Category: Garden & Foraging (page 2 of 6)

Resolve To Grow An Abundant Garden This Year

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If you’ve never had a garden, or you have but don’t feel successful when you have, then you may be yearning to not only grow a garden, but grow a successful and abundant garden this year—and I think that’s exciting!

So what has stopped you in the past?  Time?  Knowledge?  A plan?

Relax future gardener, there’s help.  There are seven simple steps to take to help you grow your best garden yet this year.  And—they aren’t that hard—I promise.

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Perennials Vs. Annuals: Picking The Right Combination For Your Personality & Needs

When planning your garden, you’ll be faced with almost innumerable options.

  • Where will you put it?
  • What will you plant in it?
  • How much will you plant?
  • Will you color coordinate vegetables?
  • Should you inter-plant flowers with your crops?
  • How many of your plants will you let go to seed?
  • How much money will you spend on seeds?
  • What kind of fencing and protection do you need?
  • Will you plant perennials or annuals?

If you’ve never planted a garden before you may just plant whatever seeds you find wherever you’ve already got free space.  It may work, and it may not.

But if you’re in a phase where you want to start planning strategically to either become more self-sufficient, or just want healthier foods readily available for your family, then you’ll need to be more deliberate with your decisions.

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13 Ways To Save Money In Your Vegetable Garden

*This post contains affiliate links.  If you click on one and make a purchase, I may make a small commission at no cost to you.  Thank you for supporting this site.*

 

There’s no doubt about it, growing a garden can mean a lot of money saved in food expenses.  It can, however, also be a very expensive activity if you let it.  It starts off so innocently, and before you know it, you’ve invested a lot of money into that beautiful patch of produce.

Fortunately, there are some tips you can use to keep your expenses down–even at a minimum when your budget is tight.  It takes a bit of planning and dedication, but with persistence and determination, you can keep your out of pocket expenses down with these tricks.

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How To Eat Fresh Produce Year-Round In A Cold Climate

*This post contains affiliate links.  If you click on one and make a purchase, I may make a small commission at no cost to you.  Thank you for supporting this site.*

 

The number of days between our average last freeze of the year and the average first freeze of the year is 70 days.  If you’ve got gardening knowledge, you’ll recognize this as the length of a growing season in North America.  That means most of my gardening for the year is done in just 70 days.

Since most of my crops take at least one month to be ready for the table (lettuce and such), then if I am only eating fresh produce from my own garden during my growing season, I am limited to about one month of eating fresh foods.

With this scenario, one might think at first glance that our family doesn’t eat much of our produce fresh, or that we shop for our produce.  Neither of these cases is true.  In fact, we eat fresh produce from our own homestead pretty-much all year long.

Even in a harsh, cold climate with a short growing season, these techniques can help anyone to eat produce fresh from their own homesteads nearly all year long.

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Garden And Homestead Resources Available This Year

*This post contains affiliate links.  If you click on one and make a purchase, I may make a commission at no cost to you.  Thank you for supporting this site.*

 

Some of the newest garden and homestead resources are breaking all the rules and joining forces for just a couple days.  Right now, they are all available in one place.

Are you looking for information on family gardening, foraging, home preservation, chickens, growing your urban farm, or other information to help you nurture your homestead?  If your answer was yes, you’re in luck.

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Building A Deer Proof Garden Fence

The garden fence has been in desperate need of repair for awhile.  This was the year we finally got around to fixing it.

It was essentially poultry wire around 4 inch wood posts.  The wire was only 4 feet tall, and then we had brightly colored baling twine ran around the top for extra height to deter deer.  (You can see some pictures of the old fence here.)

It worked when it was new.  The deer would walk around it as they migrated through.  But eventually (since we live where the deer live), they just hopped over it like it was nothing and helped themselves to whatever they wanted.  Then they just got lazy…They stopped really jumping over it.  Eventually they drug it down between the posts to the point they were literally just walking over it.

Yeah.

So this year we got to fix it just how we want it.  It is raccoon, rabbit, chicken, and deer deterrent.  We haven’t seen any moose or elk since it’s been put up, but I’m hoping it’s moose & elk resistant as well.

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How To Keep Deer Out Of The Garden

Deer can destroy even a large garden in as little as one or two trips.  Although we love their beauty and they can be quite entertaining to watch, we are not often overly happy to share our food with them.  There are exceptions of course, but our family eats what we grow–so it’s really important to us that they stay out.

If you have deer in your area like we do, then take a look at these six techniques to keep them out of your garden, or at least from eating your produce.

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Hoss Double Wheel Hoe And Attachment Review (Plow, Sweeps, Cultivating Teeth)

* I was provided the following double wheel hoe, plow, sweeps and cultivating teeth from Hoss in exchange for my honest review.  All opinions are my own.  This post contains affiliate links.*

 

For a short and intense season each year, our family is immersed in our garden.  Yes, immersed.

By 5 a.m. most members are in one of the gardens or fields.  We are busy cultivating, dreaming, planting, laughing, watering, weeding, sharing, eating, living, harvesting.

This is an almost daily ritual that consumes our mornings, and eats our days until lunch time.  And as soon as the evening starts to cool, we are often back for more.

Nothing grows a family together like growing a family garden and running a family farm.  And you better believe, all my children have a work ethic.  Growing food brings us together, teaches us values, commitment, loyalty, and a love for the soil.

This year, we were generously supplied the Hoss Double Wheel Hoe with some attachments.  We have been using the cultivating teeth, oscillating hoe, plows, and sweeps in our garden growing rituals and they have been a real blessing.

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Saving Money In The Garden And On The Homestead? Easy.

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Any serious gardener will tell you that gardening is an expensive hobby.  Even when you are growing all your own crops and plants from the seeds you save every year, you still have to think about structures.  There will always be raised beds to build, fences to erect, gates to attach, and barns to update.

Using reclaimed and recycled materials can get you a long way if you’re determined to save money.  But there are some projects that you just need to go out and buy materials for.

We’re in that place right now.

It’s fencing season.  We are needing to repair a mile of pasture fence, and repair our deer fence around the main preservation garden.  We will need new supplies: posts, panels, and fencing staples for both projects.  The cost?  Into the thousands of dollars.

We’ve been putting it off for a couple years, but this year we have to get it done.  We are in a position now where we have to figure out a way to pay for some new materials.

And then we were told about the most amazing news we’ve heard all month.

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How To Grow Kohlrabi: The Cold Weather Crop

*This post contains affiliate links.  If you click on one and make a purchase, I may make a small commission at no cost to you.  Thank you for supporting this site.*

 

Kohlrabi might be a vegetable you’ve never heard of if you live in a warmer climate or have a long growing season.  If you are in a colder climate and have a shorter season, or you’re thinking of moving to one, then it’s an absolute must in your homestead garden.

This beautiful and tasty treat can be white, pale green, or purple.  The swollen part of the stem is the part most commonly eaten, although the leaves are also edible and can be cooked in the same way one would cook kale or collards.

In the German language, kohlrabi translates to “cabbage turnip,” and as the name implies is part of the cabbage family.  Relatives to the kohlrabi include arugula, broccoli, broccoli raab, Brussel sprouts, cauliflower, collards, kale, horseradish, mustard, radishes, and turnips.

It is a very hardy biennial crop that is grown mostly as an annual.

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