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For the Love of Tomatoes

I have to admit that the main reason for my garden is the tomatoes. Most grocery store tomatoes are varieties that have been bred for appearance and shipping durability, but are often mealy and tasteless. There is an almost endless variety of tomatoes available in the seed catalogues and garden centers, with […]

Hot Peppers

Hot peppers hail from Mexico, and the closer you can mimic that climate the more successful you’ll be at growing them. They like lots of sun and hot, dry weather. Start them in the spring 12 weeks before the last frost if you’re living above zone 10. Here in Florida they do best during the […]

How to Grow Cucumbers

This was the first baby cucumber of my garden.

Cukes are one of my favorite vegetables. Seldom do I not have a few in my crisper drawer. They vary in delightful ways, from “burpless” varieties to ones bred just for pickling to slicing varieties. They come in round, long, short, yellow, green, and white […]

Turn one bed into a cornfield.

I grew up in Indiana in a Chicago suburb. In the neighboring farms, corn and beans were always growing. Fresh sweet corn was always available in roadside stands, along with tomatoes, cucumbers, beans and apples.

One summer a friend of my parents in Gaylord, Michigan invited us up to his cabin for a vacation. On […]

Tomatoes!

There are few things as rewarding to grow as tomatoes. In fact, for me, they’re the reason for growing anything. It’s all about the tomatoes.

Warmed by the sun, a vine ripened tomato rinsed with the garden hose is one of the best snacks a gardener has. The flavor cannot be […]

Consider a Salad Bed

I love to grow one bed just for salads. I don’t know why, but lettuce is one of my favorite things to grow. It grows quickly, requires only partial sun, and can be harvested a little at a time for weeks. Arugula is one of those plants that will regenerate if you cut […]

Make Your Own Seed Tape

Seed tape has many advantages. It’s easy to plant, it provides even spacing for seeds, it eliminates the need for thinning later, and it makes planting tiny seeds much faster. The problem I have found, however, is that it’s rarely available in the varieties of seeds I’m looking for. […]

The Musical Fruit

Ahhh, beans. Broad beans, French beans, yard long beans, lima beans, soy beans, green beans, yellow beans, purple beans – how many varieties of this great source of protein can you name?

There are two basic types of bean plants: bush and climbing, or vining beans. They grow easily, are a “green” […]

Root Vegetables

Root vegetables like beets, turnips, carrots, parsnips, onions, rutabagas, and radishes are easy to grow in raised beds or containers, and if you love them like I do, they’re very rewarding crops.

What most novice gardeners don’t think through before planting their root veggie seeds is that they need a good depth […]

Plant Placement

The biggest challenge I faced as a new gardener was how to place the plants in my beds so each would thrive. The seed packets were helpful for the plantlets that I started from seed, as they usually give the height that the plant will grow as well as well as how far apart […]