Family Plot - Nov. 8, 2012

Uploaded by WKNOPBS on 09.11.2012

>> Cooper: Hi --Thanks for
joining us.
And welcome to "The Family Plot:
Gardening in the Mid-South."
Today we're going to cook up a
delicious addition for your
holiday meal -- pumpkin soup.
And fall is a great time to
prepare new beds for spring
So we're going to give you some
tips to help get you started.
All of that and more is just
ahead on "The Family Plot:
Gardening in the Mid-South."
So stay with us.
>> Female announcer: This is a
production of WKNO, Memphis.
Production funding for "The
Family Plot: Gardening in the
Mid-South" is provided by Good
Winds Landscape and Garden
Center in Germantown since 1943
and continuing to offer it's
plants for successful gardening
with seven greenhouses and three
acres of plants plus
comprehensive landscape
>> (instrumental music)
>> Cooper: Hi -- Welcome to "The
Family Plot."
I'm Chris Cooper.
Joining me today is Rita
Rita is an extension agent right
here in Shelby County.
And Ellen LeBlond is here.
Ellen will be our horticulture
expert for today.
How y'all doing ladies?
>> LeBlond: Just fine.
>> Cooper: Good -- You ready to
get started?
>> Jackson: We are.
>> Cooper: Alright.
Pumpkin soup -- What do we need
to get started?
>> Jackson: Well, first thing
you'll need is six cups of
chicken stock.
So we're just going to pour that
in to our pot.
And to that we're going to add
one and a half teaspoons of
And we're going to use three and
a half cups of pumpkin.
And the pumpkin that we're using
today is cut in one half inch
cubes that way it's going to
cook quicker.
And it's going to turn soft
really nicely.
Then we're going to add a half
teaspoon of thyme.
>> Cooper: Now what is the thyme
going to do for us?
>> Jackson: Just give it some
flavor, okay?
And then onion.
We're going to add about a cup
of onion.
And this soup -- A lot of times
pumpkin soup is a sweeter soup
sometimes people think of.
But this is a more savory soup,
And then we're going to add some
garlic -- a clove of garlic.
It's minced.
And then we're going to add five
whole peppercorns, okay?
And that's just to give it a
little spice -- a little kick.
Yeah, just a little kick.
And basically, we're going to
stir that.
And you're going to let that
You're going to let it come to a
rolling boil.
And then you're going to reduce
the heat and get it down to a
And this is what it's going to
look like once it's simmered
>> Cooper: Wow, it looks good.
>> Jackson: Yeah.
Now the thing with pumpkin soup
-- You want it creamy.
So this still has some chunks of
pumpkin in it.
So what you'll do then is you're
going to puree it, okay?
So we'll take that off.
And if you have a large pot, you
want to do it in small batches.
But since we have a smaller pot,
we're just going to do most of
it, okay?
>> LeBlond: That pumpkin breaks
down pretty well.
>> Jackson: It does.
And in the blender, that's going
to make it even smoother, okay?
>> Cooper: Yeah, the chunks are
no longer there.
>> Jackson: Right -- And you
don't want a chunky pumpkin soup
most of the time.
You want something that's really
smooth and creamy, okay?
So we're going to let Ellen
blend this up for us.
>> LeBlond: Got my job.
>> Jackson: You just do this in
a regular blender or a food
>> (blender noise)
>> LeBlond: A little pumpkin
bath never hurt anything.
>> Cooper: Let me hand you a
paper towel.
>> LeBlond: Why, thank you.
>> Jackson: And then you're just
going to pour that back in to
your pot.
>> Cooper: Oh, so you put it
back? -- okay.
>> Jackson: And then to that,
we're going to add a half cup of
whipping cream.
And that's going to help with
the thickening, as well.
>> Cooper: Whipping cream.
>> Jackson: And then you'll
reduce the heat again and let
that simmer for about 30
minutes, okay?
And then this is your finished
>> Cooper: Now before we get to
the finished product, what are
some things that the people need
to know about pumpkins?
Are they nutritious or what?
>> Jackson: Yeah, pumpkins are
really nutritious.
