Category Archives: Garden Prep

Love And Lettuce

Another national epidemic concerns food safety, perhaps most notably with Romaine lettuce, which has been fingered in several recent E. coli outbreaks. Though the government investigation is still ongoing, there are multiple possible causes for E. coli contamination, from water passing through areas where livestock is grazing to field contamination from wild animals and birds (not to mention humans; many growers haven’t supplied field toilet facilities, but that’s changing). This fits right into my own ecological grief; when even organic produce may not be safe, what can we trust? Happily, there’s a simple solution: Grow your own. One great thing about greens is that they can be grown in very little space, and many will flourish in containers on a balcony or deck where garden space is limited. Continue reading

Posted in Edible Flowers, Garden Prep, Health & Wellbeing, pests and pesticides, Soil, Sustainable Gardening, Sustainable Living | Tagged , , , , | 3 Comments

Harvesting & Healthy Soil

When both pantry and freezer fill up, it’s time to make soup! Make enough to share and sit down with younger folks who just might want to learn a little more about growing and cooking.

Tuscan Bean Soup With Black Kale

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon fennel seed
4 cloves garlic, chopped
1/8 teaspoon hot pepper flakes
1 organic lemon, juiced, rind grated
1 large onion, chopped
1 large bulb fennel with greens, chopped
2 sweet carrots, chopped
1/2 teaspoon kosher or sea salt
2 cups cooked white cannellini beans (or any kind)
1 quart vegetable or chicken broth
1 bunch Black Tuscan kale, cut in ribbons

In a soup pot, combine oil, fennel seed, half the garlic, the lemon rind, pepper flakes, onion, fennel (reserve 1/4 cup chopped greens), and carrots, sprinkle with salt and cook over medium high heat until barely soft (8-10 minutes). Add beans and broth, bring to a simmer and cook over low heat for 20 minutes. Puree in small batches with remaining garlic and return to pan. Add kale and pepper, cover pan and cook until barely wilted (2-3 minutes). Stir in lemon juice to taste and serve hot, garnished with fennel greens. Serves 4.

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Posted in Annual Color, fall/winter crops, Garden Prep, Gardening With Children, Health & Wellbeing, Planting & Transplanting, Recipes, Sustainable Gardening | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

Gardening Without Plastics

Print PDFReplace plastic with reusable woven row cover cloth Because Every Day Is Earth Day Plastic. Say the word and someone will start talking about Dustin Hofmann and The Graduate. Actually, that used to be a typical response. Now, the … Continue reading

Posted in Garden Prep, Gardening With Children, Health & Wellbeing, Planting & Transplanting, Recycling Nursery Plastics | Tagged , , | 4 Comments

Gardening From Scratch

Print PDF A New Beginning Happy New Year! Whatever the horrors of the past year, each brand new year aways seems somehow fresh, open to possibilities and unrolling before us like a road untravelled. I most certainly hope this is … Continue reading

Posted in Garden Design, Garden Prep, Planting & Transplanting, Sustainable Gardening, Sustainable Living | Tagged , | 4 Comments