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  • Gardening, again...

    It's been a decade since I gardened, other than a few tomato plants on the front porch, year before last. I know, I know, it's hardly primal and this isn't exactly hunting and gathering (OK, well, a lot of gathering), but we like organic veggies, belong to a CSA, shop the organic section of our local market, and it finally just made sense to get back into it myself. We were part of the back to the land movement in the 70s (yes, I'm old, why do you ask??), and I gardened for years after we moved back to town. One thing and another got in my way, and I hadn't, for ages.

    This feels GREAT. I know where the food comes from, it's not shipped 1500 miles, it's not weeks old, I KNOW it's organic, and other than effort and the cost of plants and seeds, it's free.

    Anybody else gardening out there?

    (Hey, it's exercise, too...I lift heavy things, I walk a lot more...and life is good.)
    Best--
    Kate

    Still Craving Pterodactyl--my Primal Blueprint blog

    70 is the new 50--without the hot flashes!

    Goals: Feel good, be stronger, and hopefully kick that arthritis in the backside! Oh, yeah, and losing more weight would be okay, too.

  • #2
    I have a little garden that I put a lot of work into this spring. It produced lots of cherry tomatoes, cucumbers (the taste of a fresh one straight from the garden is so different than a store bought one!), yellow squash, and black eyed peas. We got a few weeks of torrential rain, followed by blistering heat, and everything died. Now I'm just waiting to start over with a fall garden! I'd like to grow broccoli and lettuce.

    For gardening related online communities, check out GardenWeb and Homesteading Today, two other forums I frequent (Homesteading Today's forum is a wealth of information on self sufficiency, not all that different from the values of the primal community!)

    Jenny
    My Writing Blog
    My Twitter

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    • #3
      Count me in! I have a 1300 square foot garden. Finally moved into a place with a decent amount of land, so I'm able to plant quite a bit. I got a late start, so this is more of an experimental year. Lots of variety I'm trying -- different kinds of tomatoes and peppers, mixed varieties of radishes (the last of which I'm turning into Mark's Breakfast Pork and Radish Hash from one of his books), arugula, collards, kohlrabi, carrots, yellow beans, acorn and spaghetti squash, cukes, cabbage, cauli, broccoli, brussels sprouts, canteloupe and watermelon.

      It's a good amount of work, but I LOVE IT!!!!!!!!!! Something about the smell of the dirt is intoxicating. And I don't mind putting the sweat and physical effort towards it since the rewards will be plentiful.

      Now I need to find all of my canning jars...

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by aix_sponsa View Post
        I have a little garden that I put a lot of work into this spring. It produced lots of cherry tomatoes, cucumbers (the taste of a fresh one straight from the garden is so different than a store bought one!), yellow squash, and black eyed peas. We got a few weeks of torrential rain, followed by blistering heat, and everything died. Now I'm just waiting to start over with a fall garden! I'd like to grow broccoli and lettuce.

        For gardening related online communities, check out GardenWeb and Homesteading Today, two other forums I frequent (Homesteading Today's forum is a wealth of information on self sufficiency, not all that different from the values of the primal community!)

        Jenny
        Thanks for the links, Jenny! Yes, the harsh weather's made it more difficult, hasn't it! We've just enjoyed our first green pepper, and our first tomato will be tomorrow!
        Best--
        Kate

        Still Craving Pterodactyl--my Primal Blueprint blog

        70 is the new 50--without the hot flashes!

        Goals: Feel good, be stronger, and hopefully kick that arthritis in the backside! Oh, yeah, and losing more weight would be okay, too.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by kkratz57 View Post
          Count me in! I have a 1300 square foot garden. Finally moved into a place with a decent amount of land, so I'm able to plant quite a bit. I got a late start, so this is more of an experimental year. Lots of variety I'm trying -- different kinds of tomatoes and peppers, mixed varieties of radishes (the last of which I'm turning into Mark's Breakfast Pork and Radish Hash from one of his books), arugula, collards, kohlrabi, carrots, yellow beans, acorn and spaghetti squash, cukes, cabbage, cauli, broccoli, brussels sprouts, canteloupe and watermelon.

          It's a good amount of work, but I LOVE IT!!!!!!!!!! Something about the smell of the dirt is intoxicating. And I don't mind putting the sweat and physical effort towards it since the rewards will be plentiful.

          Now I need to find all of my canning jars...
          WOW, good luck with all of that! I had a quarter acre, once upon a time, and I couldn't keep up. We just have a little strip of front yard that gets sun, now, but I'm SO enjoying it. Loving dirt, and compost, and visiting the garden every morning. I envy your cantaloupes!