They have -- They're a really
good source of Beta-carotene.
And Beta-carotene is really good
in helping to reduce the risk of
heart disease as well as some
types of cancer.
Also, pumpkin is very low in
calorie and fat.
About a cup of pumpkin that's
boiled without salt is about 49
calories, zero grams of fat, and
about two grams of protein.
>> LeBlond: And it's also part
of the orange group which is
good for your eyes.
>> Jackson: It is and a lot of
people tend to put it in the
vegetable group but it's
actually a fruit.
So in the area of nutrition we
usually put it in the orange
vegetables but it is actually a
>> Cooper: Now how long does it
take for the pumpkin to cook
>> Jackson: It takes about 30
minutes when you first put it
And it's just going to be really
It's kind of like boiled
potatoes or anything else.
You just want it to get really
good and soft.
And then you want to puree it so
that you can have it creamy.
Now a lot of times people ask
all the time about canned
pumpkin as well.
And fresh always tastes best to
But you can do this with a
canned pumpkin.
>> Cooper: Now we always hear
about pumpkin pie.
What are some of the other
things we hear about that people
use pumpkin for?
>> LeBlond: I made a pumpkin
ravioli one time that was really
good that had a butter sage
sauce on it.
So, you know, there's lots of
things you can do to it.
Anything you can stuff with a
cream consistency you could use
it for.
>> Jackson: yeah, a lot of
people use the fruit of it for
pies and casseroles and things
like that.
But you don't want to throw out
the seeds because they're really
good for roasting.
A lot of times people roast
those and snack on those.
So they're really good.
>> LeBlond: They make pumpkin
>> Jackson: And pumpkin bread --
And there are lots of different
things that you can do once you
puree it.
But even in it's natural form,
people put it in salads just to
give it a little more flavor.
So there are a large variety of
things you can do.
>> LeBlond: But is there a
specific pumpkin we have to use
for this?
>> Jackson: Well, each pumpkin
kind of has a different texture,
different flavors.
Some is a little more seedy.
Some has a little more of the
stringy from the inside.
So it just kind of depends on
the recipe.
Look at your recipe.
If it calls for a specific
pumpkin, then that's the one
that you want to sue.
But in this particular instance,
you can use any type of pumpkin.
>> Cooer: I've also had pumpkin
I've had pumpkin cookies.
>> LeBlond: A pumpkin parfaits
where you would do it -- It's
like the inside of the pie.
So you do a little bit of the
crust crumbled down in the
parfait, and then the pumpkin,
and then some whipped cream --
spiced whipped cream.
And just use the little ones.
They're cute for cocktail
parties or something like that.
>> Jackson: And during this
season, people usually, you
know, decorate them but a lot of
homes -- They just don't know
what to do with the inside of
it, especially if they don't
want something sweet.
And a lot of times people just
-- That's mostly what people
think of when they think of
pumpkin is something kind of
But this is an idea of something
that's a little more savory --
something that if you're not
really wanting that sweet taste,
you want something else.
>> Cooper: Okay -- well, good.
Let's go ahead and taste it.
You want to taste it, Ms. Ellen?
>> LeBlond: Absolutely.
>> Cooper: Let's check it out.
>> LeBlond: Alright.
I think we got used to pumpkins
only being for the fall and more
of a decorative item instead of
an edible item.
But a hundred years ago they
would have eaten it all the time
because it's so nutritious.
>> Cooper: We're seeing more and
more pumpkins out there these
I think people are growing more
>> Jackson: Right -- You see
pumpkin patches all over the
place now.
>> Cooper: Ladies first.
>> LeBlond: Oh, why thank you,
>> Cooper: Yeah, there are a lot
of pumpkin patches out there and
all that good stuff.
>> Jackson: And this is really
good to pair with just some
crackers, breadsticks.
>> LeBlond: It's just not sweet
at all.
It's wonderful -- deep taste,
>> Cooper: Hey, that's pretty
>>Jackson: A lot of times people
aren't expecting that.
>> LeBlond: And you could play
with your spices on however you
If you wanted it more savory
tasting, you could add some
different sages.
>> Jackson: Add more peppercorn.
