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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  • GARDEN WEEK 12, PLANT FLOWER AND HERB SEEDS

    Posted on March 22nd, 2013 Pam No comments

    Typically, flower and herb seeds are very slow germinating and growing. So it is a good idea to plant as early as possible.  Especially when planting in the house with a grow-light, in a cold frame or greenhouse. It is best to plant seeds as early in the season as possible, but keep in mind frost dates and if the plant likes cold or hot weather.

    Most flowers and herbs cannot be transplanted in the garden until the ground is warm.  In my area this isn’t until the end of May.  But, if planted now, with some protection, they will be ready for trans-planting the end of May, instead of just planting seeds.
    The earlier the flowers can be planted, the sooner their blossoms can be enjoyed. The earlier the herbs can be planted the sooner they can begin to be harvested. But keep in mind that some flowers and herbs do not like to be transplanted, so read the labels carefully and plant accordingly.

    The biggest advantage of planting your own seed is the variety of choices you have.  When purchasing transplants from retail stores, selection may be limited.   But, when planting from seed different plants can be tried.  For example purple cauliflower, purple artichokes, white cucumbers…the list is endless.  Planting and experimenting with different plants is always fun for me.

    Jan. 4th Week 1 Order gardening catalogs
    Jan. 11th Week 2 Check out Books & Magazines from Library
    Jan. 18th Week 3 Family survey
    Jan. 25th Week 4 Garden Journal, study gardening books
    Feb. 1st Week 5 Seed inventory, test seeds
    Feb. 8th Week 6 Make a garden plan
    Feb. 15th Week 7 How much to plant
    Feb. 22nd Week 8 Buy seeds
    Mar. 1st Week 9 Plant onion seeds and artichokes
    Mar. 8th Week 10 Trim Raspberries and apply Caseron
    Mar. 15th Week 11 Plant broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage seeds
    Mar. 22nd Week 12 Plant flower seeds & herbs
    Mar. 29th Week 13 Plant onion sets, plant raspberry starts, plant trees
    Apr. 5th Week 14 Plant tomato, pepper seeds
    Apr. 12th Week 15 Transplant broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage if ready
    Apr. 19th Week 16 Plant salad greens, radishes, cress, peas
    Apr. 26th Week 17 Plant melons  & cucumber seeds for transplanting later

  • GARDENING WEEK 11, PLANT BROCCOLI, CAULIFLOWER AND CABBAGE

    Posted on March 15th, 2013 Pam No comments
    Broccoli, cauliflower, brussel sprouts, and cabbage can be planted now.  Especially if they are planted in a cold frame or greenhouse.   If they are planted now, they can be trans-planted earlier in the spring.  These members from the ‘brassica’ family love cool weather, so the earlier they are planted, the better.  If they are planted now, they should be large enough to trans-plant the end of April.

    I plant the seeds in flats filled with potting soil.  I use flat inserts that have 32 individual 2” containers.  It is best to plant 2-3 seeds per container, when doing this, a better crop is guaranteed. When the plants are about 2” tall, I choose the strongest and healthiest plant in each 2” container and PINCH out the extra plants.  If I pull out the extra plants, the roots of the strongest plant are disturbed.

    I have tried these types of ‘brassicas’ and I recommend the list below.
    Broccoli:  Packman
    Cabbage:  Copenhagen Market (green), Golden Acre, (early green),  Red Express, (red).
    Cauliflower:  Jade, Early Snowball.  (the Jade cauliflower is green and very, very good.
    Also, it is not too early to plant Kale, Swiss Chard or Spinach.

    If you fall behind this schedule, it is not too late to catch up!!

