Kodiak Daily Mirror - Daily newspaper of Kodiak, Alaska
  
Home and Garden
 
Garden Gate: Gardener's almanac is a gem
A delightful little book called “The Curious Gardener’s Almanac” found its way onto my desk a couple weeks before Christmas, a gift from a dear friend. As I read the paragraph on the inside flap, I knew I’d been given a gem. “A garden is not merely a haven of peace and tranquility, or a simple plot of land for vegetables, fruit, and flowers — it is a living encyclopedia of curious and fascinating knowledge, the ro...
Dec 30, 2013 | 0 0 comments | 57 57 recommendations | email to a friend
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Garden Gate: Searching for the right onion
Now that it’s officially winter, I tend to therapeutically indulge in seed catalogs. Before I flip through the pages, I ponder Oliver Wendell Holmes’ statement: “When I want to understand what is happening today or try to decide what will happen tomorrow, I look back.” So today I’d like to devote a paragraph or two reflecting on the past. Not too much, though I consider it research, to learn what went right, what ...
Dec 23, 2013 | 0 0 comments | 53 53 recommendations | email to a friend
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Garden Gate: This time of year is magical
It happens every year. After loading Christmas tree branches with lights and ornaments, I step back to critique my efforts. First I notice holes among the branches. A few years ago, I had an ah-ha moment, found my stash of origami paper and started folding. Soon I had whales, penguins, bears and birds perched among the branches. I felt better making a few simple ornaments; time seemed to slow down a notch during t...
Dec 16, 2013 | 0 0 comments | 52 52 recommendations | email to a friend
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‘Tis the Season for Holiday Wellness
‘Tis the Season for Holiday Wellness OK, so holiday and wellness go together like water and peanut butter. Studies show that the average weight gain during the winter holidays is between one to three pounds. Oops. The good news is that while the holidays are a time for sharing and giving back, it is possible to ward off any weight gain. The secret: Keep moving. Here are a few ways you can get fit and give back at ...
Dec 09, 2013 | 0 0 comments | 60 60 recommendations | email to a friend
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Garden Gate: Dates bring flavor to holiday dishes
There are two food plants I’d love to be able to grow, but can’t: Apples (I don’t have space) and dates (I don’t live in the desert). Next to carrots, I think apples are one of the most versatile foods on the planet. Both are happy dressed as sweet or savory foods. Dates, though not as versatile as apples, are sweet nuggets of high-fiber nutrition. So imagine my joy last week while vacationing at the Furnace Creek...
Dec 02, 2013 | 0 0 comments | 60 60 recommendations | email to a friend
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Garden Gate: Amaryllis bulbs are a perfect holiday gift
Never mind the tinsel and fake Christmas trees: When boxes of Amaryllis bulbs start showing up in the stores, I know Christmas is around the corner. And if you treat the flowers right, they’ll bloom next Christmas. The baseball-sized bulbs that arrive in a colorful boxes are the perfect gift for winter-weary friends and relatives. In fact, the Greek word “amarysso” or “amarussein” from which “amaryllis” derives, m...
Nov 25, 2013 | 0 0 comments | 59 59 recommendations | email to a friend
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Garden Gate: Workshop covers several topics
When asked if eating home-grown kale could be as dangerous as eating a nitrate-laced hot dog, Lydia Clayton didn’t skip a beat. In fact, she used the opportunity to teach us something about winter vegetable gardening that we’d never considered. Originally from Oregon, Lydia Clayton knows a thing or two about gardening in a cool, moist climate. Kodiak took her by surprise. “It’s 50 degrees today. It feels like the ...
Nov 18, 2013 | 0 0 comments | 57 57 recommendations | email to a friend
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Garden Gate: A grabbag of questions
Garden columnist Marion Owen answers your questions each Monday in the Kodiak Daily Mirror. Ask your questions at mygarden@alaska.net. Q: Can shredded computer paper be used as mulch in the garden or be added to the compost pile? A: The good news is that many studies have tested the safety and usefulness of shredded paper in the garden. The not-so-good news is that they came up with different answers. Newsprint ge...
Nov 11, 2013 | 0 0 comments | 57 57 recommendations | email to a friend
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From Soup to Nuts: A sauce sutied for Thanskgiving
My preparations for Thanksgiving Day are an extended affair because I like my holiday cooking to be easy so I may focus on family. Throughout the month, while I make our regular evening meal, I will also prepare one dish for the Thanksgiving Day meal. Over the years, I have found that much of the meal can be prepared in advance, frozen and reheated to great success. I have reduced my actual cooking on Thanksgiving...
Nov 06, 2013 | 0 0 comments | 54 54 recommendations | email to a friend
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Garden Gate: Using organic matter in the garden
The longer I garden, the more I appreciate the value of organic matter, compost and mulch. Three of the best local sources of organic matter are fish bone meal, seaweed and autumn leaves. Leaves are jam-packed with trace minerals that trees draw from the soil. When added to your garden, leaves feed earthworms and beneficial microbes. They lighten our heavy soil and help it retain (and drain) moisture as necessary....
Nov 04, 2013 | 0 0 comments | 45 45 recommendations | email to a friend
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