Sheet Mulching the Herb Bed

The large 4 x 24 foot bed up front will be for the medicinal perennial herbs. (The culinary and the annual ones will go in the herb bed in the back, near the kitchen door.) This bed was started last Spring. First we did some deep tilling (with rototiller), then we installed the boards and […]

More Orders! More Bushes, Berries, and Vines

Irises (probably) in the back yard While I was spending money anyways I went ahead and ordered, from Burnt Ridge: 2x ANANASNAYA FEMALE HARDY KIWI 1x MALE HARDY KIWI /POLLINATOR 2x  PAW PAW 2x YORK ELDERBERRY (canadensis) 2x SOCHI TEA (Camellia sinensis) 1x BARCELONA HAZELNUT (Corylus avellana) 2x BUSH HAZELNUT (Corylus americana) 1x GAMMA HAZELNUT […]

Of Calcium in the Soil and Plants – Part 8

You guessed it: it’s time for another episode in the Calcium in the Soil and Plant series! Take heart: we’re getting close to the end (maybe only one more part to go?). Actually, it took me so long to post on this again because this one took me a long time to figure out. If […]

Of Calcium in the Soil – Part 6

O, that egg again! We’ve arrived at Part 6 if this extraordinary saga of how calcium arrives and behaves in the soil (if I’ve occasionally typed “soul” instead of “soil”,  is it really a typo?). Click to catch up on part 1, part 2, part 3 and part 4 and part 5. ~ 6. Soil […]

Of Calcium in the Soil – Part 4

We’ve reached part 4 of this riveting story of how calcium and other nutrients make it into into the soil and thence into our vegetables and thence into our own bodies (and into chicken eggs). We’ve had some cliffhangers already, so be sure to check out parts one, two and three. ~ 4. Solubility, carbonation […]

Of Calcium in the Soil – Part 3

This is the third article in a series on how calcium and other nutrients end up inside our vegetables, and on how to interpret certain soil test results. It is preceded by part 1 and part 2. ~ 3. Water and pH Let’s investigate the water in the soil. For one, water brings the minerals […]

Quick Notes on Stored Food and a Peek Inside the Hoop House

So I did all that canning last year and ended up with a little more than what you see in the picture above. So far we’ve eaten half the tomato sauce, a lot of apple sauce and blueberry jam (but not half, not by a long shot), a quarter of the peaches, and some of […]

Of Eggshells and Calcium in Soil, Compost – Part 1

It was the combination of finding an eggshell in the compost and staring at our soil test results that did it. I started researching and one thing led to another. But I figured it out, the basics of it, anyway. The result is a long text, so I’m serializing it over the next couple of […]