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Celebrate St. Patrick's Day by planting seeds

Written by Doug Oster on .

blog yellow peas soakingSoaking peas overnight will help them sprout in cold soil. Photos by Doug Oster

peas in potsPeat pots are the perfect place for pea seeds to sprout.It's a tradition for gardeners to start their peas on St. Patrick's Day, for me it was my grandmother who told me when to get them going.

I always plant peas on the holiday. Here are a few tricks to get them started. There will be a complete story in this Saturday's Post-Gazette.

Soaking the seeds overnight will encourage them to sprout in cold spring soil. I decided to have some fun and try a couple different varieties. 'Golden Sweet Edible Pod' is from India and produces tall vines covered in pale yellow snow peas. Beside having a beautiful name which rolls off the tongue, 'Blauschokker' grows pretty, purple podded shell peas. The peas themselves are lime green and they look amazing, it's going to be fun to add color to the spring garden.

The soil is too wet to work this early in the season, if the dirt sticks to the shovel, don't turn it over. To solve that problem, I bought a couple bags of compost and will cover a vegetable bed and plant directly in the black compost.

Another trick I'll use to start this soon is to plant some seeds in peat pots. They are a fibrous container which will rot away in the garden soil. They are used as peas resent being transplanted and will be set back by doing so. I'll keep the planted peat pots in a warm location until they sprout and then they go out into the compost.

Even though it's getting cold again, all these seeds need are a couple 50 degree days to germinate, once up, they are indestructible. Peas love cold weather.

Starting peas now will have you harvesting when "normal" people are just starting their gardens.

blog purple peasIsn't 'Blauschokker' a beautiful pea?

blog sprouting peaThis pea seed germinated out in the garden last year just a few days after planting.

 

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Free lawn care seminar at Best Feeds Thursday 3/19

Written by Doug Oster on .

blog grass growingLearn the way to get a great lawn from Jonathan Green.

Best Feeds Garden Center on Babcock Blvd. will hold a free lawn care seminar with a representative of Jonathan Green Lawn Care Company, Thursday March 19th, 2015 at 7 p.m.

Jonathan Green offers many organic lawn care options. I use their Black Beauty and Shady Nooks grass seed in my yard and have also used Mag-I-Cal to correct the pH of my soil.

Nothing can outgrow grass when the fertility and pH are correct in the lawn. That's one of the topics the representative will be speaking about.

 

 

 

 

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Free seed starting workshop with Doug Saturday 3/14 11am at Chapon's Greenhouse

Written by Doug Oster on .

blog tomato up upBrush your fingers lightly across a tomato seedling to release the fragrance of summer. Photo by Doug OsterI'll be presenting "Indoor Seed Starting" on Saturday 3/14/15 at 11 a.m. as part of the Spring Fling at Chapon's Greenhouse in Baldwin. The workshop will offer ideas for beginners and cover advanced techniques too. The seminar will also cover organic gardening, early planting secrets and more.

Starting seeds inside is fun and easy, will save you money and give you a chance to grow something different. It's therapeutic to see something go from tiny seed to fruition in just a few short months.

Chapon's Spring Fling offers seminars, sales, garden vendors, food and much more.

I know I'll be leaving with some cool weather crops to put in the garden.

Hope to see you there!

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#SettingTheSEEN: American Ireland Fund Preview!

Written by Natalie Bencivenga on .

This week's episode was so much fun to film! Sara and I entered a wonderful world of colorful linens at Party Mosaic in the Strip District. Sara chatted with the owner, Susie Perelman, about how she dreams up amazing creations for events like the one we previewed: The American Ireland Fund. We enjoyed a tour of the rarely viewed backroom (which was filled with literally thousands of linens...all perfectly color coded, of course!). I also chatted with Theresa Kaufman of Theresa Kaufman Events who is planning the American Ireland Fund dinner which takes place on (naturally) St. Patrick's Day! We hope you enjoy this colorful show as much as we enjoyed filming it!

Until next time...we'll be seeing you!

Follow @NBSeen on Twitter and @NatalieBenci on Instagram to keep up with #wheresNataliePG

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Male model from Pittsburgh discovered on Instagram featured on 'The Ellen Show'

Written by Sara Bauknecht on .

It's no secret -- be careful what kinds of photos you post on social media, because they could change your life.

When Matthew Noszka from Pittsburgh posted on Instagram a shirtless photo of himself next to a deck he had built, he received a direct message from a representative with renowned talent agency Wilhelmina Models that ended up taking him from the construction site to the catwalk.

He talked about his unexpected, virtually overnight success in the modeling world on "The Ellen Show" today, speaking with great humility and gratitude for what he's been able to do so far. He's already worked with the likes of Nike and Calvin Klein and recently walked in his first New York Fashion Week, he told host Ellen Degeneres.

He's been a natural in front the of the camera, flexing and posing in his underwear for some of the ad campaigns he's booked. Reading magazines like GQ and practicing different poses in front of the mirror have helped, he said.

Prior to being discovered on social media,  he was a student at Point Park University playing basketball and working in construction and waiting tables on the side.

"I guess it worked out," he said bashfully. 

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