          My husband made faux crab cakes with radish, by the way, and they were WONDERFUL.
          Best--
          Kate

          Still Craving Pterodactyl--my Primal Blueprint blog

          70 is the new 50--without the hot flashes!

          Goals: Feel good, be stronger, and hopefully kick that arthritis in the backside! Oh, yeah, and losing more weight would be okay, too.

          Comment


          • #6
            Any permies in the group?
            http://www.theprimalprepper.com - preparing for life's worst while living for the best

            Comment


            • #7
              I have two 8'x2' square foot garden beds. It's mostly tomatoes (I bought 4 heirloom varieties and then tons of tomatoes from LAST year sprung up in random places!) plus some lettuce (that have gone to flower at this point so I should probably rip them up and replant?), swiss chard, onions, yellow squash and zucchini (which aren't producing much of anything ((). This is my second year gardening and I'm still trying to remember to get down there and weed. I went down there a few days ago and found a rabbit nest burrowed in one of the squares!! The babies still had their eyes closed so I'm waiting for them to leave before I fix my fence (where mama got in) and continue planting. I hear now is the time to plant for fall, only I'm not sure what to plant..

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by tamo42 View Post
                Any permies in the group?
                I'd love to explore permaculture! Tell us more?
                Best--
                Kate

                Still Craving Pterodactyl--my Primal Blueprint blog

                70 is the new 50--without the hot flashes!

                Goals: Feel good, be stronger, and hopefully kick that arthritis in the backside! Oh, yeah, and losing more weight would be okay, too.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by torena View Post
                  I have two 8'x2' square foot garden beds. It's mostly tomatoes (I bought 4 heirloom varieties and then tons of tomatoes from LAST year sprung up in random places!) plus some lettuce (that have gone to flower at this point so I should probably rip them up and replant?), swiss chard, onions, yellow squash and zucchini (which aren't producing much of anything ((). This is my second year gardening and I'm still trying to remember to get down there and weed. I went down there a few days ago and found a rabbit nest burrowed in one of the squares!! The babies still had their eyes closed so I'm waiting for them to leave before I fix my fence (where mama got in) and continue planting. I hear now is the time to plant for fall, only I'm not sure what to plant..
                  Yep, once lettuce flowers, it's pretty bitter. Do you mulch? That REALLY helps keep down the weeds, and holds in the moisture. I don't know where you live, but this year that's VERY important for us. Dry and hot!
                  Best--
                  Kate

                  Still Craving Pterodactyl--my Primal Blueprint blog

                  70 is the new 50--without the hot flashes!

                  Goals: Feel good, be stronger, and hopefully kick that arthritis in the backside! Oh, yeah, and losing more weight would be okay, too.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    We have about 4500-5000sf in crops right now, plus a laying flock and weaner pigs. But I guess we transitioned from garden to market farm a few years back.

                    One of our goals is to close loops and be as low-input as possible, so we incorporate a lot of permaculture ideas into our set up. We're also training our farm horse to help with certain tasks (aside from providing manure). Feel free to peruse our farm blog linked in my signature

                    I didn't really grow food much before moving here in 2005, and my first effort was two 4 x 8 raised beds in the square foot method. But each year has been a learning experience, and now we're able to grow 90% of our own food, plus sell enough to count as a 'real' farm. We could do a lot more if we didn't both work full time, but paychecks are helpful things. Just being able to eat food this good is worth more than money though.
                    Seven Trees Farm - diversified subsistence farming on 1.25 acres.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Kate Ruckman View Post
                      I'd love to explore permaculture! Tell us more?
                      Well, the 30-second Primal-appropriate version would be something like this:

                      In the Primal WOE/WOL we have rejected the status quo in Western society because we have come to realize that it is not biologically appropriate for human beings to follow the CW. Permaculture (permanent agriculture or permanent culture) applies the same kind of thinking to living in the landscape, but also goes one step further to develop synergies between different elements.

                      That's a little opaque, so maybe an example would be clearer.

                      Let's say you want to have fresh tomatoes from your garden.

                      CW says something along the lines of pick a sunny spot, clear all the current growth, transplant tomato starts from a greenhouse or nursery, fertilize, stake/cage the plants as they grow, and then harvest. All throughout this time you'll need to weed, control insects, and water. In other words, lots of work.

                      A more permaculture approach is more complex in planning, but simpler in execution (work). So you might create an environment that allows the tomato plant to thrive. This could include direct sowing the seeds on a hugelkultur bed (raised bed over rotting wood) in a favorable microclimate, in a guild (supportive community of different species). The hugelkultur bed pretty much eliminates the need for watering. Direct sowing creates a stronger plant that has deeper roots and doesn't suffer from transplant shock. The various species in the guild will provide scaffolding for the climbing plant, habitat for predatory insects, exchanges of nutrients through the soil and mycelium, and so on.

