Category Archives: Food


Apples are Easy

My old apple tree came with the house. I have no idea of the variety, but it produces some really nice fruit. The poor tree had the bark on one side stripped off by a puppy 15 or 20 years ago, but it has managed to out­live the dog and just keeps on going. When we first began using the apples, there was a lot of worm damage in them. In those we just peeled and sliced, then discard­ed all the nasty parts. But now…

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Plant of the Month – Parsley

Article & Photos by Jan Koehler, SCMG Scientific Name: Petroselinum sp. Other Common Name: Curly or curly leaf parsley (P. crispum), Flat leaf or Italian parsley (P.neapolitanum), Hamburg parsley (P. tuberosum) Type: Annual/biennial herb Family: Apiaceae (Carrot family) Native Range: Mediterranean region of Southern Europe Height: 8-14” to 2-3’ depending on variety Spread: 10-12” dense clumps Sun: Full sun to part shade Water: Medium Maintenance: Medium Suggested Use: Herb garden, kitchen garden, container garden, borders Leaf: Edible as are the seeds/stem/roots (particularly the Hamburg variety) Attracts:…

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Plant of the Month – Nasturtium

Article & Photos by Jan Koehler, SCMG Scientific Name: Tropaeolum sp. Other Common Name: Nasturtium, garden nasturtium Type: compact, semi- trailing, single flower climbing Family: Tropaelacea Native Range: Originally Peru and Mexico: introduced and native status in HI, VA, MA, NY, NH, PA Zone: Annual, may reseed in our area Height: Varies depending on species Spread: Varies depending on species Bloom Time: Spring through fall depending on planting time Bloom Description: colorful, abundant, trumpet shaped, 1-1.5” in diameter, delicately scented Sun: Full sun to part shade,…

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When to Harvest Vegetables

Revised Article by: Stephanie Walker Extension Vegetable Specialist and Assistant Professor, Department of Extension Plant Sciences, New Mexico State University Asparagus—Cut or snap spears off at soil line when 6 to 10 inches long, before heads open. Cease harvesting when average spear diameter is less than 1/4 inch. Beans (snap)—Full-sized pods, beans about 1/4 of their mature size, before constrictions in the pod are evident. Beans (lima)—When well filled, but not overmature. Seeds should be green and tender. Beets—Diameter of 1 1/2 to 2 inches.…

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Storing Fresh Fruits and Vegetables For Better Taste

From the UC Davis Post-Harvest Technology Center The flavor of fruits and vegetables is influenced by maturity and quality at harvest and by how they are stored afterwards. To maintain the freshness and flavor of the produce you buy at the market or grow in your garden, it is important to know how to store it at home. Many fruits and vegetables should be stored only at room temperature because refrigerator temperatures (usually 38° to 42°F) damage them or prevent them from ripening to good…

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