May 2, 1997


As commonly used as the eggplant is today, it's hard to imagine that at one time their use was viewed with suspicion (eggplants are in the nightshade family). The first eggplants grown weren't the large purple varieties frequently grown today, but rather small, white varieties with fruits shaped like eggs (thus the name eggplant).

Hortline Hours for Summer 1997

Hortline hours from May 12 through August 22 will be 9:00 to 12:00 and 1:00 to 4:30, Monday through Friday. The student who will be helping answer the Hortline during this period is Anne Larson. Anne is a senior in horticulture at Iowa State.

This article originally appeared in the May 2, 1997 issue, p. 55.

Growing Peanuts in the Home Garden

Peanuts (Arachis hypogaea) are an important field crop in the southeastern United States. In 1995, peanuts were grown on 1.5 million acres in the United States. and produced a crop of 3.5 billion pounds. Peanut seeds (kernels) are used for peanut butter, oil, flour, roasted peanuts, and other food products. While they are not widely grown in Iowa, their unique growth habit makes them a fun addition to the home garden.

Safety Concerns about Rhubarb

Many areas in Iowa experienced record or near record temperatures in early April 1997. Those cold temperatures have prompted questions on the edibility and use of rhubarb. Answers to those and several other rhubarb related health questions are presented below.

Is it safe to use rhubarb after the plants have been exposed to freezing temperatures?