VNT_A007XXC10142017_Real

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TRIB TOTAL MEDIA SATURDAY, OCTOBER 14, 2017 · 7 Plant edibles for timely harvest ByDave Vargo For Trib ToTal Media Now’s the time to plant Jerusalem artichokes which should be available at your local garden center. Jerusalem artichokes or also known as sunchokes (Helianthus tuberosus) are perennial sunflowers grown for their potato-like tubers. The tubers can be enjoyed raw or cooked for their sweet, nutty flavor. Beside their unique food value, the 6- to 8-foot-tall plants make an attractive windbreak, fence row or mass planting with loads of attractive, 2- to 4-inch, daisylike yellow flowers. Choose a permanent location when planting. Along one edge or corner of the garden is usually perfect. Plants grow best in full sun and loose soil. Tubers can be harvested from late summer to late fall. It is best to harvest tubers after several frosts, as this improves their flavor. When harvesting, grasp the plant at the base of the stalk, pull up the entire plant and gather the tubers. Alternatively, the tubers can be left in the ground and harvested in smaller quantities as desired. The next crop can be planted from harvested tubers in the fall or by leaving some in the ground to grow again. There also still is time to plant garlic for next year’s harvest. Good varieties to plant for our area are Italian Purple, German Red and Spanish Roja. All keep well, have great flavor, are easy to peel and produce nice-sized cloves. Garlic can be planted as long as the ground isn’t frozen. Consider planting some If you hope to plant fruit trees in the spring — and pears are a great choice to grow in this area — use this time during fall to prepare the soil where you intend to plant. fruit trees next spring. Now would be a good time to decide where to plant them and also to dig the hole and prepare the soil. Two excellent pear varieties to try are Housi Asian Pear and Olympic Giant Asian Pear. If you’re not familiar with Asian pears, then visit your local fruit market or grocery store and buy a couple. You will be hooked. The nice feature about Asian pears is they need very little maintenance. Customers who have grown these pears in the past report of not even spraying them and getting loads of beautiful, edible pears. Housi Pears produce medium to large size sweet fruit that is crisp like an apple with lots of juice. They arebest for fresh eating but also make great pies! The other great feature of Housi Pear trees are their mature height of 8-10 feet with a spread of 7-8 feet, which means you don’t have a huge tree to deal with in the landscape. Olympic Giant Asian Pear produces the same type of great-tasting pears with larger fruits weighing up to 15 ounces. The mature size of Olympic Giant trees is 18-feet tall with a spread of about 12 feet. Both varieties are selfpollinating, but yields will be greater if they have a pollinator. Either tree is a good pollinator for the other. Scope out your yard this fall and start getting ready to plant a few fruit trees this spring. Dave Vargo is the owner of Arnold Feed & Garden Center (724-335-1821) and Kiski Plaza Garden & Feed Center (724-845-8201). Products mentioned in the article are available at either garden center. Any questions, call or email dvargokiski@comcast.net. Like us on Facebook @kiskigardencenter. GARDENING GARDENTIP: As the gardening season comes to an end now is the time to start planning next year’s garden and plantings while this past year’s garden still is fresh in your mind. U-BILDCRAFTS Folk-art quilting Born out of necessity (to keep warm) and resourcefulness (to use whatever materials were available), quilting is a uniquely American needlecraft. But it’s also easy to see that this practical art was — and is — a great way to express creativity, resulting in quilts that are bona fide folk-art masterpieces. If you’re a part of that great tradition of quilting (or you’d like to be), now you can create a folk-art masterpiece of your own. It’s easy to discover your own “inner artist” with the help of a fullcolor, 44-page guidebook, “Folk-Art Quilts.” The book includes 11 smallscale quilted designs — five table toppers, three mini-quilts and two wall hangings — that will add homespun charm wherever they’re used. Each project includes a materials list, step-by-step instructions, piecing diagrams (where necessary) and color photos for helpful reference. Eleven pages of full-size patterns round out the collection. The fun and fanciful designs include “Folk Flowers” (pictured), “Pansies by the Picket,” “A Risky Roost,” “Bird Patchwork Quilt,” “Uncle Sam Table Mat,” “Angel Mini Quilt,” “Crazy Pumpkin,” “Penny Table Rug,” “Floral Penny Table Rug,” “Pumpkin Harvest” and “Wool Penny Tree.” The “Folk-Art Quilts” guidebook, No. LA1944, is $9.95. If you’d like to try quilting but don’t know where to begin, a 57-page guidebook, “I Can’t Believe I’m Quilting,” No. LA3649, available for $12.95, will help you get started. Please include $4 per order for postage and handling and allow about two weeks for delivery. To order by mail, clip this article and send it with a check or money order to U-Bild Features, c/o Trib Total Media, 821B S. Tremont St., Oceanside, CA 92054. To order by credit card, call 800-828-2453. By The U-Bild Craft Staff


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