Welcome to my new website. It will be both fun and informative. It will have five of my favorite topics: pictures, thoughts, recipes, gardening ideas and did you know? Please enjoy, leave comments, ask questions and visit often.
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  • LAWN TIPS

    Posted on October 20th, 2010 Pam No comments

    If you are lucky, you have an automatic watering system!!!!!

    I am not one of those people.

    But, I did learn a few things about how to take better care of a lawn when a sprinkler system is being used.

    1.  Did you know that most people set their sprinklers and never change them the entire season?

    2.  Did you know that it is best to change your sprinkler settings three times during the year.

    3.  It is best to water lawns less in April and May.  We get lots of rain those months and it isn’t very hot yet, so lawns need less water.

    4.  It is best to increase the water on lawns during June, July and August?  These are the hottest months of the year. 

    5.  It is best to decrease water again during September, October and November?  It has become cooler and lawns don’t need as much water.

    6.  The best thing for your lawn is to water deeply twice a week. Rather than water more shallow four times a week or more. Grass roots can be up to two feet deep and a deep watering can reach the deep roots and can help your lawn be more healthy.

    OTHER LAWN TIPS

    1. Did you know it is best to use a simple lawn fertilizer twice a year? This helps the lawn stay more green. There are lots of four system lawn care products on the market, but in this case simple is better. Use it once in May and once in early August.

    2. Also, according to Aaron at Sunnyside Gardens, when cutting your lawn for that last time in late October or early November cut it as low as you can. Even as low as one inch tall. This will prevent the grass laying down over the winter. If lawn grass lays down over the winter it is more likely to grow mold and the lawn will be less healthy when Spring comes.

    3. Spraying weeds in the lawn is best twice a year. Once in the spring BEFORE THE Dandelions bloom and again in the fall before they bloom again. Spraying when weeds are in blossom increase the chance that the blossoms will have enough energy to go to seed. There is nothing worse than a sprayed lawn with tons of weed seeds blowing all over your lawn and your neighbor’s lawn.

    So good luck with your lawn this Fall and again in the Spring!!!!!

  • REWARDS OF GARDENING

    Posted on October 18th, 2010 Pam No comments

    …the joy of gardening is in doing it yourself, in devising a plan or parts of a plan, reflecting on it, refining it as you go along, revising it, fine-tuning it, figuring out, season by season, how the pieces fit together, what works well together, what has absolutely no interest in living on your property and what is quite happy there.  And in this long process of trial and error, of great plans laid and gone awry, of crushing defeats and tiny victories, a sense of wonder awakens and you begin to realize you are traveling in Concord.  Season to season, year to year, grows an amazement, an appreciation, of just how extraordinary is this tiny sliver of earth and all that is happening on it.

    –Arthur T. Vanderbilt II, ‘Gardening in Eden’

  • GARDEN LOVERS

    Posted on October 16th, 2010 Pam No comments

    “NEVER APOLOGIZE FOR YOUR GARDEN. I have a hunch that if a hundred gardeners went in for a group evaluation, phychologists would find one hundred Type A’s. Who else would create so much work for themselves? Gardeners can get overwrought about bad judgements, or weeds, or borers, but that’s not the point of gardening. You didn’t create the nematode problem–and you didn’t create moonflowers, either. You’re just the gardener. Step back and view the whole, listen to the birds, lean on your hoe. Whatever your garden is, it is beautiful.
    –Christine Allison, ‘365 Days of Gardening’

  • ‘MYTH’ ACCORDING TO ‘THE FARMER’S ALMANAC

    Posted on October 15th, 2010 Pam No comments

    MYTH: We use only 10 percent of our brains.
    TRUTH: Although perhaps difficult to believe at times, various studies have concluded that no part of the brain is ever completely dormant.

  • Summer Squash Recipe

    Posted on October 15th, 2010 Pam 1 comment

    Have you ever heard of  Patty Pan Squash or Scallop Squash. They are one of my favorite squash to eat while I am waiting for the Winter Squash to rippen. They are so good this way, I hope you will try this recipe.

    This shows a picture of some Patty Pan Squash, these are kind of small, I usually wait until they are twice this large to harvest them.

    First wash the squash, trim the top and bottom, then cut in half.

    With a spoon, take out a small amount of the center.

