04/04/17 1:16pm
Lavender is one of many low-maintenance options for your backyard garden. (Credit: Kendall Stark. file photo)

Lavender is one of many low-maintenance options for your backyard garden. (Credit: Kendall Stark. file photo)

When decorating a home, plants and shrubbery are an important part in bringing life and color to your property. For the East End’s second homeowners who don’t have the time to offer constant care, or those without a green thumb, low maintenance flora can be the perfect option.

Below are some plant suggestions from local nursery owners. (more…)

07/14/16 1:56pm

Garden Club event

Zantedeschia. Gypsophila. Hydrangea macrophylla. 

Confusing? Perhaps to a novice, but not to the seasoned members of the Garden Club of Shelter Island. These are just some of the names of the beautiful flowers that will be on display during the Garden Club’s annual Garden Show and House Tour.  (more…)

05/28/16 6:21am
A mason bee checks out a blossom. (Credit: Dave Hunter)

A mason bee checks out a blossom. (Credit: Dave Hunter)

The importance of bees in maintaining our food supply is well understood and these pollinators play a vital role in keeping our plant stocks healthy. But habitat loss, disease and pesticides are all taking a toll on bee populations, which is why some people are expressing interest in keeping honeybees themselves these days.  (more…)

04/22/16 6:10am
Cornell Cooperative Extension horticulture consultant Alice Raimondo examines some garden soil. (Credit: Barbaraellen Koch)

Cornell Cooperative Extension horticulture consultant Alice Raimondo examines some garden soil. (Credit: Barbaraellen Koch)

For beginning gardeners — or even experienced ones — problems can always arise when working out a green thumb.

Some, like an insect infestation, can be pretty obvious. But others, like unbalanced soil, will likely not be so noticeable to the untrained eye.

To find out if the dirt in your garden is causing trouble, stop by Cornell Cooperative Extension’s office on Griffing Avenue in Riverhead with a cup and a half of soil and five dollars. There, horticulture consultants Alice Raimondo and Sandra Vultaggio will test your soil’s pH balance and soluble salts level. (more…)

09/16/15 6:10am
 Saving seeds is a way to get the best yield from your garden. (Credit: Jo Ann Kirkland)


Saving seeds is a way to get the best yield from your garden. (Credit: Jo Ann Kirkland)

As the cool autumn weather descends upon us, we growers and gardeners start thinking about the best way to finish out the season and look forward to the next.

One way is to preserve the best plants that you’ve grown this season and replicate them next year through the art of seed saving. It is a surprisingly simple practice and has been in effect for 12,000 years.

Saving seed is the best way to ensure genetic diversity and allows you to breed and improve your best plants within your micro-climate. Breeding also allows the strongest performers to thrive. Purchasing generic seed increases the risk that the plants will not succeed in your climate. (more…)