National Gardening Association, Whizbang Garden Cart, Tapioca Plant, Barley Straw Planter for Ponds

The National Gardening Association has an email newsletter they send out to subscribers in each of the gardening regions.

Today's issue had two items of interest.

The Whizbang Garden Cart has its own blog online.
And that blog leads readers to another blog of a farmer who built a Whizbang for his farm.
Does everyone have a blog?

The Whizbang is an old fashioned item that is still available for sale. Herrick Kimball wrote a book about how to build your own. The book is around $15. Kimball says it costs $150 to $200 to build your own cart and his blog is full of home spun conversation and photographs.

Oh, and he is having a contest with prizes - just build a cart and send him a photo.

The other item of interest is a barley straw pond planter that cleans the pond. The hidden plastic insert keeps the plant in tact while it floats in the pond. It is distributed by Summit Chemical whose primary products are mosquito chemicals for ponds.

Photo: Another wonderfully successful plant this year is the Tapioca Plant from Blossom's Garden Center. The pink stems and large, variegated leaves make it an eye catching addition. It is reputed to take full sun but this one grew 5-feet tall in a pot just under the branches of an oak tree. a service of Texas Extension, Texas A & M, says about this beauty:
"Tapioca is one of the common names of Manihot esculenta 'Variegata' as is cassada, cassava, manioc, yuca, mandioca, shushu, muk shue, cassave, maniok, tapioka, imanoka, maniba, kasaba, katela boodin."
Photo: This little pond was $12 at Lowe's. It holds 9-gallons of water, 3-goldfish and 4 plants. The weather is cool enough now that the fish will be safe outside and the water will not get too hot. When cold weather arrives the fish will come indoors.

There is still time to plant and great weather to be outside.


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