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Friday, October 31, 2014

Yes, I Compost Toilet Paper Rolls. Don't You?

What not to compost.
Keep your compost clean and healthy. 
If you have ever read the long list of things you can compost, you already know that toilet paper rolls aren't the nastiest item on the list. If the TP roll has you saying ick, get over it. I'm not suggesting you compost used toilet paper. Just the empty roll.

Anything that goes into the compost pile gets pooped on, eaten up and pooped out. That poop grows your food. We all have poo, even the tiniest of buggies that live in your gardens.

And now you're thinking, where is she going with this? Do I want to keep reading? Yes. You do. Don't wuss out here.

Poop is gold for your garden. Not all poop. Just some poop. Obviously, you want good, safe poop. The healthy stuff.

How do you grow good poop? You start with good food for all the creatures in your garden that are providing you, free of charge, all the poop you can handle. What goes into your compost will eventually end up in your mouth. So keep it clean.

No synthetic fertilizers, pesticides or herbicides. That means no treated grass clippings or shrub trimmings that have been sprayed with insecticides. 
No household cleaners, paints, etc. 
No cooking oils; they disrupt the moisture balance.
No diseased or infested plants.
No used personal products. Eww.
No dairy products. Stinky. 
No rice, bread or meats; they will attract rodents. Rice is a breeding ground for harmful bacteria. 
No walnuts; they contain a compound that is toxic to some plants. 
No human or pet poo. Fresh manure from non-carnivorous animals can be composted, but most must be allowed to compost and age several months before use in the vegetable garden. 
No shiny or heavily printed papers. 

Now that you have the don't-add list, you are free to add just about any other organic matter to your compost pile. Even your toenail clippings, unpaid bills and toilet paper rolls. The microorganisms, one-celled creatures, worms, mites and nematodes will work together to eat up all that good stuff and turn your waste into black gold for your garden.

Happy gardening,

~Julie








Thursday, October 30, 2014

I Am the Out-of-Control Gardener

Seedlings sprouting at Wood Streets Gardens. 
So many seeds started. I do it every time. I start more than I could ever plant, believing that I will find a home for them. So far this week I have started 60 broccoli, 60 bok choy, 60 kale, 60 cilantro, 60 celery (who needs that much celery?) and 60 Swiss chard. Every thing is coming up on schedule, just like always.

I'm not finished. There is still so much to plant. I still have seeds!!!! Hundreds of thousands of seeds. I could feed the world. Not that I want to, but I could.

I still want to get more garlic in, Start beets, turnips carrots and radishes. I need to get lettuce and spinach growing. And herbs. I can't forget about the herbs. And onions. In January it will be time to plant potatoes. Our sweet potatoes are still growing strong.

Where is it all going? I have no clue. I never do.

Then, there are the fruit trees and bushes I want. I don't want too many, only 15 more or so. We just bought our first tea plant and I'm already planning on getting 3 or 4 more of those.

I don't know why I do this to myself. It's like drinking the whole box of wine because you can't see how much you've consumed.

Am I the only out-of-control gardener? Do you go as bat sh** crazy as I do?

People keep asking me if it is too late to start? Heck no. Not here, anyway. We grow year round. In fact, fall and winter are the best seasons for some crops. So I will keep planting. And I will find homes for everything. If I don't, the orphans will die. That is life and death in the garden.

Happy gardening and go crazy and keep growing -

~Julie







What's Growing in Our Gardens

What's Growing in the Gardens?

Just a few of the crops we have growing now. 

Swiss chard growing at Wood Streets Gardens
Swiss Chard is always growing in the gardens. 
Swiss Chard is easy to grow and keep growing in the garden. The plants will reseed themselves if you let them. We have volunteer Swiss chard show up regularly in the gardens. You can also save the dried seed for later plantings.

We grow Swiss chard year round in the gardens, but it always tastes better during cooler weather.

Use in:
Salads
Pizza
Stir fry
Sauteed
Omelets

Swiss Chard Growing Guide



Kale is a garden staple. 
Kale is another easy to grow green. We grow it year round here and use it in soups, salads, stir fry and smoothies. It just keeps growing. They get a little funky looking after a while, but we have learned that those side shoot branches can be cut and rooted. When the plants get a little too ugly from continuous harvesting we pull them up, feed them to the chickens and replace them with younger, prettier plants.

Propagate kale from cuttings. 
Kale Growing Guide


Grow fresh, organic garlic
Grow fresh, organic garlic. 
Garlic. One can never have too much garlic. We grow lots of it every year. We plant in the fall, and then another crop goes in late February. The fall planting always produces bigger heads, but the spring garlic is good too. It can be grown indoors in containers and in the garden. Get some garlic and get growing.

Buy organic garlic for your garden. 




We have lots more growing, and I'll update again soon with more pics. Happy Gardening!

~Julie






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