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Garden Bloggers Bloom Day January 2010

I decided to be a little more consistant with Bloom Day postings this year, hence this flowerless January post. Flowerless is OK. One of my favorite cakes is a flourless chocolate cake. But I digress.

The only flowers that are blooming in my home are in the seed catalogs. One thing I did notice this holiday season is that bromeliads were used at a couple of malls and a restaurant instead of the traditional poinsettia.

One plant that I do not think of when I think about bromeliads is the pineapple.

It’s obviously a bromeliad when you see a pineapple growing. But I rarely see a pineapple as a plant.

It’s as if the seed catalog industry hasn’t heard about global warming. They keep putting out paper catalogs with astonishing frequency.

Wish I could say Let’s make a deal.
You only send one catalog a year. And I, knowing that, will keep this one catalog all year.

Richters Herbs – Medicinal, Culinary, Aromatic – Plants & Seeds. The Canadian nursery offering an extensive selection of culinary, medicinal, and aromatic herbs.

I keep Richters catalog all year, frequently referring to it as a valuable reference tool. www.richters.com

Or, Better Yet, just put the catalog online. That’s how I order my plants and seeds. So you do know I am smart enough to find you online.

Renee’s Garden
seed catalog is only on line. She doesn’t even print a paper catalog. www.reneesgarden.com

Think Spring Garden Festival

The 10th Annual Spring Garden Festival at Baker Creek is Sunday and Monday, May 2 & 3, (Sunday & Monday) 2010 – 10am – 7pm

Come celebrate spring with renowned musicians, national speakers, historic demonstrators, food activists, western re-enactors, organic growers, gourmet chefs, see historic farm animals & poultry, and meet Ozarkian crafters.

Join more than 6,000 visitors at the spring garden festival of seeds, plants, music, culture and the celebration of historic foods. A hundred local vendors of plants, Ozark crafts, and hand made products will be on hand along with over sixty musicians on 3 stages filled with old-time music.

Learn more about heirloom gardening, seed saving, homesteading, eating local and preserving your harvest by guest speakers.

The Festival is held at Baker Creek village and farm, near Mansfield, MO. Come to Mansfield and follow signs. Free tent and RV camping; no need to register. There are also hotels in the local area or an hours drive west is Springfield. Food is available at the festival.

Spring Garden Festival is at Baker Creek Heirloom Seed Company,
2278 Baker Creek Road, Mansfield, MO 65704, phone (417) 924-8917

Springfield, Missouri, Convention & Visitors Bureau Tourist Information Center
: 3315 E. Battlefield Road, Springfield, MO 65804.

Admission: $5.00 per person, pay at the event. Children 16 and under are free. All pets over 20 lbs must be pre-approved. No weapons.

Vendors, this is Baker Creek’s largest heritage garden event. Vendors and crafters, call for info: 417-924-8917. (Spaces are limited) Space is free to non-profits & those providing historic demonstrations.

Read more Ozarks Travel Examiner

Homegrown Vegetables, Fruits & Herbs: A Bountiful, Healthful Garden for Lean Times

Homegrown Vegetables, Fruits & Herbs: A Bountiful, Healthful Garden for Lean Times (Paperback)

Jim W. Wilson (Author), Walter Chandoha (Photographer).

Homegrown Vegetables, Fruits & Herbs: A Bountiful, Healthful Garden for Lean Times by Jim Wilson shows us practical ways to save time, energy and money in our own back yard.

Even before we get to the Table of Consents, Jim Wilson lays down some common since rules in Health and Safety First. If this is the only page you read it will keep you in the garden and out of the first aide kit.

In plane terms, the book is about the science of gardening combined with hands on experience. Plus, every gardeners delima of too many squash is at last resolved by the kid friendly pizza squash solution.

I had the pleasure of reading the book cover to cover. If you just came from a buying frenzy at a spring plant sale, it’s good to know you can read the book in the I-need-to-know-now order, each chapter being a complete lesson or topic.

Chapter 6 is a every thing you need to know about a particular vegetable. Chapter 7 focuses on fruit and chapter 8 is about growing herbs – often neglected in the home garden. Then there is a quick overview of organic gardening practices.

The 10th and final chapter is about helping ourselves and our neighbors. Homegrown Vegetables, Fruits & Herbs: A Bountiful, Healthful Garden for Lean Times encourages us to share what we know and share what we grow.

This book is a clear and simple guide for beginning gardeners. It is also a gentle remider to the more experienced gardener that there is alway something new to learn in our back yard.

Homegrown Vegetables, Fruits & Herbs: A Bountiful, Healthful Garden for Lean Times (Paperback)

Jim W. Wilson (Author), Walter Chandoha (Photographer).

