How to Care for Fire Damaged Trees

After a fire, plants may look dead but still be alive. When evaluating what to do with a plant burnt by fire, the best advice is that given when a plant has been burnt by freezing temperatures:  wait...

Discovery Depends on Having New Eyes

“Brand New,” “New and Improved,” “All New.”  We are all familiar with these advertising slogans.  They must be effective because we keep hearing and seeing them, over and over again. Lust for somethi...

The History of Fruit Tree Grafting

No one knows when grafting of plants began.  Initially, grafting was thought to be an extension of vegetative or clonal propagation by cuttings.  Just as softwood (shoot) or hardwood cuttings, detach...

Health Benefits of Chickpeas

There is something mystical about gardening, an activity whose highest expression depends on turning death into life. If you really want to be good to your plants, if you want them to grow in a maxim...

The Secret Life of Poinsettias

“The Secret Life of Plants” was a popular book published in 1973 which made seemingly outrageous claims that plants respond to stimuli in human ways. Plants would grow better when soft music, as oppo...

Real Gardeners Don’t Use Sprinklers

Some of you might remember a book entitled “Real Men Don’t Eat Quiche.”  Published in 1982, it was on the best seller list for over a year and sold more than a million copies.  I wa...

How to Grow Kiwifruit

How Kiwis Got Their Name Have you eaten any Chinese gooseberries lately? This exotic sounding edible treat has a more recognizable name, introduced to this country just thirty years ago by Frieda Cap...

Vareigated Leaves, Flowers, and Fruits

Like gardeners everywhere, I recognized the potential of foliage as an element of garden design with my first glimpse of a plant with variegated leaves. Initially, I thought I was looking at a plant ...

Let it Grow, Just Let it Grow

I am especially captivated by plants which, water thrifty in any case, are positively drought resistant when allowed to grow out naturally in an untrimmed state, remaining more or less water deprived...