, Salem, MA


April 26, 2013

Can we grow a pumpkin in yard?


If you used compostable mulch like grass or leaves, it could be left to compost right on the bed. You won’t have to completely remove it, but pull it back from the base of the plants to prevent rot and insect damage.

If you used hay as mulch, it probably hasn’t rotted enough to leave it. Move it to the compost heap, where it can continue decomposing for a few more months, then bring it back to the garden.

Q: Everything seems to be sold for large gardens — seed, plants, fertilizers — and they’re things I would really like to try if I could get a smaller size. I’ve written to several companies, but they can’t seem to help. Can you offer any suggestions?

A: This is the time of year to choose a “garden buddy” — someone in your neighborhood with whom you can share plants, seeds, garden materials and even some specialty tools. You’ll save time and gasoline on trips to the nurseries and share information as you go through catalogs and trips out for supplies. Choose a first-time gardener, or someone who has knowledge to share about a specialty like roses or lilies. It might be wise to set budgets so there are no misunderstandings.

Q: My neighbor walks her dogs past my house every day, sometimes more than once. She is a very caring dog walker, picking up all solid matter, but there’s no way she can control the wet spots, which appear to be happening in the same spot every day. Now I’m beginning to see dead grass in the area. What can I do?

A: First, don’t be too quick to blame. Maybe it’s not only your neighbor’s dog’s fault — other dogs follow suit and may have used the same spot, over and over.

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  • Ask Dog Lady: Her little dog is obsessed with food Dear Dog Lady: I have a 3-year-old, long-coated Chihuahua named Mexipep (after a brand of hot sauce). She has many fine attributes -- she's very sweet, not nervous and barky like the short-coated Chihuahuas can be. On the subject of food, however, th

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  • vehicles Quick pick: Festival of vehicles

    Festival of vehicles Take a ride over to the Hamilton-Wenham Public Library for the 16th annual Vehicle Night on Wednesday from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. The festival of fire trucks, emergency vehicles, cruisers and snow plows takes place in the library park

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  • Friday's Best Bets Best Bets for Friday, July 25

    Looking for something to do today? Here are The Salem News' Best Bets:

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  • Dear Abby: Tyke becomes a terror when mom takes back her cellphone Dear Abby: When my friend "Fran" and I get together with our kids, they often play games on her cellphone until the battery dies. If she tries to take the phone from her 6-year-old to make a call or recharge the phone, he starts yelling at her, pushe

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    The original Concours d'Elegance was a fashion show on wheels. "It did start in 17th century France, where some of the aristocracy wanted to show off the fashions they were wearing," said Patrick Cornellison, chairman of the event. "Mainly women woul

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  • twenties_3 Ipswich's Castle Hill braces for 1,000 at Roaring '20s Lawn Party

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  • kallyson North Shore entertainment calendar Good cause YARD SALE TO BENEFIT JIMMY FUND. Saturday, July 26, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., 11 Anna Drive, Danvers. Family yard sale with all proceeds benefiting the Boston Marathon Jimmy Fund Walk. WOOSHIE'S WARRIORS FUNDRAISER FOR MS. Sunday, July 27, 10 a.

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  • The reader's eye Name: Erika Torkildsen Hometown: Beverly Description: "I took this at the Salem Common around a park where I noticed a ripped basketball net amid the blue sky. Instead of taking the picture from my original view, I tipped the camera up from under the

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