Avant Gardener – NEW AWARD-WINNING SEEDLESS WATERMELON FOR HOME GARDENERS; HOW ALL-AMERICA SELECTIONS PICKS ITS WINNERS; GROUNDCOVER RECOMMENDATIONS FOR A BARE SLOPE.
Our garden expert during this broadcast is a plant breeder, Pattie Buskirk, who developed the new seedless watermelon variety, ‘Harvest Moon’, which has the distinction of an All-America Award for 2013 introduction. We explain how the All-America Selections judge flower and vegetable seed entries, and then have Pattie explain the merits of her sensational breeding achievement – a new hybrid that is similar in looks to the heirloom variety known as’ Moon & Stars’, but which is earlier by two weeks, more productive (an average of five fruits to a vine instead of two), sweeter tasting and SEEDLESS. Pattie also discusses a prior award for a new ornamental pepper she developed that has black fruits shaped like an olive and black leaves, appropriately named ‘Black Olive’. Her company, Seeds by Design specializes in using heirloom varieties that may have flaws, like poor production or lateness, and turning them into vigorous hybrids that make them more suitable for home garden production. In the email session we answer questions about plants to cover a dry slope and flowering plant choices for shade.