Recipe: Roasted Cauliflower

ROASTED CAULIFLOWER

1 Head Cauliflower
4 Tablespoons Olive/Canola Oil
1 Lemon, Zested and Juiced
1 Tablespoon Cumin
1 Tablespoon Garlic Powder
1 Teaspoon Ground Coriander
2 Teaspoon Salt
1/2 Teaspoon Pepper
1/4 Cup Grated Parmesan Cheese

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and lightly grease a small baking sheet or cast iron skillet. Remove any green leaves from the cauliflower and trim off the hard part of the core. In a medium bowl, whisk together the oil with lemon zest and juice, cumin, garlic powder, coriander, salt and pepper.(You can add or change seasonings to your taste.) Use a brush or your hand to spread the marinade evenly over the head of cauliflower. (Any leftover marinade can be stored in the fridge for up to three days and used with meat, fish or other veggies.) Place the cauliflower in the prepared pan and roast until the surface is dry and lightly browned, 30-40
minutes. Let cool a bit before slicing into wedges, serve warm with Parmesan sprinkled on top.

Submitted By: Sheri Kisch

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Silverleaf Buffaloberry vs. Russian Olive

(Elaeagnus angustifolia vs. Shepherdia argentea)

Silverleaf Buffaloberry, which is native to North America, and Russian Olive, which is non-native and considered invasive, are closely related and at first glance are hard to distinguish from one another. They have the same color leaves and grow in similar
areas, have thorns and can take on a shrub-like appearance. However, when you examine

them close up, you will find that Silverleaf Buffaloberry leaves are arranged in
opposite pairs and its thorns are oppositely arranged. Russian Olive has leaves arranged in alternate pairs and its thorns are alternately arranged. Russian Olives have silver berries that become tan as they mature while Silverleaf Buffaloberry have yellow or light orange berries that turn red late in the season. An excellent chart with great pictures explaining the difference between these two plants can be found at: http://www.tamariskcoalition.org/sites/default/files/resource-center-documents/2014_05_12_RO_vs_Buff.pdf

Submitted By: Elaine Allard

The Hidden Life of Trees: What They Feel, How They Communicate By Peter Wohlleben

As gardeners and landscapers, we deal extensively with plants. Yet for many, our real understanding of the life of plants only scratches the surface. Would you, for example, believe that trees “talk” to each other, help each other out when a tree is ill or hurt, warn other trees of impending danger, and support their young?
Part of why we are not aware of the communications and connections between trees is that trees live in a very long time frame and even their electrical and chemical communications are slow compared to smaller, shorter-lived organisms. If trees are living within a supportive forest environment, they can live hundreds of years. There is a spruce in Sweden, for example, that is over 9,500 years old.
The key element is that trees survive well in an intact, healthy forest. They create a microclimate that provides protection from wind and weather (such as drying heat). They warn each other of danger, such as predators like porcupines or insects. They share food with ailing member trees. There is a structure to the forest that helps all the individuals within. Trees that ordinarily live this way do not do well when planted alone. Lone trees live much shorter lives.
The Hidden Life of Trees explains in detail accessible even to lay persons how trees communicate. They use tree equivalents of our senses. They send and receive chemicals through the air and through their roots, they use electrical impulses and vibrations in their roots, and they use visual signals such as flowers to attract pollinators and leaves turning color to signal the cessation of photosynthesis which insects appear to understand. They use a complex system of underground fungi to share nutrients and communicate between trees. Trees can even distinguish the roots of their own species from other tree species. It also seems possible that all beings in the forest are communicating as a community.
Planted tree farms do not exhibit these amazing abilities to communicate and support member trees. It is thought that their roots are too damaged from planting to be able to share information, selective breeding may damage their ability to communicate, and they often have no fungal network so these forests are silent compared to intact forests. Tree farm members live like loners—they do not live long lives and they do not support each other.
There are some species of trees such as birch and aspen that have evolved to live as loners. They live shorter lives than forest species and they use different methods of defense and growth because they do not have the forest community to feed and warn them.
There is much more fascinating information about the lives of trees in this little book. There is so much there that I plan to carefully read the book again to catch what I missed the first time through. Also, there is so much new research being done to expand our knowledge of tree communication that I look forward to a follow-up book at some point to increase our understanding even further in this area. We can only become better gardeners as we gain greater understanding of all plants and their “hidden” lives.

Book Review by: Ann Guthals

Gardening Series: Growing Microgreens Indoors Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Join Claire Johnson and Parker Graves, Gainan’s Garden Center experts, as they demonstrate how to grow microgreens. (Microgreens are salad vegetable shoots.) Samples will be available for tasting. Call 657-8290 for more information. Thanks to Gainan’s and the Yellowstone County Master Gardeners for co-sponsoring this event.

Date: January 18, 2017 Time: 5:00 PM – 6:00 PM
Location: Community Room Contact: 406.657.8290
Address: Billings Public Library. 510 N Broadway. Billings, MT
Email: mailto:refdesk@ci.billings.mt.us Cost: Free

Old World Garden Farms – Calling All Gardeners – We Need 5 Volunteers!!

This coming January, Old World Garden Farms are helping to launch an incredible new garden website that will showcase everyday gardens from everyday gardeners around the world! It is designed to be a place for gardeners to share their gardens and their garden tips – no matter the size or type! They need 5 volunteers whose garden they can showcase for the launch. So whether you have a Backyard Flower Garden, Vegetable Garden, Water Garden, Herb Garden, Railroad Garden – or any kind of garden.
Send an email to thefarm@owgarden.com with a picture or two and a short description of your garden. The 5 volunteers selected will also get a sneak preview of the site as well as having their gardens featured on the site for the launch!

Here’s the Dirt

Watering Cans have been a gardener’s most valuable tool throughout the years.

What once was referred to as a watering pot started out with a very primitive design. In the late 1400’s to 1500’s the medieval design was made of clay with small holes on the bottom of the pot that when immersed in water would fill the pot. The pot was tapered toward the top creating a neck with a small hole that would be covered by the user’s thumb to control the flow of water.

As the design of watering pots began to evolve in 1692 a man named Timothy Keeble began referring to water pots as watering cans and this new name stuck. John Haws was the next inventor to change the watering can. In 1886 he put in for a patent on his invention of the new and improved watering can making it easier to use. Watering cans have been made in many different materials such as clay, copper, metal and plastic. To learn more about the history of watering cans or collecting watering cans click the link below.

http://www.marthastewart.com/911212/history-and-presentation-antique-watering-cans

Submitted by: Donna Canino