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Cookies For The Christmas

Cookies For The Christmas

1-Christmas Play Dough    

You will need:

1 cup flour

1 table spoon oil
1 cup water
½ cup salt
2 teaspoons of cream of tartar
2 teaspoons of gold glitter

How to make:

1. Mix all ingredients together in a saucepan with a whisk to remove the lumps.

2. Cook over low heat stirring with a wooden spoon. The mixture will thicken and become a big blob.
3. Take play dough off the heat and turn out onto the bench.
4. Knead until play dough is smooth.

Tips & Ideas:

- To minimise the transfer of glitter onto hands and play area, add the glitter during cooking rather than kneading the glitter in after cooking.

2-Christmas Gingerbread Man Cookies

You will need:

Green and red smarties to decorate

Gingerbread cookie cutter
125g softened butter
½ cup brown sugar
½ cup golden syrup
1 egg, separated
2 ½ cups plain flour
1 tbs. ground ginger
1 tsp. mixed spice
1 tsp. bicarbonate of soda

How to make:

1. Beat butter and sugar in a bowl until pale and creamy. Add golden syrup and egg yolk and beat until combined.

2. Stir in the flour, ginger, mixed spice and bicarbonate of soda. Turn onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth. Cover with plastic wrap and allow to rest in the fridge for 15 minutes.
3. Place the dough between 2 sheets of baking paper and roll out until about 4mm thick. Cut our gingerbread man shapes with cookie cutter and place onto baking trays. Repeat with any excess dough.
4. Bake in oven for 10 minutes or until brown.
5. Remove from oven and transfer to a cooling rack.
6. Decorate with Smarties and draw on gingerbread face, arms and legs with a skewer or blunt knife.

3-Short Bread Christmas Cookies

You will need:
300g softened butter
1 cup icing sugar
3 cups plain flour
Baking paper
Christmas cookie cutters

How to make:

1. Mix butter and icing sugar together with an electric mixer.

2. Gradually add flour and mix well.
3. Place baking paper onto bench top and knead mixture until smooth.
4. Place in the fridge to rest for 15 minutes.
5. Roll out flat onto the bench with a rolling pin.
6. Press Christmas shape cookie cutters into the dough.
7. Bake at 180 degrees for 15 minutes or until golden brown.

Tips & Ideas:

- Placing the mixture into the fridge for 15 minutes helps stop the mixture

sticking to the rolling pin and gives a clean finish with the cookie cutters.

Living Christmas Trees

Living Christmas Trees

Living Christmas Trees

Living Christmas trees are festive and beautiful for the holiday season, as well as a new addition to your landscape after the holidays. Make certain the tree will fit into your landscape and that the type of tree you are considering will ultimately thrive in your local environment. Most evergreen trees grow to be quite large. It is important to take mature size into account during the decision making process. Consider when the tree can be planted; if the ground is frozen the tree will need to be cared for outdoors until a good planting time arrives.

Do not bring the tree inside right away. The tree can be left in the garage or a covered outside area to ease the transition to being indoors. The tree needs to be watered and protected from the weather during this transition period. A thorough cleaning of debris should be done at this time also. The location of the tree indoors should be away from heating ducts, fireplaces or wood stoves. Decorate the tree with lights that produce little heat and water the tree regularly to keep
the soil and roots moist. Provide as much natural light as possible. A week or seven days is the premium time for a living tree to be indoors.

After the holidays, move the tree outdoors to a cool bright porch for a few days to ease the transition to outdoor temperatures. When planting the tree, make certain the top of the root ball or the tree crown is at or slightly above ground level. Water the tree deeply and apply mulch.
Colorado Blue Spruce (Picea pungens ‘Glauca’) is a good living tree choice. 

This spruce grows about one foot a year and likes plenty of water so is a good choice near lawns. The Colorado Blue Spruce is also good in a large planter for several years. The Dwarf Alberta Spruce (Picea glauca ’Conica’) grows very slowly, three or four inches a year, and can be grown for years in a container as a small Christmas tree. 

The dwarf spruce is conical in shape. The Dwarf Alberta Spruce prefers regular watering, soil enriched with organic material and shade from the hottest afternoon sun. Douglas Fir (Pseudotsuga menziesee) and White Fir (Abies concolor) are also popular choices for living Christmas trees. They are moderate to fast growers depending on elevation.

