Category: plants

What to Read Now: Warm Climate Gardening

What to Read Now: Warm Climate Gardening

It’s winter here in the northern hemisphere, and farmers and gardeners everywhere are dreaming and planning about what to plant in the spring and summer! While all gardens have their challenges, those who grow food and flowers in warm and/or arid climates need a… Continue Reading “What to Read Now: Warm Climate Gardening”

Foraged Flavor: Finding Our Culinary Roots in Wild Food

Sometimes it’s easy to forget that everything we buy or grow to eat now was once a wild species. Our ancestors have done the bulk of the work identifying and domesticating the foods we now take for granted in our gardens and stores. But… Continue Reading “Foraged Flavor: Finding Our Culinary Roots in Wild Food”

The Book of Barley

In 1981, while Ecology Action was preparing to relocate its GROW BIOINTENSIVE farming program to from Palo Alto to Willits, CA in 1982, I received a letter from Lorenz Schaller, an amazing grainsman, noting that the Kusa Seed Society—”a voice for the precious edible… Continue Reading “The Book of Barley”

Back to Our Roots: How Learning from Prehistoric Agriculture Can Help Grow the Future

Prehistoric Agricultur Edited by Stuart Struever

A healthy, productive agriculture relies on LIVING SOIL – truly the most important resource in the world. We live in a time of when healthy, living, farmable soil—as well as farming nutrients in organic and synthetic fertilizer form, fresh water, and energy—are all diminishing in… Continue Reading “Back to Our Roots: How Learning from Prehistoric Agriculture Can Help Grow the Future”

Maybe Read This: Experiments with Plants, 6th Edition

As a farmer and a researcher, I am constantly reminded that agriculturalists from earlier times are often the best teachers. Experiments with Plants (6th ed.) written in 1911 by Harvard Associate Professor of Botany Dr. W.J. V Osterhout, is a good example of this… Continue Reading “Maybe Read This: Experiments with Plants, 6th Edition”

Save Water! Use Seedling Flats!

Or: How to feed an extra person and still save over 5,000 gallons per year. It may be a little late in the season for this post (at least in this hemisphere), but we just had a series of storms that would feel right… Continue Reading “Save Water! Use Seedling Flats!”

The World is Filled with Solutions: A Guidebook to Healing Spices

It is wonderful how the Earth gives us an abundance of delicious, beneficial, healing plants that we can grow and use to make our lives better. I have so many favorite books, and Healing Spices – How to Use 50 Everyday and Exotic Spices… Continue Reading “The World is Filled with Solutions: A Guidebook to Healing Spices”

Can You Dig It? How Deep Soil Preparation and Structure Makes All the Difference to Your Plants

These images are from the section “Living Quarters for Plant Roots—A Picture Story of How Soil Conditions Determine Root Development” by Henry C. De Roo

So, here’s another post about roots. This time, I want to talk about how deep soil preparation (double-digging) works to increase the health and yields of plants by giving them room to spread out. Did you know that the average carrot puts down an… Continue Reading “Can You Dig It? How Deep Soil Preparation and Structure Makes All the Difference to Your Plants”

“Pricking Out”: Greatly Increase Plant Health and Yields by Transferring Seedlings from Flat to Flat Before Final Transplanting

“Pricking Out” Greatly Increase Plant Health and Yields by Transferring Seedlings from Flat to Flat Before Final Transplanting

Spring has sprung, and it’s time to get your seedlings in gear for a productive year! In keeping with the season, I thought that this would be a good time to discuss the benefits of pricking out your seedlings before you transplant them. Many… Continue Reading ““Pricking Out”: Greatly Increase Plant Health and Yields by Transferring Seedlings from Flat to Flat Before Final Transplanting”

Old Ways, New Farmers: How Native Wisdom Can Help Us Create a Better Future

Old Ways New Farmers - How native wisdom can help us create a better future

Sustainability isn’t a new concept.   For almost 50 years I have worked to create a form of agriculture that helps all people grow abundant nutritious food and fertile soil, in harmony with this beautiful earth. I know that I have been helped and… Continue Reading “Old Ways, New Farmers: How Native Wisdom Can Help Us Create a Better Future”