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Chitted Potatoes

Saint Patrick’s Day is for Potatoes…Usually🥔

The temperature of my beds this morning ranged from 36 degrees to 40. Potatoes like a temp of 45 degrees or more, so I’m going to wait another week or so to plant. But it’s tough to wait. It’s the one thing I grow that my whole family loves. The buttery soft potatoes are wonderful…

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March Tasks to Get you Sowing and Growing

March is an awakening with a promise. A promise of longer days, warmer temperatures, and lush growth. None of that is happening…yet. But it will—March promises. This month, there are warm season seeds to sow indoors, and cool season crops to plant outdoors. Garden beds to prep and your lawn to prepare. It’s also a…

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President’s Day is Perfect for Rose & Blueberry Pruning

Willamette Valley, Zone 8b Roses and blueberries are almost ready to burst forth with new spring growth. To get them growing and producing beautiful blooms and berries they both require heavy pruning. To get you cutting with confidence, check out my pruning primer that has how-to steps, links to videos, and OSU Extension documents. Happy…

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How Long are My Seeds Good For?

Now that my new seed orders or rolling in, I’m feeling the need to go through my seed storage box. How Long do Seeds Last? Seeds lose vigor with age, some faster than others. According to the Sustainable Gardening Handbook here are some averages on how long seeds remain viable. Caveats: Fluctuation in temperature and moisture stimulate seeds…

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Weekend Tip: Prune Your Trees, Shrubs, & Canes like a Pro

Willamette Valley, Zone 8b Perhaps you can work around the showers🌧, but if you prefer, stay in today with some ☕ and 📚 and get a plan in place for tomorrow. Sunday is looking dry and cold; perfect pruning weather. Skip to the pruning guide. What to Prune December through January February Need some confidence…

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Lucky to have this helpful helper to plant this vine maple.

Front Yard Makeover — Native Plant Edition: How to Plant Perennials so They Can Thrive

In this article you’ll learn pro-tips for getting your long-lived perennial plants off to a good start. AND I’m sharing with you the my native plant list along with the most important details. Project Progress: Rules of Thumb for Planting Perennials For the longer lived, massive plants like trees, these rules are critical for establishing…

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Native plants for front yard project.

Front Yard Makeover — Native Plant Edition: How to Choose Perennials that will Thrive in Your Space

I accepted the challenge of using Oregon native plants, (Willamette Valley specific) for several reasons. First I wanted to generate some good PR for our Oregon natives and showcase their beauty, resilience, and their innate ability to thrive in our climate. I also like taking the opportunity to slip in a few ecosystem value points…

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Photo by Anna-Louise on

Leverage January for Growing Season Opportunities

January is a month of renewal, dreams, and opportunity. Now that the winter solstice has past and 2023 has arrived, the growing season feels almost touchable. Scan the January Calendar for inspiration to get you ready for spring. 🌱🌷 I would love to hear your plans, dreams, and goals for 2023! Please comment below or…

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Front Yard Makeover — Native Plant Edition: Moving Mountains of Mulch

I’ve been working on a implementing a redesign for our front yard to replace our turfgrass with Willamette Valley, Oregon native plants. This will seriously up my square footage for my Backyard Habitat Re-Certification coming up. 😁 This is the third article in the series. Here are articles one (retaining wall construction) and two (digging…

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Simple Tasks For December to Get You Growing Next Spring

December is a light duty month, (finally!) with a few opportunities to get ahead of the game for spring. It is a good time to test your soil. There is adequate time to amend for pH before the growing season, and to be able to prepare for any missing nutrients that you can add just…

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Male Anna’s Hummingbird

Five Tips to Help Hungry Hummingbirds Survive Winter

Yesterday morning I brought out the hummingbird feeder and there was a little female Anna’s Hummingbird hovering near the ant-moat. She flew right up to me and hovered a few feet from my face. “Hungry?” I asked as I offered her the feeder. She went right to work, and even perched while I held it…

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Front Yard Makeover — Native Plant Edition: Retaining Wall Building!

Phase 1: Build Retaining wall for vine maple area. Complete! Hoo-yeah. What Project are you Doing? Goal #2 for 2022 was designing a new front yard landscape dedicated to Willamette Valley Native plants. Also managing storm-water and weeds are of paramount concern. Also, it’ll add lots of square footage to “area dedicated to native plants”…

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November is Here!

November Garden Calendar 🍂 🫖 It might seem like time to kick back by the fire and sip tea—it is—it so is, but it’s also the perfect time for landscape projects. The soil is soft and workable, and planting in the dormant season gives your new trees and shrubs time to set down roots, connect…

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Weekend Tip: Winterize Your Irrigation System

Now that the rain is here to stay, it’s time to power off and drain your system. Drip systems need to be turned off and drained for winter to prevent damage to the fittings. To do this, open all the valves and slip off the figure 8 end clamps and let the water drain, lifting where necessary…

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Weekend Tip: Cover Crop Time!

Hello Rain! Lovely to see you again. Now that you’re here, I’ll toss around some cover crop that you can get growing for me. Cover crops can feed your soil microbes sugars through their root systems, protect your soil from leaching and erosion, and provide nutrients in the spring when they are composted on the…

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Peppermint Lip Balm

Making your own body products is an excellent way to reduce exposure to toxins, and, TBH, I like them better. I whipped up a batch of lip balm yesterday morning and as my daughters eagerly took a couple tubes, I thought I would share my recipe and tips with you, my friend.

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Water Drop on Lupine

It’s May?

Yeah, really. Despite the exceptionally wet, chilly weather, it really is May. See my May calendar for things to do this month. My cool weather crops are happy—this weather is their jam. Lettuces are giving and giving, herbs are going crazy, peas are reaching upward, carrots are pushing up, beets are a little more hesitant.…

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Calendula and Lupine

What to do in April

Wondering what to do in the garden in April? All the things! Well almost. Check out my April calendar to help you get organized. Happy growing, my friends!

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Potato Harvest

4 Easy Steps for Growing Potatoes🥔

When I asked my oldest daughter what she wanted to grow in her garden this year, she replied, “Potatoes.” She paused or a moment, “And some strawberries, I guess, and catnip for Ollie.”😺 “That’s it?” “Yep.” The one thing I grow that we all love—potatoes. The buttery soft potatoes are wonderful roasted, mashed, steamed or…

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A Dozen Plants for the Lazy Gardener

I am coming to understand what kind of gardener I am. There are the types that lovingly sow seeds in February then care for them until August and in a single week reap a large harvest of tomatoes, basil, onions, egg plant, cucumbers, in one big exciting bonanza. These gardeners will invite friends over for…

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Fall planted cover crop in spring.

Bed Prep Guide Ready!

Willamette Valley Oregon, Zone 8b Wondering when to get started on your beds? Soon, but we need to wait for a some specific conditions. 🌧 If working outside in the pouring rain doesn’t sound good to you, listen to that! Your garden soil doesn’t want to be worked on when it’s saturated either. It needs…

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Taken in February, this was the first honey bee of the season.

Welcome March

Oh March, how happy we are to see you. Thank you so much for coming. Oh, and thank you for bringing the warmer weather and our bird friends back. Are you as ready as I am for spring? Ok, that’s fair… Check out our March calendar to help you prepare for an awesome growing season.

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Seed Starting Guide

Now that you know what you want to plant, and when to plant, let’s cover how to plant. There are two prevailing methods, starting seeds indoors and direct sowing in your beds. This article will take the guess work and get you sowing today!

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