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  • Bird Population Soaring May 22, 2015
    Spring 2015 is once again proving to be a banner year for bird broods in my beautiful wildlife garden.  Bluebird brood #2 has successfully hatched and 4 healthy mockingbird babies located in a holly shrub not 15 feet away joined them this past week.  It is dizzying watching the two sets of parents feed the […] We love hearing from you! Please click here to s […]
    Loret T. Setters
  • Monarda Madness May 21, 2015
    The first Monarda blooms of 2015 opened up this week, kicking off a series of great blooms from now until late summer.  Every year I learn to appreciate this genus of native flowers so much more until I feel that I might just be on the edge of monarda madness because last year I actually […] We love hearing from you! Please click here to see all the beautifu […]
    Ellen Honeycutt
  • Twinleaf May 19, 2015
      A very early wildflower, Twinleaf, Jeffersonia diphylla, is native to eastern North America. It is a plant that I must remind myself to hunt for, well before I’m used to finding wildflowers blooming. Here in the mountains of central Virginia, that crucial time is late March into early April. Each flower only lasts for a very […] We love hearing from you! P […]
    Brenda Clements Jones
  • Trilliums April 21, 2015
    There is not much more thrilling than hiking through the woods and finding a patch of native wildflowers. Some are minuscule, not of bright color, others can knock your socks off. Trilliums fill the bill for knocking my socks off! In the picture above, you see White Trillium, Trillium grandiflorum, about to bloom in one of my gardens. I’ve […] We love hearin […]
    Brenda Clements Jones
  • Help for Hummers April 16, 2015
    Putting up a hummingbird feeder is a fun way to bring hummingbirds close to a viewing space like a window. Like other types of bird feeders, it is often the first step in developing a love of our feathered friends and a desire to nurture them. So once you’ve taken the first step, I’d encourage […] We love hearing from you! Please click here to see all the be […]
    Ellen Honeycutt
  • Native Plant Appreciation Week, Osceola County Florida April 10, 2015
    Today’s article is going to be about promoting the use of native plants, mostly because I forgot that today was Friday and didn’t do any critter research. I’ve been busy promoting The Central Florida Native Plant Sale (3rd annual) which is today, April 10, 2015 from 4-7 p.m. and tomorrow from 8 a.m. – 1 […] We love hearing from you! Please click here to see […]
    Loret T. Setters
  • Ladies of the Day April 3, 2015
    Notwithstanding their common name, I’ll start by clarifying that they aren’t all ladies.  After all, in North America the order odonata need male and female to reproduce. I’m not clear how these insects acquired their common name.  Damselflies are an interesting group of insects. Predatory in both larval and adult stages, these are insects you […] We love he […]
    Loret T. Setters
  • Skink Wars and More on These Sleek Lizards March 28, 2015
    I was on the patio late one afternoon and the trashcan was rocking.  I glanced over since you never know what creature of nature will be visiting my place.  I figured that maybe a black racer or water snake had slithered underneath the wheels setting the rocking in motion. Then I heard thrashing and a […] We love hearing from you! Please click here to see al […]
    Loret T. Setters
  • Spring Garden Care March 26, 2015
      Spring Garden Care People who care about attracting wildlife to their gardens usually learn over time about best practices for fall cleanup and especially the fact that it’s really beneficial for our birds if we refrain from relentlessly cutting perennials to the ground before winter. But what then happens in the spring for garden care?   Here in […] We lo […]
    Jesse Elwert

#GardenChat

In the Garden, Out of the Oven

We’ve been blessed with a mild, although dry, Autumn this year. Today was no exception with bright sunshine and nary a cloud to be seen. I checked the bulbs I (finally) planted to make sure the squirrels haven’t found them and picked a few China Rose radishes from the vegetable garden. The mild weather has kept the garden producing, ironically lack of rain has slowed it down. I’ve ordered row covers for next spring, but if they arrive before the ground freezes I may use them now for the fennel, beets, kale, radishes and cabbage lettuce. A few of the indoor Asian greens may be transplanted “under cover”, also. They’re very frost tolerant making them ideal candidates.

fall-garden-fennel-lisa-gustavson

fall-garden-escarole-seedlings-lisa-gustavson

For those (like me) that prefer a little spice with some sweet, here’s a recipe for snappy Ginger Crinkles. I baked a batch this afternoon when craving something ginger-y. For a sugar-restricted diet replace the sugar with one tablespoon powdered stevia and omit rolling the cookies in sugar; so yummy!

Ginger Crinkles:

  • 1c. white sugar or 1 Tbsp. powdered stevia
  • 3/4 c. butter or margarine
  • 1/4 c. dark molasses
  • 1 egg
  • 2 1/4 c. flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 Tbsp. dried powdered ginger
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. salt

Mix sugar (or stevia), butter, molasses and egg until well combined. Stir in flour, soda, cinnamon, ginger and salt. Roll cookies into 1″ balls and roll in sugar to coat. Bake in a 375 degree oven about 7 minutes for a soft cookie, 10 minutes for a crispier cookie. Remove from cookie sheet immediately and cool.

ginger-cookies-organic-recipe

Last but not least, I planted a few flower seeds for the indoor garden. Dwarf zinnias, French marigolds, Pansies and Alyssum. I may dig out a few more from the stash, but right now I have more seedlings to pot up. The eggplant and peppers are ready… five of each…that’s 100% germination! I love heirloom seeds…dependable, delicious and beautiful. Tomorrow I’ll share my all-time favorites and some new-to-my garden varieties I’m trying next year.

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