Details: Paperback: 192 pages Publisher: Creative Homeowner; First edition (December 7, 2009) Language: English ISBN-10: 1580114717 ISBN-13: 978-1580114714

Review by Patsy Bell Hobson

First new "Must have" vegetable of 2010

“a work of art, this Italian heirloom is almost too beautiful to eat — but it begs to be savored. Each gorgeous head is a sprightly, light green spiral of cone-shaped florets, with a delectably mild flavor and a texture more akin to cauliflower than broccoli.”

from: The Cook’s Garden

Not really new, since it is an heirloom vegetable. Usually, broccoli is not successful in my hot Missouri zone 6 garden. (It bolts at the first sign of summer.) But I will try it and tell you about my success (or lack there of.)

Broccoli Romanseco

after all, I was successful with Renee’s Garden Pak Choi, Baby, “Green Fortune.”

I try something new every year. Renee has challenged me to grow things that have never been successful in this hot, humid climate. Like nasturtiums, sweet peas and Pak Choi.

Cabela’s KingKat Fishing Tournament Sept. 25, 26

Cabela’s KingKat Fishing Tournament Sept. 25, 26

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The Southeast Missouri district fair is ready to go.

The Southeast Missouri district fair is ready to go.

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Home grown potatoes promised and delivered

I’ll Try the German Butterballs again next year, and give them better care.

German Butterball potato weighing in at
9 and a 1/2 pounds.

Seeds of change seedsofchange.com
says, ” A 2 lb. order will plant approximately 20 row feet and yield about 15–20 lbs. of potatoes.”

Red Sangre Potatoes, Solanum tuberosum, is a tender annual, red-skinned with pure white flesh. Stores well. Maturity: Early-mid season 90-100 days.

German Butterball, Solanum tuberosum, family Solanaceae. First place winner in Rodale’s Organic Gardening “Taste Off.” A good choice for roasting, frying and mashed potatoes. Russeted skin and buttery yellow flesh. One of our favorite all-purpose potato. Excellent for long-term storage.

German Butterball were the big producers of the two, but both varieties under produced. The catalog said yields 15-20 pounds.

My yield was about five pounds of Red Sangre Potatoes, Solanum tuberosum

My yield was about 9 and ½ pounds of German Butterball, Solanum tuberosum, family Solanaceae

Potage Parmentier (Potato & Leek Soup) – Julia Child

as a tribute to Julia Child, I will make a pottage – a potato – leek soup and make it my own by floating tiny crusty/roasted potatoes and onion pearls.
– Try fresh dill for garnish.

– The potato is the second most consumed food in the U.S., trailing only milk products.

– The average American eats 120 pounds of potatoes a year. That is almost 365 per person; or a spud a day.

1846 – In 1846, there was a potato famine in Ireland and millions of Irish Catholics migrated to America. The Irish population rose drastically in New York and Boston, and there was an anti-immigrant, anti-Catholic and anti-Irish backlash.

Teds grandfather saw those signs NINA- No Irish Need Apply – when he came to this country.

Kehdes Barbecue a local favorite in Sedalia

Kehdes Barbecue a local favorite in Sedalia

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Straw bale bed and breakfast in Southern Illinois

Straw bale bed and breakfast in Southern Illinois

Straw bale bed and breakfast in Southern Illinois

August 13, 1:22 AMOzarks Travel ExaminerPatsy Bell Hobson

Truth window showing that our room REALLY IS made of straw. photo pbh

Green living is more than a commitment at home.This new Southern Illinois green bed & breakfast is getting a steady business simply by word of mouth. The Makanda Inn is an energy efficient small retreat and B&B.

Makanda Inn incorporates both high and low-tech methods for minimizing its impact on the environment. Most impressive is the straw bale wall construction which provides energy efficiency and insulation. Mikanda Inn supports several local farmers and artisans. Much of the spectacular art is from local artists and craftsmen.

The seasonal breakfast menu showcases natural ingredients broth organic and sustainable when available. Breakfast this morning will be strawberry French toast for the six guests staying at the inn.

On the way are a natural swimming pool, outdoor musical performances on a to-be-built stage, a hot soaking tub and hiking trails. Makanda Inn is landscaping now and although the Inn looks like it is under construction, it has been occupied by the owners for about a year.

Guests hear about the b&b’s four completed rooms by word of mouth. If you would like to enjoy the early stages of what promises to be long term commitment to our community, check for availability on the Makanda Inn website.

The fall promises to be a busy time for the Inn because they are in the heart of the Shawnee Wine Trail. It’s the kind of harmonious retreat where guests tend to return and consider the Inn a private getaway.

Mikanda Inn is growing and changing everyday, keep up with their progress at the Mikanda Inn website. Southernmost Illinois Touism Bureau has the most uptodate information about fall events and festivals. For more information about the area B & Bs,Shawnee Wine Trail links to a B&B website.

Makanda Inn, 855 Old Lower Cobden Road, Makanda, Illinois 62958, phone: (618) 697-7929.

Makanda Inn is not yet handicap accessible, but will soon be accessible in good weather.

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