Yearly Archives: 2015

Impossible Coconut Pie Recipe

This recipe has been in my family for decades. I remember my Mom making 2 or 3 at a time as it was so delicious, we as kids would gobble it up.
The beauty of this pie is its simplicity. No need to make a crust. You place all the ingredients in a blender and pour it into a pie pan. As the flour settles to the bottom, it makes its own crust.

Impossible Coconut Pie
4 eggs
1/4 lb. butter
1/2 cup flour
2 cups milk
1/2 cup sugar
1 cup coconut
2 tsp. vanilla

Place all ingredients into a blender. Blend until well combined about 15-20 seconds.
Pour into a greased 9″ pie dish. Bake at 350 deg. for 1 hr. or until set.

Serve hot or cold.

Do You Sell Seeds & What Planet Are You From? Q&A

In this week’s Q&A I answer the following questions:

1. Why are you wasting your time on bolting lettuce? Yank the crap out and throw it away
2. Why did you have the seat belt on?
3. Why don’t you sell seeds?
4. You ramble way too much
5. If you lay wood chips, you’ll deplete the soil of nitrogen

Why Is My Lettuce Bitter & Is Cardboard Bad For The Compost Pile? Q&A

Weekend Q&A. In this edition, I will answer the following questions

1. What is the advantage of starting seeds in cells instead of trays. Do you really have to spend the extra money?
2. I have heard that cardboard is bad for the compost. is this true?
3. Every time I grow lettuce, it’s bitter when I pick it. how can I prevent this?
4. In a facebook post, some people were recommending foliar feeding. What are your thoughts on it?
5. I heard you say that you don’t use animal manures on your property at all. Can you explain why?

Watch the video:

Lasagna Gardening – The No Till Composting System

If you hate digging and turning your compost, then lasagna gardening just might be the ticket for you.  I’ve done it a little on a small bed, but this is the first year I’ve tried it on a larger bed (3’x10′).
The system worPreparing Lasagna Bedks by layering (hence the term lasagna) your browns and green, alternating each layer until you have a stack that’s way above the top of the bed.

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The Benefits of Growing a Vertical Garden

Before using the Greenstalk Vertical Grow System, I always believed the best way to garden was either directly in the ground or in raised beds. I never considered using any kind of vertical system. My reasons were varied. However, my greatest concern was crowding. I assumed that cramming too much into one space would certainly cause disease problems. Without proper circulation, I was just asking for trouble.

I was wrong

Since using a vertical grow system, I must say I ‘m convinced this is a great addition to my traditional gardening methods. I’m not advocating abandoning your raised beds or traditional in-the-ground garden. But I do suggest you give vertical gardening a try.

vertical garden

Greenstalk Vertical grow system

Benefits of growing vertically

Air Circulation

One reason I resisted vertical gardening in a tower was air circulation. I thought putting too many plants together in one area would not allow proper air to flow around them. As it turns out, circulation is actually improved as each section is far enough away from the others so it’s not a problem. And the fact it is elevated actually helps with air flow underneath the unit.

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Cutting Runners On Strawberry Plants

What is a runner?

A runner is a shoot or stem coming from the root of some plants. These “shoots” are produced by all June-bearing strawberry plants and most ever-bearing and day-neutral strawberry varieties.
Strawberry plants produce runners to propagate themselves. This is basically how the plant reproduces.  It lays down the runner looking for soil. Once it finds it, the shoot attaches itself to the soil and starts to root. This is where a new plant will develop.

Strawberry Runners

Why prune them?

As the plant lays down its runners, it expends a lot of energy into producing its offspring. There are two schools of thought here. Some people won’t even let the plant lay down its runners as too much energy is taken away from the plant and less energy goes into strawberry production. Others think that the runners should be allowed to take root, but be cut away from the parent plant immediately after the new plant has established itself.

I am a fan of both methods. Strawberry plants only produce fruit for a few good years and then production drops off dramatically.  I usually cut shoots I see coming off the plants for the first couple of years. After that, I usually let the plant propagate itself because I know they are aging and they will be producing less over the years. Then I will cut the runner away from the parent plant.
Never leave the plants attached to each other as it serves no purpose and you may be setting yourself up for failure if one of the plants dies, it could take the other one down with it.

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Recommended Reading

It’s raining today and the forecast is for a lot more of it the next few days. I decided to pull a few books off the shelf to flip through and gain inspiration. I’ve mentioned before that I have 4 huge bookshelves full of gardening, survival and homesteading books, so the task was daunting. What do I read?
After staring for 15 minutes wondering what to pick, I decided to pull three of my favorites, ones that I thought I could share with my readers.

#1 The Holistic Orchard by Michael Phillips

holistic_orchard

 

Great instructional book for the small grower. In The Holistic Orchard, Michael Phillips shows you how to adapt to nature rather than try to change it.

His healthy, holistic approach to maintaining an orchard is a refreshing change from the standard teachings of modern orchardists.

#2 Lasagna Gardening by Patricia Lanza

lasagna_gardening

 

Lasagna gardening is a no till, little work way to generated compost by layering. No turning or taking your soils’ temperature. Just stack your browns and greens alternating between each. Let it sit for a few months and then plant. Gardening can’t get any simpler that this.

 

#3 Four Season Harvest by Eliot Coleman

four_season

 

Four Season Harvest is all about growing year round. This book has been the standard for so many people wanting to grow food for their families all year long.

Growing Maqui Berries

We’ve all heard about the health benefits of blueberries, acai berries,, strawberries and other fruits. But few people have heard about the Maqui Berry.  In fact, I hadn’t heard of it until recently.

I was given a few seeds from a friend through our local gardening club. I planted them, not expecting much. However they are now about 3 inches tall and ready to repot. I plan to keep them in the greenhouse as they are hardy down to zone 8.

The health benefits of the Maqui Bery are just now starting to be discovered.

Yard Sale Finds For Gardeners

Don’t forget when you’re visiting yard sales or garage sales, keep your eyes open for anything that can be used in the garden.

Planting And Growing Strawberries

I figured it was time to transplant my strawberries. I also explain the different types and why I grow them.