Andean Root Vegetables for the Pacific Northwest and Beyond

How To Grow Andean Root Crops

Today’s post comes to you from Bill Whitson. Bill is the co-owner of Cultivariable Seeds, an independent breeder and supplier of seeds and plants, specializing in Andean vegetables and other unusual and hard-to-find edibles for the Pacific Northwest. He was kind enough to put together this incredible primer on cultivating oca, yacon, mashua and ulluco for folks [Continue Reading...]

Understand Thermal Mass To Be A Climate Zone Hacker!

Themal Mass, Gardening, Climate Zones

Picture yourself on a beach. It’s late August and you’re sinking your bare feet into the sand. You can feel the warmth of the sand on your toes. It’s not just warm, it’s downright hot. It’s starting to be uncomfortable, so you wiggle your feet a few inches down into the sand where it is [Continue Reading...]

10 Tips to Simplify Your Spring Planting

Simplify Spring Planting

It’s spring, the very beginning of the gardening year, so why do some folks feel like they are already behind? This is a crazy time of year for the gardener, I totally understand. Between seed starting, transplanting and soil prep, it’s easy to feel like you just can’t keep up. Here’s a few tips to keep it a [Continue Reading...]

If You Give A Gardener A Book, She’ll Wonder About A Swale

If You Give A Gardener...

It’s really amazing how quickly a week can slip by with barely a post written. It’s not that there isn’t anything to write about. Au contraire. There is so much to write about, I don’t even know where to start. Let’s start with my shoulders. Cause, damn, they are sore. I’m no stranger to a [Continue Reading...]

Fruit Trees: Summer Pruning vs. Winter Pruning

Fruit Tree Pruning

To grow the most varieties of fruit on my small suburban lot, I am experimentally trying a technique called Backyard Orchard Culture developed by the fruit tree-growers at Dave Wilson Nursery. Proponents will tell you Backyard Orchard Culture or BYOC (“Bring Your Own Cherry? Citrus? Cherimoya?”) is a great way for space constrained gardeners to [Continue Reading...]

The Best Vegetable Choices For The Small Garden

Best Veg For Small Gardens

Today’s post comes to you from Grace Hensley of eTilth.com, who urban homesteads with a 150 square foot garden. She believes that the secret to small-space vegetable gardening is to stop feeling guilty; pick the right crops for you and depend on people you trust for the rest. Here she shares her top vegetable picks for the [Continue Reading...]

To Do In The Northwest Edible Garden: March 2014

March To Do

In like a lion, out like a lamb. That’s what they say about the weather in March, and I suspect that’ll hold true this year. There are always two points during the gardening year when you have to just go on faith that the weather will do, more or less, what you expect it to. [Continue Reading...]

Heavy Duty Potato Cage Results

Potato Bins

I’m writing this post kinda under duress. If I don’t write it, several readers are going to show up at my house with pitchforks, demanding answers. People want a follow-up on the Heavy Duty Potato Cages I built last spring, and they want it now, so they can plan for their own potato growing. Totally [Continue Reading...]

What’s Growing Under The Seed Lights in February?

February Under Lights

I’ve been ramping up my indoor seed starting over the past several weeks. The first of my spring cole crops and my peppers and tomatoes are just getting to the true leaf stage. I thought you guys might want to see the veggie madness that has taken over my seed starting rack. My first round [Continue Reading...]

World Domination Gardening?

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You guys probably know that the half-ass hugelkultur beds I built a few years ago rock my world. They have been super productive. In fact, I like this permaculture bed-building technique so much that in a recent re-build of some of my old traditional raised beds, I experimented with making a normal raised beds into [Continue Reading...]

How Green Is Your Organic Soil Amendment?

Soil Amendment

This is a guest post from Rachel of Dog Island Farm. Rachel and her husband Tom intensively urban farm a quarter acre parcel in the San Francisco Bay area. They are pretty famous in the urban homesteader world for going a year without stepping foot in a grocery store and providing no-nonsense advice on urban [Continue Reading...]

To Do In The NW Edible Garden: February 2014

To Do February

February always feels like the first real month in the garden to me. Sure there’s a few things to do in January, if you want. But my first real round of seed starting happens around mid-month. Count forward 6 weeks and it’s the beginning of April – the perfect time to put hardy brassica transplants [Continue Reading...]