University of Illinois Extension

Volume 8 Special Issue

Articles in this issue...

Fall is for Planting

Fall is a key season for next year's garden, said a University of Illinois Extension horticulture educator. "The nursery industry has been successful in promoting the planting of trees and shrubs with their campaign called 'Fall is for Planting,'" said Greg Stack. "While you may not want to plant trees and shrubs, this slogan can also work for those of you who may want to plant salad greens and root crops for a fall and early winter harvest."

Picking the Perfect Pumpkin

The tradition of Halloween jack-o'-lanterns goes back to the Irish who originally carved big turnips into jack-o'-lanterns, said Ron Wolford, a University of Illinois Extension horticulture educator."With the influx of Irish immigrants into the United States, pumpkins became the fruit of choice for carving; and yes, pumpkins are a fruit, not a vegetable," he said. Pumpkins are grown all over the world including Illinois. Illinois produced an estimated 427 million pounds of pumpkins in 2010. They are grown on every continent, except for Antarctica.


Peppers give the "kick" to salsa, said a University of Illinois Extension horticulture educator. "The degree of hotness in the salsa can be varied by the type, quantity and portion of the peppers used," said Jennifer Fishburn. "One type of pepper may be substituted for another type of pepper in salsa recipes. When canning, do not vary the total amount of peppers called for in a recipe. Peppers have the same basic growing requirements as tomatoes."

Vegetable Garden Q & A

Maintaining a vegetable garden is an ongoing process, said a University of Illinois Extension horticulture educator. "We often find familiar questions arising every season," said Ron Wolford. "Here are some questions and answers that may prove helpful."

Soil Test this Fall

Testing your soil does not take much time and the benefits of doing so can mean being able to produce more vegetables for fresh table use all season long in 2013, said a University of Illinois Extension horticulture educator. "Gardeners could test their soil anytime," said Richard Hentschel. "Fall is the better time, having had the season to allow any fertilizers and organic matter applied to react with your garden soil and provide you the best possible soil test levels."

2012 All-America Selections Vegetable Winners

"Gardeners are always on the lookout for new, interesting and better plant material for their garden," says Greg Stack, U of I horticulturist. While everything labeled new or better may not always be all it is intended to be, there are a few things that catch one's attention of those in horticulture as being something worth trying.