Interesting gardening facts

The wonderful walking onion......Many persons regard the remarkable and slightly peculiar "walking onion" as either a junk plant, a curiosity for children or simply a bother in the garden. Few persons consider it a valuable addition to the garden or to the menu.
Perhaps it should be...for good reason. First, they are hardy and do well here. The little top set onions are about halfway between chives and garlic in flavor. The plants are totally edible. The bulbils are good pickled and the hollow green stalks can be chopped for salads and soups, split and filled with cream cheese. The onions propagate themselves by making clusters of bulbils, small bulb or bulb-shaped growth arising from the leaf axil or in the place of flowers (see above) at the top of their stems. When they become top heavy, the bulb cluster bends the stem to the ground, the bulbils root and the onion-as-Slinky keeps growing.

Why do butterflies have two sets of wings? It's not to fly higher or faster, according to Smithsonian magazine (January 2009).  The hindwings appear to be crucial to a butterfly's ability to be agile in the air and to turn quickly - presumably to avoid predators like hungry birds.

     Many of us have discovered that our dogs sometimes are driven to become gardeners...at least to replant bulbs in the fall or to transplant young plants in the spring.
     Many a perplexed gardener has wondered: "What is going on?" The answer appears to be that dogs are attracted to the scent of newly disturbed soil (especially as the soil warms in the spring) and the scent of bone meal (often applied when planting bulbs in the fall and sprinkled around bulbs in the spring).
    The way to avoid having your best friend and companion become a real problem is to fence off the area that attracts the dog. A piece of bird netting covering a bulb area and held in the soil with soil staples is almost invisible and needs to be in place only a week or two. A newly planted area can be fenced off for a short period of time or a piece of chicken wire or bird netting laid on the area. All these 'solutions' work for a short time and that is all you need. And the dog can return to sleeping in the shade!


Drowning In Tomatoes? Try Something Different This Year.


If you’re a home gardener about to drowned in tomatoes rolling in off the vines and demanding to be consumed before they go bad, hang on. Here comes a life preserver.

I chop up a small bowlful of fresh very ripe tomatoes, add chopped red onion or scallions, minced garlic, chopped fresh basil, and extra-virgin olive oil.  I sometimes add Kalamata olives. I make this dish in the morning and let it set on the kitchen table all day. By evening meal time, the flavors have melded nicely, and I serve it over hot cooked spaghetti noodles and top it with fresh grated parmesan for an easy meal on a hot summer day.

other such survival gardening from Off the Grid News