Growing Tomatoes Indoors ' Demanding '
I>ear Plant Doctor: Is it possible
to grow tomatoes in my home over
tlte winter? 1 have several plants 12
18 inches tall, and one of them is
Would I be wasting my time lend
ing these plants in a sunny kitchen
I have been reading your column
only a few weeks, bul have found it
interesting and helpful. Before
spring, how about some lips for
those of us who tend small gardens.
Thanks lor your help.
Answer: Thanks for the encour
agement and the comments!
Growing tomatoes in a tempera
ture controlled greenhouse with opti
mum light and nutrients can be very
demanding even for the most expen
enced horticulturist. I expect that the
light coming in through your kitchen
window would be sufficient to grow
a tomalo plant, but would be insuffi
cient for tomato fruit production.
Even though tomatoes are self
pollinated, plants grown indoors re
quire lhat (lowers be jiggled in order
for ihc pollen to be transferred to the
stigma (female part of the flower).
Commercial greenhouse tomato
growers use fans or trellis systems
lhat jiggle plants during the morning
hours lo ensure pollination and good
Dear Plant Doctor: We have
four ihom trees growing in our yard.
I have never seen thorn trees like
this before. 1 have enclosed leaves
for you to examine.
This spring, worms denuded the
trees. Later in the summer, leaves
appeared again. This is remarkable
Do you have experience with
trees which have lost all their leaves
in the early summer and then leafed
I fertilized the trees early this fall
hoping lhat this might give them
added strength to withstand what
must have been a terrible blow. The
trees are at least 14 years old and ap
pear fully mature.
Any comment you may have will
Answer: Thank you lor your let
ter. However, I cannot identify the
tree species you arc growing from
the leaves you enclosed. There arc
hundreds (possibly thousands) of
species of woody ornamentals in
eastern North Carolina and I only
know the most common species.
I will be glad (as will any NC'SU
Cooperative Extension agent) to send
a sample of your plant material to the
North Carolina State University
Herbarium for positive identification.
If you would bring a small branch of
the tree to my officc, I will make sure
that you get a positive identification.
Most trees arc pretty tolerant of
Coastal Museum T
The Museum of Coastal Carolina
at Ocean Isle Beach will close for
the winter season after this weekend,
according to the museum's founder.
Saturday and Sunday will be the
final days the museum will be open
to the public until it reopens in
March, said Ocean Isle Beach
Museum Foundation President
Ingram said more than 13,(XK)
people have visited the 7,5(X)
temporary adverse environmental
conditions. I am sending you two
publications that I dunk you will
lind helpful. 'Ihey are (iruunds
Management for llome Gardeners
(M.A. Powell, Horticulture Infor
mation Leaflet #612) and Pruning
Shaile Trees and Re/mirinK I heir
Injuries (USDA, Home and Garden
You can obtain these publications
at your local Cooperative Extension
Service office or by sending me
your request and a SASH.
Dear Plant Doctor: I am interest
ed in growing mosses in my Japan
cse garden. Where can I gel infor
mation on diis subject?
Answer: Mosses are a fascinating
subject. You may want to find an old
copy of Mosses with lland-Lens
and Microscope by A.J. Grout for
reference and identification.
On a recent trip to Atlanta, I dis
covered a company that specializes
in selling and cultivating different
mosses. For a small fee, they will
provide you with an excellent publi
cation on the culture and care of
Contact them at Mostly Mosses
Inc., 130 Sandy Drive, Slockbndgc,
Ga. 3028 1 , or phone (4()4 >474-5820.
Send your gardening questions to
The Plant Doctor, P.O. Box 109.
Bolivia. N.C. 2X422.
o Close For Winter
square-foot facility since it opened
"If everything works out we're
going to try to expand the building
next year," Ingram said. "We need
more space now."
The museum is located at the cor
ner of Third and Laurinburg streets
at Ocean Isle Beach.
It features displays of marine life,
sea shells, wildlife common to the
coastal region and historic artifacts.
Sizes up to 18 ? Also Petites
Free Gift Wrap
Hwy. 179, Meadow Square
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Students Donate Food
f>"0*0 conmn . n i
I a: kind Middle School students Ashley Burton (left) and I'atrick Kobbins pack food boxes for delivery
to needy families this Thanksgiving. Students donated 2J59 food items , led by the sixth grade with 7li
items. The Student Council sponsors the yearly holiday season food drive. Sames of recipient families
are provided by counselors , teachers and students. Classes also decorated containers in w hich to deliv
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fourth grade made a picnic box that placed second.
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