This is a journal of my home vegetable garden. Skippy and Suzie think it's their garden, but I do all the work. We're located near Boston (USDA zone 6A). I have a community garden plot and a garden in my backyard. I try to grow all of my family's vegetables using sustainable organic methods.

Monday, February 08, 2016

seed swap announcement

Seed Swap
Hosted by the Belmont Victory Gardens
At the Town of Belmont MA Public Library on Sunday, March 6, 2016, 3:00 PM - 4:00 PM

Get ready for spring planting! Seed swap is open to all gardeners – whether you are a member of a community garden, grow vegetables or flowers in your yard, or would like to try sowing seeds for the first time.

Bring fresh vegetable or flower seeds to share and go home with new varieties to try. Heirlooms are great but purchased hybrid seeds are also welcome. Divide seeds into labelled, sharing-sized envelopes before your arrive to save time. Most store-bought seed packs can be divided into 2 or 3 "swap-sized" packets.

Please come even if you don't have seeds to share. There will be seeds and conversation to share with everyone. Belmont Victory Gardeners will be on hand to provide sowing tips and answer questions. Come visit with new and experienced gardeners and start dreaming of spring!

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AmeliaGardens blog

Amelia is an avid vegetable gardener located in Cambridge MA and she's got a great blog: AmeliaGardens. She's taking and teaching vegetable gardening classes now and I'm reading up and trying to learn as much as I can from her. Also, she's a programmer and built all of Skippy's Calendar apps. (Thanks Amelia!) Here's a post she wrote about the apps: Skippy's Vegetable Planting Apps.

community garden under snow cover

David Sprogis - Rock Meadow (2)

These are clips of my community garden, the Belmont Victory Gardens, that I took from a vimeo by David Sprogis: Rock Meadow. Rock Meadow is a 70 acre piece of conservation land in Belmont that includes the Victory Gardens. It's a really beautiful vimeo of the area taken from the air.

David Sprogis - Rock Meadow (1) David Sprogis - Rock Meadow (3)

My garden plot is right in the center of the lower photo.

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Sunday, February 07, 2016

game day chili with Jacob's Cattle beans

I heard that Americans go through some huge amount of nachos and chili on Super Bowl game day. We're doing our part. I bought some really nice Jacob's Cattle beans at a winter farmer's market a couple weeks ago.

I'm following a recipe I made a few years ago: Jacob's Cattle Bean Chili. (I'm using the last of my homegrown canned garden tomatoes.) We'll pile the chili onto chips with guacamole, cheese, salsa fresco and sour cream, then open the beer and turn on the game.

The Jacob's Cattle beans I got were grown by a small farm in Maine that grows only shell beans. They had a great table at a recent farmer's market. I told the farmer I wanted to grow some of the beans and eat the rest. He showed me the package with the darkest freshest beans. I love the color and size of these beans, though they do fade when cooked. The farmer also told me that Black Turtle beans are about the most productive variety to grow. Those are my other favorite shell bean to grow.

Saturday, February 06, 2016

snow

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We had about 8 inches of heavy wet snow yesterday that stuck to tree branches. It looked beautiful, but there were many power outages and sadly, a couple people died not too far south from here from being hit by falling branches. It's our first real snow of the season. What a storm.

The photo above is my backyard. Taken at 7 am, the sun is low in the east, shining across the pond onto snow-covered trees. The roof of my garden shed is visible at the right and my vegetable garden is in the middle. A cluster of birch trees by the pond is bent down to the ground.

Thursday, February 04, 2016

my vegetable garden - panorama photo

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I took this photo today by running along the edge of my garden and trying to hold the camera steady on its "panorama" setting. A crazy perspective - I really don't have a curved garden. But I think this will be helpful as I draw up a plan for this year's garden. I'm working on that now. I have extra space outside the raised beds to fill up. I'm imagining it overflowing with flowers and vegetables this year.

