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Garden Variety: The time is right for growing onions

Onions are a staple in many U.S. households and are easy to grow in the Midwest with proper timing and a little knowledge of planting methods. Give them a try this year, or use these tips to improve production if you have tried them in the past. Plan to plant anytime from now to late April in ...

Owners of 19th century Pinckney home attracted to its character, history

Though Carl Edwards had always admired the home he and his husband now own, he didn’t like the way its then-green paint concealed the building among the trees in the front yard. “The house just sunk back into the darkness,” he said. But now, the brick home with its blue paint, red ...

Garden Variety: The myths and facts about companion planting

Companion planting is a centuries-old practice of planting one or more crops near each other for singular or mutual benefit. New gardeners hearing the term for the first time might wonder which practices are best; experienced gardeners might wonder if it really works. Some companion planting ...

Garden Variety: How bitter cold affects plants — and pests

The bitter cold that accompanied recent winter storms in the Lawrence area will likely have long-lasting effects on certain trees and landscape plantings. And while many gardeners think the silver lining of the cold is a decrease in insect and mite populations, the actual effect is difficult ...

Garden Variety: Flowers’ colorful history as symbols and gifts

Fresh flowers and plants are given as symbols of caring, friendship, love, remembrance and other sentiments. And although this is true year-round, the Society of American Florists says that Valentine’s Day tops the list for sales. Have you ever wondered how flowers became unspoken words, ...

Garden Variety: Should you remove vines from trees?

English ivy, Virginia creeper and other perennial vines are sometimes found growing up the trunks of trees in landscapes and wooded areas. They are more obvious in winter months than other times of year because of the lack of greenery on affected trees. Most experts recommend removing vines ...