Front Yard – Spring Update

Remember back in the fall when I was busy cutting and dividing perennials for the front garden? The new little plants held on through the winter – mostly cuttings of lamb’s ear, artichoke, sage, euphorbia, and irises. It was a slow start in February, with just a few spots of green emerging from the mulch…. Read more »

Baby Fruit

A home orchard is the best way to savor the delicious sweetness of summer fruits. I would argue that it is just as much fun to watch the baby fruits develop as it is to devour them when ripe. It’s like Christmas as a kid – the presents were that much more fun because of… 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 »

Awakening Garden

April has stirred the garden to life and I wanted to share some of those signs of beauty with you this morning. Of course there is a lot to be done this season, but this moment in time reminds me that there is a lot to cherish as well. By June we will be swimming… Read more »

Harvesting Compost

Building a compost bin system is one of the first things I do when I move into a new place. It feels good to know I am working on building good soil even before my boxes are unpacked inside. My three bin system ensures we have a constant supply of compost “cooking” outside: one pile… Read more »

How to Thin Raspberries

Our fence is lined with ever-bearing raspberries, a wonderful addition to our edible landscape. Just as the name implies, ever-bearing raspberries will give you a continual harvest throughout the summer and fall. They do well in our Pacific NW climate and are a carefree addition to the homestead. The berries deteriorate quickly after harvest, which… Read more »

Country Gardens Magazine Article

Run, don’t walk, to grab your Spring 2013 copy of Country Gardens magazine (on sale March 12th). I wrote an article for this issue all about my journey through modern homesteading. They did a fabulous photo shoot of our homestead, so you can enjoy all kinds of gorgeous garden inspiration. I am so giddy to… Read more »

Time to Wake Up

It’s still pretty grey in Portland in late February, but a careful eye in the garden shows signs of spring at every turn. Here are some promises of spring I am noticing in the garden. Our flowering quince shrubs have buds at the brink of opening. Quince will mostly set fruit on woody stems developed… Read more »

Winter Blooming Witch Hazel

It’s the beginning of a new gardening season and already I see blooming plants that I wish I could make room for in my garden. On a recent afternoon, I took a tour of my favorite local nursery to admire their many varieties of winter blooming witch hazel. You will generally find three varieties of… Read more »

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