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PERENNIAL PLANTING TIPS

Posted at 12:41pm on June 03, 2017 in GARDEN CENTER

Planting perennials is an excellent way to add season-to-season color and fill to any landscape. Shrubs and trees add structure, height and definition to gardens. Perennials make a statement all their own. Colorful blooms that change with the seasons, and textures that make a garden really come to life. Once a perennial bed is established there is little care necessary. This makes perennial gardens a great choice for carefree coverage and color. There are a few steps that will help in making the perfect perennial garden.First, Always Plan Decide where the garden will be located. Tweaking an existing bed, or are you installing something entirely new? If a new bed is in order, take rope and outline the area to be planted. Then, remove the sod and place edgers at the border of the garden. New bed or existing, add a high quality compost to improve soil texture. This process is known as amending the soil. It is my first step any time I plant because it provides adequate drainage, nutrient...



Olive Oil Differences

Posted at 12:35pm on June 03, 2017 in TWISTED TRUNK OLIVE OIL

Refined, Virgin, Extra Virgin... what's the difference? I have always loved olive oil. It was a staple in my mother's house growing up. The mere smell brings back memories of watching her simmer eggs in the morning. She always said to only use extra virgin olive oil. For a time, I bought "extra virgin" purely on my mothers say-so, but my curiosity drove me to look in to where this philosophy came from. Was it just another wives' tale or family tradition? It turns out that mama does know best. The categories refined, virgin, and extra virgin are a clue to the quality and flavor of an oil. Extra virgin olive oil historically has been the most sought after. What is at the pit of all this? It all comes down to how the crop it grown, harvested, processed, and stored. Variances in these factors will lead to difference in over all purity. When it comes to olive oil, quality is everything. Buying inferior oil is a waste of money, and can even be costly to our health. Refined, Virgin, and Extra...



Authentic Balsamic Vinegar

Posted at 9:59am on May 05, 2017 in TWISTED TRUNK VINEGAR

There is nothing better than Balsamic vinegar. More than just a condiment for salads or marinades, it is an art that is centuries old. Earliest historic references to the use of balsamic vinegar date back to the 1047 AD. Balsamic is thicker, richer, and sweeter than any other vinegar in the world. Authentic Balsamic Vinegar can only be labeled such if it is produced by a specific set of criteria. It must be aged at least 12 years, according to traditional methods, and native to a specific region of Northern Italy. These factors produce vinegar that is truly original. It is a process which takes a great deal of time, quality ingredients, and care. In the modern world, fast and cost effective are the mantras of many food producers. Some can try to add thickeners, sugar, or reduce lower quality vinegar to sweeten it. It is a failed attempt to replicate authentic flavors, but a trained pallet and informed customer can easily spot the difference. Knowing that a product speaks true of it...



Introduction to Container Gardening

Posted at 9:55am on May 05, 2017 in GARDEN CENTER

Container gardening is a diverse subject. Talks can range from raised bed gardens to house plants. Here, I want to give an introduction to the benefits of this form of gardening, and the various styles that are available. Since a book could be written about vegetable containers alone, I plan to go into detail about each type in later blogs. First, what is considered a container? Seems self explanatory, but really there is a wide variety available for gardening purposes. The first thing most bring to mind is a traditional clay pot. These can be a variety of shapes, sizes, and materials. All types of traditional pots will have a hole through the bottom for drainage. Another style of container is known as a "self-watering" or "self-contained" pot. This design is the most basic form of hydroponics. Here, water does not drain freely from the container. There is a small well contained at the base of the pot so that the soil or roots can pull up/wick moisture. Lastly, raised beds are consid...



Twisted Trunk Low Carb

Posted at 8:30am on April 07, 2017 in TWISTED TRUNK VINEGAR

This tiny little four letter word 'carb' has been thrown around like a curse. 'Avoid at all costs' might as well be a synonym, but what is a carb really?There are two general categories to help separate the 'bad' from the 'good'. Starches and sugars, which occur as small chains, are known as simple carbohydrates. These are absorbed rapidly into the blood steam, quickly spiking blood sugar levels. Complex carbohydrates, like fiber, occur in long chains. These take longer for the body to break down and absorb, and therefore have a more steady affect on blood sugar. High blood sugar releases insulin which helps absorb sugars (glucose) into the cell. Cells can only absorb a limited amount of glucose at a time. This means excess glucose is stored in the liver and muscle tissue. Complex carbohydrates are considered healthier because they are slower to release into the blood stream. This means that cells can use more of the glucose efficiently, storing less as fat.What is considered a low car...