| For The Columbus Dispatch
During these strange and stressful times, I suspect I’m not the only gardener to be compiling a mental “someday” bucket list.
One of my latest fantasy destinations: New Guinea, which “has the highest plant diversity of any island in the world,” according to Kew Royal Botanical Gardens.
From trees to orchids to rhododendrons, New Guinea boasts literally thousands of plant species found nowhere else in the world.
Researchers hypothesize that New Guinea’s location, between Asia, Australia and the Pacific Ocean; along with its diverse habitats, including mountains, rainforests and coastline, contribute to this breathtaking diversity.
Experts from Kew, located in England and one of the world’s leading gardens, worked with botanists from around the globe to tally the plant life of New Guinea, which, compared with the Amazon and other botanical hotspots, has been relatively unstudied.
For details, visit https:www.kew.org, then open the menu and click on “Kew Science,” then click on the story titled “The Island Paradise Teeming With Life.”
Hope to see you there someday!
“How the world will change post-COVID 19 remains to be seen. But one thing is certain: We are in the middle of a great reset,” according to Katie McCoy Dubow, president of Garden Media Group, which recently released its annual garden trends report.
A few highlights from the report, titled “The Great Reset”:
• “There will be even greater demand for houseplants — and home office plants, whether people are setting the stage for virtual meeting backdrops or just wanting to improve concentration.”
• The number of gardeners continues to climb. “Gardening will become part of their everyday lives, school curriculums, and psyche.”
• As insect populations plummet, one step that gardeners and others can take is to turn off outdoor lights at night. “White lights draw insects all night long, exhausting them and making them easy prey for bats and birds.”
For details on the report and on Garden Media Group, located in Kennett Square, Pennsylvania, visit http://www.gardenmediagroup.com.
All-America Selections, which bills itself as “an independent, nonprofit organization committed to bringing you award-winning flowers and vegetables,” has announced its first two winners for 2021. For details on these highly rated plants, visit https://all-americaselections.org.
• Kelos Candela Pink celosia is an annual with spikes of bright-pink flowers.
• Goldilocks squash won praise for “high yield, disease tolerance and rich nutty flavor.”
Still hankering to do some outdoor planting, even though garden season is winding down?
Good news: October is prime time for getting garlic into the ground.
You can find bulbs or cloves for planting at some brick-and-mortar retailers, or by googling “garlic for planting for sale.” Fall-planted garlic will be ready for harvest early next summer.
Garlic from the grocery store is usually treated to prevent sprouting, so it’s worth tracking down the kind specifically for planting.
Diana Lockwood, a freelance writer covering gardening topics, posts on Facebook at www.facebook.com/mrsgardenperson.