    Jan. 4th Week 1 Order gardening catalogs
    Jan. 11th Week 2 Check out Books & Magazines from Library
    Jan. 18th Week 3 Family survey
    Jan. 25th Week 4 Garden Journal, study gardening books
    Feb. 1st Week 5 Seed inventory, test seeds
    Feb. 8th Week 6 Make a garden plan
    Feb. 15th Week 7 How much to plant
    Feb. 22nd Week 8 Buy seeds
    Mar. 1st Week 9 Plant onion seeds and artichokes
    Mar. 8th Week 10 Trim Raspberries and apply Caseron
    Mar. 15th Week 11 Plant broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage seeds
    Mar. 22nd Week 12 Plant flower seeds & herbs
    Mar. 29th Week 13 Plant onion sets, plant raspberry starts
    Apr. 5th Week 14 Plant tomato, pepper seeds
    Apr. 12th Week 15 Transplant broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage if ready
    Apr. 19th Week 16 Plant salad greens, radishes, cress, peas

  • WEEK 10, TRIM RASPBERRIES AND APPLY CASERON

    Posted on March 8th, 2013 Pam No comments

    Trim raspberries now or in the next few weeks. I usually wait until the raspberries have just started to leaf out and the ground is not too wet.  I use hand loppers (trimmers) to cut the dead raspberries at ground level. Then trim the living raspberries to about 40 inches tall.  If the raspberries are trimmed this way, they branch out and produce more raspberries.

    After trimming the raspberries, it is the best time to clean the area of all leaves, branches and debris. I use a 6″ rake, it fits well between the canes.  After the area is clean, to control weeds, I apply Caseron.  It should be applied to raspberries before any weeds or grasses begin to grow.
    Caseron prevents weeds. It is actually a pre-mergent and keeps seeds from germinating.  It also creates a barrier that keeps weed roots (like quack-grass), from breaking through the soil. However, woody plants and trees are not affected, that is the magic of Caseron.  It can be sprinkled around woody plants, like raspberries, currents, shrubs and trees, without any damage to any new or old growth. It is the best product I have ever used and it also lasts the entire season.  Products like Prem will last about eight weeks then re-application is necessary. Prem works well around flower beds and garden paths, but the results have not been the best for me.
    It may be a little early to apply Caseron, and some areas may still have snow, but do not wait too long.  I am going to apply it to my fence lines and ditch banks tomorrow morning, (when the ground is still frozen and I will not sink in the mud).
    Caseron works best on bare ground. To apply, sprinkle it about as thick as salt and pepper. I use a hand fertilizer spreader that spreads it very thin. Caseron also works well on cracks or seams of cement sidewalks or driveways. For some of my wide flower borders, I use a walk behind lawn fertilizer spreader.
    WARNINGS
    1.  Do not apply it too thick or it will kill the ‘good’ plants. A little bit goes a long way.
    2.  READ PACKAGE DIRECTIONS CAREFULLY!!  Caseron is a STRONG HERBICIDE.
    3.  Be careful, Caseron lasts one year in the soil.
    4.  Caseron spreads, I have had it spread as much as one foot.  So do not apply it too close to gardens or flowers.
    5.  Be careful using it around children, pets and livestock–especially chickens.
    6.  Use a face-mask and gloves when applying and wash clothes afterward.
    50 WEEK GARDEN SCHEDULE
    Jan. 4th Week 1 Order gardening catalogs
    Jan. 11th Week 2 Check out Books & Magazines from Library
    Jan. 18th Week 3 Family survey
    Jan. 25th Week 4 Garden Journal, study gardening books
    Feb. 1st Week 5 Seed inventory, test seeds
    Feb. 8th Week 6 Make a garden plan
    Feb. 15th Week 7 How much to plant
    Feb. 22nd Week 8 Buy seeds
    Mar. 1st Week 9 Plant onion seeds and artichokes
    Mar. 8th Week 10 Trim Raspberries and apply Caseron
    Mar. 15th Week 11 Plant broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage seeds
    Mar. 22nd Week 12 Plant flower seeds & herbs
    Mar. 29th Week 13 Plant onion sets, plant raspberry starts
    Apr. 5th Week 14 Plant tomato, pepper seeds
    Apr. 12th Week 15 Transplant broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage if ready
    HAVE A GREAT GARDENING WEEK, WHETHER IT IS DREAMING OR GETTING IN THE DIRT!!!!

