March 7, 2003

All-America Vegetable Selection Winners for 2003

In trials conducted in more than 40 sites across the United States and Canada, two vegetable cultivars were chosen as All-America Selection winners for 2003. To receive this award, the selection must possess unique or improved characteristics compared with similar existing cultivars on the market.

Below are brief descriptions of the 2003 All-America Selection recipients.

Melon 'Angel'


Cyclamen (Cyclamen persicum) is a popular houseplant in winter. They have attractive marbled or mottled heart-shaped leaves that skirt bright pink, lavender, red, or white flowers. Plants are available in three sizes; miniature (6 inches or less in height), intermediate, and standard (12 inches in height) to suit almost any indoor location. The flowers themselves are unique because the petals curve backward, each blossom somewhat resembling a butterfly or badminton birdie.

Insects in Firewood

Each fall as we cut firewood and bring it into our homes, we also may be bringing in some unexpected hitchhikers. There are many insects and other arthropods that may be living in your firewood. Luckily, most insects living in firewood pose no danger to humans, our homes, or our furniture. Insects in firewood are either feeding directly on the wood, nesting in the wood, or are overwintering under the bark.

Pruning Large, Overgrown Shrubs

Shrubs are valuable assets to a home landscape. Shrubs are often planted for their ornamental characteristics, such as flowers, colorful fall foliage, or attractive fruit. They also can provide privacy, block views, and attract wildlife. For shrubs to perform well in the landscape, home gardeners must prune them properly. Proper pruning helps to maintain plant health, control or shape plant growth, and stimulate flower production.

Southern Bacterial Wilt of Geraniums

Southern bacterial wilt of geraniums is caused by Ralstonia solanacearum. Ralstonia can be spread through soil, water, and propagation. However, it doesn't move through the air. Southern bacterial wilt symptoms are almost identical to those of bacterial blight, caused by Xanthomonas campestris pv. pelargonii, which is fairly common in the United States.