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A Quick Garden Cleanup

12-08-2014 11:21 AM by ReubenD | 1 comment »

I have to confess that when winter arrives, I usually ran around the garden and pile everything from furniture to kids toys into the sun room. Having turned the sun room into a games room and bar earlier this year, I suddenly find myself without anywhere for the piles of stuff that simply won’t survive a NY winter outside. The intention had been to build a decent sized barn for the animals this summer and include a hay loft and some storage for the garden bits and pieces, but with on...

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The Smart Garden

12-02-2014 02:28 AM by ReubenD | 0 comments »

Even though we grow the vast majority of our own vegetables and fruits (and herbs) in our rather expansive gardens, we are a modern family. The push towards more organic has actually been in large part due to our modern knowledge of the real effects of the fertilization and insect control methods of years past. I often laugh when it is implied that my organic methods are throwback methods to years gone by as the fact is while they share some commonality with methods of many years ago, it is m...

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Lattice for Peas and Beans

11-04-2014 06:41 AM by ReubenD | 0 comments »

One of the goals for next year’s garden (as mentioned in another post) is to make it more hospitable. Rather than just utilitarian, since it is virtually all of the back yard, to make it a place we can still gather and entertain with a few walk ways and benches. With the additional space we have gained by getting the area from the adjacent lot especially, we can spread out a little and make the gardens both functional and decorative. Along that theme I am thinking of replacing the posts wi...

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You are What You Eat (or w=What is in the Soil Your Garden Grows in?!)

10-07-2014 07:37 AM by ReubenD | 2 comments »

Everybody has heard the saying “you are what you eat” and it is one of the reasons I have a garden – to make sure I have lots of fresh wholesome fruits and vegetables for my family. In more recent years we have taken that a step further and learned (through first common sense and later proven by science) that simply choosing to eat carrots and peas and beans over processed foods is not the end of the story. Where and how these vegetables are grown and what is fed to the plants and sprayed on ...

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Planning for the Off Season

10-02-2014 08:10 AM by ReubenD | 2 comments »

It is around this time every year, as the current years garden becomes more barren with more rows tilled and empty than growing plants, that I begin my planning for next year. It is arguably as busy as the spring planting season, but instead of being bent over with my hands in the fresh dirt I am hunched over the counters peeling and blanching vegetables for canning and or freezing. Just as in the spring I pass the hours of work daydreaming of the harvest to come and the taste of the fres...

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Keeping My Garden from Becoming a Food Plot for Deer

09-30-2014 01:21 PM by ReubenD | 1 comment »

I remember the first time we were sitting on the deck talking and relaxing after dinner when the two tiny spotted fawns suddenly appeared in the back corner of the garden. After the squinting and pointing and exclamations of how cute we watched them get bolder each evening as they hopped and played taking an occasional nibble here and there on the young plants. They seemed most fond of the beans and young pepper plants but spent more time jumping and playing than eating so we were satisfied t...

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Unlikely Garden Tools

09-30-2014 01:51 AM by ReubenD | 1 comment »

I have over the years developed a large collection of gardening tools. Rakes and spades, hoes and cultivators, hoses and sprayer heads enough to fill a garage, a shed, and a good portion of the basement to name a few of the more typical tools. Every trip to the garden center you see another gadget promising to make your garden grow better while simultaneously reducing time and effort needed to make it produce. Sometimes I try them, though most often these days I pick them up and laugh and kee...

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Year Round Garden

09-30-2014 01:29 AM by ReubenD | 1 comment »

A few months ago while sitting on the deck one evening, my wife and I had discussed the possibility of changing the deck into a sunroom (that post is here). While typically this sort of project is done to increase the square footage of the house, our consideration was to increase the space we had to grow fresh vegetables and herbs, particularly during our overly long winter months. Though not quite October, the days are getting shorter at an alarming rate and the coolness of the evening ai...

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Making Room for a Bigger Garden

09-23-2014 06:38 AM by ReubenD | 1 comment »

Somehow the garden finds a way of getting bigger nearly every year but this year is really taking a new approach. The strip of property that adjoins ours came up for sale. It is an old lot that has not actually been used for many years, with an old farm that was left behind in the mid 80’s was broken up and sold off after going out of business. This lot has never really been used being nothing but a rectangular lot about an acre in size with the old milk parlor on it. What us the use for an o...

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The Fox Attach

09-13-2014 10:15 AM by BenhamDesign | 1 comment »

Chickens are an integral part of my garden. They help keep the bugs under control, as well as eat the tops of the weeds off. They also provide me with some great fertilizer and much like the zucchini plants, they provide a never ending supply of food. Enough so that between my neighbors and I, we can’t seem to eat enough eggs and zucchinis to keep up. However to my kids the chickens are their pets, so when a fox came into the yard looking for dinner, it was quite a traumatic experience....

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