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Backyard Business In Bloom

Montana gardener provides a bounty of bouquets

The dry heat of eastern Montana fades to a memory once you step into Debbie Smith’s yard in Kinsey, Montana. From just 10,000 square feet of annuals and perennials, Smith serves dozens of “subscription” customers, each of whom receive weekly bouquets from June through early fall. “It’s a great feeling to deliver bouquets, and to watch people be so excited about receiving something they bought for themselves,” she says.

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Garden Climb

Garden Climb

In 1949, the view from Grace Marchant’s flat on San Francisco’s Telegraph Hill was less than enticing…old bedsprings, bottles, lumber, and other castoff trash covered the slopes above the waterfront. Today, thanks to Marchant’s efforts and those of a small but dedicated group of volunteers, Telegraph Hill has become a lush waterfront tourist attraction.

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    A Touch Of Prairie

    A Touch Of Prairie

    Many gardeners have bought a packet of seeds called “prairie wildflower mix,” planted them, and then become disappointed as their planting area quickly returns to weeds and grasses. Learn the secret, though, and you can have a prairie garden on par with that of Elizabeth Hamilton-Steele, Elk Creek, Missouri. “Wildflowers are not for the folks who want instant gratification. It usually takes about three years to get started,” she says.

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      Hopping Hobby

      Hopping Hobby

      Even the coldest hearts have a tough time resisting a bunny! Interest in breeding and raising rabbits is growing, thanks to fairly easy upkeep and a relatively low upfront cost. “Rabbits are small enough that oyu can manage them if you’re a kid,” says Anne Manlove, Extension advisor, Central Point, Oregon. “And it’s an entrée for many kids to move on to other sorts of species, once the parents see that they’re responsible with their animals.”

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