Wednesday, February 03, 2016

mid-winter garlic

garlic IMG_4964 - Copy garlic IMG_4969

I checked the garlic growing in my garden today. "Music" (pictured) is up an inch or so above the salt march hay mulch. The tops of the plants look weather burnt, but underneath they're green. "Late Italian" is up about 2 inches above the mulch. "Duganski" isn't up yet. Our forecast is now saying maybe we'll get some snow next Tuesday. The garlic would prefer that. Gardeners at my community garden have been concerned and have been adding more salt hay to cover their garlic.

I'm now eating supermarket garlic. :-( I'd normally have my own still in February but I had a problem with rot last year :-( So, I'm chopping up these big, pure white supermarket cloves. I assume it's CA garlic. Maybe from Gilroy, the garlic capital. I was surprised by its flavor. I find it very strong and sharp. Pshew! I remember someone saying homegrown New England garlic doesn't have much flavor. Now I understand. In comparison to this, it's very different. But I find that our local garlic has nice complex flavor, without the strong sharp taste.

I saw local garlic at a winter farmer's market in Wayland MA last weekend and almost stocked up. However, it was small and $1.75 a head. I'd eat 10 of them in a week I think, so I didn't get any. I'm glad they get such a good price.

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Monday, February 01, 2016

chickens out for a walk

My chickens went out for a mid-winter walk today. No snow left here - they had lots of scratching to do.

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In the middle of their walk, Ginger the brown Auracana all of a sudden jumped up, left the group, ran for the laying box and left me that blue egg. I'm getting 2 or 3 eggs a day now. Only Bertha, the big white Brahma isn't laying yet.

eggs IMG_4948 chicken IMG_4935

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where did winter go?

It's in the 80's in the sun now! Where did winter go? A high of 57F is officially predicted this afternoon in Boston. My bees are out and about. Garlic is sprouting. I've been opening my greens tunnel to the sun the past few days. We've had a week-long stretch of very mild winter weather. I'm tempted to think spring is around the corner, but I was reminded that last year, most of our enormous snowfall came in February. Nevertheless, I think this is turning out to be a very mild Boston winter.

Friday, January 29, 2016

the perfect stick!

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dogs with stick IMG_4835

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app update - reminder bug

Now that our Flower & Herb Calendar App is out, my programmer Amelia and I are working on our next App update. We'll update the Vegetable Calendar App to fix the reminders function, which has bugs for users of iOS 9+, and iOS7 or 6 (e.g. iPhone 4 users). We expect to get this update out in about a week. Thanks to the users who let us know about this bug.

And thanks again for using our apps! Let us know any other questions or suggestions for the apps.

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Thursday, January 28, 2016

mid-winter hive check

I was wondering about my bees today and so I dropped an email to Tony at my local bee club and asked if I should be checking them in the winter. The answer was "Yes, I should". But not like a summer inspection. (... more)

Sunday, January 24, 2016

at the northern edge of a giant snowstorm

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We only got a couple windswept inches of snow yesterday, but Skippy watched it fall at the Sudbury River. Boston was way up at the northern end of the giant snowstorm that hit the coast south of us. I only have a little bit to snow blow this morning.

Saturday, January 23, 2016

new app! --- flowers and herbs

Our new app is out! A planting calendar for Flowers and Herbs. $1.99 at the apple Store. 60 varieties with sowing times and methods. The calendar starts soon with winter sowing of varieties that need cold stratification.

Apple store link: Skippy's Flower & Herb App

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Thursday, January 21, 2016

bee hives in winter cold

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My bee hives are dwarfed by the long winter shadows. I'm wondering how the bees are doing. We've had a couple weeks of temperatures in the 20's and below. (...more)

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winter tunnel update

winter tunnel at end of January IMG_4831

I've been looking for my bottle of castor oil for a week now. There are vole holes in my winter tunnel and wanted to give the soil another dose. I finally found it. Of all places - in my new garden shed! I forgot about that spot. There it was with the empty pots and garden sprays. I'll have to get used to having a shed.