Add pepper, salt, other flavors.
>> Cooper: I can actually taste
the peppercorn in here a little
>> Jackson: Can you?
>> Cooper: I can.
>> Jackson: You can garnish
We've had people put, you know,
even a dollop of sour cream on
Everything helps with sour
>> Cooper: What about whipped
Can you just put whipped cream
on top?
>> Jackson: Yeah -- Most of the
time people use the whipped
cream more for sweeter taste.
But it's to your liking.
>> LeBlond: You just want to eat
those pies.
That's all.
>> Cooper: So how you like it?
It's pretty good.
>> LeBlond: I think it's great.
It's a whole different flavor.
>> Cooper: This is pretty good.
Now, is this something you'll
prepare at home for the
>> Jackson: Yes -- Actually, I
did some about a week ago.
My husband liked it.
He really did.
>> Cooper: So he's the guinea
pig, right?
>> Jackson: Yes.
>> Jackson: Yeah, he gets to try
>> Cooper: Okay -- Well, thank
you, Rita.
That was delicious.
I'm going to eat some more off
the set.
Alright -- There are still a lot
of gardening events going in the
next couple of weeks that might
interest you.
Here are just a few of them.
>> (instrumental music)
>> Cooper: Alright, Ms. Ellen --
Let's talk a little bit about
new bed prep.
So what are the steps?
How do we get started?
>> LeBlond: Alright -- Well,
falls a great time to start.
But it's been so hot this
summer, who wanted to get out
and work?
So in the fall, what we're going
to do to put in a new bed -- You
want to recognize the area that
you're going to put this new bed
Do you have drainage problem?
And so you're going to want to
address that.
And if you have your light
situation -- You know, maybe one
end of your area that you want
to put in to a bed is really
sunshine and the other end is
very shady.
Or if you have a totally shady
area and you need some more
light, you're going to open your
canopy of your trees.
So those are all things that you
need to think of first.
And then once you figure it out
-- where you want to put it, you
want to cord it off.
And if you're going to do a
geometrically shaped bed, you're
going to use stakes and a rope.
And if you're not going to do --
You're going to do an irregular
shape bed and understand mother
nature always, always just an
irregular shaped bed.
She never does a straight line.
So with that, I'm going to use a
hose and put my hose down.
Alright -- Once I have my area
designated where I want my bed
to be, I'm going to take a soil
You've got to do that.
>> Cooper: Come see me for the
soil sample.
We've got to do that.
>> LeBlond: That's right.
So once we get our soil sample
done and we've told state that
we want to put a perennial
border in here with some
evergreen shrubs or some
deciduous shrubs so they know
what we're looking to do with
our ground.
Then I want to come back and
kill it out with a grass
herbicide -- maybe a Roundup
Remember -- This time of year,
our temperatures are lower than
they normally are.
So it's going to take longer for
that herbicide to take.
>> Cooper: It's going to work
slower -- right.
>> LeBlond: So I would do ten to
twelve days.
We want a good kill on this and
not get it back.
Once I have that done, I'm going
to take a rototiller or a garden
fork, depending on how large
your bed is, and I want to break
that ground up maybe eight to
ten inches deep.
>> Cooper: Oh, we're going deep.
>> LeBlond: And I know you --
Oh, so deep.
But the reason I want to do that
is one -- especially with this
drought we've had.
You want to get that water down.
The winter rain is when our rain
is the very most.
So I want to get that water down
as deep as I can down in to the
ground -- all the way down.
I also want to open up the
ground and have more air
Remember that dirts been ten
inches underground.
There's not a lot of air working
so bring it up.
You can, at this point, stop on
your bed.
And you can leave it over the
And it's okay to leave it over
the winter because the rains are
going to come and break all
those clods of dirt down -- get
that water way down inside.
However, if you would like to go
ahead and finish your bed at
this point, you will till it and
break those clods up a little
bit more.
And then I would like to top it
off with two inches of shredded
pine bark and one inch of red
coarse sand.
And that red coarse sand is
incredibly important.
Do not go get playground sand.
