Front Yard Update

It has been a year since we bought our new homestead and about six months since the front garden was installed. Time for an update on how it’s growing and some lessons learned! The concept was to design the front garden as a prairie. Our neighbors have two massive Coast Redwoods in their front yard, which… Read more »

2015 Vegetable Garden Plan

It’s time to plan those vegetable beds! Spring is around the corner and thoughtful planning now allows you to maximize the amount of vegetables you can fit in your space.  Think about what produce your family eats most often and make sure to include those in your plans. Also, consider factors like crop rotation and companion planting… Read more »

Fall is Planting Time

Fall is the best time of year for planting trees, shrubs and many perennials – including all those fabulous bulbs and tubers. Mother Nature will keep them watered and comfortable for several months, giving them lots of time to get established. Temperatures are cool and the ground is usually soft from autumn rain. Everything needs… Read more »

Why Practice Crop Rotation?

It’s time to start planting your fall crops. I know, I know… it seems crazy to think about winter when it’s a bazillion degrees outside, but it’s true. Before you start sowing seeds though, be strategic about where things get planted by practicing crop rotation. Put simply, crop rotation means you plant each type of… Read more »

May To Do List

It’s that time of year when the garden needs help transitioning from spring to summer. Here is a rundown of my current to-do list for the garden: I densely planted the vegetable beds in early spring with the intention of pulling out the cool-weather crops when the temperatures heated up. That will make room for… 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 »

Battling Aphids

Aphids suck – literally. These pesky garden pests will poke their mouths into your beloved plants and suck out their liquid. It weakens the plant and reduces your harvest – not to mention the unsightly appearance a massive, black mound of aphids can be on your plants. What can be done on the organic homestead… Read more »

Gardening An Hour At A Time

Today is the first day of spring and the garden waits for no one! Juggling a newborn can easily put a cramp in gardening productivity, but gardening isn’t just a hobby for me. It is where we get a significant part of the food that ends up on our table. The “stead” part of having… Read more »

Risky Business: Exotic Edible Plants

January is the time when nursery catalogs pour through our mail slots and cold evenings are spent carefully deciding what new trees, shrubs and vines to add to the homestead. There is an on-going debate between permaculture advocates and native plant experts on which plant species should be planted and which ones are dangerous. David… Read more »