I got DH a few gardening books for Xmas...now I am reading them too!

Discussion in 'Random Ramblings' started by BarkerChickens, Dec 30, 2009.

  1. BarkerChickens

    BarkerChickens Microbrewing Chickenologist

    Nov 25, 2007
    High Desert, CA
    We started reading one, but he is way ahead of me, so I grabbed another one to hold me over. Oh my gosh!!! I LOVE them! I should note that DH LOVES gardening and is currently planning to expand the garden and build a couple greenhouses. It isn't a past-time, bur rather a true love and a sense of purpose for him (this is key to that first book too). He already has a big garden and it was him that wanted chickens (no complaints from me!! I take care of the chickens, since he does the gardening). Since DH is unemployed and his field (civil engineering) won't be picking up anytime in the near future, he wants to focus on expanding our garden. Plus, his best friend is into gardening as much as DH and now has chickens too, so they get to enjoy it together, which is cool! He was so excited about his books he had to show his best friend all the books.

    The first book is "Plenty: Eating Locally on the 100-mile Diet" by Alisa Smith and J.B. Mackinnon. This book is one he has been wanting since he saw it mentioned on a TV show. We like the idea of trying to eat more foods that are grown or raised locally (of course, we can set our own rules and "miles", but we figure living in California, lots can be grown locally and Farmer's Markets are common). It is very well-written and tells about their experience (and hardships) when they decided to go 100% local immediately. It is not political or anything of that sort, and they state that it is for their own personal reasons. I like that!! [​IMG] Funny too! I got to the end of the second chapter and now I will wait until DH is done since he took it over (it's his present anyway! [​IMG] ).

    The other book is "The Backyard Homestead: Produce All the Food You Need on Just a Quarter Acre!" by Carleen Madigan. Anyway, this book was recommended to me on the BYC-sister-site SufficientSelf.com. Great book!!! I figured it'd be more of a reference book, but I am finding myself reading it page by page. Some of it, of course, we already know since we have a large garden, but it has many tips and suggestions for expanding out garden.

    I am so excited to be able to read these with DH. I figured they'd be his and I'd glance at them as needed, but they are VERY well written! [​IMG]

    The other books I got DH are "How to Build Your Own Greenhouse" by Roger Marshall, "Greenhouse Gardener's Companion" by Shane Smith, and "Independence Days: A Guide to Sustainable Food Storage and Preservation" by Sharon Astyk.
     
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2009
  2. mjdtexan

    mjdtexan Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 30, 2008
    Houston(ish)
    Good for you. That will be good reading.
     
  3. Goose and Fig

    Goose and Fig Grateful Geese

    8,603
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    308
    Apr 19, 2009
    Fall Creek Falls TN
    I'm adding them to my wish list! Let me know if you come across anything that says why parsnips take so flipping long to grow. [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2009
  4. BarkerChickens

    BarkerChickens Microbrewing Chickenologist

    Nov 25, 2007
    High Desert, CA
    Quote:The Backyard Homestead says that the "Seeds germinate slowly (up to three weeks), even in the best garden conditions. Some gardeners soak them overnight or treat the seeds with boiling water before planting." (p. 69-70) and "Parsnips grow slowly, and mulching withstraw is the best way to pamper them. If they receive inadequate moisture during the summer, they'll be tough and likely to split and rot with the fall rains. During dry spells, water the bed deeply once a week" (p. 71). It has a really cool tip on how to plant them too for the best luck..."Drive a crowbar into the soil 2 feet deep and rotate it in a circle until the hole is 6 inches across. Fill the hole with sand, peat moss, and sifted soil leaving a slight depression at the top of the hole. Place two or three sprouted seeds in the depression, then cover with 1/2 inch of sifted sphagnum moss and water." (p 71). Doesn't way why though...I guess 'cause they can. [​IMG]
     
  5. debilorrah

    debilorrah The Great Guru of Yap Premium Member

    I think I want to get rid of the goats and plant a garden this year too. The soil here is perfect for so many different types of produce. I was thinkin about a Pistachio tree too. And a cactus that produces apples. Those are so yummy!!!!
     
