Extension Horticulture Hints July by Steve Mayer

Steve Mayer, Extension Educator-Horticulture, for Purdue Extension-Marion County, serves as coordinator and instructor for the Purdue Master Gardener program in Marion County.

July Garden Calendar Tips

Note: Letters and numbers following the tip refer to Purdue publications; other reference links on the topic may also be supplied.

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AAS Announces 3 National Winners for 2018

All-America Selections (AAS) has recently announced their first batch of 2018 national award winners: Ornamental Pepper Onyx Red, Sweet Corn American Dream and Cocktail Tomato Red Racer. We will grow all three national winners in the Purdue Extension-Marion County Demonstration Garden in 2018.

Onyx Red Ornamental Pepper has black foliage similar to the 2006 AAS showstopper Black Pearl. However, Onyx Red is a compact, well-branched plant growing only about 6 inches tall in a pot or 8-10 inches tall in the garden. Recommended garden spacing is 6-8 inches. Onyx Red produces beautiful three-eighths inch black fruit that eventually turn red. The plant grows best in full sun and no deadheading or staking is required.

Ornamental Pepper Onyx Red

Ornamental Pepper Onyx Red (photo: All-America Selections)


American Dream Sweet Corn edged out 1988 AAS award winner Honey ‘N Pearl. The bicolor kernels on the 7-inch ears are very tender and super sweet with excellent bite depth. American Dream matures slightly earlier and has excellent germination. Plants grow 6-7 feet tall and the corn is ready in 77 days.

 Red Racer Cocktail Tomato is a small uniform round red tomato with classic tomato flavor. They grow in clusters but are larger than cherry or grape tomatoes – the two-ounce fruit are 1.5 inches in diameter. Tomatoes are ready to eat in only about 57 days from transplanting. The compact determinate plants are suitable for containers or plant about 2 feet apart in the garden. Plant height is about 3 feet so training is optional. Plants can produce 68 tomatoes per plant. Red Racer has the following disease resistance: Verticillium wilt, Fusarium wilt (1 and 2), nematode, tobacco mosaic virus, and gray leaf spot.

2016 Master Gardener Growth Awards

Many thanks and congratulations to the 55 Marion County Master Gardeners who received a MG Growth Award for 2016! They are: Sue Arnold, Nancy Boettner, Mauvene Borton, Colette Bracken, Pat Brummer, Steve Cline, Cira Coates, Carole Cole, Carolyn Curry, Jim Curry, Vickie Davis, Sue Draheim, Mary Durkin, Janet Eigenbrod, Les Eigenbrod, Linda Foster, Barb Garing, Deanne Heidrich, Nancy Herrin, Carol Hooker, Connie Hudson, Kathleen Hull, Meredith Hull, Rita Hupp, Julie Iverson, Barbara Jablonski, Phil M. Johnson, Alane Judkins, Karen Kennedy, Chris Lawson, Mike Logan, Dale Luchsinger, Deb May, Ann McCullough, Carolyn McMahon, Dan Millar, John Montgomery, Ruth J. Nelson, Beckie Nowlin, Wayne Porter, Peg Powers, Jayne Queck, Paul Ransberger, Boynton Robson, Carol Ryan, Phyllis Schmidt, Nancy Snively, Jackie Sundboom, Judy Turner, Shirley Ulicni, Pat Warrick, John Westermeier, Debbie Whitman, Gail Wiseman, and Susan Zordan. Individuals completed at least 100 approved volunteer hours and 15 advanced training hours last year. They are recognized online: https://extension.purdue.edu/marion/pages/article.aspx?intItemID=18940.

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