Today I opened up the tunnel. I'm really pleased with how everything is doing. Fortunately, no more vole damage, except a small bite in a Daikon radish. And the plants are still fine after a week with low temps below 20F. In the afternoon, even at 28F, there's lot's of condensation on the plastic. Unlike the rest of my garden soil, the soil inside is not frozen.

So I mixed up some castor oil and applied it. I'm a bit concerned I may have used too high a concentration. I used 1/4 cup castor oil, 1/4 cup liquid soap in 2 gallons water. That's 1.5%. About 4 times what I find is recommended now that I look. We'll see.

I'm thinking my tunnel might soon be covered with snow and I might not open it again for a while. Just as good as the plants inside now are small for harvest. I think my layers of plastic and double frost fabric probably reduce the faint sun we have. So the plants won't do much growing until March probably. Wow, I wonder if they'll survive til March?

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Sunday, January 17, 2016

potato order

I've decided on my potato selection for this year. 4 types, all from Fedco Moose Tubers:

Natascha, v. early, yellow skin/yellow flesh, waxy, high yield, high scab res
AmaRosa, mid-late, red skin/red flesh, waxy, high yield, high scab res
German Butterball, late, yellow-russet skin/yellow flesh, med/dry texture, med/high yieid, exel storage
Russet Burbank, late, russet skin/white flesh, dry texture, high yield, high scab res., exel storage

Last year I restrained my self to one variety, spaced the eyes out nicely, and ended up with a very poor harvest. I'm looking forward to abundance this year!

Jan 18: I've just placed my order. Some things are already selling out at Moose Tubers. Fortunately they still had the four varieties I want, but conventional only - the organic ones were sold out. I was surprised at their shipping charge of $15 on my $21 order (10 lbs total), but I want these varieties and I suppose 10 lbs isn't like shipping little seed packets. (Thanks for the correction below.)

In placing the Burbank Russet order I see this note: "This dependable standard requires heavy feeding and regular moisture for exceptional performance." I'll have to remember that. I neglected both with the Russets I grew last year and had a very low harvest.

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Thursday, January 14, 2016

winter tilling

I read at LSUAg that winter tilling can reduce problem insects in the soil. Our soil is about to freeze up, so I turned a few beds that had problems last year. My sweet potatoes were badly damaged by wire worms and other unidentified things. My carrots had root maggots. (Now that I think again, the carrot problem is from flies - not a soil issue. I'll use row cover on them next year.) But the sweet potato bed had soil problems. I won't plant them in that same bed next year. Maybe they can go in the winter tilled carrot bed. I'll do what I can to build up good soil structure this spring. Beneficial nematodes, lots of compost, fish emulsion, biochar, etc.

winter tilling IMG_4680

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

winter harvest

 winter salad tunnel IMG_4668

It seemed like a good day to open my winter tunnel. I was really curious how things looked after our cold snap down into the single digits last week. Surprisingly, it was not too bad. There were some areas on the edges, especially the north side, with mushy plants. And some plants are doing better than others. But lots of the plants look really good. The kale (Vates) and spinach (Kookaburra) look perfectly happy, romaine lettuce (Trucas) too. The leaf lettuce (Italienischer), escarole frissee, and the daikon radish looked frost bit.

I picked a whole bucket full of greens. I picked a lot of the greens at the edges that were having trouble, and most of the leaf lettuce. I picked the bok choy only because it looked so good and I though why risk it. I didn't pick any spinach. It's still small. I wish I'd planted more and earlier. That said, I wish I'd planted more of everything. We've been eating store bought greens the past month. But this tunnel is a good experiment. More next year!