There is something very special about displaying a living Christmas tree that provides a tree for you to plant in your garden or in a container after the holidays. Living Christmas trees are usually more expensive than cut Christmas trees, but they also provide more value and create less waste. Enjoy the upcoming holiday season!

Preparing The Garden For The Winter

Preparing The Garden For The Winter


1. Apply an anti-desiccant spray (such as WiltPruf or Folicote) to newly-planted evergreen trees and shrubs to reduce both water loss from leaves and needles and the damage caused by drying winter winds and afternoon sun. Follow label directions; apply only to plants listed on the label. Apply when soil is moist and temperatures will be over 40°F for 24 hours or as directed.

2. Check plants damage caused by pests and for over-wintering egg masses of Eastern tent caterpillar or gypsy moth, bag-worm bags, and scale insects. Many pests are more easily seen after leaves have fallen. Have the problem identified, then physically remove it or make notes to control it at the appropriate time.

3. Pull away any mulch around trunks of trees and shrubs. Leave 4 inches or more between the mulch and the trunk to maintain a doughnut of mulch. Mulch on the trunk invites fungus and insect problems, promotes development of adventitious roots, and may harbor "varmints," such as voles, which eat tender bark and roots in winter.

4. Wrap soft twine, pantyhose, or broad tape around multi-trunked or stemmed evergreens, such as tall juniper, arborvitae, boxwood, and yews that may split under snow or ice weight.

5. Place board shelters (a-frame structures similar to the sandwich boards worn to advertise a deli) over shrubs susceptible to snow weight damage, especially those plants under the eaves of houses.

6. Put a burlap screen around small marginally hardy plants and broadleaved evergreens that are prone to winter burn. Put stakes in the ground before the ground freezes (November). Tack the burlap to the stakes in late December.

7. If the Christmas tree is balled and burlapped and meant to be planted outdoors, dig the hole before the ground freezes. Place the soil in a box and store it where it won't freeze. Cover the hole with a plywood sheet or fill the hole with leaves or mulch until the tree can be planted after the holiday.


1. Deciduous trees and shrubs may be trimmed after the leaves fall and there is no danger of new growth. Needled evergreens may be lightly pruned of excess growth. Do any necessary heavy shearing of evergreens and severe or renewal pruning of all plants in late winter/early spring.

2. "Bleeders," trees that drip sap when pruned or damaged in early spring (maple, birch, dogwood, elm, sour gum), can be pruned in late fall/early winter after most leaves have fallen, or in May or June. Bleeding does not cause damage to trees, but the dripping sap may stain the trunk or items under the tree and will attract insects.

3. Summer-blooming shrubs are pruned in winter because they set their flower buds on new spring growth. Do not prune spring-blooming plants in fall or winter. This will remove the flower buds that developed the previous August or September. Spring-blooming plants should be pruned immediately after flowering.

4. Remove dead, diseased, damaged, or severely insect-infested stems and branches.

Roasted Chicken Breasts with Fresh Beans & Sage

Roasted Chicken Breasts with Fresh Beans & Sage

Roasted Chicken Breasts with Fresh Beans & Sage


 4 cups (2 lb/1 kg) fresh shelling beans, shelled

5 Tbsp (3 fl oz/80 ml) olive oil

3 cloves garlic, peeled

1 bay leaf

3 fresh sage leaves Salt and freshly ground pepper

4 skin-on boneless chicken breasts, tenders removed

How to make it

Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C). Place the beans in a heavy pot and add water to cover by 1 inch (2.5 cm). Add 1 Tbsp of the olive oil, the garlic, bay leaf, sage, and 1 tsp salt. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, and cook until tender, about 30 minutes. Add more water to cover the beans, if needed.

Season to taste with salt and set aside. Season the chicken with salt and pepper. In a large ovenproof frying pan over medium high heat, sear the chicken on one side in 2 Tbsp of the oil, 3–4 minutes. Turn the chicken over and put the pan in the oven.

Roast until cooked through, 5–8 minutes. Transfer to a plate, pour any pan drippings around the chicken and let rest for 3–4 minutes. Spoon the beans and a little of their cooking liquid on the side of the chicken and drizzle with the remaining 2 Tbsp olive oil. Serve right away.

