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Posted by on Dec 6, 2016 in Gardening, Uncategorized | 0 comments

10 Plants for Attracting Beneficial Insects to Your Garden

10 Plants for Attracting Beneficial Insects to Your Garden

I love winter. It’s the best season for getting prepared for a new gardening season. I love to cuddle up by a fire, drink some tasty hot chocolate, drool over my favorite gardening catalogs, and plan my future garden. It’s a lovely, peaceful season for dreaming about possible future garden productivity. However, I do NOT want to read only garden catalogs (for real!). I also love reading new gardening books. This has been tough to find. I read plenty of great homesteading books (like the ones I mention in my gifts for gardeners post), and those homesteading books have a section or two about gardening which are great to read. But sometimes I just want to curl up by my fire with a great gardening book. So I’ve got some GREAT news: I think I just found my perfect gardening book! When Amy from Tenth Acre Farm asked me to review her book, The Suburban Micro-Farm, I didn’t know what to expect. I was pleasantly surprised to find that this gardening book is PERFECT...

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Posted by on Nov 6, 2016 in Gardening, Uncategorized | 2 comments

6 Gift Ideas for Gardeners

6 Gift Ideas for Gardeners

It’s that time of year. Time to think about clever, cute, and/or funny gift ideas for your loved ones (or for yourself!). Here is a list of 6 gift ideas for gardeners. I tried to focus on just a few very specific gift ideas that I think gardeners will LOVE. Feel free to add other ideas in the comment section! 🙂 1. The Ultimate Garden Tool Set What gardener could resist a garden tool set (like this one), that comes with all the tools needed to garden and a nifty bag to carry it all (and keep it organized!). I drooled when I saw the one pictured below: 2. Garden Gloves Most gardeners I know are super fussy about their garden gloves. So you might want to ask them what type they prefer. These garden gloves are the ones that I personally use. I *love* that they are snug on my hands, and the plastic fingertips keep me from getting poked by thorns. I went through about 10 pairs...

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Posted by on Oct 31, 2016 in Gardening, Uncategorized | 7 comments

8 Lessons from My Summer Garden

8 Lessons from My Summer Garden

This year, my garden was much MUCH better. Unlike last year’s fiasco. Thank goodness.  However, even though this year’s harvest was a happy thing, I still learned plenty of lessons from my summer garden. So I thought I would share them with you all. Feel free to tell me about YOUR summer garden in the comments! 1. Drip Irrigation is a life changer. I hesitated to get drip irrigation in the past. This was for many reasons, including: I have a strict garden budget and I actually LOVE watering my garden by hand. However, my sweet hubby surprised me with drip irrigation supplies, so of course we set it up. I have mixed feelings about using drip irrigation in my garden. The positives: This summer was very dry and hot in South Carolina. Our Drip Irrigation had a timer and it went off twice a day without me having to worry. Instead of daily spending hours watering and rewatering my plants, I only had to stroll through once a day...

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Posted by on Aug 8, 2016 in Beans | 2 comments

How to Preserve Green Beans (4 ways)

How to Preserve Green Beans (4 ways)

How to Preserve Green Beans (4 ways) How does your garden grow? Unlike last year’s fiasco, I have a lovely thriving garden this year. True, my tomatoes and peppers did not grow past seedlings (possibly due to faulty soil mix?), so I have very few tomatoes and peppers this year. However, I DO have loads of zucchini and yellow squash, cucumbers and pickles, watermelon, and green beans.  I certainly have more green beans than we can eat in a week. We started out eating about 2 meals of green beans per week, but now I’m getting a bit sick of eating them. When that happens, it’s time to start thinking about how to preserve the green bean harvest for the winter months. I don’t know about you, but I’m not a big fan of the green beans you can buy at the grocery store in the dead of winter. They are missing that fresh taste that comes from garden beans, even if your garden beans have been preserved.  Speaking...

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Posted by on Feb 21, 2016 in Saffron, Spices | 11 comments

How to Grow Saffron

How to Grow Saffron

Welcome to my Spice Series! This is about How to Grow Saffron. Click here to learn more about saffron. Click here to see the rest of my Spice Series. Enjoy! How to Grow Saffron Saffron is the world’s most expensive spice.  It has beautiful golden-red threads and a pound of dried saffron goes for about $5,000, about 25 percent of the price of a pound of gold. Thankfully, saffron is sold by the gram. Saffron is collected from the stigma of one type of flower: the blue saffron crocus.  It is quite easy to understand why saffron is the most expensive spice in the world when you consider that it takes 80,000 crocus flowers and a quarter million dried stigmas to produce one pound of saffron! One of the things that make saffron so expensive is the labor involved in harvest and the sheer acreage needed to produce even a small amount. Approximately eighty thousand flowers, or a football field-sized patch, must be grown to produce just one pound. During...

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