I'll probably add a photo of cleaned up greens here later. I'm hoping they make a few nice salads. I pulled some salad turnips. These were something I was testing for timing for my app, but "are not to my taste"(yukk). I think my husband like them sauteed just a little. They do look pretty.

winter salad tunnel IMG_4669 winter salad tunnel IMG_4685d
winter salad tunnel IMG_4675 winter salad tunnel IMG_4677

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Monday, January 11, 2016

a seed give away!!

GIVE AWAY IS DISCONTINUED - We've just come across information that Apple has started removing apps that offer incentives for reviews. Sorry. (1-13-2016)

I have a lot of seeds that I saved from last year. Perfect for a seed give away. Just leave a comment on my calendar app at Apple or Google Play, and I'll send a sample of seeds of your choice, until my collection runs out.

Our apps really are worth trying. There's nothing else like them on the market. Simple, easy-to-use and uncluttered, with no in-app adds or purchases. Enter your frost date and your crops and you get a nice weekly calendar of your planting tasks on your mobile device. There's sowing, transplanting and succession sowing information. The Flower & Herb App will also have instructions for plants that require special sowing conditions. Over 50 vegetables to choose from and over 70 flowers & herbs.

The Vegetable App is here: Apple and Android. When our new Flower & Herb Calendar App will comes out any minute now, and I'll post the link here. (all are $1.99)

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The seeds I have are:
Pink cleome
Magenta cleome (one of my favorites)
White New England asters (these are the small wild ones that bloom late in the fall)
Tithonia (Mexican marigold, a giant plant with brilliant orange flowers)
Anise Hyssop (the bees LOVE this)
Judy's Giant marigold (3 ft tall with single orange flowers)
Tromboncino squash (named after a trombone for long curly shape, use as summer or winter squash)
Shung Wang pole beans (a crisp blocky white bean given to me years ago, one of my favorites)
Thai hot pepper (dries easily, nice and hot)
Basil Eleanora (basil downy mildew resistant - I bought a giant package last year)

After you leave  your comment, email your address to me at kathy@skippysgarden.com and I'll mail out the seeds. Thanks!!

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Friday, January 08, 2016

my 2016 variety list

I'm getting my 2016 variety list together. It's so exciting to be thinking about planting again! I can't wait.

I went through and sorted my old seeds, threw out seeds that were old. Especially the carrots and celeriac. I like to start fresh with those. Most of these seeds I have already, but I'll still end up with a good order to place. I'll see if I can get everything I need from one or two companies: FedCo and Johnny's. I put a link to this list on my side bar. I'll update it as the season goes. I haven't kept a variety list in the past, just a planting list. I think this list will be really helpful for ordering year to year. Also for keeping track of how the varieties do, what I get tired of, etc.

Arugula
Basil, Eleonora (downy mildew resistant) Basil, Superbo
Basil, Dolce Fresca
Basil, Nufar
Beans, green, Maxibel
Beans, green, Fortex
Beans, green, Jumbo
Beans, pole, Wax
Beans, pole, Shung Wang Chinese
Beans, pole, Gino's Italien
Beans, shell, Jacobs Cattle (...more)

Thursday, January 07, 2016

get ready to plant seeds!

We have an update out for Skippy's Vegetable Planting Calendar app. It now has 50 vegetables to select from.

If you haven't tried the app, it's very easy to use. Select from Spring, Fall, or Winter planting season (or all three), enter your frost date, select the crops you plan to grow, and the app creates your personalized calendar. Your planting tasks will be listed by the week. It includes sowing, transplanting, and succession planting dates.

It's a cute little tool to have handy on your mobile device for only $1.99. I do all my seed planting with it. And, I added a like button on my side bar. Please LIKE the app if you've used it!

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ordering seeds

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I thought I'd be a bit more orderly about this process this year. I usually just order throughout the year as I think of seeds I forgot to buy. This year, I made a list of my favorite seeds - the ones I want to plant this year. I'm going through my saved seeds now to check off ones I already have. I'll put those varieties at the front of my rubber-banded packs of seed types. Maybe I can order most of my seeds now and save on the shipping charges. Oh, such organization!

