Defining a Garden’s Purpose

...an Francisco. Thankfully the Fling did not involve sitting in a sterile hotel conference room. Instead, we boarded two buses and took a look at fifteen spectacular gardens in the bay area over three days. I’ll share the gardening lessons I learned over a couple of posts. But if I could take away only one lesson it would be this: every garden has a purpose, but great gardens have clear and beneficial purposes. Dead Grass and Junk The uninten...

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Saturday Linkages: Of Tiny Shops and Margarita Dermatitis

The smallest shop in London. Gardening How to make a ferrocement raised bed: http://www.ruralize.com/Genes  Projects/ferrocement/ferrocement garden bed.html The Agony and the Ecstasy of Gardening with Children: http://www.nwedible.com/2013/06/the-agony-and-the-ecstasy-of-gardening-with-children.html … Live light Join the Aussies in a Plastic-Free July: http://www.plasticfreejuly.org/the-challenge.html Stuff to worry about With 2 Weeks’ W...

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Straw Bale Garden: What I Learned

...will fall over eventually. I knew this but was too lazy to actually do it. Straw bale gardens are a great option for those cursed by poor or contaminated soil. I’ve got lot of bales to compost! My future in straw bale gardening I’ve decided to continue straw bale gardening on a smaller scale. I’m going to build some raised beds and fill them with soil, but I’m leaving room for two bales to grow nitrogen hungry crops, pr...

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Straw Bale Garden Update: Success!

Ladies and gentleman, straw bale gardening works. I left town for a week earlier this month and, during my absence, the vegetables in the straw bale garden exploded in size. The Tromboncino squash on the left, is threatening to envelop the entire yard.  The tomatoes are equally vigorous and covered in ripening fruit. Zucchini is on the menu. While it takes an input of outside resources in the form of straw and fertilizer, straw bale gardening i...

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Permaculturalist Paul Wheaton in Los Angeles

...ly to life in the concrete jungle?  Hear this Permaculture designer and entrepreneur speak about healing our cities, creating jobs, and transforming LA’s food culture. Darren Butler of EcoWorkshops.com 3:30pm to 5pm Systems Gardening Does gardening have to be such hard work? Learn how to work with Nature’s systems to make your garden easier to manage and more productive than ever before. Paul Wheaton on Irrigation Free Gardening at Armory Cent...

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Self Irrigating Planter Resources

Homegrown Evolution is up in San Francisco this weekend to do a talk about the world of self-irrigating planters (also known as SIPs or self-watering planters or a couple of other variations on that general verbiage). In our opinion SIPs are the food growing tool of the aspiring urban agriculturalist. Make or buy one of these things and vegetable container gardening is a breeze. No need to water your pots three times a day during the summer! For...

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Arduino Homesteading Projects

...’d compile a list of Arduino based project related to the “low-tech, home-tech” subjects covered on this blog. I’ll keep updating this list as I hear of more projects. Chickens Chicken coop controller Gardening Garden Bot (information about “an open source garden monitoring system). Includes links to other Arduino based gardening projects. Gardening moisture sensor/watering controllers An Arduino waterer that twee...

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Gathering of Community Gardeners

This weekend is the third annual Gathering of the Gardens in Los Angeles. While the event is put together by the non-profit L.A. Community Garden Council, it is open to all interested parties. You don’t have to be a member of a community garden to attend, just interested in community building and gardening. There will be workshops and discussions on topics such as vegetable gardening, composting, native plants, beekeeping and even a worksh...

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Skid Row Community Garden Gets SIPs

...ow-income residents on skid row.  Hars, Lobl, myself and a bunch of folks from LACAN put together a few SIPs and planted vegetables on the LACAN rooftop. The plants are thriving in a space where previous attempts at container gardening met with mixed success. Gardening, like all the ways we humans interact with our surroundings is all about context. If you’ve got soil, as I’m lucky to have, work with that first. But if you have only a...

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How to Plan a Vegetable Garden

...ike to eat. A planning form from Ecology Action Deciding How Much to Plant To decide how much to plant I rely on the charts in John Jeavons’ book  How to Grow More Vegetables . I took his three day Biointensive gardening class early last year and recommend it highly, especially for learning how to use the, at first, intimidating charts in the book. Jeavons handed out a handy planning form during the class that works with the tables...

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