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Our company blog, Annie's Gardening Corner, takes a sneak peek at how we balance our own love for everything green + a place to find inspiration, garden ideas and landscape design tips.

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Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Tuesday’s with Annie

The answers to yesterday’s brain teasers.

True or False - The first Jack O Lantern was made from a pumpkin.
False – the first Jack O lantern was made from a turnip.

True or False – Blueberries grow best in acidic soils.
True – blueberries grow best in a pH of 4.5 to 5.0, which is very acidic.

True or False - The pigment in leaves that create fall color is due to built-up sugars in the leaves.
True – when the nights get cooler at this time of year, the sugar produced in the leaves through photosynthesis during the day doesn’t flow back into the trunk of the tree. It remains in the leaves and as the chlorophyll (the green pigment of the leaf) diminishes, it displays the colors of the sugars.

True or False – The lower the hardiness zone of your area, the warmer the weather.
False – the higher the number, the warmer the climate. Massachusetts typically ranges from zone 4 to 7, depending on location and any existing microclimates, with 5 to 6 being the average. Below is a listing of zones and temperatures. This is important to know when selecting plant materials to make sure it is hardy to your zone.
Zone 1: below -46 C (below -50 F)
Zone 2: -46 to -40 C (-50 to -40 F)
Zone 3: -40 to -34 C (-40 to -30 F)
Zone 4: -34 to -29 C (-30 to -20 F)
Zone 5: -29 to -23 C (-20 to -10 F)
Zone 6: -23 to -18 C (-10 to 0 F)
Zone 7: -18 to -12 C (0 to 10 F)
Zone 8: -12 to -7 C (10 to 20 F)
Zone 9: -7 to -1 C (20 to 30 F)
Zone 10: -1 to 4 C (30 to 40 F)
Zone 11: above 4 C (above 40 F)

True or False – Grape vines were originally cultivated in France.
False - The grape that became known as vitis vinifera originated in the Black Sea region and spread rapidly southward to the Middle East. (Excerpt from National Grape) Vitis vinifera is the parent plant to all the wine grape varieties we are familiar with such as cabernet, merlot, and chardonnay.

True or False – Orchids only grow in the warm, tropical climates.
False – orchids grow in most zones, i.e., our local lady slipper is a member of the orchid family. (Orchidaceae)

True or False – Red maples are considered a rare native tree.
False – red maples have actually become a fairly invasive species, which over the course of time have choked out a number of our native nut trees.

True or False – Apples, peaches, cherries and roses are related plants.
True – all of these fruits are a member of the rose family (Rosaceae).

If you want to learn more about plant families and how they are grouped together botanically, the Systematic Garden at Tower Hill in Boylston, MA is a great way to learn; they make it very easy to understand.

Hope you had fun on the quiz. The inspirational gardening thought of the day is by Ray LeBlond. “You learn something every day if you pay attention.”

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© 2009

© 2009 Ann St. Jean-Bilowz/Bilowz Associates Inc. (including all photographs, unless otherwise noted in Annie's Gardening Corner are the property of Bilowz Associates Inc. and shall not be reproduced in any manner nor are they to be assigned to any third party without the expressed written permission and consent of Bilowz Associates Inc.)