Wednesday, August 02, 2006

What's Growin' On: 8/2/06

Realization Of The Day:
Surprise! Cary didn't eat all the surprise lilies in the front yard--yet.

Minding The Moonsigns:
Thursday 8/3, Monday 8/7, and Tuesday 8/8 are all fertile days in the second quarter--great days for starting seeds. Fall crops, anyone? I'm still debating if/what I want to plant. This area is not exactly conducive to fall crops--it stays hot too long and then gets cold too fast. I do keep hearty greens such as chard and beets growing all winter long in the greenhouse (and this year I plan to experiment with my new permanent arugula plot), but anything outdoors is always an iffy proposition. Knowing me, though, I'll probably end up throwing caution to the wind and planting all kinds of seeds during the next few weeks--assuming I can find them. (Just where do those little packets go when I'm not looking?)

Friday 8/11, Saturday 8/12, and Tuesday 8/15 are fertile days in the third quarter. These are the best days for transplanting--seedlings into the garden, potted plants into roomier accomodations, etc.

If you have no idea what this minding the moonsigns business is all about but are intrigued (and need all the help you can get in the garden), click here to read more about it.


  1. I'm thinking that I won't plant anything this winter, but wanted to get some pointers on how to overwinter the beds so that they are at their best for spring planting.

    Any suggestions for mulching, cover crops, fertilizing, pest control, etc?

    Thanks to Steven at dirtsunrain I will be treating the beds with neem oil to prevent future bacterial wilt, but beyond that, I am curious what other people do.

  2. plant parsnips, they'll overwinter in the beds no matter how cold it gets

    (says the guy who probably won't plant a darn thing.)

  3. Thanks FarmGirl, for the reminder about moonsigns. I started using an almanac this year, and then sort of forgot about it.

    Finnyknits. I use a thick mulch of hay (breaks down faster than straw) on the boxed beds where I can't roto-till a cover crop. It's easy to pull off in the spring, and makes a nice enough looking blanket over the winter.

    And on beds where I can till the organic material into the soil, a cover crop of a bulky annual like rye grass (grows fast and dies over the winter).

  4. Hi again, I'd like to contact you with a request to add my blog to your blogroll. I don't see a way to contact you by email, so I hope it's all right to leave the request via comment.

    Anyway, my blog is "A to Z Gardening" at and I would like to be included on your blogroll if mine passes muster. Of course, I've had yours on my blogroll for some while now. I really enjoy your clear writing and gorgeous photos.

  5. Thanks for the head's-up farmgirl!! I've been plotting (yadda yadda) to start some fall crops too, and also debating the merits of the various options. Maybe I will just get outside and start something tonight. Be spontaneous and such.

  6. Just want to thank you and introduce myself!! I have been reading your blog for a while-am facinated by the moonsigns...although I don't understand it, I will transplant some four foot spruces into the yard today instead of waiting!

  7. I have an issue. I've been reading this site and I'm really jealous. Then the other day in our paper there was an article about a couple that built a completely off the grid house on 300 acres of land for 250k in our area. That is my dream and short of winning the lottery I can't see it happening. I was happy after finally buying a house last year and now I don't feel like this is where I'm supposed to be, yet I see no way out of it. I can't even begin to imagine how to get this on our meagre income. Urg. Sorry for the vent.

  8. Going to check out these moonsign books. Mike loves gardening (can't take the country outta the boy) but hasn't been able to do much here in Iowa yet. Back home he planted apple trees, cherry, peach, fig and a mulberry in our tiny little yard. Also had strawberries, tomatoes, green peppers, watermelons and passion fruit planted as well as a lot of flowers. He's wanting to do that here but his tomatoes aren't going so well this time round. Should be an interesting read for both of us. Thanks.

  9. Hey, before I quit my office job and jumped into the food world I used to look at your site a few times a week to transport me into the country and away from ringing phones and deadlines. I'm sure you hear this all the time but thanks for that.

    I'd never noticed the link to your garden and recipes until now though. I'm so glad I found it.


March 2013 update: My apologies for the inconvenience - I know word verification is a pain - but I've had to turn it on to help stop the ridiculous number of anonymous spam comments I've been getting every day. Thanks for your understanding.

Welcome to! Thanks so much for taking the time to write. While I'm not always able to reply to every comment, I receive and enjoy reading them all.

Your feedback is greatly appreciated, and I especially love to hear about what's going on in your own garden. I know, too, that other readers also delight in reading about your garden successes, failures, helpful tips, and lessons learned. Feel free to leave comments on older posts!

I try my best to answer all questions, but sometimes it takes me a few days to get to them. And sometimes, I'm sorry to say, they fall through the cracks, and for that I sincerely apologize.

I look forward to hearing from you and hope you enjoy your visits to my kitchen garden!