Food & Wine
Southern Living

Southern Living February 2018

SOUTHERN LIVING celebrates the legendary food, gracious homes, lush gardens, and distinct places that make the South unique. In every edition you’ll find dozens of recipes prepared in our famous test kitchens, guides to the best travel experiences, decorating ideas and inspiration, and gardening tips tailored specifically to your climate.

United States
Meredith Corporation
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13 Issues

in this issue

2 min.
secret ingredients

THIS ISSUE MARKS the 40th anniversary of the Hummingbird Cake— or at least the 40th anniversary of the February 1978 issue of Southern Living, in which a story called “Making the Best of Bananas” featured Mrs. L.H. Wiggins’ Hummingbird Cake recipe for the first time. We don’t know much about Mrs. Wiggins except that she worked as a housemother at The University of North Carolina at Greensboro, as Kathleen Purvis reports in “The Mystery of Hummingbird Cake” (page 109). But we do know that Mrs. Wiggins’ layer cake struck a chord with readers, and over the years, it has become the most requested recipe in the history of the magazine. Maybe it’s because of the rich, nutty flavor; maybe it’s because the cake is exceptionally moist and keeps forever; or…

6 min.
new home old soul

BEAUTIFUL SPACES—INSIDE AND OUT OXFORD, MISSISSIPPI, was love at first sight for lawyer turned interior designer Virginia Mary Brown. When she and her now-husband, Ray, began dating, he would take her to visit the old college town, where his family has deep roots. She was instantly charmed by the picturesque square and the shady streets, which inspired the setting in many Faulkner novels. Although the couple ultimately settled in Houston, Texas, Oxford would always remain their special getaway. Fast-forward two decades: Their oldest son, Ray Brown, III, enrolled at the University of Mississippi, providing them the perfect opportunity to build a second home in Oxford. After scoring a downtown property, they selected a 2,600-square-foot Southern Living House Plan (Turnball Park, plan 1124, by Moser Design Group, Inc.). Brown knew that the exterior’s…

2 min.
glorious greens

BRANCH OUT beyond the traditional Southern gardener’s collard greens and try Swiss chard, beets, and spinach. These nutritious, colorful options are quick growers that thrive in February’s cool temperatures. Plant them now so you can reap their rewards through the middle of April. THE PLANT SELECTION Because the cool-weather window in the South can be short and unpredictable this time of year, it’s okay to take a shortcut by choosing transplants (also known as starter plants) instead of growing from seeds. Once the temperatures climb, greens will begin to bolt (bloom). You can buy transplants in packs of six at garden centers. If you have more time and patience, sow seeds. You’ll find some of the best options online at southernexposure.com and johnnyseeds.com. ‘Summer Perfection’ and ‘Tyee’ are two spinach selections that…

2 min.
the grumpy gardener

HEADLINE NEWS > An organic yard service suggested that we use newspapers to mulch the flower beds around our home. “What a wonderful idea!” we thought. Several weeks later, our flower beds were infested with earwigs, grubs, and millipedes. We ended up having to call in a professional.—MARY » Newspaper pages used as mulch absorb a lot of water. As you’ve discovered, many insects love the moist, dark environment beneath them. In the future, I recommend recycling the newspapers and mulching with ground bark or pine straw instead. This will discourage weeds without attracting all of the creepy-crawlies. TOSS ’EM > I have a container of tulips that were forced into bloom indoors. If I keep them in a sunny place, can I save them and then plant them outside later?—MICHELE » It sounds like…

2 min.
ready for weather

PET OF THE MONTH @mollythenewfie Follow this lady’s adventures in small-town Argyle, Texas. GIVE A DOG A HOME ▸ Start with a basic structure that has a floor, roof, and sides to block out the wind and rain. Be sure to rotate it seasonally. During the winter, the opening should face south to avoid exposure to cool north winds. In the summer, turn the shelter toward the east so the opening faces away from the blazing afternoon sun. WATCH THE THERMOMETER ▸ On sunny days, it’s okay to leave dogs outside in temps below 32 degrees, but when nighttime temperatures drop below freezing, bring them indoors. On rainy and windy days, be sure to monitor both the temperature and wind-chill, which accounts for moisture in the air. Once the windchill dips under 32 degrees, pets…

1 min.

A SEASONAL GUIDE FOR GREEN THUMBS NO PLANT DOES A BETTER JOB of announcing the end of winter than classic border forsythia (Forsythia x intermedia). Also called “yellow bells” for the shape and color of its blooms, it responds to the first mild days of late winter and early spring by smothering its leafless branches with blossoms. It’s extremely easy to grow in USDA Zones 6 to 8, needing only good drainage and full to partial sun. Do not prune it into meatballs and boxes! Maintain the plant’s graceful, arching form by cutting it back to about 2 feet tall after it blooms. It will quickly send up new branches to regain its former size and shape by summer’s end and be ready to bloom again the following spring.…