Tuesday, January 05, 2016

early morning winter view

winter view IMG_4600

Saturday, January 02, 2016

2015 garden review

I'm working on reviewing crops I grew in 2015 and listing what to do different (or the same) this year. The list is long so I posted it here: Kathy's 2015 crops review. Once I finish this, I'll draw up my 2016 garden plans.

2015 vegetable garden crop review

Apples: My four little trees are in their second winter. I picked 5 apples from one tree last year, but the trees are all small and need to grow. They seem healthy. In the spring, I sprayed with horticultural oil. I didn’t fertilize, which I think I should do this year. I have ground up leaf mulch directly under the trees and I seeded clover and wildflowers between the trees. I’ll see if that grows this year. It will provide flowers for my bees and the legumes should help the sandy soil. The deer fence around the trees is unattractive and it would be nice to remove or replace it this year. 2016: Dormant prune before growth begins and train after growth resumes in spring. Spray with dormant oil in spring at first sign of green growth. Send out a soil test in early spring and fertilize by their recommendations. Work on legume ground cover below and deer fences.

Asparagus: I have a very small bed (about 5x2 ft) at my community plot. I moved it last spring because it was getting shaded by a lilac. I’d like to buy more plants and give it a much larger space. I don’t know whether it should be at my community plot or at home. I will see how my plans work out for space. 2016: find a bed for asparagus and order plants.
(...more)

Thursday, December 31, 2015

lights for new year's eve

new years lights IMG_4532

I lit these lights in the darkness tonight
In another season, we would still have sunlight
We would have warm air and full gardens
But now it's the New Year and lights sparkle in the cold and darkness,
It's time to reflect and plan for new things.

I very much hope 2016 is a year of peace in the world
I wish 2016 would bring food and happiness for everyone.

For me - I'm beginning to plan my gardens
I have a nice stack of catalogs, circles here and there, a growing list of partially made plans
By the warm glow of candlelight,
I'm imagining a bountiful new season.
I hope 2016 is bountiful for all.

how are you planning your next vegetable garden?

We need a new poll!

I just got the MOFGA (Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association) Newsletter and their top item today is about garden planning software. They site this link for 10 Best Vegetable Garden Software of 2016. Except when you get to the link, it says it was last updated in 2011. Five years ago!!

I wrote to MOFGA, Jean wrote back immediately! and we agree, we need a new review of Planning Software. So, how do you do your garden planning?

Me: I like to use paper and tracing paper. I trace last year's garden, then move around my crop locations. I erase and rewrite. And think about it. Then I make my final draft. Which is never final, because I'll think of something to change. Software is fun to use. Sometimes I use PowerPoint, only because it's on my computer for my business. I can make lots of edits with this. But I like my hand drawings better.

So, two questions, First: Do you use Garden Planning Software? Please use this poll

Do you use Garden Planning Software?
Yes
No
Sometimes
Poll Maker


Second: Have you tried any Garden Planning Software recently? Please leave me a comment and let me know. Maybe Mother Earth News and Grow Veg? I'll put together another poll soon to see what software the readers of this blog like to use.

And, by the way, Happy New Year!

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

our Christmas tree

There wasn't room for our tree inside this year, because of renovations we are doing, ... so... the tree is out on the patio decorated with lights and bird food.

outdoor christmas tree IMG_4339

Who came to the tree? First a couple of noisy red squirrels! Then, Suzie (my little Portuguese water dog who loves birds food), my chickens, and then lots of birds. A Carolina wren, junco's, ground sparrows, chickadees, and cardinals.

IMG_4518 - Copy outdoor christmas tree IMG_4715 outdoor christmas tree IMG_4741 outdoor christmas tree IMG_4768 outdoor christmas tree IMG_4748 outdoor christmas tree IMG_4783

Oh, and Santa came by too. On Christmas morning there was a big pile of new garden tools!! I can't wait to use them all.

outdoor christmas tree IMG_4416

biochar? carbon gardening?

