Avant Gardener – 112513

Hosts Derek and Carolyn begin by discussing an article in Readers Digest magazine criticizing Michael Pollan’s book titled The Omnivore’s Dilemma in which they say he makes a number of errors, like claiming that MacDonalds hamburger is unhealthy compared to organic hamburger when in fact many organic hamburgers have twice the calories of McDonalds and the problem of OVER EATING can apply to organic foods as much as non-organic. Derek also conducts an interview with wildflower expert, Ilene Boyle, from the Mt. Cuba Center, near Wilmington, Delaware. A former DuPont family estate, the institution today concerns itself with conservation, especially native wildflowers. The facility can be visited by going to Mt. Cuba’s website for details. A particularly good time to visit is in spring around the first week of May when their large trillium collection is in full bloom. During the interview Ilene gives tips on growing trillium from seed and other attractive wildflowers like wild blue phlox and cardinal flower. She also cautions listeners against digging up wild pink lady-slipper orchids from the wild since they do not transplant easily, and they are now an endangered species in the wild. Answering emails, Derek advises a listener about eelworms and problems they can cause with growing primroses. He also diagnoses a disease that kills seedlings soon after they germinate, and identifies strange black pea-sized growths that can occur along the stems of lilies. Derek reminds listeners that they can view a free issue of the on-line newsletter, the Avant Gardener by visiting avantgardener.info.