  • GARDENING WEEK 9, PLANT ONIONS & ARTICHOKES

    Posted on February 28th, 2013 Pam No comments

    Week nine already!!!!!!!

    So now is the time to plant onion seeds and artichoke seeds. Plant these inside with a grow light, in a cold frame or in a greenhouse.  Planting them now gives them about a 40 day head start.
    Yes, Artichokes can be grown in eastern Idaho! I have grown them successfully now for three years. The Artichokes aren’t large, they are about baseball size.  If harvested when they are smaller, they don’t have a ‘choke’ part.  But the best part about growing artichokes is that because they are fresh, they taste so good!
    Artichokes and onions grow slowly, but they will withstand some cold weather.  Planting the seeds now will make sure they will be tall enough to transplant later.
    Last November I tried planting onion seeds, onion sets and radishes in my garden. I’ll update this site as to how they are doing as they come up this spring.
    Planting onions sets vs planting onion seeds. Planting onion sets gives the onions a huge head start, but do not store through the winter as well as the onions that were grown from seeds.  It is best to plant both onion seeds and onion sets.  Harvest the onion sets through the summer and fall, don’t harvest any onions grown from seeds.  Only harvest them late fall, dry them out and store for winter use.
    To plant onion seeds in flats, I use eight, 4″x 4″ inserts in each flat. I usually plant 50-75 seeds in each 4″x 4″ pack. It is best to plant them in 3-4 small rows. This makes it easier to transplant later.
    To plant artichokes in flats, I use eight 4-packs for each flat, in 32 separate 2″ containers. I usually plant two seeds per container or 62 seeds per flat. Then thin to one plant per 2″ container when they are about two inches tall.
    I recommend Green Globe or Imperial Star Artichokes  and Yellow Sweet Spanish Onions.
    Good luck and let me know how the planting is going!!
    Jan. 4th Week 1 Order gardening catalogs
    Jan. 11th Week 2 Check out Books & Magazines from Library
    Jan. 18th Week 3 Family survey
    Jan. 25th Week 4 Garden Journal, study gardening books
    Feb. 1st Week 5 Seed inventory, test seeds
    Feb. 8th Week 6 Make a garden plan
    Feb. 15th Week 7 How much to plant
    Feb. 22nd Week 8 Buy seeds
    Mar. 1st Week 9 Plant onion seeds and artichokes
    Mar. 8th Week 10 Trim Raspberries and apply Caseron
    Mar. 15th Week 11 Plant broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage seeds
    Mar. 22nd Week 12 Plant flower seeds & herbs
    Mar. 29th Week 13 Plant onion sets, plant raspberry starts
    Apr. 5th Week 14 Plant tomato, pepper seeds

  • GARDENING WEEK 8, BUY SEEDS NOW

    Posted on February 22nd, 2013 Pam No comments
    Yes, now is the time to buy garden seeds. Why??
    1.  Because the best selections are in stores now.  Be aware that the most popular seeds sell out quickly.
    2.  It may take up to four weeks to receive seeds when ordering from a catalog.
    3.  Spring is coming and it will be time to plant before we know it, buy or order now.
    4.  It is best to have seeds on hand when you want to plant them.
    Below is a 11 week schedule, we are on week 8.
    Jan. 4th Week 1 Order gardening catalogs
    Jan. 11th Week 2 Check out Books & Magazines from Library
    Jan. 18th Week 3 Family survey
    Jan. 25th Week 4 Garden Journal, study gardening books
    Feb. 1st Week 5 Seed inventory, test seeds
    Feb. 8th Week 6 Make a garden plan
    Feb. 15th Week 7 How much to plant
    Feb. 22nd Week 8 Buy seeds
    Mar. 1st Week 9 Plant onion seeds and artichokes
    Mar. 8th Week 10 Trim Raspberries and apply Caseron
    Mar. 15th Week 11 Plant broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage seeds
    Mar. 22nd Week 12 Plant flower seeds & herbs
    Mar. 29th Week 13 Plant onion sets, plant raspberry starts

  • GARDEN WEEK 7, MAKE A GARDEN PLAN

    Posted on February 15th, 2013 Pam No comments
    This is quite a task, making a garden plan.  All of the weeks leading up to this week have prepared you for this huge undertaking.

