Tuesday, January 31, 2012

17th Annual Urban Forestry & Horticulture Conference

17th ANNUAL Urban Forestry & Horticulture Conference


Date: Tuesday, February 21, 2012
Place: Cross Point Church, 1360 Cox Creek Parkway, Florence, AL 35633

Price: $40 (includes catered lunch from Whole Hog)

Paul Graham,
Grounds Supervisor, University of North Alabama
Restoration of the Southhall-Moore House - Discussion of the issues, problems and solutions in the restoration of the Southhall-Moore Landscape. 

Andy Brown: Visionary Art and Design
Artist, Designer, Owner of Visionary Art and Design
Bring nature to your home, just outside your backdoor. The use
of natural materials to beautify your lawn using stone, water
and ground cover.

Carl Casiday: Garden Baskets with Plants from the Garden
Owner, Lola’s Gifts and Flowers.

Ken Creel: Pruning for Rejuvenation
Regional Extension Agent for Home Grounds, Gardens and Pest
Pruning to increase blossoms.

Justin G. Wall: New Landscaping Products and Ideas for 2012
Owner, Coldwater Landscapes and Garden Center, LLC
Join Justin for tips on spicing up your yard with new types of
trees, shrubs, etc. which are more hardy and have longer bloom

Dr. Rodulfo O. Pacumbaba, Jr.: Rejuvenation of Flowers and Shrubs
Assistant Professor, Department of Biology and Environmental
Sciences, Alabama A & M University
What you should consider when troubleshooting your plants.

Matthew McCollough: Alabama Tree Recovery Campaign
State Urban Forestry Coordinator
Alabama Forestry Commission’s efforts to spearhead the
recovery of Alabama’s trees.

Pesticide and Urban Forestry programs also included. (See brochure for full program schedule)

Door prizes awarded!

Brochure / Registration Form

Text and photos by Phillip Oliver, Dirt Therapy

Friday, January 27, 2012

My birthday cake

Michael always makes me a Boston Cream Pie for my birthday. It is my favorite cake (I have no idea why they call it a pie). He usually buys a boxed mix but he went all out this year and made it from scratch, using a recipe from Maida Heatter (with a little help from me). I'm going to post the recipe and photos of him making it on my baking blog. It was delicious! I also gained about 5 pounds.

Text and photos by Phillip Oliver, Dirt Therapy

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Ornamental Kale

Ornamental Kale (or Ornamental Cabbage if you prefer) is second only to pansies as a colorful option for winter containers or planting in the ground.  The scientific name is Brassica oleracea. The plant is a member of the mustard family. They can be planted in the fall (from seed or transplants) and when colder temperatures and frosts approach, the color intensifies. They like sunny locations although they will grow in shadier areas, the color may not be as vivid. They also may become leggy if not given enough sun. Although edible, they are not near as tasty as regular cabbages and kale and are grown mainly for decorative purposes.

I've had hit-and-miss experiences growing ornamental kale. Some years they do well, some years not. Colder temperatures are a must as they will bolt in warmer climes. They respond well to fertilizer although I confess I usually forget to fertilize them. They do not like extreme wet conditions and are especially vulnerable to freezing rain, which leaves them puny and limp. If freezing rain is predicted, cover the plants if you can until the danger has past.

Text and photos by Phillip Oliver, Dirt Therapy

Monday, January 2, 2012

Winter berries

Beauty Berry (Callicarpa)

Holly (not sure about the variety)


Text and photos by Phillip Oliver, Dirt Therapy