Crostini with Fava Bean Spread

Crostini with Fava Bean Spread

Crostini with Fava Bean Spread


- 1 large baguette, cut into slices
- 1 ⁄4 inch (6 mm) thick
- 5 Tbsp (3 fl oz/80 ml) extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra for brushing
- 2 lb (1 kg) fresh fava (broad) beans
- Salt and freshly ground pepper
- 3 Tbsp (3 fl oz/90 ml) heavy (double) cream, plus more if needed
- 4 Tbsp chopped mint

How to make it 

Shaved aged hard cheese, such as Parmesan, for garnish.
Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C).

Brush the baguette slices on both sides with 2 Tbsp of the olive oil and bake in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet until lightly golden, about 10 minutes. Turn the slices over and bake, about 10 minutes more. Set aside to cool.

Remove the fava beans from their pods and discard the pods. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the beans and cook until tender, 2–3 minutes (the amount of time required will depend on the freshness of the beans). 

Drain the beans and then immediately plunge into a bowl of ice water.

When cool enough to handle, slip off the skins and discard.

In a food processor, process the beans, the remaining 3 Tbsp oil, 3 Tbsp of the cream, 2 tsp salt, 1 tsp pepper, and the mint until a creamy purée forms. If the mixture seems too dry, add up to 3 Tbsp more cream. Taste and adjust the seasoning.

Spread the purée on the baguette slices and arrange on a platter. Sprinkle with the cheese and serve right away.

Hidden Health Secrets of Lemons

Hidden Health Secrets of Lemons

Hidden Health Secrets of Lemons

Health Benefits of Lemon

Health benefits of lemon include treatment of throat infections, indigestion, constipation, dental problems, fever, hair care, skin care, internal bleeding, rheumatism, burns, overweight, respiratory disorders, cholera and high blood pressure. Known for its therapeutic property since generations, lemon helps to strengthen your immunity system and cleanses your stomach. 

It is not only a blood purifier but also enables body to fight diseases. Lemon juice, especially, has several health benefits associated with it. 

Useful for treating kidney stones, curing heart strokes and reducing the body temperature, lemonade helps you to stay calm and cool.

Health benefits of lemon are due to many nourishing elements like vitamin C, vitamin B, phosphorous, proteins, and carbohydrates present in it. Lemon is a fruit that contains flavonoid, a composite that holds antioxidant and anti-cancer properties. It helps to prevent diabetes,
constipation, high blood pressure, skin care, fever, hair care, dental care, indigestion and many other health problems. Studies conducted at the American Urological Association highlight the fact that lemonade or lemon juice can cure kidney stones by forming urinary citrate, which can prevent formation of crystals.

People use lemon to make lemonade by mixing lemon juice with water. Many people use lemon as a washing agent, as it can remove stains. Lemon can also repel mosquitoes.  

Drinking of lemon juice with olive oil helps to get rid of gall stones. Lemon is well known for its medicinal control and is used in many different ways. As per the results reported in a study of Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases, lemon provides human guard against inflammatory polyarthritis and arthritis.

health benefits of lemon can be described as under:

• Indigestion and Constipation: Lemon juice helps to cure problems related to indigestion and constipation. Add a few drops of lemon on your dish (take care lemon does not go well with milk), and it will aid in difestion. Lemon acts as a blood purifier and a cleansing agent.

A good drink post lunch or dinner is fresh lemon soda (also called fresh lime soda in many places). The recipe is add lemon juice, some cold water, soda, salts (common salt or rock salt) and sugar/honey (if you want it sweet), and mix it in a glass. You can also add some mint leaves or crushed fennel seeds for added taste. Drink this whenever you have a heavy lunch/dinner.

• Fever: Lemon juice can treat a person who is suffering from cold, flu or fever. It helps to break fever by increasing perspiration.

• Dental Care: Lemon juice is used in dental care also. If fresh lemon juice is applied on the areas of toothache, it can assist in getting rid of the pain. The massages of lemon juice on gums can stop gum bleeding. It gives relief from bad smell and other problems related to gums. In addition, lemon can also be used in regular cleansing of your teeth.