If you add playground sand to
our clay, we're working with
concrete now,
So you want to get a sand that
has a larger granule on it.
And so mason sand or red coarse
sand will have that.
>> Cooper: Now let me ask you
Where can you get the sand
though because we get that
question a lot.
>> LeBlond: Well, we can -- It's
really better at a builder's
supply place, or a place that
sells mulch or soil additives.
So you can get it from those
Once I put all of the shredded
pine bark, I have my dirt tilled
I'm going to put the sand on it.
I want to till it smooth, rake
it, and make it a pretty bed.
And then I'm going to go to one
of the co-ops or feed stores and
I'm going to ask for crushed
oyster shells.
And they use it in the chicken
industry to make stronger
But I'm going to take that and
my hands not very large.
And I'm just going to sprinkle
it lightly over my bed.
And the reason I'm going to do
that is we have added that
shredded pine bark in to a
naturally acidic ground -- soil
that we have.
And the crushed oyster shells
are going to sweeten the ground
a little bit.
Rake it all smooth.
The next thing -- What are we
going to do about the weeds?
And the weeds seeds -- They will
crawl up.
They will.
If you are going to do seeds in
your bed next spring, do not put
Preen in it.
However, if you are going to
just plant it in perennials and
annual plants -- not the seeds
-- you can go ahead and put
Preen down.
It's good for about six months.
It's going to catch our winter
grass coming back and the early
spring grass which is going to
be really nice.
And of course, mulch.
We'll do that.
I never add more than two inches
of mulch on to it.
>> Cooper: Which is what we
>> LeBlond: Which is what you
So that's how I would do it.
You can stop at the point where
it is still roughly tilled or
complete the whole project and
go ahead and plant.
If I was going to plant in to it
this winter, I might just plant
the bones of it -- the shrubs
that I'm going to put in.
So I know what that bed looks
like in the dead of winter
because that is a four month
period we're going to have to
look at it.
And then follow up next spring.
>> Cooper: Okay -- Alright.
That's good bed-prep
Now let's go quickly to
additional tricks for stronger
plants and flowers.
>> LeBlond: Well, there are a
couple of things we do in the
industry to make you think that
we're all fabulous but some of
those things are -- There's a
group of plants that we grow and
we grow them very well.
And I like to call them the
English Garden -- Cutting
They're ones like Foxglove,
Dianthus, Clematis, Larkspur,
Delphiniums -- those that you
see in an English cutting
They need a little bit of lime.
And so I would put the lime out
right now because it's going to
take three months for that lime
to breakdown the plants will be
able to pick up.
So as soon as spring starts,
it's ready to go.
Then, in cutting back our
perennials, this is the time now
that we have had a frost.
Our perennials are going to
start to need to be cut back.
There's another group of
perennials that have a basal
And to kind of give you a mind's
view of what that it, it would
be a dandelion -- how a
dandelion grows on the ground.
If all of our trees let those
leaves go and fall down on that
dandelion, it's going to
suffocate a lot the crown of
that dandelion.
So when I cut back my plants,
these are going to be
coneflowers, or cardinal
flowers, or Penstemons -- the
plants that grow really close to
the ground -- as well as
I will leave a four to six inch
piece of that stem left up.
And what it's going to do is
those leaves fall down.
It's going to stand and those
stems instead of falling down on
to the crown of my plant.
And it creates kind of a
And then the winter rains can
come and they will work fine.
And then the third thing that I
like to do is the fertilizer.
Alright -- This time of year, we
do not want any foliage growth
happening on our plants.
So we have stopped fertilizing
with nitrogen.
So during this time of year,
I'll go around for all my
shrubs, and trees, and my
perennials and I'll put an
0-10-10 down.
And I'm looking for no nitrogen
but I would like to have the
potassium that is going to go
ahead and give me good, strong
root systems, and flowers, and
stems for next year.
And then I'm going to put in
some Potash -- phosphorous --
Excuse me.
And I'm going to put in some
And that also is going to help
on my roots and things.
And that will give us -- open up
next year with really strong
stems and strong roots systems.
And that's what you want when
you start.
>> Cooper: Yeah because that's
what we're looking for.
