Blue Camas

Some of my favorite things to plant in my garden that are not fruits or vegetables are native wildflowers. Though they may not be edible themselves, many flowers have the benefit of attracting pollinators, which will help to get those fruit and vegetable blossoms pollinated, too. I like to grow native flowers, specifically, for a…

Tuscan Kale, Sausage and Tomato Broth with Linguine

  I’ll be honest. Kale isn’t one of my favorite vegetables, in and of itself. But it’s one of my favorite vegetables to grow — because it’s easy; it lasts in the garden forever; and it’s one food that I can pick fresh in the winter. I decided to use some of my garden kale…

Rascally Rats

Winter is a time when work in the garden and orchard is primarily about protecting the plants from the cold and other dangers. One of the potential dangers to fruit trees that may be even more of a problem for city growers than our country colleagues is rats. Rats are my least favorite animal. In…

Fiddly Fava Beans

Fava beans are the best bean. Their nutty flavor and creamy texture is unlike any other, and they are truly a delicacy, especially in the early spring when little else is yet in season, and I’ve grown tired of winter crops and stored food. But they aren’t widely eaten in this country because, frankly, they…

Wild Arugula

Now is the time to plan the garden for next year. I already have most of the seeds that I want to plant in 2019, but I’m still going over what I might want to grow more thoroughly, and thinking about trying even more! One thing I will definitely be growing is arugula — wild…

Nesting

There’s something comforting about a bale of straw, I find. Maybe it’s because I’m a country girl. Maybe it’s because it reminds me of hay rides from my childhood and youth. Maybe it’s a deeper instinct that tells me that if I’ve got a bed of straw, then I’m doing all right. Whatever the reason,…

Space Invaders

I don’t worry very much about weeds, really. My goal is not to have a manicured lawn or landscape that has no plant in it that I didn’t put there, exactly where I put it. I want my garden to be a natural, not an artificial place. I’m happy to let Nature do her stuff…

Garden Snow

It’s gotten pretty chilly here in Portland. The wind was rather biting today as I walked to the market. When I came home and kissed my husband, he exclaimed at how icy my nose and cheeks were as I pressed them against his warm face. The cold can be an exhilarating pleasure, when you have…

Microcosm

When I went out to the garden today, I took a look at the small raised bed I had put together early enough this year that I could grow a few vegetables in it. I planted some fava beans in September and October in the empty spaces, to both act as a cover crop, and…