Daphne brought up biochar as the most stable way to sequester unwanted atmospheric carbon. As a nice side effect, it also improves the soil. And Tony explained that my tasty lettuce gardens don't hold onto much carbon very long, but if I added more wetlands, that would. Hmm, carbon gardening - that's new to me. I had to do more research.

The main focus of recent Climate Change Conferences is to reduce emissions, but then, there's a secondary discussion: what to do with the carbon that's already in the air? Biochar is one proposal.

Solutions for the "What to do with it" problem have been divided into biological and chemical approaches. NOFA recommends tying CO2 up in plant/compost cycles. This has the advantage of using a free energy source: the sun. The disadvantage is that we have only the earth's surface for this activity.

Biochar (pyrolyzed organic products that sequester CO2) production is also considered a "biological approach". (I'm not sure why as it doesn't use the sun to do the pyrolyzing, it uses fossil fuel. It just make use of organic products.) Biochar has the advantage of great potential capacity as it can be buried, However, the scale it's used on currently is relatively minuscule.

There are also spectacularly varied chemical methods of capturing CO2 that are being proposed — "from direct air capture using resins, to the use of crushed olivine (a mineral that absorbs CO2 as it weathers) to seed beaches, to new forms of carbon-negative cement-making."

But back to the biochar, it's currently having an impact agriculturally as a soil amendment that revitalizes tired soils. It's not effective everywhere (negative issues include price, affects on soil microbes, and the large volumes that are needed), but in many places it is improving crop production. Like Daphne's garden! (Is that how she grew those beautiful sweet potatoes?)

As far as expanding biochar production to the point where it can impact atmospheric CO2, critics are concerned that land used to grow plant material could displace food crops, they sorry and about socioeconomic effects, and they worry about what eventually happens to biochar in soils - when it does breakdown. They worry that sufficient research has not yet been done.

I like the rational view of Stephen Joseph, a biochar researcher from Univ of New South Wales in Australia, "Biochar probably won’t save the world from climate change, nor is it going to be the key to increasing agricultural productivity everywhere. But used wisely, it is a tool that may help in both situations.”

Personally, I this I'll to stick with NOFA's very biological approach and traditional methods: Cover everything I can with plants (more lettuce!! more clover!!), compost everything I can on site, and use my chickens to enhance my composting. I'm also growing locally - in my backyard - and reduce driving to the grocery store. I hope my little micro-farm is at least a transient a part of reducing atmospheric CO2.

Sources:
NY Times (July 24, 2015) A Third Way To Fight Climate Change
BloombergBusiness (June 8, 2015) Scientists Are Coming Up With 'Last Ditch' Remedies for Climate Change
PBS (July 3, 2015) The Coal That’s Good for the Climate

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Monday, December 28, 2015

Since I'm a new NOFA member I was reading through their literature. I like this one about Soil Carbon Restoration.

"Much discussion has focused on how to deal with greenhouse gas emissions and resulting weather extremes. Most analysts believe we must stop burning fossil fuels to prevent further increases in atmospheric carbon. [But we} must also find ways to remove carbon already in the air....

"...where can we put carbon once it is removed from the air? There is only one practical approach -- to put it back where it belongs, in the soil.
So here's a list of things vegetable gardeners can do to put carbon back in the soil:
- Plant nitrogen fixing cover crops and living row paths
- Heavily mulch weeds instead of pulling
- Incorporate no-till or shallow till practices
- Replace pesticides and fungicides with diverse beneficial organisms
- Incorporate perennials in our garden
- Compost your garden and kitchen waste
- Recycle biomass with livestock (grazers, browsers, compost to poultry)

And things yard-owners can do:
- Plant lawns with diverse species: deep rooted grasses and nitrogen fixing species like clover
- Incorporate multi-layer, perennial, diverse plantings
- Compost, rather than burn, yard waste
- Minimize pavement and unproductive mulch
- Grow nitrogen fixing trees and perennials
- Maintain diverse forested buffers and perimeters

I think we've all heard about the importance of doing most of these things since we know good soil health is important for our crops. Soil health is also important for the earth. More info is at the NOFA site (NOFA Carbon Soil Restoration).

