Easy Solutions for Our Unique Virginia Gardening Challenges

Raised beds are one solution to Virginia gardening challenges

Welcome to Virginia—home of red clay, granite chunks, and critter problems—moles, voles, and deer. And yet, it’s home. I’ve lived here my whole life. I’ve learned that there are several things to think about when I plant. Our Gardening Reality My yard is the best of Virginia—red clay in the front yard and red clay … Read more

Let’s Grow Yummy Tomatoes

Growing tomatoes is a lovely way to learn about gardening

From the New World to the Old World to Your Garden – Growing Tomatoes Tomatoes, or Solanum lycopersicum, are native to the New World—found in Central and South American wilds. In 1519, the explorer Hernán Cortés took seeds back to Europe, where they were planted as ornamentals. People were convinced they were toxic because it … Read more

What’s Bugging You?

What's bugging you? Maybe its a tomato hornworm like the one pictured here

It’s about that time, so I’m reposting a previous blog on common veggie garden insect pests…. WHAT’S BUGGING YOU? Or—who’s been eating my veggies besides me? When I’m out admiring my garden and keeping my eye out for problems, I also look for things like holes in the leaves or chewing damage on the outer … Read more

What Is A Weed?

Dandelions are considered weeds to some, and not to others. What is a weed to you?

TI have friends who are into wine-making. They occasionally come to my yard, dig up dandelions, and take them home to make dandelion wine. I’ll never forget visiting them and walking around their huge yard, noting a nice-sized bed of dandelions. There was one lone blue bachelor button growing in the corner. Without even thinking, … Read more

Simple Steps to Prevent Vegetable Garden Problems

Find out how to prevent vegetable garden problems

Unfortunately, our commonly grown garden vegetables are prone to specific problems. Tomatoes can get Early Blight, Late Blight, Southern Blight, Gray Leaf Spot, Septoria Leaf Spot, Verticillium Wilt, Anthracnose, Fusarium Wilt, etc., as well as aphids, stink bugs, and tomato hornworms. Cucumber family members (cukes, squash, melons, pumpkins) can get Wilt, Powdery Mildew, Downy Mildew, … Read more

My Favorite Vegetables to Plant

Take some time to enjoy your vegetable gardens

I try to plant at least one new thing every year in my flower and veggie/herb gardens. Over the past few years, I’ve compiled a list of my favorite vegetables. As I continue to try new things, this list is subject to change. Most of my favorite veggies are not necessarily the “standard” varieties. Some … Read more

Earth Day

Celebrate Earth Day

This coming Saturday, April 22nd, is Earth Day! Earth Day was established in 1969 at a UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization) conference in San Francisco, California. In March of 1970, a sanctioned Proclamation was signed at the U.N.  A U.S. senator from Wisconsin organized a national demonstration about environmental issues, and the … Read more

Elephant Ears

Elephant ears

Elephant ears have been cultivated for more than 10,000 years as a food crop—making it one of the oldest cultivated plants in the world. The botanical name is Colocasia esculenta—esculenta comes from the Latin word for edible. It’s toxic when raw due to calcium oxalate crystals but edible when cooked. In Polynesia, elephant ears are … Read more

Let’s Take a Walk Around My Garden

It's always good to walk around the garden

It’s National Walk Around Things Day – Let’s Take a Walk Around My Garden Did you know that tomorrow (Tuesday, the 4th) is National Walk Around Things Day? The National Day Calendar is uncertain of the origin of this, so let’s just “run” with it. I’m a gardener, so maybe I’ll celebrate by walking around … Read more

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