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TAG : gardening

Planting Seeds of Hope

We fully planted plot No. 1 of our two vegetable gardens this week. Typical of most gardeners, we complain that our plot is both too large and too small: When we’re about 2/3 of the way done planting and want to quit because we’re so tired, it’s too large. But when it’s fully planted ...

Planting for Our Vitamix

Dear friends,Larry and I have been trying to eat more nutritious foods, and have improved immensely since gardening and farming. I use my blender for many things, but especially for fruit and berry smoothies. Recently, we purchased a Vitamix blender in order to make delicious green smoothies ...

Successful Gardening Means Recordkeeping

A couple years back I paid 25 cents for an unused gardening journal at a church rummage sale. When I got it home my husband asked me, “Why on earth did you buy that?” Wouldn’t you know, we started using it that spring and since then the journal has become like a bible for us. We consult ...

Spring Update

It is interesting how time becomes warped as winter just goes on and on .... It is amazing to enjoy the first warmer days of spring. Everything is waking up.One of the projects I have been working on is reclaiming the greenhouse. Pat and I built this greenhouse for Dad about 10 years ago. It ...

Time to Put the Peas In

Do you have your peas in yet? If not, time to hit your garden plot. Growing peas is easy and rewarding – they are the perfect early crop. Peas like cool temperatures, and, luckily, snow is no problem for them. Peas stop producing once the temperatures get up around 70 F, so the earlier you ...

A Recycled Downsized Greenhouse Idea

A greenhouse? Nah. Don’t need one. We garden all year without the aid of a greenhouse. But it would be nice for me to hang out in a warm, sunny greenhouse on cold winter days. So, maybe .... We started gathering old windows. The plan was to create a foundation and framework to hold all ...

A How-To For Seed Starting

It’s time to start seeds for your vegetable garden. Here are a few tips to get you started.The first thing to consider is space. You’ll need a place warm enough for germination or some way to warm your containers. We bring a patio table into the living room. It makes for pretty tight ...

Well House to Potting Shed in One Day

The water well house was built with the original house in 1947 out of brick cinder blocks and appeared to be falling apart. The original yellow paint was peeling off and several bricks were missing or broken. Upon closer inspection, we found the bricks had been pushed inside the structure due ...

Gardeners Start Your Engines

We start our vegetable garden 100 percent from seeds. If you’re in the habit of hitting Home Depot for plants come May or June, I encourage you to give seed starting a try. It’s not that hard and very rewarding!This year our seeds came from many sources. My mom gave me Scarlet Runner Bean ...

Frugality in the Garden With a DIY Compost Bin

I’m pretty sure Grandma and Grandpa never heard the word “repurpose” but the idea behind repurposing was certainly central to their way of life. Having lived through the Great Depression, the phrase, “Use it up, wear it out, make it do or do without,” was a household aphorism.I ...

Annual Springtime Jobs Include Yard Work

Is there anything more motivating than springtime? If there are any traces of snow left, it’s usually in the form of little melting rivulets headed for streams and rivers. The cold, unforgiving Minnesota winter is in my rearview mirror, and warmer weather is gaining a toehold.That warm ...

Expand Your Garden Space With a Community Garden Plot

We just renewed our community garden plot for 2014, through Capital District Community Gardens (CDCG). Community gardens are available land (may be privately or publicly owned) that has been divided into individual garden plots. CDCG has more than 850 individual plots in 50 gardens in our ...

Water Water Everywhere Not Likely

On January 17, California Governor Jerry Brown declared a drought emergency in much of the state’s agricultural counties. This has been the driest year on record since they started keeping track more than 100 years ago. In 1976-77, a few years before I married into the family, my husband ...

Seeds Made Just For Me

As I browse through my seed catalogs, I can’t help but notice that the number of seed varieties for most plants are downright overwhelming. And so is the advice about which ones to plant in different parts of the country. Every producer has a different recommendation and, unfortunately, none ...

Winter Break on the Homestead

In December our weekends are free for the first time since March. Spring, summer and fall find us working to grow and preserve our own food and further our self-reliance. Since Jim and I both still work full-time, gardening occupies our free time nine months of the year: from starting plants ...