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Tidbits of info..

Hosta, CB'c, AARS and Chocolate Bliss Contest Winner
February 22, 2010

TidBits of Information

This issue:

  • 2010 AHGA Hosta of the Year 'First Frost'

    First Frost’ (Scolnik, Solberg 2002) - (Sport of ‘Halcyon’) - Medium, (16" X 34") "Great hosta sports start with great hosta parents." ‘First Frost’ is a frosty white-edged sport of ‘Halcyon’. Blue leaves emerge with a wide margin the wonderful color of the center of ‘June’, another 'Halcyon' sport and 2001 Hosta of the Year, and then turn pure white if grown in half a day of bright light. Lavender flowers bloom in July. It has excellent color and substance, and will look unblemished in the garden until the "first frost".

  • Warm up 2010 with trends from the International Home & Garden Show

    March 18 – 21, 2010
    International Centre, 6900 Airport Road, Mississauga

    Spring Fling

    Each year thousands of homeowners head to the International Home & Garden Show for new products and ideas that bring better living, indoors and out. 2010 is no exception. Entertaining at home continues to dominate the home front and to make that next gathering a success, Anna Olson, Massimo and other celebrity chefs appear on stage daily with fresh ideas from the garden.

    Relaxed, classic and sustainable design are key style influencers, and crowd pleasing designers Lynn Spence and Karl Lohnes introduce smart ways to incorporate the newest trends. HST have you in a hurray? Find expert remodeling advice at the kitchen, bath and contractor exhibits, and Bryan Baeumler is on deck with ways to minimize the angst of home renovations. The Ontario Horticultural Association hosts its 18th annual floral design and plant competition, while horticultural heavies Ed Lawrence, Marjorie Mason, Frank Ferragine and Cristina da Silva are just some of the experts featured at hourly garden seminars. Add more than 400 home-related exhibits, Green Street, the full-size Quality Engineered Model Home, free parking and more, and the 22nd annual International Home & Garden Show has homeowners well on their way to becoming house proud.

  • Canada Blooms 2010, "Passions"

    March 17 - 21, Direct Energy Centre,
    Toronto, Ontario, Canada

    Canada Blooms: The Flower & Garden Festival invites you to visit a paradise bursting with six acres of stunning gardens in full bloom, more than 100,000 square feet of green thumb shopping and much more at Canada's largest and most prestigious flower and garden festival.

    Interested in learning more about gardening? With four different stages going non-stop, the show offers over 200 hours of seminars, workshops and demonstrations in five days from some of the best garden experts in North America included in your admission to Canada Blooms.

    Need a little inspiration or looking for ideas? Over twenty dazzling and unique display gardens are designed and built by the best of the best!

    Is there any more appropriate theme for a garden show than passion? Gardening is about cultivating life—nurturing living organisms. Gardeners are, by nature, passionate people and in the past fourteen years, visitors to Canada Blooms have demonstrated a deepening and increasingly passionate commitment to everything from gardens and flowers to floral arrangements, garden ornaments and horticultural travel. And, in more recent years, they have come to embrace the need to make our home here on earth greener and more sustainable. Join us at Canada Blooms 2010 and unleash your passion!

    In the D.A. Gracey & Associates Cellar, prepare to find yourself in the hidden heart of a classic garden courtyard. As you journey from the courtyard to the private tasting room, you will be undertaken through the natural seasonal progression. Through the different stages: growth of the grapes, harvest, fermentations, bottling and cellaring, the end of the journey is to the social event of tasting, feasting, and sharing the fruits of our labour. A party with great food and wine, friends and family is their passion! Cellar is only one of more than 23 beautiful feature gardens that you won't want to miss at this year's show.

    The 2010 Canada Blooms Speaker Series presents 5 days of themed talks by Canada’s top gardening experts. Wednesday, March 17th starts things off with Urban Agriculture and Thursday, March 18th is back to basics with Foundations for Your Garden and a special presentation Plants in Space by University of Guelph’s Dr. Mike Dixon, courtesy of Vineland Research and Innovation Centre. Discover must haves for your garden on Design Day, Friday, March 19th, explore environmentally friendly gardening on Plant Day, Saturday, March 20th and learn how to live green in Smaller Spaces on Sunday, March 21st.

    Canada Blooms tickets are now available online at Buy your tickets before the show and save $2 off regular admission. Adults tickets are only $16 ($18 at the event) and Seniors and Students only $14 ($16 at the event). As always, children 12 and under are free of charge!

    Be the first to explore Canada Blooms at the Preview Party, Tuesday, March 16th. Celebrate spring in style, while tasting Ontario's award winning wines and enjoying mouth-watering fare. Don't miss this unforgettable event! Tickets are $75 per person.

  • Easy Does It wins AARS title for 2010

    All-America Rose Selections (AARS) has chosen a single rose to symbolize the best in the country. The new winning rose for 2010 – Easy Does It – features mango orange, peach pink and ripe apricot flowers and glossy green foliage. The seemingly free-flowing swirling shades of sunset show up in fragrant clusters atop a rounded, bushy plant. Easy Does It was hybridized by Harkness New Roses of England and introduced by Weeks Roses. To be chosen as an AARS winner, this new rose thrived during 2 years of comprehensive testing in 23 gardens nationwide. In fact, this rose flourished in 15 categories including the ability to resist disease, overall beauty and general ease of maintenance


OUR WINNER is Janet from Chilliwack

Bliss describes how completely chocolate touches the culinary heart of the
world. In this compact and pretty package, Chocolate Bliss celebrates the rich
and diverse culture, delights, and benefits of chocolate.

Chapter one, “Good Taste: Exploring Your Favorite Chocolates,” provides culinary
information on how to taste and appreciate chocolate through all five senses.
The recipes featured in this chapter—for bon bons, marbled pound cake, brownies,
and hot cocoa—reflect how strongly chocolate appeals to the senses.

Chapter two, “Health and Beauty: How Chocolate Helps You Inside and Out,”
summarizes nutritional information and discusses how chocolate contributes to
overall wellness. These recipes—for healthy snacks, sauces, body lotions,
scrubs, and soap—show how chocolate can be incorporated into a health-conscious

Chapter three, “Good Works: How You Can Help Chocolate,” explores the people and
sustainable agricultural practices of chocolate’s growing regions, as well as
how to give back. The recipes here are earthy—chicken with mole negro sauce,
cocoa chili, and fair trade mocha lemon cheesecake—and are inspired by the
people who grow chocolate.

Chapter four, “Share the Love: The Gift of Chocolate,” looks at cultural
gift-giving traditions featuring chocolate. These recipes feature birthday
cakes, cupcakes, cookies and icing. The book lists many resources, including
websites, blogs, organic companies, and worthy organizations supporting
sustainability and biodiversity.

Part cookbook and part gift book, Chocolate Bliss is a delicious hybrid and
thoughtful book about all things chocolate. It makes a wonderful holiday
present, especially when paired with a bar of chocolate, a tin of cocoa, some
black forest cupcakes (see page 121 for recipe), or some homemade chocolate mint
foot rub (see recipe on page 66). Share the bliss!

Susie Norris is an artisan chocolatier, pastry chef, and culinary school
instructor. Her chocolate business is called Happy Chocolates ( ).
Visit her chocolate information website . She is available for events and interviews. She
divides her time between Los Angeles and the Berkshires.

Read more:


  • New Eden
  • Kids Garden
  • Plant a Row Grow a Row