Garden Detective

Jessica Damiano's award-winning garden blog gets to the root of things.

Long Island's first orchid festival coming this week

Orchids will be on display at the New

(Credit: AP video)

The annual Orchid Show at the New York Botanical Garden gets lots of well-deserved fanfare, but this year Long Island will get its own piece of the orchid pie.

The Long Island Orchid Society's first-ever Long Island Orchid Festival hits the scene this week, running from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on May 3-5 at Planting fields Arboretum State Historic Park in Oyster Bay. The festival will host orchid...

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Benner's Farm workshops for kids, teens and adults

During an open house at Benner's Farm in

(Credit: Jasmin Frankel)

It's time to start focusing on the outdoors, and getting better educated is always part of the fun. Benner's Farm in Setauket (56 Gnarled Hollow Rd., 631-689-8172) has unveiled a roster of workshops that will get you on your way, help the little ones get involved and even give teens something to look forward to. 

Eat Dirt You Worm! (Ages 5 and up, $35) Saturday, April 20, 10 a.m.-noon


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Gardening field day at Farmingdale State College

Farmingdale State College is a four-year SUNY school

(Credit: Alexi Knock)

Looking to get outside this weekend? Farmingdale State College's Ornamental Horticulture Department has your back, as it's holding its third  Educational Field Day and Open House Saturday from 8:30 a.m.  to 4:45 p.m.

The teaching gardens on the campus, 2350 Broadhollow Rd.,  will be open all day. There will be plant sales (and a raffle), plus lectures, workshops, garden tours...

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What do plants talk about?

Dr. Suzanne Simard, University of British Columbia and

(Credit: Ian Kerr, CSC)

Lots of readers tell me they talk to their plants -- some even sing to them -- and they all claim the plants benefit from the interactions. I used to think the only benefit to plants was the carbon dioxide exhaled through speech (or song), but a couple of years ago I read a study that showed tomatoes grew better and bigger when exposed to music -- from a radio.

And now a new "Nature"...

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