The Garden Fence
Summer solstice is Friday, June 21, 2019, the time when the Sun
reaches both its highest and northernmost points in the Northern
Hemisphere. Throughout history, people have gathered to celebrate
and honor the Sun.
As with the cycles of the Sun, we all go through highs and lows. It
seems like each year, with the beginning of summer, something
awakens inside. As you walk outside and sink your feet in the ground,
you feel your energy grounding to the core of Mother Earth.
I take this time to remember what helps keep me grounded: my family
and friends. Of course gardening too!
Summer solstice is all about expressing gratitude for gifts of harvest,
bounty and abundance. It is a great time to enjoy being outside,
connecting with nature and incorporating your awareness of the
connection between health, wealth, and natural living.
As the Sun finally sets, I plan to be watching it on my deck, holding
hands with my husband of almost 43 years. He, like the Sun, gives me
strength and guidance for which I am so grateful.
Celebrate the Summer solstice!
Ronnie Grevey ‘16
Inside this Issue
Trilliums Information Sheet
Nasturtium Baby Rose
The Adorable Custom of
‘Telling The Bees’
Pepper Just Sweet F1
How to Make Sugared
Harford County Master
Ronnie Grevey, President
Anne Bredlow, Vice President
Kim Poehling, Secretary
Carol Linthicum, Secretary
Greg Murray, Treasurer
Steve O’Brien, Newsletter
Ginny Smith, Newsletter &
Harford County Extension
Home & Garden Info Center
Harford County Master
Species: T. erectum; 39 native trilliums in the U.S.
Common Name: wake-robin, tri flower, birthroot, toadshade
Origin: North America, Asia
Growth Habit: ephemeral; grown from rhizomes; can tolerate extreme cold
Dimensions: to 16” h; 12” wide
Leaf: 3 bracts arranged in a whorl about a scape; some species mottled
Flower: this species red; others species range purple, pink, white, yellow, green; either sessile
(flower sits directly on to of whorled leaves); or pedicellate (flower is raised on a short stalk)
Fragrance: stinky, available only to pollinators (carrion flies, bees, ants, beetles)
Fruit: contains seeds – spread by ants and mice
Uses: medicinal – roots and leaves for a variety of ailments
Climate: zones 4 – 9
Soil: rich, well drained, neutral to slightly acidic pH, part shade
Pruning: do not pick flower, or cut back; keep the deer away
Propagation: rhizome cuttings or division either in fall or late winter
Pests and Diseases: not very competitive with other plants; deer
Comments: Spring ephemerals with 2 distinct growth phases: Epigeous (above ground); and
Hypogeous (below ground). Growth takes place undergroud in fall and winter. Once spring
arrives and the ground begins to warm, leaves are produced and flower reproduction occurs.
Plants bloom for only a short time, then die back into dormancy.
Native Plants Committee, submitted by Anne Bredlow, ‘15
Trilliums Information Sheet
What is plant blindness? When we don't notice the green all around us, it's bad for the planet.
Imagine taking a walk in the woods and seeing a deer or a rabbit.
You'll no doubt remember the encounter — it might even be the
highlight of your outdoor adventure.
But what about all the plants, trees and flowers you passed while
hiking? There's a good chance you paid little attention to the
greenery on your path -- That's what researchers call plant
In 1998, U.S. botanists Elisabeth Schussler and James
Wandersee defined plant blindness as "the inability to see or
notice the plants in one's own environment," which leads to "the inability to recognize the importance
of plants in the biosphere and in human affairs."
Because of plant blindness, people tend to rank animals as superior to plants, so conservation efforts
for plants tends to be limited.
"We are absolutely dependent on plants for life and health, but so often they fade into the background
and miss out in the direct actions we take to protect our planet," says biologist Kathryn Williams in the
University of Washington's Conservation. "I wonder how the world would look if more people, instead
of seeing a wall of green, saw individual plants as potential medicine, a source of food, or a loved part
of their community."
In a 2016 study, Williams and her team researched whether people are hardwired by evolution to
ignore plant life and what this means for conservation. They found that although plants make up 57%
of the endangered species in the U.S., they receive less than 4% of endangered species funding.
Many studies have shown that people are drawn to images of animals instead of plants and can more
easily remember them.
The bias for animals over plants has been attributed to several factors, the researchers found. Plants
don't move and people, especially children, are ‘tuned in’ to motion. Plants also tend to visually blend
One major cultural factor for the animal-over-plant preference is the greater focus on animals in
education — sometimes referred to as zoocentrism or zoo-chauvinism. Researchers argue that
because educators often use animals, rather than plants, as examples of basic biological concepts,
children grow up with more familiarity and empathy toward animals.
Why plant blindness is a problem
While plant conservation funding drops and there is decreased
interest in plant biology classes, the plant popularity issue has
increasing ramifications. Plants are important for environmental
and human health so the impact of plant loss is great.
As the BBC's Christine Ro points out, "Plant research is critical to
many scientific breakthroughs, from hardier food crops to more
Conservationists argue that plants aren't as
appreciated as animals. (Photo:
effective medicines. More than 28,000 plant species are used medicinally, including plant-derived anti-
cancer drugs and blood thinners." When plants are underappreciated and understudied, the
environment and the people in it suffer.
In addition, children who grow up with an animal-centric biological education don't learn to value the
greenery around them. Being complacent about plants and the complete environment, youth don't
grow up with interest in plant-related careers.
The biggest issue of all: The world is dependent on plants!
"Many of our biggest challenges of the 21st century are plant based: global warming, food security and
the need for new pharmaceuticals that might help in the fight against diseases," writes Angelique
Kritzinger, lecturer in the Department of Plant and Soil Sciences at the University of Pretoria, South
Africa. "Without a basic knowledge of plant structure, function and diversity, there's little hope of
addressing these problems."
Submitted by MG Carol Lancaster ‘13
MNN.com > Earth Matters > Wilderness & Resources MARY JO DILONARDO May 6, 2019, 8:26 a.m.
2019 All American Selections (AAS) Ornamental Seed Winner
Regional Winner – Northeast, Heartland, Mountain /Southwest
Exciting news! The last nasturtium AAS Winner was back in the early days,
in the 1930’s. Now it’s time to introduce a wonderful rose colored nasturtium
perfect for today’s gardens. Baby Rose is a petite-flowered, mounding
variety with healthy, dark foliage ideal for containers and small space
gardens. AAS’ expert judges praised the uniformly compact plants that
sported flowers with consistent coloration. Their compact habit means less
“flower flopping” with their blooms remaining upright throughout the season.
The rose color is uncommon in nasturtiums, and contrasts beautifully with
the dark-green foliage. Bonus: both the leaves