Why the royal wedding probably featured peonies

 As you read this column, the festivities are probably already underway in London for the marriage of American actress Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. I would guess that it will be quite a bash. Although there are only about 600 invited guests, the whole area around the church and, indeed, much of London will be in a turmoil. I cannot imagine what the florists are doing right now and have been doing for several days.

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Let the Buyer Beware

To begin with, let me explain. I am not writing this to build my own business because there are four other reputable florists in this community.

Yes, this is the time of they year when I write a few words about buying flowers for Mom on Mother’s Day. Since so many of us work or live miles and miles from our Moms, it is a time of the year when there are a lot of scams out there. It is the time of year that most flowers are ordered to be delivered to different cities or states. There are some that simply take your money and run. Others skillfully build that offer for 2 dozen roses for $29.95 into a bill that often exceeds $79.95 or more. Continue reading

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Unlikely Partners

It sure has been a busy week here at home. We are trying to get the back yard cleaned up and the pond drained. I am seeing that we are going to be doing a lot of painting in my Italian Garden this summer. I am sure that a lot of my gardening readers are out there, raking the leaves, those that we did not get up in the fall, from under the evergreens, pruning off dead branches on roses and other flowering shrubs. In a couple of weeks, it will be time to give the whole place, lawns, flower beds and shrubbery an early dose of fertilizer. Be sure to pick the right one for each area. Personally, I like one of the Scott’s weed and feed for the early application on my lawn. But, with all the work today, there was a great reward, one of my Forsythia bushes had thrown a couple of large branches, full of buds ready to burst, that needed severe pruning. My living room will be brightened with a lot of yellow blossoms in a day or two.

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Is It an Herb or a Spice?

You might be surprised at how often that question comes up. The answer is quite simple, and at the same time complex. Generally speaking, herbs are made from the leafy part of a plant, while spices come from any other part. Spices are best described as the dried parts of aromatic plants.  Many spices are not only valuable for cooking, they are indispensable in the world of medicine. While we find herbs growing across the world, spices are usual found in tropical and sub-tropical areas. Indonesia and East Africa provide the world with many of those spices that we can not do without.


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How To Handle Those Easter Plants

Calls this week have mostly been about how to handle those Easter plants that arrived 10 days ago. Here are some things to think about. Enjoy them. I hope that you have kept them in the coolest part of the house. The blooms will last longer that way. Now for tulips, daffodils, hyacinths and lilies: keep watering them until the leaves turn yellow and go limp. Stop watering them. Leave the lily in the pot and let it completely dry out.

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Let’s Talk Food

Let’s Talk Food
Carmen Cosentino


It has been quite a while since I devoted a column to foods, as a matter of fact I have not given a recipe in months. And there is so much out there to talk about. Of course, I am talking about fruits and veggies. So, I have a couple of recipes for you today and a bit of information about some food finds.  Continue reading

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Flowers, Plants and Things —-Sex in the Garden

And you thought that it was we humans who had all the fun. When it comes to atbee5tracting partners to getting someone to help fertilize those eggs, most of us don’t have the allure that many plants do. They use every trick in the book to lure those birds and bees and sometimes animals to get the pollen from one’s own flower to another, or even to their own.   Flowers use every trick in the book to accomplish the goal; color, aroma, motion, shape and form. Sound like that teenager next door? Continue reading

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