You can look for a toothpaste containing lemon as one of the ingredients, or add a  drop of lemon juice on your toothpaste. Some people also rub their teeth with the outer shell (the inner side touching your teeth) of a lemon after removing the juice. Take care  if you mouth starts burning, quickly put some water in your mouth.

• Hair Care: Lemon juice has proved itself in the treatment of hair care on a wide scale. Lemon juice if applied on the scalp can treat problems like dandruff, hair fall and other problems related to hair and scalp. Lemon juice if applied on the hair, gives a natural shine to hair.

• Skin Care: Lemon juice, being a natural antiseptic medicine, can participate to cure problems related to skin. Lemon juice can be applied to stop sun burn also. It helps to get relieved from bee sting as well.

Lemon juice can also be applied on the skin for acne and eczema problems. It acts as an anti ageing remedy and can remove wrinkles and blackheads. Drinking of lemon juice mixed with water and honey brings glow to the skin. If you search thoroughly in the market, you will find some soaps containing lemon juice also.

• Burns: Lemon juice if applied on the areas of burns can fade the scars. As lemon is a cooling agent, it reduces the burning sensation on the skin.

• Internal Bleeding: As lemon has antiseptic and styptics properties, it can stop internal bleeding. You
can apply lemon juice on small cotton and place inside to nose to stop nose bleeding.

• Rheumatism: Lemon is also a diuretic and can treat rheumatism and arthritis. It helps to flush out bacteria and toxins out of the body.

• Weight Loss: If a person takes lemon juice mixed with lukewarm water and honey, it can reduce the body weight as well. 

• Respiratory Disorders: Lemon juice assists in curing respiratory problems, along with breathing problems and revives a person suffering from asthma. Lemon, being a rich rich source of vitamin C, helps in dealing with respiratory disorders.

• Cholera: The diseases like cholera or malaria can be treated with lemon juice, as it acts as a blood purifier.

• Foot Relaxation: Lemon is an aromatic and antiseptic agent and is useful in foot relaxation. Add some lemon juice in warm water and dip the foot in the water to get foot relaxation.

• Corn: Lemon juice can dissolve lumps on the skin. It can be applied at the places where the skin has been hardened up. Drinking of lemon juice with water can facilitate the patient to get rid of stones.

• Throat Infections: Lemon is an excellent fruit that aids in fighting problems related to throat infections as it has an antibacterial property.

• High Blood Pressure: Drinking lemon juice is helpful for people suffering with heart problems as it contains potassium. It controls high blood pressure, dizziness, nausea as provides relaxation to mind and body. It reduces mental stress and depression.

Lemon: Nature’s Boon

Lemon has proved to be nature’s boon to the entire mankind. It gives solution to many health related problems. It has its own set of antiseptic and natural medications. Make sure you eat atleast one-fourth or half lemon daily.

12 Amazing Benefits Of Purslane

12 Amazing Benefits Of Purslane

12 Amazing Benefits Of Purslane

What is purslane?

Purslane is a leafy vegetable that is probably native to the Mediterranean. The scientific name for Purslane is Portulaca oleracea and is distributed in Europe, Asia, the Middle East and Africa. It is an annual succulent with a slightly sour and salty taste that makes it an interesting supplement to the palate. The entire plant, including leaves, stems, flowers and seeds, is edible and has been used in various forms for millennia. 

Purslane has been used since prehistory and is widely mentioned in ancient Chinese medicine as well as Aboriginal culture as far as Australia. In the United States, however, it is generally ignored or bred and treated like any other invasive vegetation in gardens and terraces.

1. Omega-3

You thought you could only get Omega-3 from salmon and flaxseed. You will find that the Omega-3 fatty acids found in Purslane, according to Mother Earth Living, serve as fuel for the brain, prevent heart attacks and treat depression.

2. Improve heart health

Dr. Artemis P. Simopoulos, MD, Center for Genetics, Nutrition and Health, Washington DC, USA in his research, he noted that high levels of omega-3 fatty acids helped reduce the amount of LDL or bad cholesterol in the body. This helps to improve the cholesterol balance in our bloodstream.

Omega-3-rich foods have been shown to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease and arteriosclerosis by preventing heart attacks and strokes. Due to its vasodilator behavior, potassium in Purpan lowers blood pressure, which relaxes blood vessels and reduces cardiac tension.

