Margaret Lauterbach

Margaret Lauterbach

Pears, pears and more pears: These fruit trees are producing

Have you ever had a dessert pear? Seckel pear, a small delicious dessert pear, is known as the only true American pear because it allegedly first appeared as a mutation on a farm owned by a Mr. Seckel near Philadelphia in the early 1800s. Some folks think it’s a hybrid cross of a European pear with an Asian pear. It’s popularly known as a sugar or candy pear for its sweet flavor. Important to us in this area, it’s resistant to fireblight, while few other varieties of pear are resistant.

Margaret Lauterbach

There are always successes and failures after summer of gardening

The growing season is drawing to a close, and vegetable gardeners have had some successes and some failures. Some are complaining about small tomatoes, and that is a problem I’ve seen on some varieties (not all) in my garden. Why are some tomatoes too small? It may be from stress, our high heat, insufficient water or too much nitrogen. Apparently if temperatures over 100 degree are to blame, not all varieties are equally susceptible.

About Margaret Lauterbach

Margaret Lauterbach

The Statesman's weekly gardening columnist, Margaret Lauterbach has advised Treasure Valley gardeners on everything from sowing to composting to coping with the soils, pests and diseases of this unique climate. Send garden questions to melauter@earthlink.net or Gardening, The Statesman, P.O. Box 40, Boise, ID 83707.

Into the garden with Margaret Lauterbach

Idaho Statesman gardening columnist Margaret Lauterbach spends time in her early spring garden, reflecting on why we love gardening so much.