Feb 29, 2016

Okie.... Dokie.... Artichokie!

Freshly Harvested Jerusalem Artichokes

Taking advantage of this extra day in February to harvest Jerusalem Artichokes.

Jerusalem Artichokes
Guess what's for dinner?

Fresh Harvest of Jerusalem Artichokes in a wooden  bowl



Feb 27, 2016

It's getting hot in here


I am finally getting the hang of this compost thing....and things are really starting to heat up!



I've always just thrown things in the compost, willy nilly and never took the time give it much more thought than that. So, this year I have made the conscious decision to  turn the piles once a week...and  guess what....it's really starting to pay off!

With the regular turning, the pile is heating up quicker and breaking down faster.

Just what every gardener wants....More black gold!



Feb 26, 2016

Lasagna Gardening Update

Do you remember our post about Lasagna Gardening from last year? 

We combined two garden spaces together and chose to cover the grass in between with cardboard, amendments and deep mulch?


Well, patience is a virtue....waiting was the hardest part of this whole...."no work" method.

Last year was excessively dry here in North Idaho, with wildfires all around the region, unfortunately the garden wasn't watered regularly and was neglected for long periods of time while we preoccupied ourselves with the fire danger. 

In the end the deep mulch did it's job and we still reaped a harvest.

I didn't expect much from the lasagna gardening portion because, we did absolutely nothing with it! 
Now that the snow has melted off the garden, it was time to see how our "Lasagna" turned out.

The mulch has broke down a lot and I was surprised to still see intact cardboard underneath the mulch. Beneath that the  grass is broke down and gone....perfect!

We are planning on not tilling the garden this year and putting the "No Dig" garden method to the test.


Not the most beautiful time of year for my garden...Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, I can see beautiful things in the near future!

Feb 25, 2016

Popping up


 Do they know something we don't?
The daffodils along the North side of the house are well on their way up.
The first sighting of Garlic has been discovered too  :-)

Feb 23, 2016

Sunshine & Seedlings

seedling starter trays in the greenhouse on a sunny February day
Although my greenhouse isn't heated and minimum overnight temperatures dipped down to a frigid 23 degrees last night, that didn't stop me from bringing my seedlings out to enjoy today's blissful sunshine.
Black tray of seedlings and starts
Once the sun hits the greenhouse, it doesn't take long for it to naturally heat up to a cozy 70 degrees.
Tray of heirloom Ailsa Craig seedling starts
After the sun goes down, I will haul the trays into the house and back under the grow lights and continue to dream of Spring!



Feb 22, 2016

Souper Sundays

Garden confession: The boys don't share my enthusiasm for parsnips. I've tried cooking them many different ways, to no avail. 

So being the sneaky mom that I am, I found a way for them to eat parsnips without complaining.


Straight up....shredded in soup!

This Sundays soup, met all my needs to feed my family on the cheap...
Not only was it meatless, I was able to hide fresh Parsnips and dried Kale in it.

Stretched for two nights worth of meals and was even better on day 2 with compliments from my teenager....woop! woop!

It's the small victories that can make this mom happy!
I love that soups are so forgiving, frugal and can be made in larger quantities with endless possibilities...I never follow a recipe and always just throw one together with whatever is in season or on hand.

Feb 19, 2016

Northern Gardeners..have you melted out yet?


What a difference a couple of days makes...
Our garden has finally melted out and I couldn't be happier!

 Although I do have visions of grandeur, I realize Winter's not over yet. 

The 10 day forecast is looking good...and hopefully no more snow in sight! 

North Idaho Garden melting out in February


Feb 18, 2016

February Harvest

Now that the snow is melting off the garden, getting to the parsnips is a whole lot easier. I can not believe how big some of these are!!!

Today's harvest totals 8.5 lbs. of parsnips and one lonely little 3 oz. spud


Feb 17, 2016

Earliest Plantings

.
Jumping the gun...I just had to plant something!


Peas and Fava Beans can be planted as soon as the soil can be worked. 


So, even though my garden still has a thin blanket of snow....the soil beneath was absolutely workable.


 Without hesitation, I wasted no time getting those peas in the ground.


 I have never planted Fava Beans in my garden before nor have I ever eaten them... They are known to be a cool season crop and can handle the cold.

This should be a fun experiment...



Let's see how they grow in my garden or if my family will even like them.

Feb 16, 2016

Seeds!

After the trip to the Conservatory my guys humored me and stopped by Northwest Seed & Pet in Spokane. 
 Wow...How is a girl supposed to restrain herself in here?

Seeds....Seeds.... and more Seeds!


I have to admit, I did get a little over whelmed. A good thing, I only needed Fava Beans, some cover crop seed, and fish emulsion. 

I could have easily filled a basket....

Did you know that Northwest Seed & Pet carries 14 brands of Non-GMO, Organic, Heirloom, and Hybrid variety seeds from A-Z. 
If you are in the area...and in need of seeds, you might want to stop in and check them out.

Feb 14, 2016

Happy Valentines Day!


I am one "LUCKY IN LOVE" Lady!

My Sweetheart took me for a surprise visit to the Gaiser Conservatory in Manito Park. I can't believe that I've never been before....

I'm already planning another visit, when the gardens are in full bloom.


Inside the conservatory, heaven awaits :-)


So many plants, so many blooms.


I couldn't stop smiling.


 I know I'm officially ready for Spring!

My Sweetheart really knew what his girl needed....








Feb 9, 2016

Keep on the sunny side of life

Today marks the beginning of our seed sowing.

Did you know that according to the Farmers Almanac  today was an extra good day to start Tomatoes, Peppers, and other above ground crops?


The last couple of days have been brimming with golden rays of sunshine.
Such a welcomed visitor, after so many cabin fever like days of Winter.
It sure felt good to catch up on some Vitamin D
With Spring like weather...the snow is melting leaps and bounds...
Soon enough, I will be playing in the dirt once again.
Seems as though I wasn't the only one enjoying that sunshine today!
Look at these happy cluckers, they found green grass on the sunny side of life ;-)


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