3. weight loss

Studies show that the veranda is very low in calories, but rich in nutrients and high in fiber. This means that people can feel satisfied after a Purslane meal without significantly increasing their calorie intake or helping them lose weight and maintain their diet.

4. Potassium

Complete your daily diet with Pumlane as the potassium in the leaves keeps your blood pressure under control.

5. Gastrointestinal disease

Some people may fear alternative remedies for their various health problems, but in traditional Chinese medicine, purple (known in Chinese medicine as Ma Chi Xian) has been used to treat diarrhea and bleeding intestinal hemorrhoids. and dysentery And even today it is used to treat a variety of intestinal problems. These benefits are mainly attributed to organic compounds found in Purslane, such as dopamine, malic acid, citric acid, alanine, glucose and many others.

6. skin protection

Purslane can also help to treat a variety of skin problems. A study published in 2004 showed that poplar leaves contain a lot of vitamin A. Vitamin A in combination with the active ingredient cocktail contained in this "weed" helps to reduce the inflammation caused by bee stings. and snake bites in topical application. It improves the health and appearance of the skin, reduces wrinkles and stimulates the healing of skin cells to eliminate scars and stains when they are consumed.

7. Beta Carotene 

You can not think that purslane is a rich source of beta carotene because of its green color, but according to the Chicago Tribune, it is one of the main benefits of the plant.

8. Prevents cancer

Cancer is one of the most widespread and tragic diseases in the world. For this reason, any anti-cancer food is strongly recommended. A 2016 study suggests that purslane seed oil has antioxidant and antiproliferative properties that help reduce oxidative stress.

In addition, it contains significant amounts of vitamin C and vitamin A, which act as antioxidants against certain cancers, including lung and oral cancers. However, it also contains pigmented betaline compounds that give the plant its distinct yellow and red color. Betacyanins and betaxanthins are directly related to the anti-mutagenic effects in the body. This means that they prevent free radicals in healthy cells from causing mutations, thereby preventing the development of cancer.

9. Strengthens the bones

The minerals contained in Purslane make it a healthy option for people who want to prevent bone loss. [11] Calcium, magnesium, iron and manganese are important elements for the development of bone tissue and for accelerating the healing process of bones in our body. This can help prevent osteoporosis, a common age-related condition that affects millions of people.

10. Tryptophan: 

Purslane contains this important amino acid that regulates mood. Advanced Health states that eating Purslane can fight depression.

11. Betalain. 

Progressive Health states that Purslane contains Betalain, an antioxidant that prevents cholesterol from damaging blood vessels. For this reason, Purslane is known to positively affect LDL cholesterol levels.

12.Improve blood circulation

Due to the high content of iron and copper in the blind, the production of red blood cells is stimulated. Both minerals are essential for blood circulation because they deliver more oxygen to vital parts of the body and accelerate the healing of cells and organs. In addition, iron and copper also help improve hair growth and metabolic efficiency.

10 things You Have to Know About Lemon Trees

10 things You Have to Know About Lemon Trees

10 things You Have to Know About Lemon Trees

1-Fertilize lemon trees

Fertilize lemon trees once a month during your activity. Growth phase and once every 1 to 3 months in the fall and winter, though The tree is inactive. Older trees do not need to be fertilized inactive, but lemon tree fertilization is expected to increase during the year Growth once every 2-3 months.

Choose a nitrogen-rich fertilizer or a balanced NPK fertilizer. Optimally, it is specially designed for citrus fruits. If the tree has Blooming problems, try to use a phosphorus-rich fertilizer such bone meal. If phosphorus is missing, it can not produce. Flowers (which means that there are no fruits). Fertilized by foliar spray or distributed spraying. In a ring around the base of the tree. Be careful not to place it Fertilizer too close to the trunk of the tree.

2- Why does my lemon tree have thorns?

Beautiful and with so many tasty fruits. He comes as it is a shock to see a lemon tree armed with thorns. Nature has provided that the theses of the trees culminate for the same reason as the animals sporting pigs - protection against predators. Thorns of citrus fruits plants are more common in tender, young and less mature trees.

Trees Because thorns can be, even a thorn in the side of a grim reaper, Spin-free hybrids have been developed and are available for gardener.

3- How do lemon trees pour?

