On today's Growing on the High Plains, we'll examine a non-native plant of biblical proportions.
Polygonatum, also known as "Solomon's seal," offers much more than meets the eye. It can grow up to four feet in height, bearing beautifully-blanched, bobbing bells that morph into blue-black berries in the autumn.
Furthermore, its underground root stalks, or rhizomes, are a known herbal remedy. Plus, this darling of the shaded flower bed is known to conceal a religious relic deep in the dirt.
Few things give away a particularly High Plains landscape like a fine-but-fluffy, blue-kissed buffalo grass tickling a horizon. While a staple of our region's ground cover, I wonder why it's not more prevalent and popular.
On today's Growing on the High Plains, I want to talk about this lush native -- including it's many benefits, and a few pointers for planters. So, buffalo grass, won't ya come out tonight?
Would a pepper by any other name taste just as sweet? Or spicy? Or seasoned? On today's Growing on the High Plains, let's tip our caps to the Capsicum, blow a horn for the peppercorn, and find out "what's the dilly" with the chili. Though different as they may be, these three cousins often answer to the same name: pepper.
When curating one's seasonal planting, most veteran gardeners have their favorites. Time-saving green thumbs often prefer perennials, while those attracted to a regular change of scenery might opt for annuals.
My passion for growing beets all started with a jar of these vibrant veggies that were homemade and pickled by a friend. Years later, I am proud to say I've reaped many a beet harvest, producing countless batches that were lovingly boiled and bequeathed to others.
On today's Growing on the High Plains, I'll discuss these sturdy root vegetables, their royal history, and their versatile applications -- from soup to dye to insecticide. Thankfully, beets seem to thrive on the High Pains. So I guess it's true: the beet goes on.
Father's Day is coming up this weekend, and it made me think back on my own father -- a man with wit, wisdom, and a unique collection of sayings. On today's Growing on the High Plains, I'll share some of his more choice expressions, sage advice, and a little history that shaped him into the man and father that he was.
I will always cherish my many memories of my dad, and I hope this segment honors the many wonderful fathers across our region. Happy Father's Day, to listeners across the High Plains.
On today's edition of Growing on the High Plains, I've decided to thaw out an old memory of a particularly harsh winter and the devastation of vegetation that it brought to our region.
But don't worry! It's not all frozen ground and brittle branches. This is a story that celebrates the pioneer spirit of the Plains. Despite nature's cruel cull during the winter of '91, what sprouted from the loss was a renewed sense of stewardship, community, and loving memorial.
With the first of May arriving this week, I thought it an apt time to pause and reflect on the historical traditions associated with the special day. From a Red Square affair to a celebration of weather fair, May Day has been associated with a variety of rites and rituals.
To conclude our three-part series on how gardeners new to our region can overcome reduced water access, today's installment of Growing on the High Plains goes underground -- literally.
In addition to thoughtful xeriscaping and maximizing moisture with mulch, those committed to making water conservation a top priority can consider planning and installing a drip system. With the flip of a switch, you can ensure that every drop goes where it's needed -- saving time and energy.
You might have noticed that community gardening has grown in popularity across the High Plains and the nation in recent years. Home gardeners often feel that coming together with others to nurture shared spaces to benefit one's own community gets at the root of why we love to grow, harvest, and share the bounty.
Nothing dampens winter doldrums like that first purple peeper pushing up through your still-chilly garden or yard. (Or maybe she's white or gold?)
Whatever petals she's pushing, the first crocus remains an annual celebration of the hope and promise of the lush Spring to come.
Today's installment of Growing on the High Plains takes a long look at these punctual pals. With their knack for tackling the gale-force gusts and dry climate of our region, there's no denying the mighty crocus will ever emerge triumphant -- especially in the hearts of the winter weary.
There’s a method to my madness when it comes to growing potatoes and it has nothing to do with March. While many people plant their potatoes on St. Patrick’s Day, perhaps because Irish cobbler is everyone’s favorite spud, my planting schedule is determined entirely by, well, when I have time.
Then in late summer, after I have unearthed the brown roots as if hunting for buried treasure, I stash them away. Then, with a little luck of the Irish, hope they will last through the holidays to the New Year so they can make their way into some soup.
Today's installment of Growing on the High Plains might feel a bit like an audio submission to the Antiques Roadshow, as I share with you the history of my prized collection of authentic McCoy pottery.
More than a century ago, Nelson McCoy founded his famed stoneware company in Roseville, Ohio. The vessels were noted for their simple, utilitarian design, as well as their durable, high-quality construction. In fact, I can attest that these puppies are indeed resilient -- even in the face of a potential catastrophe.
Scroll down for some snapshots of my assembled assortment of antique McCoy planters. As you can see, they're almost as pretty as the plants they present.
Valentine's day is coming, and love is in the air. So today on Growing on the High Plains, I'll tell you about an enchanted, amorous bloom often referred to as "Love in a Mist."
You know how that special someone makes you feel like you're walking on air? Likewise, these bright, ethereal blooms appear to levitate over a frothy, feathered bed of foliage. But watch out! Like lovers, they'll grow thorny with time. Thankfully, like love, they're always worth the trouble.