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Avant Gardener – 072913

Hosts Derek and Carol describe a week of foraging in the wild, hunting for chanterelle mushrooms, wild raspberries, and ramp – a garlic substitute, all of which grow in shady parts of woodland surrounding their property, Cedaridge Farm. The Fells also discuss topics covered in their monthly full-color on-line newsletter, the Avant Gardener, including a site that features a video showing how to make creative container gardens, how to avoid injuries to children involving lawn mowers, the right kinds of worms to use for creating compost, and the fact that Tufts University has discovered that after blueberries and acai berries, strawberries are considered to be the third healthiest berry, PROVIDING they are locally grown, and how to ensure local-grown garden-fresh strawberries through three seasons. Derek also reports on a trip he took into the South Pacific to New Zealand’s Sub-Antarctic Islands where an amazing number of giant wildflowers, called mega-herbs, flourish on the slopes of extinct volcanoes in company with millions of nesting albatross, penguins, shearwaters, flightless ducks and flightless snipe. Answering emails, the Fells discuss how to stop ear-worms from eating sweet corn, some facts about atmospheric nitrogen in terms of plant nutrition, how to stop a heron from eating goldfish in a garden pond, and a recommendation for an ornamental tree to serve as a lawn accent that would still allow grass to grow up to the trunk.