Watering lemon trees can be difficult because it is very small too much water has the same results - possibly death. water tank lemon trees grow like a houseplant. Water deep inside intervals and let the soil dry between the irrigation. Be sure to overeat lots of water, because citrus fruits do not tolerate damp roots. Make sure the container has sufficient drainage holes and places the plant on a solid pebble saucer Relative humidity is also important. Operate a humidifier while winter months, when the air is cold and dry. Lemon trees with water in The land is once a week manually or in the rain.

4- Why does the lemon tree dropping  leaves?

There is something interesting about lemon trees; cling to their leaves when the tree is dry and then lost when it is watered again.  It is important to agree with the irrigation of citrus fruits in general. Because this Trees do not like "wet feet" (roots), excessive watering can also cause tree lose leaves. In addition, lack of fertilizer can cause a lemon tree covered leaves. All three emphasize the tree and leaving the leaves is your reaction to this stress.

5- Why do the leaves turn yellow on the lemon tree?

The yellow leaves in the lemon trees may be water deficient. If lemons are water is stressed, they hold their leaves (until they are watered again), but the leaves may turn yellow as a last resort for irrigation. Lemon water on the floor trees once a week, depending on the rain and containers It would be a houseplant if the soil is dry or slightly damp. Also add one a few inches of mulch to keep the soil moisturized. Different reasons yellow leaves may contain pests or diseases.

6- How do I cut a lemon tree?

Unlike other fruit trees, lemon trees do not have to be pruned regularly .They must have removed the buttons as well as dead or members or weak branches that intersect. Even tall trees can benefit from it .Cut for a better penetration of light. Cut off the lemon trees afterwards harvest with a sharp pair of scissors or a saw and with gloves protect thorns. Always make your cuts with the blade in the direction.

Tree so as not to damage the bark. For large branches, use a section of three System. Start with a cut at an angle of 10 to 12 inches from the branch of the branch Cut 1/3 through the branch on the other side. Finish the cut branch a few inches over the length.

7- Why does not my lemon bloom?

If a lemon or lime has never flowered, this could be a bad rhizome; otherwise, the offender is likely to be a problem of irrigation or fertilization. Lemons you need constant irrigation, too much or too little damage. You also need a citrus fertilizer that is rich in potash and is poor nitrogen.

Excess nitrogen leads to beautiful foliage, but does not stimulate the tree They produce flowers, hence the fruit. The addition of phosphorus also has encourage flowering , lemon trees do not need much pruning elimination of dead or problematic branches and spores. Strawberries at the end of
the branches, so each size must be reasonable. That is possible excessive pruning is the culprit.

8- What causes the fruit to fall on lemon trees?

One of the reasons why a lemon drops fruit is when it has brought more support. This is normal and does not affect final production. In fact that it's just that nature is erased. When the fruits fall on the lemon trees, that's it however, excess is likely due to an environmental factor such as too much or too little water, insufficient fertilization, excessive size, disease or predator of insects.

9- How do I care for lemon trees?

The cultivation of citrus fruits in containers is ideal for those who do not live warmer climates A lemon dwarf variety is a good candidate for growing container. Make sure that the container is sufficiently drained and because you can move it easily, it's on wheels.

The lemon trees need constant irrigation, so they have to be programmed consistent.

Lemons in containers must be fertilized regularly. A weak one
Nitrogen slow-release fertilizer is a great way to feed and allow the tree take in the necessary nutrients over a period of time. Moisture is important for spray your lemon tree daily or place it on a pebble board. plum any branch of piglets or dead or diseased limbs. Move the tree as the temperatures are starting to fall.

10- How to care for lemon trees in winter?

Lemon trees work best when temperatures are in the 70s during the day and below. at 55 F. at night. When temperatures fall below this value, the tree becomes latent and can be killed as temperatures drop. So if you live in a colder area, it's best to breed a lemon in a bowl. Make sure that the container has wheels so the tree can move around the house easily in winter.

Cover the pot with a pebble board or use a humidifier in the winter to add some moisture to the air. Reduce fertilization during the winter months.

Light supplement with fluorescent lamps. When the temperatures are warm, move the lemon outwards so that it can be pollinated by bees and other insects. Depending on the location you will also find a variety of cold resistant citrus fruits.