The Exciting Pile of Woodchips

I was doing a bit of a jig and Doug had a big smile on his face as we watched a beautiful sight. A tree company dumping a huge load of woodchips in our driveway! It’s the little things, you know, and this was truly a happy day! We are on a mission to transform…

What Ever Happened to Monsanto? (well, let me tell you…)

I think everyone had heard of Monsanto. They were becoming the monster of the ages. Sued by countries and farmers everywhere; they were the profiteering, poisoning mega-giant, successfully putting small farmers out of business and watching cancer rates soar. Monsanto and genetically modified crops were in the news but also protected by the US government….

Hori Hori (such a fun word to say)

Permaculture originated in Japan, along with some amazing farm implements. I have a Japanese sickle that I can never remember the name of and began calling it a Hibachi because I couldn’t remember any other Japanese word! (Not proud of this.) Well, fast forward, and all my farm interns call it that too. At least…

Winnowing Amaranth (growing one’s own grains)

Every year we try to do a little better; buy a little bit less, throw out a bit less trash, use less petroleum, grow a little bit more, become a little more self sufficient. This rocky, dry desert wouldn’t allow me more space to do a swath of turned soil for wheat or oats, but…

A Greenhouse Raising

We have been here a year. I can hardly believe how time flies! My granddaughter and I found an earth worm in the potato patch, a sure sign that our sand and shale desert soil farmed in a sustainable, no-till fashion- in just one season- is becoming an oasis. Now this land needs a greenhouse….

Dreaming of Vineyards

Have you ever stood in front of a row of grapes? The crisp lines marching up hills? The leaves lovely in autumn? Have you ever sipped a glass of wine in a vineyard and thought of the journey from planting to harvesting to magic in a glass? Something about it fascinates me. I am a…

Becoming a WWOOF Host

I read a great book recently called, This Tractor Life; A Memoir of Food, Wine, and Woofers by Pamela Jane Lincoln. I was initially a little disappointed that it was primarily a cookbook (I have a zillion cookbooks but this one is rather good!) but it was more than that. Those little things the universe…

Natural Insect Control (cont.) and Before and After Pics (so far)

Yesterday, while lamenting the incredible overpopulation of destructive bugs, I posted a picture of the gardens with three adorable ducks sitting outside the closed kitchen garden gate, practically yelling, “Put me in, Coach!” They were employed this morning and have been doing a great job eating grasshoppers. I am afraid they take way too many…

Surrendering and Saving Seeds

My friend, Lisa, is studying homeopathy and had an interesting solution to get rid of grasshoppers. You tincture them, dilute them, then apply it to the garden. I also heard of chopping up grasshoppers in a blender, diluting them, then spraying them in the garden. I am an herbalist so Doug and I had a…

Best Farming Clothes

I almost bought a few outfits from my sister-in-law who sells really cute (really expensive) clothes. My husband reminded me that I live on a farm. Looking at those darling capris and frilly shirts- yea, they won’t last long around here. I need sturdy clothes on this farm and Walmart isn’t cutting it either. I…