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WHAT’S NOT TO LOVE about zinnias? Organic seed farmer and breeder Don Tipping of Siskiyou Seeds and I both vote an emphatic “yes” in favor of making zinnias a part of every garden year.
But what goes into creating the diversity of zinnia colors and forms and sizes? And what are some new looking ones that you might want to try in 2024?
Don Tipping founded Siskiyou Seeds, a family run farm-based seed company, in 1997. His farm with a view is located at 2,000 feet of elevation in the Siskiyou Mountains of southwest Oregon, and has close to 1,000 varieties of vegetables, herbs, and flowers in its collection. As if that were not enough, Don creates a YouTube channel of how-to videos and a long-running blog, and hosts multiple on-farm trainings for gardeners and farmers each year.
We talked about that beloved annual flower, the zinnia (that’s ‘Queeny Lime Orange,’ above), and more.
Plus: Comment in the box near the bottom of the page to enter to win a $25 gift certificate for Siskiyou Seeds.
Read along as you listen to the Feb. 5, 2024 edition of my public-radio show and podcast using the player below. You can subscribe to all future editions on Apple Podcasts (iTunes) or Spotify (and browse my archive of podcasts here).
Margaret Roach: Winter! But I guess it’s seed-selling season, so probably not winter, not quiet, for you.
Don Tipping: Yeah.
Margaret: You and I recently collaborated on a story in “The New York Times,” a garden column on growing onions and leeks, something you taught me how to do almost a decade ago, how to grow them from seed. And so I’ll give a link to our former conversation, for people who want to get started on those earlybird crops. But zinnias: We share this passion,
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15 of the Best Dogwoods to Liven Up the Winter Landscape
The following is excerpted from Taras Grescoe’s The Lost Supper, and has been lightly edited for length and clarity.
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Winter is a great time to look outside and evaluate the structure of your landscape. It can be easier during this time of year to tell if you need a few more woodies to add structural support. Small shrubs in particular have a lot of utility in gardens. They fit perfectly in beds and borders and can be used in tight spaces where more presence than a perennial is warranted. Here are a few smaller shrubs with impressive foliage that have worked well for us in the Southeast.
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Sketch image from a garden planting plan recently created for a GardenAdvice client
Sow celery thinly in pots or boxes in heat in March for early varieties, or in a cold house in mid-April for the main crop. Prick off into deep seed boxes as soon as the seedlings are large enough to handle, at 5cm (2in) intervals. After hardening off, plant out from mid May to the end of June, in prepared trenches. This is not only helpful in earthing but enables watering to be carried out by flooding the trench.