>> LeBlond: That's absolutely
>> Cooper: Some good
information, Ms. Ellen.
You did good.
Alright -- Let's go to our Q and
A session.
Okay -- You ready for this?
You just jump right on in there
if you want to answer a
question, alright?
Alright -- Here's our first
We have a viewer e-mail from Ms.
She went a photo along with her
And her question is this:
"How and when do I prune this
shrub or tree?"
There it is on the screen.
"It maybe a shrub or some type
of holly.
"And it is a Yaupon holly.
"It's very thick inside.
"It needs to come down in height
-- maybe a foot.
"Because of it's size, it is
difficult for me to keep it from
growing in to the gutter.
So let's help Ms. Annette.
>> LeBlond: On this one, I had
to call around on to find
exactly what we should do.
What we're going to do with this
particular plant is in a month
or two when this holly is
completely dormant, I'm going to
come in and drop the top of it
by a foot.
And it's going to look pretty
bad because we just took that
beautiful fountain shape and we
flatten the top of it.
But that's really -- Don't worry
about that.
When April comes along on
hollies start growing again --
They're one of our plants that
start later in the year to grow.
So we don't want to put it on --
the fertilizer on in February.
I want to put it on more in
I'm going to put just a basic
fertilizer -- a 10-10-10 on it.
The first thing that is going to
happen is because I've cut the
top out of this tree, it's going
to throw shoots and runners out
of the bottom of it.
I'm going to remove all those
shoots and runners.
And I'm going to, in April, add
this fertilizer and the 10-10-10
to the Yaupon.
And what will happen is it's
going to force top growth out of
And by the end of the summer, it
will have filled back in.
>> Cooper: So it will be just
>> LeBlond: It will be just
>> Cooper: Right -- And it had
to have mop-top growth is what I
call it.
>> LeBlond: It likes that
fountain shape.
>> Cooper: Yeah, it's definitely
going to come up from the
>> LeBlond: It will come up from
the bottom because they like to
sucker anyway.
So make sure that you keep those
cut back and force it to grow
out the top.
>> Cooper: Yeah and be mindful
-- It's not going to look too
good because I've done that.
I actually have some at home.
And it don't look good now but
it will eventually.
>> LeBlond: Well, put lights on
it over the winter time so you
don't see it.
>> Cooper: That's a good idea.
Let me ask you this.
So we're going to put down the
triple ten -- 10-10-10.
Now do we need to rake that in
Is it okay just to leave it on
the soil surface or on the
What about that?
>> LeBlond: If I'm going to --
and I like to put mine out in
the spring time.
If I have a lot of mulch on the
ground, I turn my mulch under.
And then I add the fertilizer
because during the year -- The
reason we're adding that two
inches of mulch is because it
breaks down so beautifully
during the winters.
So I do ahead and turn it under
in the springtime and then apply
my fertilizer on after that.
The ground is broken up for the
turning under.
And then of course when you
water it in, don't just put your
fertilizer out and walk away.
You know, it will burn your
plants up if you do it like
So go ahead and water it in.
>> Cooper: Okay -- There you
have it from the expert.
Here's the next question.
This is from Ms. Patty -- okay?
She writes..
"Mr. D mentioned the use of
dormant oil with mini fruit
trees but he did not mention fig
>> Cooper: Then she goes on to
say, "Right now my tree is about
four feet tall and has 30 to 40
green figs on it."
That's pretty good.
You're doing good, Ms. Patty.
Now the reason why Mr. D didn't
mention using the dormant oil on
your fig trees is this.
Fig trees are relatively pest
>> LeBlond: Best kind.
>> Cooper: The only problem
you're going to have with fig
trees is going to be root-knot
But you're going to only have
those when you have sandy soils.
So we don't have that.
You know, we don't have that
problem here.
But if you have sandy soils, you
just need to incorporate some
compost, some manure, some
organic matter, organic material
in to that soil to build it up.
And that actually reduces the
population of the root-knot
So you won't have to worry about
Problem solved.
