Monday, December 12, 2011

Results From Poinsettia Trails

A survey of 67 varieties of poinsettias was taken at our Open House on Sunday Dec. 4, 2011. We grew over 8,000 poinsettias. Approximately 379 people attended from 12:30 – 4:30. Attendance was up with the sunny weather. Three plants of each variety were labeled for judging. Judging continued until Dec. 10th by those who wanted to participate. The form for judging contained 5 lists – novelty, red, white, marble, and pink. The top five favorites in each category were voted for. This year we also had a fill in section for people to write in their 3 favorite over all.

To get points I gave each 1st place vote 5 points, 2nd place 4 points, 3rd place 3 points, 4th place 2 points, and 5th place 1 point.

Thank you for helping our Poinsettia Open House to be a great success. We are one of two commercial greenhouses in the state to hold poinsettia trials. The information gathered each year helps the national poinsettia breeders decide which poinsettias they will release to the market in the future. Don’t forget to mark your new calendar for December 2, 2012 for next year’s open house. It will be from 12:30-4:30.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Plant A Row For The Hungry

What Is Plant A Row for the Hungry (PAR)?
Plant A Row for the Hungry is a people-helping-people program to help feed the hungry in local neighborhoods and communities.
Since 1995, American gardeners have donated over 14 million pounds of herbs and vegetables to feed the hungry in our local neighborhoods and communities.
Join our campaign.

We are asking Stokes County businesses, community organizations, and individuals to join us and help with fresh food donations by adding a row in their garden for those in need and donating the extra harvest to a local food agency, soup kitchen or hunger relief organization. Or become a community PAR sponsor through service or financial support.
Take the pledge and donate whatever you can.

Kick-off Event
April 30th
At Mitchell’s Nursery and Greenhouse starting at 9:30am

Free starter kits to the 1st 100 people to make a pledge.

Fun Gardening Facts!
A single cucumber plant can yield up to 15-20 cucumbers.
A single bell pepper plant can yield 6-8 peppers.
It’s easier than you think.

Support Plant A Row and help make a difference.

For more information contact us at Mitchell’s Nursery and Greenhouse
336-983-4107, email: or visit our website for more information.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Small Space Vegetable Gardening Demonstration

Come out in the spring to see how to put a small space to work for you at our demonstration garden. We have put in some winter and early spring plants. Our small space grows enough broccoli, lettuce, mesclun, and spinach for our family and others. Our broccoli grew 11” heads last year.

We also grow enough cucumbers, peppers, squash, and tomatoes to keep us supplied while they are in season. These vegetables are grown around our water tank and pump house in raised beds, straw bales, and a “Square Foot” garden. Come learn how to prepare soil, make amendments, and mulch plants.

We have cold hardy spring vegetables including broccoli, Russian Kale, collards, cabbage, kohlrabi, leaf lettuce (red and green), Swiss chard, mescclun mix, Buttercrunch lettuce, Romaine lettuce, and spinach ready for sell.

We also have some of our summer vegetables include pickling cucumbers, slicing cucumbers, straight neck squash, crook neck squash, zucchini, red, yellow, and green bell peppers, hot and sweet banana peppers, cayenne peppers, jalapeƱo peppers, many varieties of tomatoes, okra, egg plant, 5 varieties of watermelon, and 3 varieties of cantaloupe.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Frost warning

Don't forget to take in your tender plants tonight if you have taken any out like house plants. Or cover up any tender plants - like tomatoes if you have already set some out. Cold hardy vegetable like lettuce and broccoli will be fine without covering. Cloth works best for covering, but if you do use plastic, don't let it touch the plants.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Blueberry bushes in the landscape

Blueberry bushes are a great addition to any landscape. Not only do they provide a delicious fruit, they are also beautiful shrubs. Best of all they are one of the easiest fruits to grow successfully without pesticides and are full of antioxidants.
Blueberries are great by themselves fresh, on cereal, in pies, and in Margaret Snider’s blueberry ice-cream. Blueberry pancakes, blueberry coffeecake, and fresh blueberry muffins were always my favorite way to eat them, but Sandy Laughter’s blueberry pound cake might be my new favorite.
The Rabbiteye Blueberries (Vaccinium ashei) are the best variety for our area, the piedmont. Rabbiteye Blueberries get their name from the unripe fruit, it a light color with pink on the end of the berry making it look like a rabbit’s eye. They produce large berries over a long season. When choosing a plant, choose two or more varieties to get better pollination (more fruit) and it can spread your season out.
When planting blueberries, you should always add compost to the soil. It is best to add about 4” of rotted pine sawdust, rotted pine chips, manure, leaf mulch or anything else that is fully composted to the area that you are planting in. This should be a 4’x 4’ or 4’ the full length of the row. The mulch needs to be tilled in about 8” deep. If this is not practical, you can add compost over a 2’ area and mix it in with a shovel buy turning it as you dig.
Blueberries can be planted in groups or rows. They also make nice boarders. My aunt planted a row between her and her neighbor behind her house. It is a beautiful boarder between the yards. They have nice white blooms in the spring and turn shades of red in the fall. She picks the blueberries on her side and her neighbor picks the other side. Just make sure when you plant blueberries you have a different variety within 100’ for good pollination. I recommend planting 3 varieties – an early season such as Premier, a mid season such as Tiff Blue, and a late season such as Brightwell. This will give you a longer season.
Don’t forget about the birds. If you enjoy watching bird around your yard, blueberry bushes are a great attractant for birds. Birds not only love the fruit, but the shrubs make cover for birds to hide in and are good nesting spots for some small birds.
Now is the time to plant blueberry bushes between September and April. Even if you don’t like the fruit, blueberry bushed are and all around great shrub to use in your landscape.

Monday, January 10, 2011