Q I have a vague recollection that my aunt made jelly from mountain ash berries, but it's possible the berries were from some other tree. Can you tell me if mountain ash berries can be made into jelly?
Mountain ash (Sorbus)m berries can be used by themselves or with apples (which are close relatives). Place washed and drained ripe berries in a pan with enough water to float. Simmer for 45 minutes until the berries burst. Strain through a jelly bag and then measure the juice into a pan. Add sugar, cup for cup, plus one extra cup of sugar for every six cups of juice. Boil until ready to jell (see recipe books to tell when).
A nice touch is a piece of rose geranium leaf added to the bottom of the glass. A squirt of lemon juice can be added before boiling. Anyone wishing the recipe using apples can send a self-addressed, stamped envelope to the garden editor, The Christian Science Monitor, One Norway Street, Boston, Mass. 02115.
While you're about it, why don't you leave a few berries for our feathered friends.
Q After learning about Non Stop begonias, we grew some from seeds and they have been spectacular - almost as large as tuberous begonia blooms and more profuse. Can we bring the potted ones indoors and have them bloom through the winter?
We brought ours indoors last fall and they bloomed until late December, at which time they went dormant but only after the tuber had formed. We left them in the pots and stored them in our garage, which never gets below 50 degrees F. We moistened them in February and again in March. In late April they sprouted. We watered them more often and by June we again had blooms that lasted all summer long.
This year we will do the same, but we will repot them in new soil in March or April. They are a real credit to begonia breeders, being resistant to mildew and extremely prolific.
Folks who want to start seeds of Non Stop begonias and have them in bloom by May should start them in January.