Fruit

tomato blight and tomato blossom end rot

Five Things To Do To Your Tomatoes RIGHT NOW

Use these five tips NOW for healthy tomato plants. Combat disease, prevent pests and catch problems before they take hold. Stop adding nitrogen fertilizers. Excess nitrogen encourages leaf growth at the expense of fruit. If you’re wondering why you’re not getting blossoms or developing tomatoes, put down the liquid fertilizer and instead drench the soil with a gallon of water spiked with a tablesp... »

Sow Seed Early OUTSIDE

HOW TO Start Seeds EARLY OUTSIDE – Seed Starting Tips and Tricks

Too busy to start seeds indoors? Don’t have a sunny south facing window or enough artificial lighting to properly grow seedlings inside? Or maybe it’s already too late…Don’t give up on sowing your own seeds just yet. Plant Seeds Directly Outside EARLY Plant directly outside under a homemade mini greenhouse and create your own ecosystem that keeps the seed moist and protecte... »

Best Companions for Tomatoes

5 Companion Planting Mistakes Tomato Growers Make

Are you unknowingly ruining your chances of a successful tomato crop? Want to avoid the biggest mistakes when placing tomatoes near other plants in the garden? There are several plants that may stunt tomato growth and there is one tree that could potentially kill your tomato plants! Stay clear of these vegetables and your tomatoes will grow better under less stress: BRASSICAS: Cabbage and tomatoes... »

Choosing Healthy Tomato Plants

How To Buy Tomato Plants – Common Mistakes to Avoid

Avoid these mistakes when buying tomato plants this spring. Think of it like the Seven Dwarfs but with modified spelling, different names and no cottage deep in the woods. (I need to be sensitive of copyright laws.) When you head out to the nursery or garden center, skip along and sing “Whistle While You Garden, ta da da da da da daaa”! You’ll be happily taking home the Fairest T... »

Coffee Grounds Fertilizer for Plants – Good Source of Nitrogen? Does it Acidify the Soil?

Coffee Grounds Fertilizer for Plants – Good Source of Nitrogen? Does it Acidify the Soil?

Let’s talk coffee grounds as a natural fertilizer for vegetables and other plants. A study from Linda Chalker-Scott entitled “Coffee Grounds-Will They Perk Up Plants?” shows some evidence that grounds might enhance beets, cabbage and spinach but could potentially damage tomatoes. But how? Grounds will add a bit of nitrogen. We gotta have that! But do you know when to apply nitrogen to fertil... »

Fig Force Field - How to Keep Birds Away from Figs

Fig Force Field – Unreal Garden World

»

white pumpkins types and uses

11 Fun Pumpkins and Winter Squash and How to Use Them

My oldest and I are on the lookout for the most interesting pumpkins and winter squash. Check these out at your local farm stand and use our tips to help you choose the best ones for carving, cooking and decoration. Also check out my other posts about stuffing pumpkin blossoms and creative recipes for pumpkin crisps, fries and roasted seeds. 1. Galeux d’Eysines CARVING: YES, but a bit more d... »

Best method to save tomato seed

Myths and Tips on Saving Tomato Seed

Whether you simply rinse and dry tomato seeds, create a smelly fungus to kill evil pathogens, or drop whole fruits on the ground, many of your preserved seeds will survive and sprout if stored properly. No one method of seed saving reigns supreme. All you “funky fermenters” out there, your way is not the only way. There’s room for everyone! Before you save tomato seed this season... »

How To Make Pumpkin Crisps, Fries, Roasted Seeds and S’mores!

How To Make Pumpkin Crisps, Fries, Roasted Seeds and S’mores!

This season I’ll be experimenting with candied pumpkin rind! I’ll post my results soon. Also see my other post that shows you pictures and tips for 11 Fun Pumpkins and Winter Squash. Learn which ones are best for carving, cooking and decor. Use the entire pumpkin!  Well, everything except the stem. No recipe for that yet : ) We had a few pumpkins that weren’t quite ready for carv... »

How to Plant Edibles in Burlap Sacks

How to Plant Edibles in Burlap Sacks

A versatile material in the garden, burlap is used to wrap tree and shrub roots, mulch growing beds, protect newly planted seeds.  I love adding strips of it to my worm bin. Red wigglers will devour the jute cloth along with the food scraps as they weave in and out of the fibers. I’m not sewing a stitch or covering plastic containers. My approach is more organic, free-form and natural looking. Onc... »

how to make fried stuffed squash blossoms

Stuff those pumpkin blossoms for a gourmet treat!

Don’t let those male flowers shrivel up before you have a chance to convert them into a gourmet treat! The farmers market had beautiful, huge squash blossoms for sale but they were $4 each – so I passed. That same day I took a walk to my community garden bed and saw that my pumpkins had taken off and there were tons of male blossoms open. I already had several baby pumpkin fruits start... »

Zucchini Bread with Flax Seed and Dark Chocolate

Zucchini Bread with Flax Seed and Dark Chocolate

It’s fun to rev up traditional recipes and this one for zucchini bread gets a health boost from flax seed and other natural ingredients, plus a pleasant kick in the zuke from dark chocolate. When they were little, my daughters loved bringing zucchini to our neighbors. Now that they’re playing sports competitively and growing up fast, they eat it up before I can offer it to our friends.... »

Growing Cucumbers in Small Spaces

HOW TO Grow Cucumbers Over Other Plants to Save Space

How We Did It Selected varieties of cucumbers that we prefer eating. A no-brainer but try and pick the ones with smaller seeds. We like the pickling cukes as long as we don’t forget them. Don’t let them become more than a few inches long. Their skin will be like cardboard. We make many hills inside the raised bed only a foot or two apart. We plant 4-5 seeds per hill and then thin to 2-... »

grow loofah sponges luffa gourds

Grow your own loofah sponges with video!

We’ve wanted to grow our own sponges for years now ever since we learned about them from Chet at the Antique Gas and Steam Engine Museum in Vista, California. A great place for old fashioned fun and our favorite, the Fall Tractor Show. They grow all sorts of plants and sell them to keep the tractor parades going and the steam engines blowing. I always thought loofahs came from the sea. Once ... »