Quote of the Week
"To the lover of wilderness, Alaska is one of the most wonderful countries in the world."     
                               ~ John Muir      __________________
A brand new vegetable!

NEW! A brand new vegetable, bred by Dick Degenhardt in Boskoop, Netherlands. These "greens" are actually green and creamy gold. Easy-to-grow, upright plants produce a continuous harvest of delectable blue-green leaves edged in creamy yellow or white. Best of all, this kale is perennial in most climates! Makes a unique garnish and a nutritious addition to salads, soups, or stir fries. Plants cannot be produced from seed and must be cloned by root cuttings, a traditional form of propagation. 


 GardenLife Exclusive! 

Grafted Tomato 'Blush' 


New! Another tasty beauty from innovative tomato breeder, Fred Hempel. The 2" long 'julienne-style' cherry tomatoes have an unforgettable tropical sweet flavor reminiscent of pineapple! They are ready to pick when the pink blush starts to appear over the yellow background. Fruits of these elongated cherry tomatoes have been served at some of the best restaurants in the country. Chefs are absolutely enchanted with them. Widely adapted with heavy fruit set over an extended period. The indeterminate plants are productive, vigorous and adapt over a wide area. A GardenLife exclusive! 





Be the first person to correctly identify this plant and you can win some great gardening items. This week's prize from Cool Springs Press: 


Gardening with Confidence: 50 Ways to Add Style for Personal Creativity


by Helen Yoest


Last Contest Answer
Yucca filamentosa  'Color Guard'

 Winner: Faye from Knoxville, TN 


Garden Gaiters 
Protective Armwear
Just in time for Spring Pruning!

Garden Gaiters can be worn over anything to protect your clothing and skin from harmful thorns, branches and slivers. With water resistant coated nylon fabric, Garden Gaiters´┐Ż will also protect your arms from poison oak/ivy and chemical sprays. Easy to use and comfortable to wear. Just slip over your arm. Fasten the wrist strap and you're ready to go.  

Making One of the Country's Best Organic Fertilizers
Research shows that lawns fertilized with Milorganite in the fall tend to become green one to two weeks earlier than unfertilized lawns.

Garden Life Sneak Peeks

This  Week's  Radio Show 

Saturday,  February  9
8-9am PST / 11am-Noon EST  Note: Severe weather conditions in Connecticut, may necessitate the replay of last Saturday's show. If this occurs, we will reschedule Ed Hume.

Garden author of several books including Gardening with Ed Hume: Northwest Gardening Made Easy, purveyor of a wide variety of seeds and host of Seattle's television show, Gardening in America for 48 years and still running, Ed Hume will share some of his secrets about planting the end of winter and early spring crops from seeds as well as some of his plant recommendations and how to prepare our gardens for the upcoming warmer months. In Ed's "spare" time, he has an educational garden that is open to groups for children and adults. Be sure to check out www.humeseeds.com for more valuable gardening information. Call Sharon, John, Bryan or our guests with your questions at 1-866-606-TALK (8255).
Sunday, February 10
 8-10 PST, 11am-1pm EST

Fred Hempel and Jill Shepard own Baia Nicchia, a small 10-acre organic farm located in Sunol, California. Following his passion, Fred breeds gourmet vegetables such as sweet peppers, squash as well as herbs, many of them being made into tasty and healthy herbal teas known as Grey Dog Tea and tomatoes with their complex, varied flavors, shapes and colors. His tomatoes have captured the attention of discriminating chefs and farmers' market devotees. This morning Fred will talk about his latest developments on the tomato horizon. Think bumblebees! Not the buzzing kind, but the varieties of tomatoes that will really create a buzz among tomato aficionados. CLICK HERE to see Fred giving a brief video presentation of his wonderful, Baia Nicchia Farm.


Dr. Patricia S. Holloway (Pat) began the northernmost botanical garden in North America, Georgeson Botanical Garden, in 1989 and is its director as well as Professor of Horticulture, Department of High Latitude Agriculture at the University of Alaska Fairbanks.. She is interested in everything horticulture, especially propagation and cultivation of Alaska native plants. Her main programs currently are propagating native plants from seeds and cuttings; cultivation and antioxidant identification of wild blueberries and lingonberries; and a special program on cultivation of field grown peonies for export markets.   Today she will share how true plant lovers cope with "cabin fever" in the frigid environs of  the north. CLICK HERE to view a video of Pat discussing peony research in Alaska. Call Sharon, John, Bryan or our guests with your questions at 1-866-606-TALK (8255). 



    by Sharon Asakawa  

Forget about romantic cards brimming with ruby red hearts or bouquets of ephemeral, cut flowers. In lieu of cards, flowers, or sparkling jewels, there is a priceless reminder that takes place above the Asakawa garden every February. The garden is below the daily, aerial pathway of a pair of magnificent red-tailed hawks. Each morning and late afternoon, they perch amidst a stand of eucalyptus trees selecting the tallest, barest branch to sunbathe and to look out for scurrying game. When they leave, they dip and soar, riding the thermal air currents with ease and grace. In January, they busily fly back and forth, carrying various-sized sticks and suitable flotsam and jetsam to their hidden aerie where they fortify and re-build the previous year's massive nest.


Now that it is close to Valentine's Day, like a biologic clock, the female is ensconced in her re-built nursery retreat calling to her mate for tasty morsels while she awaits the hatching of their offspring. And the male perches alone in the glint of the morning light like a steadfast sentinel awaiting the warmth of the sun's rays before swooping off to fulfill his duties as a faithful mate and expectant parent. After about sixty days, the insistent caterwauling of their offspring will pierce the camouflaged veil of eucalyptus foliage announcing to the neighborhood the arrival of the fledglings.


















Roses are as natural to celebrate Valentine's Day as poinsettias are to the Christmas Season. We thought it would be fun to suggest planting pairs of actual varieties. How fun would it be to have these combos in your garden:

  • George Burns - Gracie Allen
  • Over the Rainbow - Judy Garland 
  • Karen Blixen - Out of Africa 
  • Barbra Streisand - Funny Girl 
  • Ronald Reagan - Nancy Reagan 
  • Satchmo - Trumpeter 
  • Alfalfa - Spanky
  • Tina Turner - Proud Mary
  • Freddy Mercury - Bohemian Rhapsody
  • Black Magic - Voodoo  
And maybe some tongue-in-cheek pairings:
  • Iceberg - Titanic 
  • Dolly Parton - Double Delight
  • Amnesia - Forgotten Dreams 
  • Penthouse - X-rated 
  • Amelia Earhart - Sea Spray
  • Rosie O'Donnell - Trump Card


  What's Growing in Our Gardens?  


                                   Tillandsia In Bloom                                                           'Gryphon' Begonia       
                                 Bob, Escondido, CA                                                                        Bryan's 
We'd love for you to share pictues of what's currently growing in your garden. Please send photos to john@gardenlife.com 



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