Madras, OR, US

gardening interests: Composting, Fruits and Berries, Organic Gardening, Sustainable Living, Vegetables

Member Since: 11/07/2009

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Keep your garden at peak performance

Once you have your soils amended, and seeds planted or plants transplanted, it can be easy to kind of forget on-going needs.  Mulching around but not on sprouted plants will help retain moisture...

Bucket O' Squash

With just a few extra plants, I was able to share over 1300# of vegetables through out the summer.  In winter, I found I had too much squash and potatoes in storage so sent in a couple more...

Growing a Row for Foodbanks and Community Kitchens

I first learned of the national Grow A Row program after a year of growing and sharing excess vegetables with the food bank.  I had always gardened and often had way more produce than I could...

Help in the garden

Ace is a humane society dog who was very young but in terrible shape when brought in.  At first he ran any chance he had to escape.  Would cower, act afraid.  Now he reigns supreme...

recent comments

Re: QUESTION: Problem with Tomato Seedlings

To reduce teh stress when you have leggy, tall tomato plants for the garden, dig a trench about8" deep, and plant your tomato plant on its side, gently turning up the top third and bury the rest. They will develop a root system along the entire stem and generally produce well.

I have done this for the community garden when people donate tomato plants that have gotten too tall. Seems to work great

Re: Controlling Weeds Organically

I have used Ruth Stouts method The NO-Work Garden book for years. In my half acre garden, I spend less than 2 hours a month keeping weeds under control. Mulches, intensive planting, and minimal tilling of the soil, keep weeds at bay. I broadcast seed the beds rather than grow in rows. that way the plants shade the soil and weeds do not get started. It does take a little more intensive fertilizer, but yields are way up, and weeds do not get a foot hold

Re: QUESTION: When is it too early to start...

I also live in Zone 6, and currently have onions, garlic, spinach, lettuce, pak choi, chinese cabbage all up in thegarden. You might want to try your plants outside for a few days to acclimate them, but take care not to let them dry out.

Re: 20 Ways You Know You Are Addicted to Vegetable Gardening

I would also add, you know you are addicted when you never go into the watermelon patch in August with out a knife in hand for the smaller, you know, tasting melons!!!

Re: A vegetable garden a rabbit can love

Hey, I plant clover in my walks and mow it when you are not eating heavy enough!! I even towelled off the 6 babies I found in the carrots last year, in a raised bed, and I thought rabbits didn't climb. What;s up with that???

Re: QUESTION: Starting a veggie garden in zone 6

at the bottom of the greenhouse, i put multiple containers of water, that i let warm in the sun all day. this gives a surprisingly good effect by slowly releasing heat all night. The other thing you can do it to double cover your greenhouse at night. I put a second plastic sheeting over it at night, but it will heat up quickly in the sun so you must get it off early morning, by 9 am at least if the sun is out.

I use 1 gallon milk jugs filled with water, and as i said, i let them sit in the sun all day. they get pretty warm.

good luck to you

Re: Keep Cabbage-Loving Caterpillars in Check

The other thing that works is to put a flat pan of water near cabbage, cauliflower and broccoli plants. It brings in wasps/hornets, (who do not seem to be aggressive away from the nest) and they eat the green worms found on brassica plants. I still cover cabbage as it is harder for the wasps to control the worms once the worms get below the surface.


Re: Build Brick Garden Pathways

Very cool idea. Looks lovely too!!

Re: QUESTION: How to keep cats out of raised bed garden

Mouse traps...............with just a little cheese on them, allow the cat to get close enough to set it off, but they do not get caught in it. At least taht has worked for me. I have 12 cats among three neighbors. I was going nuts....then I tried mouse traps. Have not lost a trap, have not caught a cat but the digging in my beds has stopped. I do find the traps sprung, so I know they are getting close enough to be scared by the crack of the trap when it is sprung.


Re: Managing Weeds with a Light Touch (Part 2 of 2)

To control weeds in your garden beds you might grow things more closely, For instance in the bush beans, i grow them very close together (broadcasted across a 4' X 12' bed) so when they grow up they shade the soil completely. No weeds at all there. Likewise with carrots, i do have to thin the carrots a bit but they grow up and no weeds. Low vine peas also are grown in this way, no rows just a solid bed of peas. They not only shade the soil to keep it cool, weed free but then lean on each other to keep the vines off the soil.


Re: QUESTION: Keeping Groundhogs Out of Raised Beds

Also next time you make beds in the bottom of them you can put 1/4th inch square hardware cloth before you ever add the soil back. You might try a sturdy hardware cloth fence around the inside of your cabbage bed which would be cheaper than building the boards up.


Re: 20 Ways You Know You Are Addicted to Vegetable Gardening

I would add, you know you are addicted to gardening when the gifts you receive for birthdays and holidays are all certificates for garden seeds..............piles and piles of seeds

Re: Veggie Garden 2006

Weed control is easier than we might think. With a one half acre garden, I spend less than 10 hours all summer keeping weeds at bay.

I do use raised beds and instead of growing in rows there, I broad cast seed to cover the entire bed. Sometimes a little thinning will be necessary but literally no weeding accompanies this kind of growing. The things I grow this way are green beans (bush), peas (bush), carrots, squash, lettuce, corn, and potatoes. some spacing is necessary for potatoes and corn, but they shade the beds and very little weed can get started.

Widely spaced things like watermelon, tomatoes, cants, asparagus require some weeding. But in the heavily grown, broadcast beds, teh plants grow up and shade the soil, so there is no weeding needed.

Re: Growing a Row for Foodbanks and Community Kitchens

Great to hear your food bank will accept donations. And even greater that you have the space and time to share some of your fresh produce. It is so welcomed by those who are struggling right now.


Re: Help in the garden

thanks Ruth, nice to hear from you


Re: Do It Yourself Greenhouse Insulation

I have used this successfully in a small (12' x12') greenhouse successfully. I also cover the windows in the house with bubble wrap, as we have very cold winters and this seems to slow heat loss along with insulated window blinds.
Nancy Petersen
Madras Oregon

Re: W.O.W.... What A Difference!

I make my own wall of waters with 5 gallon plastic buckets with the bottom cut out. Then I plant the tomato, set the bucket over it, and add 3 1/2 gallon milk jugs filled with water and allowed to warm through out the day. They are left there permanently for the growing season. Early in the season this allows you the opportunity to cover your home made wow with row cover to protect from late frosts.

It is far easier than filling wall of waters and they last much longer, don't turn green with algae, and don't tip oover or collapse onto the plants.

I get my buckets from a local hamburger place once they are done with the recepticals, and or sometimes will buy a 5 gal paint bucket.

To cut the bottom out easily, drill a 5/8th inch hole in the side of the bucket just above the bottom, then insert a keyhole or jigsaw and cut the bottom off.


Re: Start a New Garden Bed with a Compost Sandwich

Great pictures and information. THe one think I find about lasagna gardening is that it will attract earwigs. This is especially true with fruit crops suchs as tomatoes, strawberries, and non fruit crops like celery. I do try to avoid planting these items where old lasagna beds were started.