SHEDDING LIGHT ON veggies
Even if your yard is sunlight-challenged, you can still grow vegetables. Some vegetables need as little as three hours of sun each day or even all-day dappled shade, organic gardening expert Colleen Vanderlinden says. That includes salad greens, broccoli, cauliflower, peas, beets, Brussels sprouts, radishes, Swiss chard, leafy greens and beans. Plants that produce fruit (like tomatoes) or edible roots (carrots) need full sun. If your yard is deep shade, you're out of luck. Stick with store-bought produce or join a community garden or co-op for your veggie fix.
m On sale: outdoor living
It's not even Halloween yet, but some home and garden stores are putting out the Christmas merchandise. That's good news for budget-minded shoppers looking for patio furniture, umbrellas, canopies, containers and other outdoor items, which are heavily discounted this time of year to free up retail space. Shop now and in coming weeks for bargain deals to spruce up the patio.
Do you have the right tools to get the job done? According to the National Gardening Association, every gardener should have a spade or shovel, a long-handled cultivator, a rake and hand tools such as pruners, trowel and cultivator. Depending on the job, you may need hedge shears, loppers, a saw and wheelbarrow or garden cart to move heavy objects or soil. Quality tools aren't cheap, so compare prices at local retailers, catalogs and Internet suppliers. Yard sales and classified ads are good sources as well.
Yvonne Swanson, Times correspodent