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Sunday, December 27, 2015

NOFA

I just signed up for NOFA's winter one-day conference Saturday, Jan 16 in Worcester MA. Anyone else going? Has any been to these before? I just signed up as a new member. It looks fun. NOFA is the Northeast Organic Farming Association. I met a board member the other day and he told me they had lots of programs and resources for organic home gardeners.

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Friday, December 25, 2015

Christmas day harvest

christmas harvest IMG_4478

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christmas day bees on hellebores

dec 2015 bee on hellebores

Last week the hellebore has been blooming gloriously in the misty unusually warm New England weather. Today the sun broke out. I saw my bees were out foraging. Hard to believe on the last week of the year! I found some, collecting hellebore nectar (....more)

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Thursday, December 24, 2015

on the eve

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The perfect year for a Christmas rose (Hellebores Niger).

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

gifts under the tree

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I was hoping it would look like I painted this picture. It's a few jars of garden pickles and some honey decked out with fabric caps. We don't have room for a tree in the house this year, just this little USB one. A very cheery little plastic fir.

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Sunday, December 20, 2015

potting up a sprouted sweet potato

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My mom gave me this nice sweet potato. From the super market. I find it really hard to get these to sprout. I love to grab one that is sprouted. I put it in a pot. It'll go on the kitchen window sill. They grow slow, then fast.

I've heard of gardeners who start their own sweets having the kitchen window covered with vines by planting season. Well, that would be fun. Last year I bought 12 slips and they weren't cheap (though I forget how much they were - $25 maybe). Maybe some of mine will sprout, at least they weren't treated with sprout inhibitor like the supermarket ones are. I'll watch them.

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Saturday, December 19, 2015

today's harvest

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Wednesday, December 16, 2015

app reviews please :-)

We could really use some reviews of our seed planting app. For any one who used it last year, could you give it a brief review? Here's the preview link: https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/skippys-garden-spring-planting/id970091991?mt=8. Click "Open in iTunes" and then click "Reviews". Thanks!

Here are reviews a few gardeners left for us last year, but they didn't post them to the Apple Store.

"Thanks for the nifty app! " - MIchaeldg
"Love the simplicity... Very easy to use... very useful" - Mayhew
"It is a wonderful app....I will be able to carry it with me to the garden without printing out my garden plan. I especially love the transplanting calendar because most books and seed packet instructions do not tell you when to transplant. - Nancy

BTW - We are making a bunch of upgrades this month for release in January - just in time for 2016 seed planting! Let us know what upgrades you would like.

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Monday, December 14, 2015

inside my winter tunnel

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My winter tunnel is full of greens. Spinach, several types of lettuce, arugula, radicchio, kale, chard, collards, salad turnips, daikon and salad radish, cilantro, some frilly red mustard, escarole, bok choi. Can't beat this balmy December weather for cool weather crops! I have parsley, escarole, broccoli, beets and kale outside with no protection.

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Plants in my tunnel are from my winter seed sowing calendar, which is part of Skippy's full-season planting calendar app. I planted everything to test the planting dates in the app.

The app is $1.99 (iOS or Android). I think the price will go up for the next season (probably to $2.99), so it makes sense to get it now. All pf the app updates will apply whether your buy before or after the price increase. The calendar has spring and fall planting schedules too.

I'm counting down the days til my spring planting begins - end of February!

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My only complaint with my tunnel is that I wish I had planted more of them! Next year...

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