Archive for July, 2009

Raleigh’s Plant a Row for the Hungry – update

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Plant a Row for the Hungry – Community-wide Campaign Kickoff

July 28, 2009 – This report for Jason at the Raleigh Foot Shuttle, “The Plant A Row for the Hungry (PAR) program is doing great! Over 2000 pounds of fresh fruits and vegetables have been donated by local green thumbs so far. The Food Shuttle thanks everyone who is doing their part to fight hunger in the Greater Triangle. And it’s never too late to get started! Check out our PAR blog at Thanks again!”

Logan Trading Company, in partnership with the Inter-Faith Food Shuttle, is launching a Plant a Row for the Hungry (PAR) campaign to encourage all gardeners to grow a little extra produce to donate to the hungry and homeless.

interfaith_2color_revisedPAR is a national campaign begun by the Garden Writers Association in 1995. The first annual Raleigh PAR campaign will run from June 13 to September 26, 2009.  Food donations can be brought to Logan Trading Co. every Saturday from 9am-12noon or to the Inter-Faith Food Shuttle Monday – Friday 8AM-4PM.  Donations of seeds, gently used gardening tools, canned and dried foods are also welcome.

It may be hard to imagine, but the face of hunger in the Triangle isn’t just homeless people in our downtowns. It is the face of an elderly neighbor choosing between food and medication. It is the working parent who earns too much to qualify for food stamps so she goes without in order that her children are fed.  It is the middle class family dealing with job loss and relying on the local food pantry for donations.  Everyone can do something to help alleviate hunger in their community.  Donating as little as one pound of fresh produce – a few tomatoes or a couple of squash – can supplement up to four meals for a person in need.

Logan Trading Co. is an independent, family-owned garden center dedicated to fostering happy, healthy and beautiful communities.

giftcardContact: Leslie Logan

Tel: (919) 828-5337 or Cell Phone: (919) 418-2967


Website: Logan Trading Company


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This month in the garden – August



Mid-Atlantic Region

August Maintenance Guide

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August is the test month of a gardener. If you can make it through August, you can make it anywhere. Except for going after some weeds, it’s best to stay on the porch sipping some tea. While you are relaxing, make a note of what did well and what didn’t. Remind yourself of your poor performers now so that you are not tempted by their pretty faces next year.


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  • There is still time to sow more zinnias. The nectar-rich flowers will be welcomed by the butterflies in the fall garden.


  • It’s not too late to put in your fall bulb order.
  • Plan to plant or moved summer flowering bulbs as the end of the summer season approaches. August is a good time to plant or move amaryllis, Crocosmia, iris, and lily.


  • Remember to keep basil flowers pinched and to pick basil for use in pesto, sandwiches, and other culinary uses.


  • This is definitely not a good time to plant perennials.


  • This is definitely not a good time to trees or shrubs.


  • Ugh, no doubt the Japanese beetles are still around. Continue to pick off a drop into soapy water or for those less squeamish, pluck and squeeze – take that!
  • Plan, don’t plant roses now. Do look around and see varieties you might like to add next year. Choosing roses in bloom takes the mystery out of the difference catalogues depict.


  • Check the mulch – wind, rain, consumption may have lessened the depth, thus lessening the effectiveness. If the mulch in the beds is less than ½ inch, add more.


  • Alas, the weeds are still trudging along. Try the early morning or later in the evening to weed. Best to say out of the heat of the day, most of us are just not as productive in the heat.  Ideally, the best time to weed is right after a rain. But with little rain this month, it makes the task all the harder. However, weeds never sleep, remove them if you can.


  • Bagworms abound! Bagworms can be treated with Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) or handpick and drop into a bucket of soapy water.

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W A T E R W I S E Gardening


  • Did you know that Hummingbirds are Native Americans? A ruby-throated hummingbird weighs only 3 grams – that’s 1/10th the weight of a first-class letter. The following is a list of a few flowers Hummingbirds love:

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  • Agapanthus
  • Allium
  • Agapanthus
  • Bee Balm

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  • Cannas
  • Honeysuckle
  • Rosemary
  • Sage
  • Trumpet Vine
  • Petunias
  • Salviass

Maintenance guide and photos by Helen Yoest
Gardening With Confidence

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Sunday July 26, 2009 A week puttering in Helen’s Haven

Last week was such a busy week having Steve Bender, senior editor, Southern Living magazine  and photographer, Ralph Anderson, in town for photo shoots.  But, as always when a magazine editors come to town, the days are very fun.   Steve posted this very nice thank you on his website  Gracias from the Grump.

