row covers
Spring Row Covers

Spring Row Covers

We are in the middle of a cool, wet spring which is very typical for the Pacific Northwest. Although you can plant several crops outside right now (kale, chard, lettuces, broccoli, etc), most vegetables won’t grow too much until the weather warms up. Thankfully, I have a trick for planting my vegetables outside a little...
Prepping Beds for Winter

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...
January Harvest

January Harvest

It has been a cold, dry January thus far – at least it seems that way to me. Some of the crops that typically overwinter uncovered have been barely hanging on. This chilly swiss chard is one example. The plants are still alive, but we won’t be harvesting them until it warms up enough for...
Protected Raised Beds

Protected Raised Beds

Vegetables and herbs grow all around the homestead, but a big portion of the harvest is grown in our four raised beds. They are as attractive as they are functional, but unfortunately we are not the only ones who feel that way. Neighbor cats and our backyard chickens also love the raised beds. The cats...
Winter Harvesting

Winter Harvesting

My outdoor garden beds have been providing me with a steady supply of the usual winter suspects: kale, swiss chard, spinach, collard greens, leeks, and tasty brussel sprouts. Oregon, especially the Willamette Valley, is fortunate to have relatively mild winters and we pretty much live on brassicas from November through February. This is the first...