The never-ending dilemma… to water or wait for rain.

Where we live, we are having drought conditions.  We have cracks in our backyard that I don’t even want to try to measure – they’re deep.  It’s worse in a lot of places than it is here, but since this is where we grow, this is what we’re concerned with.  So, how thrilling it is to have the possibility of alleged rain in the forecast for not just one day, but several days!  My plants were really dry yesterday, though, and my last experience with the local weather guys predicting rain was really disappointing. Continue reading »

A different take on pesto.

A few days ago, I blogged about my obsession with pesto.  Yes, I am a pesto purist… I prefer original, classic pesto made with fresh basil, however… my basil is only a couple of inches tall and there’s enough to make about 3 teaspoons of pesto right now.  While I wait impatiently, I am going to try something new and different today.  I am going to make pesto with cilantro! Continue reading »

“Shopping for free” at the recycle center!!!

I take my neighbors’ recycling once a month to a great recycling center in El Dorado, Kansas.  Whoever designed this place is brilliant.  It’s a drive-through building, so even in the horrible weather we often have in Kansas, it’s not an ordeal to do a good deed for the earth.  I’ve been there in rain, snow, sun, and ice.  I choose to go a little farther to El Dorado rather than the center in Augusta because I always get fabulous stuff in El Dorado, and it’s all free! Continue reading »

Take my horseradish, please…

Let me begin by saying that we eat horseradish here at home… about 1/4 cup per YEAR.  Harvesting it for home use is not why I wanted to grow it.  It was supposed to deter black blister beetles from devouring my tomato crop, and that is the ONLY reason I wanted it.  I regret the day I brought home the first slip of horseradish, believe me.  If I could go back in time, that’s a life event that would definitely make me want to hit the “do-over” button. Continue reading »

Different strokes… vegetable-wise.

This past Saturday, I overheard a conversation among gardeners in which the female participant was very excited that her male friend was growing beets.  I cringed when I heard the word beets, because I don’t eat them and, unless starving, wouldn’t.  My husband gags at the mention of beets.  More about that in a minute.  I recalled another such conversation I overheard once wherein a man was announcing proudly that he had planted his entire, quite sizable spring garden with only swiss chard.  It made me wonder if people think I’m strange because of my long-term love affair with Brussels sprouts.  Continue reading »

Mother’s Day, 2011.

It’s Sunday already where I live, and if you haven’t bought anything for Mom yet, and she’s a gardener, listen up.  I have a gift idea for you that will knock your socks off.  Weed.  No, really.  Not that kind of weed, but the verb… to weed.  To weed, as in get out there on your hands and knees and, after verifying that what you are about to destroy is actually not a treasured plant, pull it, let it die in the sun and then compost it.  What more could a mother want? Continue reading »

All-natural fly repellent, and you can eat it!

Most people are familiar with flies getting in the house on occasion, some seasons more than others, and some climates more than others.  Just because flies try to get in doesn’t mean you have a dirty house.  It is the nature of flies to annoy us! Continue reading »

Arbor Day 2011, and I almost missed it!

I was so busy today, running errands and sleeping, that I almost forgot to acknowledge that it’s Arbor Day!  A day celebrated since 1872, typically by planting of trees to benefit your local community, I chose to commemorate this day by staying out of the wind, taking a nap, and planning where I will plant my trees tomorrow.  Continue reading »

High tunnels on the cheap.

I had the opportunity a few weeks ago to attend a workshop about high tunnels, also known as hoop houses.  Prior to the workshop, I thought I wanted a greenhouse.  I thought that for several years.  I was so wrong.  I want a high tunnel and I want it now! Continue reading »

Clearing up a common misconception.

More than once in the last two weeks,  I have explained the difference between compost and mulch to two different people in two different states.  Today, when a third person asked me, I figured this deserves some explanation.  They are not the same thing, although one can be the other, sort of, in a way.  Confused yet?  Continue reading »