  6. saddina

    saddina Internally Deranged

    May 2, 2009
    Desert, CA
    Quote:I have a good recipie for prickly pear wine.

    Check out 100 heirloom tomatoes for the American Garden , Dr. Carolyn Male (who is just lovely, I've been lucky enough to meet her and help on a seed project).

    Melons for the passionate gardner
    the compleat squash

    rareseeds.com has the most gorgious seed catalouge, and they're excellent about carring hard to find heirlooms.
     
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2009
  7. BarkerChickens

    BarkerChickens Microbrewing Chickenologist

    Nov 25, 2007
    High Desert, CA
    Quote:Why get rid of the goats? Just fence your garden. [​IMG] Have you seen ours? We need to have you and Ken over soon and you can see his garden. He has an area of ~ 3,000 - 4,000 sq ft fenced off plus fruit trees outside of that. He wants to plant edible cactus out in the front yard.

    MMM...pistachios!!! I'll help you harvest them! [​IMG] I want a black walnut tree, but they're expensive at the Oak Hills Nursery!!
     
  8. BarkerChickens

    BarkerChickens Microbrewing Chickenologist

    Nov 25, 2007
    High Desert, CA
    Quote:I have a good recipie for prickly pear wine.

    Check out 100 heirloom tomatoes for the American Garden , Dr. Carolyn Male (who is just lovely, I've been lucky enough to meet her and help on a seed project).

    Melons for the passionate gardner
    the compleat squash

    rareseeds.com has the most gorgious seed catalouge, and they're excellent about carring hard to find heirlooms.

    OOOHHH!!! Do share your recipe for the wine!!! Please?!?! [​IMG]

    I will look up those books! I think DH has used rareseeds.com before, however, I requested the catalog just in case it was a different site (plus a catalog is easier to go through than a bunch of windows on the computer!
     
  9. saddina

    saddina Internally Deranged

    May 2, 2009
    Desert, CA
    Quote:I have a good recipie for prickly pear wine.

    Check out 100 heirloom tomatoes for the American Garden , Dr. Carolyn Male (who is just lovely, I've been lucky enough to meet her and help on a seed project).

    Melons for the passionate gardner
    the compleat squash

    rareseeds.com has the most gorgious seed catalouge, and they're excellent about carring hard to find heirlooms.

    OOOHHH!!! Do share your recipe for the wine!!! Please?!?! [​IMG]

    I will look up those books! I think DH has used rareseeds.com before, however, I requested the catalog just in case it was a different site (plus a catalog is easier to go through than a bunch of windows on the computer!

    Of course i'll share recipies. This does a 6 gal batch.

    20 lbs orange blossom honey
    8 lbs prickley pear fruit (ripe as it gets and frozen)
    2 tsp powdered yeast extract
    2 Tbsp pectin enzyme
    1 0z prise de mousse yeast
    1 0z sherry yeast

    It comes out magenta, and is very good.
     
  10. BarkerChickens

    BarkerChickens Microbrewing Chickenologist

    Nov 25, 2007
    High Desert, CA
    Quote:OOOHHH!!! Do share your recipe for the wine!!! Please?!?! [​IMG]

    I will look up those books! I think DH has used rareseeds.com before, however, I requested the catalog just in case it was a different site (plus a catalog is easier to go through than a bunch of windows on the computer!

    Of course i'll share recipies. This does a 6 gal batch.

    20 lbs orange blossom honey
    8 lbs prickley pear fruit (ripe as it gets and frozen)
    2 tsp powdered yeast extract
    2 Tbsp pectin enzyme
    1 0z prise de mousse yeast
    1 0z sherry yeast

    It comes out magenta, and is very good.

    [​IMG] Thank you so much, Saddina!! DH will be happy since he is the brewer of the household. It seems like it uses a similar base as Honey Mead. DH will be very appreciative (especially since he likes making Honey Mead and he is planning on planting several prickly pear cactus this spring!!). [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2009

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