But if you do, Ms. Patty, happen
to see some scales on your fig
tree sometime in the future, you
will then use a dormant oil --
And you will use that in late
February throughout the month of
March when it's still cool
because it's best used between
temperatures of 40 degrees and
about 70 degrees -- Okay?
Only if you see some scales on
But other than that, relatively
pest free.
And figs taste good, too.
Alright -- There ya have it, Ms.
Okay, here's our next question.
"Is it okay to plant now?"
Can we do that now?
>> LeBlond: Oh, absolutely.
>> Cooper: Sure.
>> LeBlond: You know, right now
is the time actually that we're
going to be moving our
perennials around for sure.
I would hesitate in moving a
shrub right now.
I'd like for it to be a little
bit more dormant.
And we would know that on our
deciduous shrubs because they'll
lose their leaves.
So that you want to move a
deciduous shrub once it moves
it's leaves.
And again, we're going to wait
until our evergreens go as
dormant as they do.
You know, they do kind of stay
awake during the winter time.
They don't go completely asleep.
So again, February -- I mean,
December, January, February --
When it gets really cold, I
would do that.
But trees in pots right now --
Plant them because it will give
them six months of rain that you
don't have to worry about and
get those roots well established
before our normal, wonderful,
warm weather comes back.
>> Cooper: Yes which will
definitely be hot again, I'm
>> LeBlond: No, no, no -- Surely
not two years in a row.
>> Cooper: Now let me ask you
Do you plant anything?
Do you have any plants at home
in your yard?
>> Jackson: Very few.
My mother has the green thumb in
our family.
So a lot of times people will
give me things -- give me plants
and I just seem to kill them.
I don't know.
>> LeBlond: You're loving them
too much.
>> Jackson: I guess so.
I guess so.
But my mother -- She has a whole
-- She loves it.
I mean, I grew up doing it a
whole lot with her.
So she's actually a Master
Gardener in Mississippi.
>> Cooper: Good deal, mom.
We have one more question.
We'll get through this quickly.
>> Cooper: And you had a couple
of suggestions.
>> LeBlond: Well, if the grass
is really bad -- If the grass is
really bad, they have to be
lifted every three years anyway
to work properly.
So I would go ahead and lift
And I always Prene my bed a lot,
you know, and according to
direction, when I put in an iris
bed because it really does work
One of our biggest nightmares is
the yellow nutsedge in it.
And you can very laboriously
pull that nutsedge out and paint
it with a --
>> Cooper: A glyphosate product
>> LeBlond: Any sort of Roundup
And I would use a sponge or take
a towel and put it across.
There's other products.
Is there anything that the
extension recommends?
>> Cooper: Yes, there are a
couple of products that we do
One is Grass-B-Gone that you can
The other one is Ornamec that
you can use.
It contains an active ingredient
in it which will actually
control the Bermuda grass.
It will kill the Bermuda grass
and some of the other grasses.
And it will actually release the
So the irises can actually
tolerate being sprayed around.
Now you don't want to directly
spray your Iris, you know, with
these products because it will
actually cause some
discoloration on the foliage.
But you can still use it.
They're safe.
Read the label.
It is on the label.
I have experience with this.
I've actually used it in some
iris beds myself.
So it does work.
>> LeBlond: But lifting them up
and, you know, planting them out
with the Prene really does help
for about a year on it.
>> Cooper: Good deal.
Alright, that's all we have time
for today.
Be sure to join us next week.
We have only two more shows in
this season but we still like to
hear from you.
So send us an e-mail or letter
and let us help answer your
gardening questions.
And if you missed an episode of
"The Family Plot," you can watch
past shows online.
Just go to WKNO-dot-org and
click on 'KNO Tonite.
And be sure to follow us on
Facebook and Twitter.
Thanks for joining us.
I'm Chris Cooper and I'll see
you next time on "The Family
Plot: Gardening in the Mid-
Be safe.
>> (instrumental music)
>> female announcer: Production
funding for "The Family Plot:
Gardening in the Mid-South" is
provided by Good Winds Landscape
and Garden Center in Germantown
since 1943 and continuing to
offer it's plants for successful
gardening with seven greenhouses
and three acres of plants plus
comprehensive landscape