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Avant Gardener – 062413

Hosts Derek and Carolyn Fell join in a conversation 1,000 miles apart, with Derek in Florida at their frost-free garden on Sanibel Island, and Carolyn at their temperate garden in Pennsylvania, Derek lamenting the fact that he had to leave Cedaridge Farm in Bucks County just as the garden peas and lettuce were peaking. He discusses the several kinds of lettuce available and he names varieties they enjoy the most for flavor, including the head-lettuce called ‘Buttercrunch’ that can be eaten like an apple it has such a crisp, crunchy heart and the French red-leafed heirloom butterhead variety known as ‘Quatre Saisons’ or ‘Four Seasons’. His expert interview this session is with Lee Behrhorst, owner of Sundance Orchids, of Ft. Myers. This will be a two-part interview, the first part on growing orchids and the second part (to be broadcast during the next program) will be all about bromeliads which can be grown indoors as flowering house plants and also outdoors in zones 9 through 11. Answering email, Derek explains how to tell when a watermelon is perfectly ripe, recommends several types of repeat-blooming climbing roses that can climb to 30 ft high, and he recommends several varieties of edible soy beans that are easy to grow, and not too late to plant for a crop this season.