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Northern Gardening

  • 2nd Thursday 7-8pm
  • and following Saturday at 6am
News & Information

Recipes | Local Food on the North Shore

Northern Gardening covers a variety of gardening topics relevant to our northern climate. The program airs on the second Thursday of each month from 7-8 p.m. and is rebroadcast the following Saturday at 6 a.m. The program is a partnership between the Northwoods Food Project, the Cook County U of MN Extension Office, and WTIP.

The Northwood's Food Project is a non-profit organization who's purpose is to increase Cook County's long term food sustainability and self-reliance by eating and growing locally produced food.

Learn more about the partnership between WTIP, the Northwoods Food Project, and the Cook County U of MN Extension Office that makes Northern Gardening possible.

Jeanne Wright and daughter Olya, Diane Booth, and Melinda Spinler in the WTIP studio for Northern Gardening.

What's On:

Northern Gardening talks Community Supported Agriculture

 Hosts Joan Farnam and Diane Booth discuss Community Sustainable Agriculture (CSAs) in Cook and Lake Counties with guests David Abazs, Round River Farm in Finland and Cook County growers,k Melinda Spinler, Community CSA; Nick Wharton, Good Nature Farm and Ian Andrus, Creaking Tree Farm, a new grower in Cook County. 

This program is sponsored in part by Northwoods Food Project and Cook County Extension.




It's All About Berries!

Hosts Diane Booth and Joan Farnam talk to Cook County grower Brian Wilson, and Tom Galazen and Ann Rosenquist from North Wind Organic Farm in Bayfield, Wis. about berry growing in the Northwoods.
Brian and his wife Laura put 10,0,000 strawberry plants in on their farm in Hovland. This is the first season for the new venture and everybody is excited about what these berries will taste like.
North Wind Organic Farm grows lots of strawberries, too, as well as raspberries and blueberries.
The panelists also discuss the spotted wing drosophila, native to Asia, that is proving to be a difficult pest for many berry growers across the country. It has been found in Lake County and in Bayfield.



Pesticides, Perennials and Pollinators

Hosts Diane Booth and Joan Farnam are joined by U of M Master Gardeners Max Linehan and Janet Ditmanson to discuss the use of pesticides by home gardeners; some great native plants you can use to help out our local pollinators, and information on perennials for Zones 3 and 4.



Drip Irrigation and Gardening in China

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Hosts Diane Booth (CC Extension), and Joan Farnam (Northwoods Food Project), welcome Dave Steckelberg to talk about installing drip irrigation systems and the Wright family (Jeanne, Greg and Olya) to share about agriculture practices in China.  Information about the Perennial Plant workshop hosted by the U of M CC Master Gardeners on June 6th will also be discussed.



Favorite Vegetable Varieties and Starting Seeds

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On the February edition of Northern Gardening, your hosts Diane Booth and Nick Wharton discuss several favorite vegetable varieties along with care of seeds and seedlings - with either natural or artificial light.



Getting the most out of seed catalogs

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In the January 2015 edition of Northern Gardening, hosts Joan Farnam and Melinda Spinler spoke with Heron Breen, Fedco Seed employee of 16 years.  Heron is in charge of vegetable trials, daily operations, seed grower outreach, and vegetable disease research.

In this program they discuss seed cooperatives and how they can save you money, as well as some of the vegetable varieties that can be relied upon every year to form the backbone of your garden, and exciting new varieties to try.



Bees, Bugs, and Pesticides

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On the June edition of Northern Gardening, your hosts Joan Farnam and Diane Booth will be talking about bees, bugs and pesticides! They talked with local beekeeper Louise Reavis, and Jeff Hahn, an entomologist at the University of Minnesota.



Northern Gardening: Gardening with a short growing season

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For the May edition of Northern Gardening, your hosts Joan Farnam, Melinda Spinler, and Mark Spinler discuss gardening in a short growing season. They also talk with Graham Saunders, the author of the new book, "Gardening with Short Growing Seasons".

Learn more about Graham's book online

Copies are also available to borrow at the Cook County Extension Office at the Cook County Community Center in Grand Marais.



All About Tomatoes

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On the April 10, 2014 edition of Northern Gardening, it's all about tomatoes! Listen in to hear tips on how to grow tomatoes in the north shore climate, plus several informative interviews.

Guests to the program were Samantha Johnson, author of The Beginner’s Guide to Vegetable Gardening, and Changbin Chen, an associate professor from the University of Minnesota, Horticulture Department.  Samantha lives in northern Wisconsin and loves to grow heirloom tomatoes.  She shared some of her favorite open-pollinated tomatoes.  Changbin and his students have been playing with chromosomes in tomatoes and has developed 7 dwarf tomato varieties that are short-day and very productive. 




Straw Bale Gardening and More

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Northern Gardening hosts Diane Booth and Joan Farnam interview guests about straw bale gardening and other techniques and how effective they could be for growing vegetables on the North Shore.