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Archive for April, 2011

Aesculus-pavia-blog1

Showy red buds opening into flowers signal the season for a favorite native that is coming into bloom this week: red buckeye (Aesculus pavia). The tubular flowers are borne in panicles at the tips of the branches. (A panicle is a type of inflorescence that has a main stalk with branched side stems.) Each panicle is 4 to 8 inches long in bloom, and the individual flowers are about 1½ inches long. The flowers are showy for a couple weeks from mid spring to early summer. The flowers are very attractive to hummingbirds.

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I just spent a tiring, yet delightful, afternoon working on Kent County’s newest Community Garden. A little over a week ago, the garden was simply a fenced field on the north side of a sheep pasture at Victory Farm, located just outside Chestertown. Today, we have a straw-bale cold frame planted with lettuce, spinach, and mesclun (all sewn about 10 days ago), plus tilled beds and amended soil ready for warm-season crops to come. We also have mulched fence lines that will reduce the need to trim, a herb garden, a swing set ready to support sugar snap peas, and room for growing perennials to offer for sale at Master Gardener and other charity plant sales.

Victory-Farm-Community-Gard

ABOVE: Preparing the main beds in the garden.

The plan is to grow some produce for ourselves, but to donate most of what we produce to needy area families .

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