    Then puncture with a fork.

    Fill the cavity with peppers, onions or even salsa. I used Anaheim peppers. Season if you like.

    Then top with butter.

    Cook in the microwave until soft, then top with cheese. I used pepper jack cheese. If prefered, remove the peppers before adding cheese.

    Return to the microwave and melt the cheese. These make great appetizers.

  • FROST IN THE GARDEN

    Posted on October 13th, 2010 Pam No comments

    Where I live, it has frozen once in June, four times in September and it will freeze four times this week.
    I thought I might give out a few pointers about preventing frost in your garden, so you can extend the harvesting season.

    1. Water your plants the day you are expecting a frost. The water makes the plants hydrated and will hold up better against a frost.
    2. Cover with a heavy blanket. Cover all around the plant, all the way to the ground. If there is space between the blanket and the ground, the frost can get under the blanket and damage the plant.
    3. Turn a large water sprinkler on. The trick to this is to turn the water on at around 3:00 am and don’t turn the water off until around 10:00 am or 11:00 am. The plant needs to warm up before you turn the water off. (For example, today at 11:00 am there was still ice on my pepper leaves, because they were in the shade. So I waited until after 12:00 pm before turning the water off.) I totally saved my garden five times this year by sprinkling it. (THANKS MISSY FOR HELPING !!!!!!)
    4. There is also a product to spray on plants to prevent frost. One product is called ‘Cloud Cover’. It protects plants from 2 to 8 degrees. Most products like this will protect for 30 days, so it is long lasting.
    5. Also, you can mulch your plants.
    6. If your plants are under trees or bushes, sometimes they will be protected.
    7. My Father used an old method called a ‘smudge pot’. He used a container of old used oil that was on legs about one foot tall, put a cover over it with a chimney and burned it at dusk. It would burn most of the night. It is a method used to help warm the air so blossoms on trees would not freeze.
    8. Some fruit farmers use large fans to circulate the air. Moving air will not allow the plants to freeze. Some areas freeze more that others because their garden is in a low spot. The cold air migrates to this low area, then stays there all night and freezes.
    9. If you wake up early in the morning and discover it has frozen, you can spray off some of the frost with a blast of water. I remember getting up at 5:00 am to help my Father spray apple tree blossoms, with some success.
    10. The best prevention against frost is to pick all fruit, vegetables and flowers the evening before the frost. Then you are sure that what is harvested will be safe inside.

  • POTATOES

    Posted on October 12th, 2010 Pam No comments

    Everyone in Idaho loves potatoes, right?  Most people in the United States know Idaho is famous for it’s potatoes.

    So I thought I might give out some little known facts about potatoes.

    Potatoes grow under the ground, from ‘seed’ potatoes.  Take a large certified ‘seed’ potato (purchase certified seed at a greenhouse), then cut it into 1 1/2 by 1 1/2 inch piece.  Try to have several eyes (3 or more), on each piece.  Then dig a hole for the ‘seed potato’ and put it in the bottom.  I just push the shovel in as far as I can, pull it forward and drop the potato in.  Then carefully lift the shovel out by pulling it a little more forward. 

    Potatoes grow best in ‘hills’.  When the row of potatoes are about four inches tall, put more dirt on the topdf the plant.  Covering the small potato plants will not hurt them.  Continue through the year to hill the potatoes if desired.  When weeding you can take the hoe and pull the dirt up around the plant, this is a technique my Father taught me.  It does two things at once, it hoes out the weeds and hills the potatoes at the same time.

    You can begin to dig potatoes around the time they are in blossom, the potatoes will be small, but yummy just the same.  I usually begin to dig them when they are about the size of a tennis ball.  Continue to dig them all Fall.  Two weeks after the vines have died, the potatoes have matured enough to dig.  This maturity helps the potato skins toughen up so they don’t get scratched when digging them.

    Now to talk about the peelings and the small potatoes.  NEVER put potato peelings back into the compost bin or on the garden.  NEVER put small potatoes back into the garden.  NEVER put potato vines back into the garden.   Technically this will be the same as putting non-certified seed into your garden.  Also, doing this will promote disease in your garden. 

    So when digging potatoes take all the small potatoes out of the garden as well as the vines, and never compost the peelings.