April Is Full Of Surprises

By Jannie Vaught One day we are running the cooler and in a few days a cold front is dipping into our region and we are back with the heater on. What does this mean for the new plants in the garden? Plants at 39 degrees can feel the chill and will need a cover…

April In The Garden

By Jannie Vaught It is planting time; we had a little cold snap on Easter, but the night temperatures weren’t to the frost. I planted the biggest Tomato starts last weekend, the smaller cherry variety got a promotion to bigger pots until next week and some went into 5 gallon and larger tubs, buckets with…

Planting By The Signs

By Jannie Vaught This is a practice my Farming Gardening Grandparents did. My Grandfather was also a water dowser using a fresh willow branch that had a Y. He had me walking all over the garden with that branch until it finally went down on its own. And that was a big moment for me.…

This Is The Season Of Wait

By Jannie Vaught Even the growing regions with warmer weather are Waiting. The ease we use to have and the regular dates and schedules are now ineffective due to the usually cold and ice storms we have had and now another volley of cold and wet. This makes it that Wait till the sun shines.…

Pay Attention

By Jannie Vaught This latest cold front taught us many important survival needs. As unexpected as this was for our location, and as sudden as it came in was for this gardener a “Pay Attention”. I do take notice of the weather, and on this occasion, it really caught me rushing about to prepare. I…

The Garden Itch

Jannie Vaught This is always the time of year when many gardeners have a serious case of “Garden Itch”. The waiting for official Spring is a waiting game. We are having high and low temps. One day is t-shirts and the next minute its layers and gloves. Still, the “Itch” to get planting is hard…

Seed Starting Time

By Jannie Vaught What Are the essentials needed for starting seeds indoors? They need a good starting mix, heat, light, and Moisture!!! So you have your table up and ready. Your lights are hung above the table and you have your starting cell trays with bottoms trays that are new or clean and a bottom…

Spring Is On The Way

By Jannie Vaught The early young grasses are showing and the first Bee feeding blossoms the Dandelion are beginning to show. We in central Texas are in Grow Zone 8a with the last frost around mid-march. But my itch to get outside is seriously getting more bothersome by the day. I have learned the lesson…

Orach the “New Kale”

By Jannie Vaught, Orach, Atriplex hortensis also known as Mountain spinach, Red Orach, or French spinach or Sea purslane, saltbush, is a distant cousin to spinach. A cool-season plant is a warm-season alternative to spinach. Touted as an alternative due to its lasting in heat and not bolting as spinach does, giving a longer time…

The Fabulous Fava Bean

Jannie Vaught Last winter was the first time I even considered fava beans or broad beans other than butter beans or Lima beans. These were just not in my library of eating or growing. So I researched the fava. Favas are a specific kind of broad bean which includes, lima, fava, and some runner beans.…

The Season For Planting Is Here

By Jannie Vaught, All the preparations and soil amendments are in and the tilling, row making and planning are underway. The important need for plant starts and seeds seems to be almost as problematic as getting a pound of butter or tissue. For many of us who have been sharing the importance of heritage seeds,…

The Beauty Of A Humble Garden

By Jannie Vaught Today’s topic of conversation is peas and growing squash, melons and pumpkin in pits. In Texas peas, Pisum sativum, English peas, sugar snap, and snow peas, not to be confused with Southern peas, black eye, and crowded peas. They should have already been planted. as they are a cool-weather crop. They go…

The Whole Picture Of The Garden

By Jannie Vaught Our gardens are beginning to shape up! Our potatoes have been hilled for the first time, Compost and Phosphorus and Tomato Tone along with some Calcium Nitrate granules all measured and mixed into the compost, wheelbarrow going down the rows and placed at each plant and a handful between for the growing…

Pansy, The Flower With A Face

By Jannie Vaught This sweet-faced flowering plant is one of the first to arrive from greenhouse growers as it is a cool weather plant, spring, and fall. They are swept up by eager gardeners and flower growers as we are weary with the winter blahs! And nature is true to us and gives us a…

The Days of Uncertainty

By Jannie Vaught Vernal Equinox has finally arrived and with it “The Days of Uncertainty.” As the world is placed on hold from a sweeping illness from day to day we never really know or understand the full effect. It has emptied our grocery stores, closed us in our homes and had us elbow bump…

Count Down To Spring Has Begun In Earnest

By Jannie Vaught As with all season transitions, it is always tumultuous. That’s a nice word for Stormy! Just when we get the tiller and digging tools ready it comes to a storm, but as a generational farmer and now a gardener it just seems normal. Rush get ready, now wait. And in the waiting…

It Is That time Of Year

By Jannie Vaught, It is that time of year when the cold fronts blow in then it warms up and all my garden plans are on hold till that pesky soil temperature reaches 60. My living room is full of Tomato and Pepper starts under lights, most of the soil and garden preparations are ready…