- Author: Eileen Linn
In celebration of the Contra Costa Master Gardeners' 30th Anniversary, we came up with 30 (plus 1) signs that you might be a gardener.
Hope you enjoy them!
- Argues constantly that compost smells sweet.
- Delays vacation travel until after the harvest.
- Dirt! In your house, in the trunk of your car, under your fingernails and on your shoes, even the good ones!
- Every vacation has a nursery and /or botanic garden involved.
- Favorite color is green.
- Gets at least a dozen catalogs in the mail - and they send you into a state not experienced since teenage dating.
- Gives zucchinis to...
I love this time of year and all of the promise and excitement that it holds. Secret plans are being drawn up, lists are being made, and visions of plum tomatoes dance in my head. Is it the cold, wintery weather that’s got me in a tizzy? No. Is Christmas and New Year’s festivities that have my heart feeling exuberant? While I do love the holidays, that is not it either. All of you vegetable gardeners know, don’t you? Yes, it is the season of seed catalogs.
I received my first one in the mail about a week ago, and it is an old favorite- The Southern Exposure Seed Exchange Catalog. Wanting to postpone the bittersweet excitement of opening it (and eventually finishing it), I have just laid it reverently...
In my little part of the county, winter weather is finally touching down. Just last week we started to drop into the lower 40’s at night and in the mornings everything is often covered with a heavy coat of dew. Rain is beginning to fall with more regularity, and the trees are becoming leafless skeletons against a backdrop of awesome October sunsets.
So, what’s a gardener to do? The soil it often too wet to be worked, and while the summer harvest is definitely over, the winter crops are still too young to bear much besides greens and baby lettuce. Might I suggest that you spend some time discovering a whole new kingdom of delights? May I introduce you to the exciting and colorful world of fungi?
This is the time of...
As I write this blog entry the view out my window shows pendulous grey clouds and rain. Our first storm of the season has rolled in and dropped about ¾ of an inch of rain. Mother Nature’s timing couldn’t be any better- Merritt College’s Fall Plant Sale was last weekend and I went a little native happy. I purchased a lupine (Lupinus arboreus), a Mimulus hybrid that has multi-colored flowers, and a Seaside Daisy (Erigeron glaucus) just to name a few. Happily, I got all of my natives in the ground before the first of the rain started to fall on Monday. I also transplanted four roses this weekend and I am sure they are appreciating the gentle watering this storm has...
As promised, this entry will be about some of the more experimental plants I have tried to grow this season in my garden. Since finishing my permaculture design course, I have been really interested in edible perennial plants. Although they take a bit more effort to get established, they often need less ongoing care than tender annuals. They usually have better established root systems so they are more able to access ground water and nutrients. They also typically have fewer issues with pests and environmental disorders (granted this is a conclusion drawn from just my own backyard observations). So, at a time of increasing awareness around issues such as fertilizer run-off, pesticide impact, and water usage, edible perennials seem...