

Cherry DropsBy Kym Pokorny

Once a week from June 14 to mid-September, Harry Olson and Tobie Habeck commuted from Salem to Silverton to tend a U-shaped plot at The Oregon Garden. As they weeded and watered, the duo would hear docents tell their trams full of visitors about the little-known grafted vegetables overflowing from the raised beds and spilling onto the mulched aisles.

salad greensBy Kym Pokorny
October is a perfect time to sow salad greens for harvest throughout the fall and winter months.
"If you live in the warmer, wetter regions of the state, you can plant lettuce and other greens now," said Oregon State University vegetable breeder Jim Myers. "In the colder areas of the state, a cold frame or cloche can help lengthen the harvest season into winter."
If you harvest through the winter, protect your greens from late fall and winter downpours. Leafy greens tend to rot.

HebesBy Daniel Robison
If you like to prolong color in your landscapes through the summer and into the fall, consider planting evergreen shrubs called Hebes (pronounced HEE-bees) for vivid color in both flowers and foliage during summer and fall.
“Most Hebes flower in the summer, but others bloom in late fall,” said Neil Bell, consumer horticulturalist with the Oregon State University Extension Service.

TomatoesBy Daniel Robison

Late blight, a fungal disease that infects tomatoes, usually shows up in Oregon gardens as weather turns wet and humid, and it’s dispersed by the wind and rain.

This devastating disease kills tomato and potato plants, as well as peppers and eggplant, and usually does not arrive until mid-August or September.

Sweet peasBy Tiffany Woods

As fall approaches, consider letting some of your annuals go to seed. If the winter isn't too harsh, they may pop up next spring.

Annual plants are inherently programmed to set seed and die in one year. During the summer, you can keep them blooming and postpone seed development by deadheading and fertilizing them, said Brooke Edmunds, a horticulturist with Oregon State University's Extension Service.

DeadheadingBy Tiffany Woods
Deadheading is a gardening chore that many people find pleasant – by pinching off fading flowers, you can beautify your landscape and keep some plants blooming longer. But is it necessary?

SpinachPlant fall and winter vegetables now
By Daniel Robison
In mild parts of western Oregon and along most of the coast, it is possible to grow a succession of garden vegetables throughout most of the year. Gardeners can extend the season well into fall in many parts of the Pacific Northwest with a little knowledge and protection of their plants from the elements.
When space becomes available after harvesting the last spring-planted peas or greens, keep those veggies coming.

WateringBy Tiffany Woods
Ross Penhallegon, a horticulturist with the Oregon State University Extension Service, recommends watering during the early morning hours. That's because there is usually less wind to affect the soaker hose, drip or sprinkler pattern. Plus, the temperatures are lower in the early morning, meaning more water gets into the soil and doesn't evaporate.

 

Sweet cornBy Denise Ruttan
Could your spotless peppers or flawless flowers have what it takes to claim the blue ribbon at your local or county fair this summer?
With some insider tips from Lynn Long, you could make this your year to test their mettle. Long, a horticulturalist for the Oregon State University Extension Service and county leader for the OSU Extension Service in Wasco County, previously served as a judge at the Wasco County Fair and Rodeo for several years.

Flowering currantBy Denise Ruttan
If you don't have much space to plant shrubs, you'll want to keep an eye out for Oregon Snowflake, a new flowering currant developed by Oregon State University that is smaller than other currants.   
This low-growing shrub is the first cultivar to come out of OSU's new ornamental plant breeding program, according to Ryan Contreras, a plant breeder and assistant professor in OSU's Department of Horticulture.

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McKenzie River Reflections is the weekly newspaper serving Oregon's McKenzie River Valley. Available by mail for $23/yr in Lane County, $29/yr outside Lane. Digital subscriptions are $23/yr. Subscribe at: http://mckenzieriverreflectionsnewspaper.com/catalog/subscriptions-0. Purchase copies online at: http://mckenzieriverreflectionsnewspaper.com/catalog/back-issues-0. Read about area communities including Cedar Flat, Walterville, Camp Creek, Leaburg, Vida, Nimrod, Finn Rock, Blue River, Rainbow and McKenzie Bridge.