50 And Better Magazine
By Patsy Bell Hobson
I have often thought, it happens very well that Christmas should fall out in the Middle of Winter.
– Joseph Addison, 1672 – 1719
Gardens by Candlelight
Brighten your spirits with the sight of Powell Gardens aglow with hundreds of luminarias. Enjoy seasonal music, refreshments and holiday crafts. There will be seasonal displays in the flower beds near the visitor education center and you can learn how to make your own luminarias. free with the cost of admission, Sunday, December 14, 2003 from 5-8 p.m. Powell Gardens is about 30 miles east of Kansas City on U.S. Highway 50. Visit the web site http://www.powellgardens.org for a map, or call 816-697-2600 for more information.
Cabin Fever Cures
Cold wintery days are a good time to put that New Year’s calendar to use. Mark these dates on your 2004 calendar. Just knowing that these shows and seminars are coming up may provide some cabin fever relief.
The Remodeling, Lawn and Garden Show is February 13 through 16 at the American Royal Building. The Greater Kansas City Master Gardeners are planning their annual Spring Seminar Saturday, March 15. The Home and Garden Show will be at Bartle Hall March 20 through 23. The last freeze date is somewhere around mid April. All the details will be in a future issue of 50 & Better.
Snuggle Up To A Blanket Of Snow
Snow covering your garden is a good thing. Freshly fallen snow is an excellent insulator. The millions of tiny air pockets in freshly fallen snow hold warmth in the soil around plants. When the air temperature drops below zero, that snow blanket covering the garden is a relatively toasty 32 degrees. That added protection can help borderline hardy plants survive the winter. And it’s been good for our marriage.
When we were first married, I drug Jules out in the yard to make snow angels. I was in love and Jules was a good sport. The insulating properties of fresh snow are just one of the excuses he has come up with to avoid the annual snow angel ritual. “Better not,” he says. “We gotta protect the plants.”
The USDA Agricultural Research Service (ARS) has seen promising results using 1 and 2 percent caffeine solutions to kill snails and slugs. Research showed the 2-percent caffeine solution more effective than metaldehyde, a common pesticide used to control slugs and snails. Instant coffee is about 0.05 percent caffeine. Normal brewed coffee is a little stronger. The coffee I make is defiantly strong enough to kill a slug. Though I have no idea where you find coffee cups that small.
From our house to yours, we wish you a merry Christmas ands a prosperous New Year. Patsy Bell Hobson is a free lance writer and a Master Gardener in Liberty, MO. Send e-mail to email@example.com Jules has been digging the holes and taking the pictures for the last twenty years.
Tags: 50 And Better Dec 03