Regional Gardening Reports :: National Gardening Association

Upper South

April, 2010
Regional Report

Web Finds

National Center for Home Food Preservation
Thinking about learning to can and freeze produce out of your garden or from a farmer%s market? Or, maybe it%s been years since you did preserving and want to find out the latest information? The National Center for Home Food Preservation, http://www.uga.edu/nchfp, is the primary source for current research-based recommendations for most methods of home food preservation. The Center was established with funding from the Cooperative State Research, Education and Extension Service in 200 as a multi-institutional effort with The University of Georgia and Alabama A&M University as the primary institutions. Recipes and recommendations are included in the site as well as an online self-study course, and videos available for purchase.

Favorite or New Plant

Sarastro Bellflower
Looking for a drop-dead, blue-flowered perennial? Then consider Sarastro bellflower. As with most campanulas, Sarastro produces stems with pendulous, bell-like flowers. These are about two-and-a-half inches long in a lovely shade of bluish purple and make great cut flowers. Unlike many campanulas, Sarastro spreads only moderately. Although catalogs say Sarastro grows only 18 inches tall, mine reached 36 inches. My plant of Sarastro was put into the garden in 2009 and produced a few bloom stems. By the spring of 2010, it had formed a clump about 15 inches across and bore a great many sturdy bloom stems. Supposedly, if I remove the faded bloom stems, it will bloom again. Sarastro needs only average, well-drained soil in full sun to part shade and is seldom bothered by pests.

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