T Dongl i n Zhang, CAES hort i culture professor, i s breed i ng cold-tolerant tea cult i vars that w i ll be able to w i thstand Georg i a ’ s temperature changes . EXTENSION HOW -TO Continued from page 3 “People today have smaller yards, and I think there is interest in plants that have multiple purposes,” he said. He’s traveled to China to collect varieties of persimmon, jujube and waxberry to use as parent plants for Georgia-adapted ornamentals. With delicate foliage, variegated leaves, bright blooms in the form �a; �e;ðe; a;b;�c; a; b;�a;�c; �b;e;c;�a;b; L tea plants are also part of his ornamental breeding program. Then he thought, “If tea plants could be successfully grown in a yard, why couldn’t they grow on farms?” Many of the tea plants grown for beverage W i th del i cate fol i age, production are notoriously cold-sensitive var i egated leaves, and don’t tolerate the rapid temperature br i ght blooms i n the changes seen in Georgia. Zhang is working form of camell i a ﬂowers to breed more cold-tolerant plants that also and the prospect of a produce a distinctly delicious Southern tea. Today, Zhang has a selection of nine homegrown cup of tea, tea cultivars growing at the Durham tea plants are also Horticulture Farm outside the UGA Athens part of h i s ornamental campus, and he plans to add more varieties breed i ng program . to his breeding programs soon. In late 2016, Zhang toured China’s tea-producing regions with plant breeders from other Southeastern land-grant universities as part of a program organized by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Ministry of Agriculture in China. The trip was paid for, in b;L �a;c; b; b;d; �b;b;d;�e;  b;�c; %#'51�a;ï �a;)  2�b;a;F With a 3,000-year history and about 2.8 million acres of land devoted to tea production, Zhang and his colleagues hoped that tea experts in China could help them determine what they needed to make tea work in the Southeast. The team was able to identify several dozen varieties out of the 4,000 currently being grown commercially in China that they believe will grow well in Georgia and throughout the South. Zhang hopes to add those varieties to his breeding program in the future. For more information about how UGA plant breeders are helping to diversify Georgia’s agriculture, visit caes.uga.edu. • Merritt Melancon Vegg i es are trend i ng . As our populat i on grows and becomes more thoughtful about food, the demand for greens i s blossom i ng . In 2016, per cap i ta vegetable consumpt i on was up to 381 . 2 pounds i n the U . S . , a 1 . 9 percent i ncrease from the prev i ous year, accord i ng F i nd these to the “2017 Georg i a publ i cat i ons Ag Forecast S i tuat i on and more at and Outlook Reports . ” https : //t . uga . If you ’ ve been mean i ng edu/387 . to cult i vate your own qual i ty, h i gh-y i eld garden to supplement your d i et and save your dollars, Un i vers i ty of Georg i a Cooperat i ve Extens i on can help you tend your crop . Check out the follow i ng publ i cat i ons from UGA Extens i on agents, hort i cultur i sts and Master Gardener Extens i on Volunteers, and remember — w i th r i gorous work comes v i gorous vegg i es! Vegetable Garden i ng i n Georg i a (C 963) There i s noth i ng qu i te l i ke a home garden to supply you and your fam i ly w i th a var i ety of nutr i t i ous vegetables that can be enjoyed fresh or preserved for later use . When space i s l i m i ted, a plent i ful supply of crops can be grown w i th a few, properly tended plants . Home Garden Ser i es: Vegetable Garden Calendar (C 943) You can plant or harvest someth i ng from your garden almost all year . The monthly recommendat i ons i n the vegetable calendar can be used as a gu i de to plann i ng and i mplement i ng your garden work . Home Garden Ser i es: Start i ng Plants from Seed for the Home Gardener (B 1432) A number of plants — part i cularly vegetables, annuals and herbs — can be grown from seed . There are several advantages to propagat i ng plants from seed . Seeds are relat i vely i nexpens i ve, allow i ng the home gardener to get many plants for the pr i ce of a few transplants . UGA faculty prov i de research-based, peer-rev i ewed i nformat i on and recommendat i ons to the publ i c through Extens i on publ i cat i ons . • Erin Yates GROW YOUR GREENS 4 southscapes // SPRING 2017 PHOTOS CONTRIBUTED, COLLAGES BY KATIE WALKER .