    Listed below are a few tips.

    1.  First, put the same type of plants together, such as vine crops, salad greens and tall crops.
    2.  Place plants together that have the same watering needs, such as hand watering, sprinkling or drip irrigation.
    3.  Plan for succession planting, this is planting from two to five crops in the same place. A good example of this is salad greens and radishes.
    4.  Plan areas for saving seeds, this is an area where the vegetables will not be harvested but allow the seeds to dry or ripen for seed harvest. It is a good idea to mark these areas clearly, so they will not be harvested prematurely.
    5.  Plan areas for a fall garden, this is an area that will have crops ripen in the fall.
    7.  Plan areas for a winter garden, this is an area that will have crops that will winter over. For example, onions, peas and garlic.

    I usually make my garden plan in pencil and take it with me when planting the garden.  As I plant, I make changes if necessary.

    Below is a 12 week schedule, we are on week 7.

    Jan. 4th Week 1 Order gardening catalogs
    Jan. 11th Week 2 Check out Books & Magazines from Library
    Jan. 18th Week 3 Family survey
    Jan. 25th Week 4 Garden Journal, study gardening books
    Feb. 1st Week 5 Seed inventory, test seeds
    Feb. 8th Week 6 How much to plant
    Feb. 15th Week 7 Make a garden plan
    Feb. 22nd Week 8 Buy seeds
    Mar. 1st Week 9 Plant onion seeds and artichokes
    Mar. 8th Week 10 Trim Raspberries and apply Caseron
    Mar. 15th Week 11 Plant broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage seeds
    Mar. 22nd Week 12 Plant flower seeds

  • GARDENING WEEK 6, HOW MUCH TO PLANT?

    Posted on February 8th, 2013 Pam No comments
    How much to plant depends on how much your family will eat, and your garden space.
    This is as simple or as complex as you want to make it.
    1. List what can be planted in your area.
    2. List what your family likes to eat, (check the family survey taken in week three).
    3. List any items that are on both lists.
    4. Plant these items, (plant more of the items that are on multiple lists).
    5. When the list is complete, put the items in order of  importance.
    Consider these five things.
    1. Will we really eat it?
    2  Will we plant several crops throughout the season? Remember to have extra seeds for additional crops.
    3. Do I really have room for it?
    4.Would I rather plant something else?
    5. Am I going to do any canning or store  items over the winter?
    Some seed packets list how much a package will plant. For example, a package of carrots may plant 50 feet, while a package of peas may only plant 20 feet.  Use package information as a guideline of how much to plant.
    Try this link #mce_temp_url# for an information vegetable table.
    This is a very good starting place, but remember, this is just one guide, adjust if necessary.
    Here is some information found there:
    1.  The number of seeds in an ounce and seeds in a gram
    2.  How many seeds it takes to plant 100 feet
    3.  The yield for 10 feet
    4.  How much to plant per person.
    5.  Row spacing.
    6.  Information about direct seeding or transplanting.
    Listed below are 11 weeks of my 50 weeks of gardening list.  If you find yourself behind, it is easy to catch up.  This is my schedule for Idaho Falls, adjust if necessary.

    Jan. 4th Week 1 Order gardening catalogs
    Jan. 11th Week 2 Check out Books & Magazines from Library
    Jan. 18th Week 3 Family survey
    Jan. 25th Week 4 Garden Journal, study gardening books
    Feb. 1st Week 5 Seed inventory, test seeds
    Feb. 8th Week 6 How much to plant
    Feb. 15th Week 7 Make a garden plan
    Feb. 22nd Week 8 Buy seeds
    Mar. 1st Week 9 Plant onion seeds and artichokes
    Mar. 8th Week 10 Trim Raspberries and apply Caseron
    Mar. 15th Week 11 Plant broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage seeds