Recipe: Summer Squashage

Story by Kaynan Goldberg. Kaynan is CaryCitizen’s 12-year-old columnist on all things frugal, crunchy, healthy and green. She blogs at VeggiesGoCrunch. Photo by Steve Minor.

Cary, NC – Sometimes in summer, it feels like all they sell at the farmers’ markets (and/or all you can grow in your garden) is summer squash and zucchini.  Read more

Pictures: Herbfest 2011

Story and pictures by Hal Goodtree.

Cary, NC – Just a few pictures from Herbfest in case you couldn’t make it or just wanted to relive the glory. Read more

In My Cary Garden: April 20

Story and photos by Hal Goodtree

Cary, North Carolina – I like the idea of a Cary gardening column being an almanac of what grows in our town and when. So, this week, here’s what’s blooming in my North Carolina garden.

Chives and Alliums

Chives, garlic, onions, leeks and shallots – they’re all part of the allium family. Many alliums bloom in this part of N.C. at this time of year.

In my garden, we grow humble, 6″ garlic chives in a pot. They are blooming right now in a sunny spot and come back year after year. My chives need almost no care whatsoever. I barely water them. They’re also nice is omelets, salads and stir fries.

Dianthus

Dianthus covers about 300 species of flowers, mostly shades of pink. Mine are low-growing perennials that die back in the winter. Carnation is in the dianthus family.

Dianthus puts on a happy show in spring, then retires gracefully to the back of the garden. I have them in a sunny bed that’s only moderately watered.

Indigo

When I think of indigo, I think of blue, like the color of blue jeans. It’s true, wild indigo can have deep blue flowers.

But wild indigo, a native to the North American prairies, can come in white and yellow too.

My indigo (Baptisia leucantha alba, White Wild Indigo) grows in a pretty dry bed in the shade under a plum tree. The cascading white flowers are very showy and long-lasting. The stems have a distinctly blue-green color.

Clematis

April is the season for Clematis here in the Piedmont.

Clematis must love North Carolina, because it thrives in conditions from full sun all the way to partial shade.  A vining plant, Clematis explodes in April with 4″ flowers that cover the entire plant.

Different varieties have slightly different bloom times and flower sizes. They generally come in shades from pure white to pinks, blues and purples.

Easy to grow in Cary, Clematis blooms profusely in the spring and is a great way to add vertical interest to your garden. This picture is from my neighbor’s house up near the mailbox in full sun.

Azaleas

Also blooming in my garden this week are azaleas.

Azaleas are a most Southern of plants, with azalea festivals up and down the region. No need for me to tell you, dear readers, about the importance and beauty of azaleas in Southern gardens.

What’s Growing In Your Garden?

Cary garden pictures and gardening stories are always welcome – gardening@carycitizen.com.

Herbfest 2011 – Coming in May

Story by Lindsey Chester, photo by Marcia Hansen.

Cary, NC- Last year, the Friends of Page-Walker created a new festival in downtown Cary – Herbfest.

My daughter Emma and I attended and she was thrilled to take home a seedling that grew into a large basil plant. The festival is returning on the weekend of May 7 and has expanded to include live performances and demonstrations along with the herbs and gifts for sale.

Read more

Gardening: After the Frost Date

Cary, NC – The Frost Date is the standard (or average) last day of frost in a particular region. This is of interest to gardeners, farmers and horticulturalists because tender plants can survive outdoors after this date has passed. Read more

Invasion of the Giant Cabbages

Story by Matt Young. Pictured above: Allison Hartman, NC’s 2010 Winner – Walnut Cove Elementary, Walnut Cove, NC

Cary, N.C. – I found this interesting, being a guy who likes kids, education ideas, gardening and…well…oddities. Read more

Recycling: I’ve Got Worms!

Story and photos by Leslie Huffman

Cary, NC -Did you know that food is the #1 least recycled of all waste materials? In Cary we are great at recycling paper, plastic and glass. We just put it “in the bin” and off it goes to the recycling plant. But up to 75% of what we throw away is organic material.

The crazy thing is food decomposes all by itself in nature. Read more

Gardening: Time for Lettuce

Story & photo by Hal Goodtree.

Cary, N.C. – This period of the late winter should be called “Pear Blossom Season” in Cary, because the ever-popular, medium-sized tree is exploding in white blossoms all over town.

It turns out that Pear Blossom Season is exactly the right time of year to plant lettuce and other cool-season salad greens. Read more

Chicken and Egg Situation in Cary – Literally

Story by Mary Beth Phillips. Photo by SteveW.

Cary, NC – I was at a dinner party in Raleigh and more than half of the attendees waxed poetic about the joys of raising backyard chickens. Read more

Cary Community Gardens Dig In

By Guest Columnist Michele McKinley, Project Coordinator, Advocates for Health in Action (AHA)

Cary, NC – Fresh food, a sense of community and generous giving are sprouting at community gardens in Cary and nearby Apex and Morrisville.  Community gardens can “grow” in different ways, but they all are about people working together to grow healthy, fresh food. By sharing a plot of land, the supplies and physical labor, garden members enjoy and benefit from fresh foods. Many gardens also often donate extra produce to hungry people in the area as part of their purpose. Read more