The buzz

  • Wednesday, August 29, 2007 4:10pm
  • Life

Do the dahlias: It’s dahlia season. In celebration of the beloved, colorful flowers, the Seattle Dahlia Society will present hundreds of blooms in a free, 50th annual show from 12:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday at the Lake City Community Center, 12531 28th Ave. NE, Seattle;; 206-367-5647.

Get green in Everett: It’s time to mark your calendar for the Sustainable Energy Fair &Solar Tour 2007, a day of “enlightening solutions that sustain our lifestyles while preserving our natural environment,” according to organizers with Green Everett.

Fair hours will be 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Oct. 6 at the PUD headquarters office, 2320 California St., Everett, which will also be the jumping off point for a solar tour of homes from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the Everett area by Solar Washington.

More than 40 exhibitors will be on hand. Zippy’s Java Lounge and the Sno-Isle Natural Foods Co-op will provide refreshments. Suggested donation is $5. Old cell phones, empty ink or laser-printer cartridges and clean plastic grocery bags will also be accepted for recycling.

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Picking primer: Organic Gardening magazine offers these tips on how to tell when produce is ready to harvest:

Asparagus: Harvest the third year after planting. When stalks reach 6 to 9 inches tall, cut or break at the soil line.

Beans: Beans snap in half when they’re ready. Pick them every other day.

Broccoli/cauliflower: Cut 6 inches below the filly formed main head. Continue cutting side shoots as they form.

Cantaloupe/muskmelon: Pick when skin is netted and the fruits separate easily from the vine.

Carrots: Harvest when the roots are at least inch in diameter, and before the ground freezes, or protect them with a thick layer of straw.

Corn: Puncture a kernel with your fingernail. If a milky fluid flows out, it’s time. If the liquid is toothpasty, the corn is overmature. Silk should be brown.

Cucumbers: Cut from vine when cukes are a deep green and seeds are still soft.

Storage onions: When about half of the leaves topple, push the rest over. Let onions cure in the soil for a week.

Potatoes: Dig spuds when the vines die back.

Winter squash: Harvest when your thumbnail does not readily pierce the skin. Leave a 2-inch stem to avoid rot.

Tomatoes: Harvest at full color. An overripe tomato quickly loses its firmness. Never put them in the refrigerator.

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