A Selection of Past Newsletters

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October 2023 Newsletter

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October 2023 Newsletter

"After the keen still days of September, the October sun filled the world with mellow warmth...The maple tree in front of the doorstep burned like a gigantic red torch. The oaks along the roadway glowed yellow and bronze. The fields stretched like a carpet of jewels, emerald and topaz and garnet. Everywhere she walked the color shouted and sang around her." — Elizabeth George SpeareThe Witch of Blackbird Pond

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Your Gorgeous Spring Garden Starts Now!

Set yourself up for an easier spring by getting plants, bulbs, and trees in the ground this fall. Fall is for planting! Give next year's garden a good foundation by letting plants settle in and build good roots over the fall and winter. They'll be ready to grow come spring! 

Although spring gets all the mainstream attention, many gardeners know that fall is where it's at! The still-warm soil helps boost root growth, the cooler temps are less stressful (for plants and gardeners!), and summer pests and diseases aren't as big of a threat in the coming months. Give your garden a leg up by learning what and why to plant now. Read the article from Garden Design here.

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A Short History of Gardening

It may seem insignificant, but the past always shapes the present. The evolution of gardening provides context for the gardening paradigm shift we find ourselves experiencing today, and helps us predict where gardening will go next.

Here is a short history of gardening - from ancient gardens to the birth of landscaping to Renaissance and Modern gardens.

Read the full article here.

This article is based on the book The Next Generation Gardener by Madison Moulton.

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Your Guide to Chaos Gardening

Think of chaos gardening as a low-stakes experiment that also helps you purge your collection of old, leftover seeds from past seasons. Some seeds may not germinate at all, while others you bought years ago may thrive. Either way, the result is surprising, educational, and even beautiful - not to mention freeing, especially if you're the type of grower who strives to make your garden look perfect.

The whole point of a chaos garden is to help you embrace chance and let go of perfection. No matter what comes up, you had a little fun and made some room in your seed stash for next year. Read the full article from The Spruce here.

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What's In Season? Pumpkin!

Pumpkins are native to Canada and have been grown here for hundreds of years. First Nations people ate them roasted, boiled and stewed, and they roasted the seeds as well. Today, most pumpkins are used for jack-o-lanterns or pumpkin pie but there are so many more ways to cook and enjoy pumpkins.

Pumpkins come in all shapes and sizes from the small pie pumpkins to the giant pumpkins that take a forklift to move. There are also carving pumpkin and novelty ones that are bumpy or come in white or different shades of green and orange. Pumpkins are considered a winter squash along with butternut, Hubbard, buttercup and acorn squashes.

Learn more about pumpkins here.

Classic Pumpkin Pie Recipe from Canadian Living

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Staghorn Sumac Is Dioecious

Staghorn Sumac puts on a startling display of color in the fall. It is a pleasing sight, especially in the fall, when the leaves turn extremely colourful. It is dioecious, with male and female flowers on separate plants.

Staghorn sumac has great historical significance. In the early 1700s, the English used sumac as a decoration. In North America, Indigenous peoples initially used sumac for spiritual purposes. Traditionally, the berries were mixed into tobacco to be smoked, a practice that is still common today.

Find out more about Staghorn Sumac here.

The Joy of Growing Annual Tulips

Stephanie Rose of Garden Therapy writes: They’re here for a good time, not a long time. Yes, I’m talking about annual tulips! These beautiful spring flowers make a huge impact when they pop out of the ground after the winter. Annual tulips are some of the more expressive cut flowers, so let’s talk about how you can start planting tulips now for enjoyment later!

People also don’t realize that there are many different types of tulips, and they all don’t grow the same. So, if you thought you could just pop any bulb in the ground and call it a day, you might want to read the label a little more carefully.

Get the lowdown on annual tulips, the tulips that last one season only, here.

Fall activities to boost your mood and well-being

As the leaves begin to change and the air turns crisper, fall offers a unique and beautiful backdrop for outdoor and indoor activities. For older adults, this season provides an excellent opportunity to stay active, engage with nature, and embrace the spirit of autumn. Here are five fall activities that can help boost your well-being while enjoying the change of the seasons.  

  • Enjoy the colours of fall on a walk
  • Spend time in a garden
  • Try a new recipe with autumn ingredients
  • Connect with your artistic side (botanical art, anyone?)
  • Curl up with a good book (so many gardening books…!)

Read the full article from McMaster University here.

Garden Inspiration

Autumn cookies spiced with cinnamon and orange zest, mixed spice or ginger, meaning every cookie is a taste of autumn, by Chef Emily Leary. Get the recipe here.

Have a gardening question?

Ask an Ottawa Master Gardener: gardeninganswers@mgottawa.ca

Ask a Lanark County Master Gardener: Contact through Website: http://lanarkmg.blogspot.com/p/contact-us.html


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Editor: Kath Thompson
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