Planting Fall Garlic

It’s not too late to get a fall planting of garlic in the ground. This easy to grow crop is adaptable to different soil types and is an incredibly low-maintenance plant. My dad shared some of his garlic harvest with us and we have been saving the best and biggest bulbs to plant this fall…. Read more »

Snapshots of Autumn

The wind and rains are rolling in on these late fall evenings – a reminder that winter is rapping on our door. Here are some snippets of what autumn has looked like on our homestead.   Fall creates a mix of cool blues and gray-greens in the front yard, dotted with yellow leaves from our… Read more »

Prepping Beds for Winter

The days are growing darker and there is a bite in the morning breeze. Before the first frost hits, which for Portlanders is around November 15th, the homestead needs to be prepped for winter. We have had some fierce rain and wind storms already, so when we had a clear weekend I jumped on my… Read more »

October Harvest

October is giving us the last drops of warm-season harvests, but it’s time to draw the curtain for winter. Juniper helped me pick the last of the ripe fruits and veggies. Her way of helping has more to do with eating than actually putting anything in the harvest basket, but I enjoy the company nevertheless…. Read more »

Fresh Tomato Soup

I have been busily canning stewed tomatoes, marinara sauce and ketchup, but still the harvest basket fills with tomatoes. Roasting fresh tomatoes with garden onions and garlic is an easy way to blow through that late summer harvest. Sauce tomatoes work best, like the delicious San Marzanos. But any old mix of tomatoes will work… Read more »

How to Plant Tomatoes

It is time to get those tomatoes in the ground! I pulled out almost everything in my late spring bed – all the bolted celery, arugula and mature onions – and replaced them with healthy young tomato starts. There are a few things you can do when planting your tomatoes to make them extra happy…. Read more »

From Spring to Summer

I can’t tell you how many people I have heard gushing about the amazingly sunny spring we are enjoying in Portland… How much they love being outside again… How it’s so overdue after a gray winter… Meanwhile, I’m the curmudgeon wishing for showers in the forecast! It has turned out to be one of the… Read more »

The Case for Boring Vegetables

My first years of gardening really focused on the divas of the produce world: tomatoes, pepper, eggplant and melons. Those are the plants that want a hot climate (something the mild NW can barely provide) and lots of water. They are the plants we garden nerds coo and crow over with one another, talking about… Read more »

Seed Starting Basics

Starting your vegetables from seed is not for the faint of heart, but it can be really rewarding for those willing to put in the time and effort. The primary advantages of starting seeds are choosing from a wider range of vegetable varieties, having more control over the size and vigor of your plants, and… Read more »

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