Steve Bender and Ralph Anderson

Steve Bender and Ralph Anderson

No rest for the wicked though, as  soon as Steve left, I packed the kids up and heading for the Outer Banks for a working holiday.  While the kids were in surf camp, I took photos.   It was a wonderful break.  At every turn,  my lens found a flower, insect, or bird.  I captured some sightings from the Outer Banks while we were gone.

When the kids did stand up, I wasn't shooting - really!

When the kids did stand up, I wasn't shooting - really!

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Lily split her eye open on the surf board...still smiling though.

Lily split her eye open on the surf board...still smiling though.

Dead heading and dead leafing were waiting for me when I returned.  Enough said.  I think  I have the garden in shape, at least for a few days when more of the same will be needed.

Helen Yoest
Gardening With Confidence

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W A T E R W I S E Gardening



Water only when plants need watering. Water less frequently and deeply. Early morning watering is best – there is less loss due to evaporation and the leaves will dry faster reducing the invitation for fungal disease.  Most established herbaceous perennials only need about an inch of water once every one or two weeks.

Add organic matter.  Add 2 – 3 inches of organic mulch to cover your beds and add a heaping handful of organic material as you prepare a hole for new plantings.  Organic matter helps aerate clay soils and holds in moisture in sandy soils.  It also breaks down to enhance the soil.

Treat the planet, yourself, your garden, your community, and your checkbook to a waterwise garden. A waterwise garden has three zones for plantings with similar requirements. The Oasis zone is nearest the water source and includes areas such as window boxes, containers, and entrance gardens. The closer to the water source, the easier it is to water. These planting areas can hold your thirstiest plants. The Transitional zone is for areas that have plantings that require water only during the driest of times. And the Xeric zone is for plants in areas furthest from a water source that require no supplemental water.

Eliminate thirsty plants dotted around the garden beds. Journey through your garden with a notebook. Draw a line down the middle of the page – one side entitled KEEP and the other side entitled QUIT. Mourn your losses and then move on. Evaluate each plant’s needs within its location. Move thirsty plants to the Oasis zone, give them away, or use for compost. Also evaluate what did well and then plant more of those achievers.

Reduce lawn size or switch to low maintenance grasses. Consider going Dormant for the Moment. Choose not to water thirsty grasses; let them go dormant. They will return when the rains return.

Water the ground, not the plants. Use an end-of-hose sprayer, drip irrigation, soaker hoses, or watering can – saturate the ground and leave the leaves dry.

Improve potting soil mixes. Incorporate water-retaining polymers into the potting soil for your container gardens. They really make a difference.

Save your water. Add rain barrels. An inch of rain from a 1,000 square foot roof will give you 602 gallons of water. Figure the water will run down the spouts evenly from your home. If you have four drain spouts, divide 600 by 4 to get 150 gallons per drain spout. This will flow into your rain barrel with overflows directed to other parts of your garden – specifically your Oasis zone.

Evolve with the planet. As our climate changes, change with it.

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Identifying Eastern Evergreen Bagworms

With July comes the noticeable telltale signs of foliage damage on evergreens such as junipers, Leyland cypress, and the like.  The culprit?  Eastern Evergreen bagworms.  Look closely.  That bugger is well disguised.

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Helen Yoest
Gardening With Confidence

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Sightings from the Outer Banks

Without looking, at every step, I stumbled upon life in the sand.  Here are some of my recent sightings from the Outer Banks.

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Helen Yoest
Gardening With Confidence

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Sunday, July 12, 2009 A week puttering in Helen’s Haven

It was a slow week in the garden.  Most of the week was spent keeping up with Southern Living’s Grumpy Gardener and photographer Ralph Anderson.

We did get some much needed rain.  Rain gauge suggests we got 2 half inches of rain.  Things perked right up after the rain.

The fun I had and the things I didn’t get to this week in the garden:

  • The Screech Owl box came in, but didn’t have time to pick it up.
  • Pulled mucho Monarda.
  • Lined out several 2010 stories for various magazines.
  • Worked a little on my book outline.
  • Saw the deer visiting again.  Traveling past all the usual deer favorites, this one heads straight back to a weeping cherry ‘Snow Fountain’.
  • Oh yes, my BIG news – I got a new lens 18 – 270  Here is my first wildlife photo with it.

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Helen Yoest
Gardening With Confidence

Comments (10)

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