                      For those who want to talk or learn more about permaculture, permies.com is the biggest forum around.
                      http://www.theprimalprepper.com - preparing for life's worst while living for the best

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by tamo42 View Post
                        Well, the 30-second Primal-appropriate version would be something like this:

                        In the Primal WOE/WOL we have rejected the status quo in Western society because we have come to realize that it is not biologically appropriate for human beings to follow the CW. Permaculture (permanent agriculture or permanent culture) applies the same kind of thinking to living in the landscape, but also goes one step further to develop synergies between different elements.

                        That's a little opaque, so maybe an example would be clearer.

                        Let's say you want to have fresh tomatoes from your garden.

                        CW says something along the lines of pick a sunny spot, clear all the current growth, transplant tomato starts from a greenhouse or nursery, fertilize, stake/cage the plants as they grow, and then harvest. All throughout this time you'll need to weed, control insects, and water. In other words, lots of work.

                        A more permaculture approach is more complex in planning, but simpler in execution (work). So you might create an environment that allows the tomato plant to thrive. This could include direct sowing the seeds on a hugelkultur bed (raised bed over rotting wood) in a favorable microclimate, in a guild (supportive community of different species). The hugelkultur bed pretty much eliminates the need for watering. Direct sowing creates a stronger plant that has deeper roots and doesn't suffer from transplant shock. The various species in the guild will provide scaffolding for the climbing plant, habitat for predatory insects, exchanges of nutrients through the soil and mycelium, and so on.

                        For those who want to talk or learn more about permaculture, permies.com is the biggest forum around.
                        Thank you! I experimented with HIGHLY simplified hugelkultur this year in my container garden (logs, sticks, etc. in the bottom of the pots), but we had to buy soil/compost, and unfortunately even with mulch and watering the dirt's very hard right now. Bad year--very hot and very dry.

                        I'll check out your link, I'd like to know more about the guild idea!
                        Best--
                        Kate

                        Still Craving Pterodactyl--my Primal Blueprint blog

                        70 is the new 50--without the hot flashes!

                        Goals: Feel good, be stronger, and hopefully kick that arthritis in the backside! Oh, yeah, and losing more weight would be okay, too.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by JBailey View Post
                          We have about 4500-5000sf in crops right now, plus a laying flock and weaner pigs. But I guess we transitioned from garden to market farm a few years back.

                          One of our goals is to close loops and be as low-input as possible, so we incorporate a lot of permaculture ideas into our set up. We're also training our farm horse to help with certain tasks (aside from providing manure). Feel free to peruse our farm blog linked in my signature

                          I didn't really grow food much before moving here in 2005, and my first effort was two 4 x 8 raised beds in the square foot method. But each year has been a learning experience, and now we're able to grow 90% of our own food, plus sell enough to count as a 'real' farm. We could do a lot more if we didn't both work full time, but paychecks are helpful things. Just being able to eat food this good is worth more than money though.
                          Wow, HUGE garden. We did a quarter of an acre back in the 70s...tons of work. And yep, we had to keep the paychecks, too...
                          Best--
                          Kate

                          Still Craving Pterodactyl--my Primal Blueprint blog

                          70 is the new 50--without the hot flashes!

                          Goals: Feel good, be stronger, and hopefully kick that arthritis in the backside! Oh, yeah, and losing more weight would be okay, too.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            My garden includes a raised bed with cucumber, broccoli, zucchini, spaghetti squash, onion, garlic, several varieties of tomato and basil. We have a couple fruit trees that we're struggling to get anything from, and several berry canes that are fairly prolific for blackberries...and a fair several handfuls of raspberries. My wife has an herb garden with lemon balm, chamomile, catnip, and a dozen other things I can never remember.
                            carl's cave

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                            • #15
                              I love the way the food tastes right out of the garden. Broccoli has an amazing color and flavor when it is cooked just moments out of the garden.
                              We have started a new garden at our new house this year and it certainly takes a lot of elbow grease to get a new plot ready and all the grass removed. That quack grass will make you crazy but I love gardening and watching things grow.

                              Our season was a little slow this year because it was so cool for soooo long. I still don't have a tomato ready. Lots of brassicas though. They love the cool wet weather. Good thing those are our favorite veggies.

                              I also started a berry patch. I had raspberry bushes for years but am trying blueberries this year for the first time. They seem to be a bit more fussy but I thought I would give it a whirl. Berries are another thing that tend to grow well in the NW.

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