King Tut's Seeds

Seeds From the Tombs

Many gardeners know that cool, dry, dark places are ideal for long-term seed storage. Many gardeners cite the seeds found in ancient Egyptian pyramids as evidence. According to the popular story, these seeds, after lying dormant for thousands of years, sprouted when planted. While most scientists would agree on the perfect conditions for storing seeds, most deny that seeds found in Egyptian tombs have ever … Continue reading Seeds From the Tombs

The Dirt-Cheap Green Thumb

The Dirt-Cheap Green Thumb

Gardening on a budget doesn’t mean that you have to sacrifice looks or taste! The Dirt-Cheap Green Thumb: 400 Thrifty Tips for Saving Money, Time & Resources In and Around the Garden by Rhonda Massingham Hart will show you how to make the most of your gardening dollars, while still enjoying a beautiful and productive garden. These tips will improve your efficiency every step of … Continue reading The Dirt-Cheap Green Thumb

5 Homemade Gifts from the Farm

5 Homemade Gifts From the Farm

There’s nothing like a homemade gift to warm someone’s heart at Christmas.  The time and love put into a handcrafted present make it special. If you enjoy country living, you have an excellent opportunity to make and grow gifts that will touch others.  Need some inspiration?  Consider these ideas: Heirloom seeds.  If you raise and save seeds from heirloom plants, why not share that favorite … Continue reading 5 Homemade Gifts From the Farm

Pros and Cons of Fermenting Seeds Before Storage

Pros and Cons of Fermenting Seeds Before Storage

Most guides to saving seeds from tomatoes, cucumbers, and melons recommend fermenting the seeds before storing them. However, a short perusal of the directions for this procedure is enough to convince anyone that a fermented seed culture is a nasty, smelly mess. So is it really worthwhile? Or is there a better way? Interestingly, some gardeners don’t ferment their seeds, but simply clean them up … Continue reading Pros and Cons of Fermenting Seeds Before Storage

Tomato

Tomato

The possibilities of a fresh, homegrown tomato are nearly endless.  The simplest uses, such as sandwich toppings and BLTs, are by far the best.  However, when you have a surplus, experiment.  Dice them and use them instead of canned tomatoes in your favorite recipes.  Cook them to make salsa or tomato sauce.  Even green tomatoes have uses.  Try slicing and frying them.   Preferred Conditions … Continue reading Tomato

Squash (Summer)

Squash (Summer)

Fortunately for gardeners, summer squash is almost as versatile as it is prolific.  Slices can be cooked in soup or sautéed and added to pasta.  Raw squashes can be peeled and cut into sticks to serve with dip.  Both zucchini and yellow squash can be shredded for cooking and baking purposes, as well.   Preferred Conditions Full sun. Hot temperatures. Soil pH between 6.0 and … Continue reading Squash (Summer)

Radish

Radish

If you have never enjoyed the fresh taste of a well-grown radish, you really ought to give it a try.  Radishes are delicious to eat raw, either by themselves or with vegetable dip.  But they can also be sliced to increase their versatility.  Use them to top a lettuce salad, or make radish salad. Even those tiny sprouts that you had to pinch off while … Continue reading Radish

Pepper

Pepper

Sweet peppers are extremely versatile.  For a quick and easy side, they can be cut into strips and served with vegetable dip.  As a main course, they can be stuffed with meat and rice, then baked.  Chopped peppers are particularly handy.  They can be used for everything from a pizza topping to a stir-fry ingredient. Hot peppers can be put to a number of uses, … Continue reading Pepper

Pea

Pea

Shell peas are one of the garden’s most delicious vegetable offerings.  Their season passes all too quickly.  If you have enough peas, steam or boil them.  Smaller quantities are great for adding to stir-fries or for topping salads.  And while you are out in the garden, you really must open a pod or two and enjoy their raw, crisp sweetness! Sugar snap peas are a … Continue reading Pea