Judy Alleruzzo


 Episode 105
September 27, 2008



William McClenathan
Boy, welcome to fall! The evenings are starting to chill and that means the early winterization is starting to happen. We have tips that will help you get yourself and your plants ready for the cold months ahead. Also, Le Tour des Plants is over and now is the perfect time to get those plants in the ground so you can have a great garden next year. Don’t forget to check out the events calendar to the left to learn about all the great festivals that are happening through-out the month of October.

This week we featured...

Cornell Farm Pansy Fest

Pansies, despite the name, are the workhorses of the winter garden. They take a beating and keep on coming back. It is great that Cornell Farm (503-292-9895) has a festival just to celebrate them. We caught up with Corinne at Cornell to hear about all the different events they have going on at the Pansy Fest which ends this weekend. Some of the classes they will be offering include ‘3 season containers’ that include bulbs and perennials for constant color and interest; ‘Orchid care 101’ that will take the fear out of growing orchids and ‘fabric dying’ that will show you how to use leaves and ferns to make great colored fabrics with materials from your own garden. But this is a Pansy Fest and that means you can choose from over 50 varieties of pansies, including Lemon Fizzy Berry. These little flowers really stand up to the cold. Judy even told the story about the ice storm a few years back when the pansies were covered in ice. After the ice melted, the pansies were back into full bloom and looking great! There is also a special offer from Cornell! Stop in this week and see all the great flowers that Cornell Farm has to offer.

There is also a special offer from Cornell! Click here, print the coupon, and get your pansies for a buck! Stop in this week and see all the great flowers that Cornell Farm has to offer.


We found another one of those ‘grandma plants’ this week. Begonias are one of those plants that everyone has seen before, but we met with Dan Heims at Terra Nova Nurseries to see some types of begonias that would surprise even grandma. Dan has been working with begonias since the 70’s and he has seen lots of improved varieties since then. He showed us over a dozen different ones, some that are extremely hardy in our area! The ones we saw were ‘Madame Queen’, a new variation on the old style, ‘Richarsoniana’, ‘Cracked Ice’, ‘Swirling Fireworks’, ‘Black Taffeta’, ‘River Nile’, ‘Exotica’, with its deep red, waxy leaves, a delicate fuchsia looking one called ‘Fuchsioides’, ‘Mocha’, ‘Bonfire’, with its large fuchsia type orange flowers, ‘Pedatifiida’, ‘Kaylen’, and ‘Metallic Mist’. These plants vary in the type of care that is needed. So if you are looking to add one to your collection check with your local garden center to see which ones will work for you. You can also check out the American Begonia Society for more information or stop by Portland Nursery on Division (503-788-9000) for the Charter Meeting of the Cascade Chapter of the American Begonia Society happening on Sunday September 28th at 1:00pm.

Fall Mower Tips

It is time to start thinking about putting away your garden power tools for the season. Before you stash them in the tool shed we have some tips for protecting them and getting them ready for next season. We stopped at Jay’s Mower and Chainsaw on N. Williams to get some pointers. Jay recommends that you add a fuel stabilizer to the gas tank and fill it to the top. That will keep condensation from forming in the tank and gumming up your engine. Also, by keeping the tank full you will keep the seals from drying out. He also recommends that you wait until spring to do any major maintenance. In spring you can change air and fuel filters and do other basic work. There is one thing you can do right now and that is sharpening. You can sharpen your blades and then apply a thin coat of motor oil to protect the sharpened edge. This is really effective on reel mowers. With all the cutting edges they can really benefit from a protective coating of oil. For more information you can stop by Jay’s shop. You will also find a discount coupon in the new Chinook Book.

Gathering of Gardeners Wrap-Up

We would like to thank the Village Green Resort and Gardens (800-343-7666) for letting William and Judy come to the Gathering of Gardeners last weekend. We had a great time and William and Judy had a great turn-out to their seminars. We would also like to thank Black Gold and OXO tools for providing giveaway prizes for our seminar guests. Judy also talked with Jon from the garden to learn about the new Kid’s garden area. We saw the new playhouse and learned how kids have been involved in the planning of the area. If you have suggestions for the area you can contact the Village Green Resort and give them your ideas.

Jan’s September Tips

It is harvest time and that finds us out in the garden of Jan McNeilan, retired OSU extension agent. Jan is busy harvesting her vegetables, even though the season had a slow start. She is pulling a lot of tomatoes out of the garden right now and that means she is trying to preserve as many as possible to use later this year. Before, preserving tomatoes meant canning them. Now Jan just washes them, cuts them up and places them in the freezer. When she needs them for soups or stews she just drops the frozen one in the pot. The skins peal off in the heat and she just pulls them out. If you are in an area that is having a frost or close to having one, you can pick you green tomatoes and keep them on your counter until they ripen. You have to choose the ones that are translucent green and not the dark green ones, otherwise it won’t work. The translucent ones also work the best for fried green tomatoes. She is also making her own horseradish this year, plus harvesting eggplant and zucchini. To learn more about preserving your harvest you can check out the OSU Extension website or the OSU food safety and preservation website.

Indoor-Outdoor Plant Tips

During the warm summer days, a lot of us took our indoor plants outside to give them a little vacation. But, with the cooler nights upon us you can start to get your indoor plants ready to return to the warmth and protection of your house. Dan from Terra Gardens (503-581-0441) in Salem gave us some tips for making the transition better for you and your plants. You will want to clean your plants up before bringing them in so they don’t bring any bug or disease problems inside with them. First, give them a good wash-down. Then you will want to treat for bugs and diseases. Depending on the plant and where you are planning on keeping it you have a wide selection of organic and chemical solutions. Then, let the plant sit for another day (to let the bugs fall off), wash it down and bring it inside. If you have questions on what product to use, you can check with your local independent garden center or stop by Terra Gardens.

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