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Showing posts from November, 2011

Winter Reading

It is hard to believe that it is the last week of November! The weather is incredible. I just finished spreading compost over the majority of the main garden and the raised bed. Normally this time of year I am staring at a blanket of white that covers the lawn daydreaming about warmer weather while I thumb through last years seed catalogues.

Yesterday I ordered a few 2012 catalogues in preparation for just such an event and thought that I would pass them along to you in case you were interested in heirloom seed stock. My old reliable is the Seed Savers Exchange out of Decorah, Iowa. Their new catalogue is coming out in early December. For those of you interested when I was on the site yesterday, www.seedsavers.org , I noticed they are selling last seasons seeds 50% off. Of course the catch is , especially with heirlooms, that the older they get the less potent they are, but if you are willing to be patient and work your crop over a year or two's time you will have made a solid …

The Final Numbers

On numerous occasion this year I have mentioned that I have been keeping a running tally of the amount of produce grown in our gardens this year in relationship to the cost to get everything up and running as well as the amount of money saved on groceries this year. I have finally compiled all the numbers and thought that I would post them for you. Our garden space is around 600 square feet give or take a few. I ended up getting the price per pound from the USDA website. In the end these stats are ballpark figures but I think it gives everyone a good idea of what type of year it has been. What this list does not take into consideration are the numerous pounds of food simply eaten straight out of the garden by myself or the children and their friends or all the fresh herbs that we grow as well. Some items in our yard are simply not mentioned or recorded, for example apples are not listed on this chart because I have been pruning our old tree over the past few years and this year was t…

Book Review (Newspaper, Pennies, Cardboard & Eggs for Growing a Better Garden by Roger Yepsen)

Newspaper, Pennies, Cardboard & Eggs for Growing a Better Garden by Roger Yepsen and the Editors of Organic Gardening contains over 400 ideas for year long gardening.

I enjoy Yepsen's work. He is also responsible for "A Celebration of Heirloom Vegetables", "Berries" and "Apples". This particular book is a reasonably quick read for 346 pages. The format reminds me of a blog to be truthful. The entries are short and to the point. Due to the quick pace of this book it is easy to read it in a matter of a few sittings.

The book is broken up into ten chapters ranging from seed starting and saving to tools, supports and storage. It touches on the theory of biodynamic gardening via lunar phases (without labeling it as such) and making your own compost bin. It provides advice on healthier houseplants and Asian eggplants. Color schemes for flower beds and how to replace a broken handle on your most trusted garden shovel. On some level I may not be doing …