To Do In The Northwest Edible Garden: June 2011

Well, here it is, almost the beginning of May and things are right on schedule. Wait, what? It’s the beginning of June? As in, it’s almost summer? How the heck is it almost June? Certainly none of my plants think it’s June, so I’m terribly sorry but you must just be mistaken. OK, back to [Continue Reading…]

Creamy Spinach Puree

The garden has had a spinach ka-boom moment. I was waiting patiently for my spinach to size up, and now, oh boy, has it. But that’s not something to complain about, really. Spinach is tasty, quick to wash up, and always on those magazine lists of “Foods You Must Eat To Be Healthy.” When faced [Continue Reading…]

A Public Defense Of The Enthusiastic Beginner

It has come to my attention that some of the best voices on the internet – writers I admire and read and am dedicated to – would rather chew their own arms off than see another damned blog post about homemade yogurt. Okay, I get it. It’s yogurt. Homemade yogurt is so done. Jams and [Continue Reading…]

Homebrew Husband Plants Something!

A few weeks ago, our garden witnessed an unusual event: I planted something. Usually I confine myself to hard labor, philosophical musing, or self mockery and only get down and dirty with the plant life when following specific orders (“no, more to the right…now turn it a little…”). But fresh back from the Seattle Tilth [Continue Reading…]

Hope In A Bottle

For the first 30ish years of my life, I enjoyed stuff as much as the average American. I bought a lot of it, and used it, and got pissed off when I had to dust it. When my stuff got a little long in the tooth, I tossed it out and bought more stuff. Several [Continue Reading…]

Moving To The Big-Girl Coop


On Saturday the chickens were moved from their indoor Pack & Play brooder to their permanent home – the outdoor coop. The chickens are five weeks old and seem fully feathered to my new-chicken-keeper eyes so we decided it was time for them and their constant, unending pooping to move outside. We put down a [Continue Reading…]

A Tour Of The Trellises


When we hit up the Seattle Tilth Plant Sale a few weeks ago, we arrived early and had some time to kill before we could start plant shopping. This gave us some time to walk around the Good Shepherd P-Patch. I was struck by how many methods p-patchers were using to trellis their peas and [Continue Reading…]

Life At Walking Speed


The stars aligned yesterday. Everyone was up and dressed early, it was a beautiful sunny morning, breakfast and a packed school lunch came together without a fuss. My daughter was done eating her breakfast and we had an easy half-hour until we had to be at the bus stop, so we walked. It’s a long half-mile to [Continue Reading…]

The Addictive Power Of Pork Fat


Well, I don’t usually echo Emeril Lagasse, but pork fat really does rule. I’ve known vegetarians who hot-rodded their Boca patty with bacon when they thought people weren’t looking, and any meat product that can find its way into desserts is a force to be reckoned with. But pork fat isn’t just bacon. For as long as [Continue Reading…]

Can You Get Arrested if You Kill-A-Watt?

My local library system has partnered with my local power company to make Kill-A-Watt energy meters available for check-out, just like a book or video. A few weeks ago, I checked out a Kill-A-Watt. These things look like a remote control and a power strip had a baby. You plug your appliance into the Kill-A-Watt, [Continue Reading…]

The Simplest Salad In The World


Salad days are here. My lettuce is responding to our cool drizzly weather by growing big and verdant and tender. Say what you will about a crappy, sunless spring; the lettuce loves it. Thanks to an over-eager over-seeding of lettuce back in February, I have a bed of lettuce to eat, and it all looks like this: [Continue Reading…]

Sowing Peas in Guttering: Wherein I Grudgingly Admit This Technique Rocks


Every American gardening book I own says you absolutely must direct sow peas because they loathe root disturbance. Every British gardening book I own advocates sowing peas early in the season in a length of guttering. They always use this exact phrase – length of guttering – and whenever I read it, my internal dialog [Continue Reading…]