Planning the Garden - the site plan

Planning Your 2017 Garden, part 1 – The Site Plan

It is time to begin planning your 2017 garden! You may have already been looking over catalogs, and have an idea of what you want to plant. Hold on there! First, you should look at where your garden is going to be. Near the kitchen, of course, but not too far away to be “out of sight, out of mind.” A possibility, if you have a large area, is a small kitchen garden for spices and herbs near the door, and a larger garden for fruits and vegetables further away. If you don’t have much space, think about planning a[…]

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December Garden Report - my best plot in December 2016

The December Garden Report – lessons I’ve learned in 2016

It is time for the December Garden Report.  It is now the first week of December, and midway into the time for the first frost. The first frost dates in Zone 9 are from November 15 to December 15. Around here, it has been dipping into the high 50-degree range in the morning, but there has been no frost or even near-frost temperatures yet. However, next week is predicted to get colder. The futurecast says 31 degrees around here on the morning of the 8th. Get some cold frames or hoop houses ready, as I mentioned in my earlier post.[…]

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3 things to do in the December garden. Tasks to do in the winter garden to make spring gardening easier.

3 Things to do in the December Garden

Now is the time to prepare for the spring garden. December is upon us, all the intensive work has been done and most of the crops have stopped growing. Here are three things to do in the December garden to make the spring garden work easier. Task #1: Prepare row covers for light frosts or freezes If you are hit with an unexpected cold snap in December or January, you can merely cover the plants with a sheet or two. If you plan ahead, you can create row covers for when a frost or freeze is expected. You can easily[…]

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Broccoli and-Cauliflower in the fall garden

A Walk in the late October garden

  Once again, walk with me on my monthly garden tour. You can follow along with my plot plan from the post A Tour of my Garden. I am walking through and observing from the gate to the back beds, so you can see how my garden grows (or doesn’t grow, as the case may be). The first herb garden plot has mint, stevia, oregano and lemon basil. The mint is still green, but thinning out. Most of the leaves are at the ends of the now-woody stalks. There is an ant bed in among the mint, putting the lie[…]

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Intercropping vegetables diagram

Intercropping-Friends Helping Friends

Intercropping is the practice of planting one plant in between other plants. An example would be planting lettuce in between heads of Cauliflower or Broccoli. Since the Cauliflower or Broccoli have to be planted 18-24 inches apart, it leaves a lot of space to plant lettuce. There are several variations of intercropping: Mixed intercropping, where two crops are mixed haphazardly in the available space. Row cropping, where the two crops are planted in alternating rows. Temporal intercropping, when you plant a fast-growing crop in with a slow growing one at the same time. Relay intercropping is similar, in that you[…]

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Lettuce Varieties

The Battle in the Garden

There is a battle going on underneath the calm exterior of your garden. In the air, on the plants and underground, a silent war is raging. There are allies and there are enemies, and there are neutral parties that are friendly to one side or the other. This is the world of companion planting. Most gardeners think of companion plants as those that help each other out, such as Eggplant and Peppers. However, there are also plants that should not be planted together, because they inhibit each others growth. Examples of these types of plants are garlic and beans or[…]

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