Posts Tagged ‘Sustainable Farming’

Here’s a list of my tips to grow more veggies, keeps animals away, water the right way and more!

  1. Make plant markers by using an old mini blind. Take the slats, cut them with scissors and use a Sharpie. Go to Goodwill if you don’t have any. You can get one for .50 cents.
  2. Keep deer away from your garden by using human hair. I save my clippings when I buzz my head or you can go to your local hairdresser and ask for hair, they may look at you weird but they’re happy to get rid of it. Sprinkle it around the perimeter and replace every couple weeks or after a big rain.
  3. Use coffee grounds to fertilize your soil. Go to a local coffee shop and ask for their spent grounds. They save them at my shop for gardeners and have a sack behind the counter.
  4. If starting vegetables from seed is intimidating, try radishes. They’re really easy and go from seed to fruit in 35 Days.
  5.  Also, to keep deer and other animals out of the garden, pee on the fence posts. This is easier if you’re a guy but if you’re a gal, be happy about multiple orgasms.
  6. To trap critters, I’ve had the best luck with the following bait; Raccoons love marshmallows and cat food. Rabbits like carrots (duhh) but love brussel sprouts and spray the trap with apple cider. Ground Hogs love apples and mice well…peanut butter is all you need.
  7. Don’t water during the day. It’s useless and a waste. Most of it will evaporate and if you water the plant, the sun can burn it up (think of water droplets as tiny magnifying glasses). Always water at the base. Keep in mind vegetables are made up of mostly water. A tomato is 90-95% water.
  8. If you want to get children interested in gardening, stay away from root vegetables. They can’t see the growth and understand what’s going on underneath the ground and can’t visualize it. Stick with tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers, pumpkins and corn. The changes are visually stunning and fun to watch.
  9. Always plant flowers throughout your garden to attract pollinators. And besides, it atheistically pleasing.
  10. Grow organically and plant non-GMO seeds. Why put poison on something you’re going to eat. And if you’re growing organically, be sure your plants and seeds are not genetically modified. Why waste time gardening organically if you’re growing a tomato created by splicing fish dna and a strawberry?

On the topic of GMO’s….On Friday, The Farm Bill amendment that would have unambiguously given states the rights to label genetically modifiedingredients in food without fear of reprisal from biotech companies was been voted down in the Senate. The amendment, introduced by Bernie Sanders (I-VT), Barbara Boxer (D-CA) and Mark Begich (D-AK), was voted down by 73-26. If your Senator didn’t vote for it, call their office. Here’s a link to all the Senators from every state Click Here.

It was all over every major news corporation, wasn’t it? Ohh wait, it wasn’t covered by anyone.

Plug: My wife created a site of wonderful artwork; whimsical themes for children in a variety of mediums. She offers original works, archival reproductions and can also create custom artwork for those who request it.  Please visit her site by clicking on the banner above.

and finally a quick update on the farm…….in pictures. Happy Sunday everyone!

Lady bug on a bush bean plant

I need to trellis the peas.

Orange is my favorite color

Pumpkin patch is blowing up.

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We would like to thank Jim and Mary at Old World Garden Farms for featuring us in their story this morning. It’s really great what they’re doing. Please take a moment to visit their site.

You can read the article at their blog:


If you would like to share your “farm” story – drop Jim and Mary an email at info@owgarden.com

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I braved the frigid cold ( windchill) to stroll around the farm this morning and take some pictures. Jake couldn’t make it out back, the snow was too high. I guess that’s a problem when you’re only 7″ tall. A lot of people complain about the winter but I love it. Everyone needs a break and It’s so quiet and serene and so close to heaven I should pass around a collection basket.




Hang in the gardening friends! Soon it will all be green and overflowing with life, so enjoy the cold calmness of winter.

Next Blog: Starting Seeds Inside.

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Here’s a list of 10 Reasons why you should Own Chickens

  1. Fresh Eggs daily – Much better than store bought eggs. The egg white alone is about 33% more and it’s less expensive.
  2. Chickens have great personalities – Our favorite pastime is sit in the back garden with a couple of cold beers and watch the chickens (they look like miniature robots).
  3. Help out with the compost pile – Chicken poo is too hot (high in nitrogen to place directly onto growing plants) but it works wonder on your compost pile.
  4. They are very low maintenance – Easier than a cat or dog to maintain. Just top of their food and water them, clean the cage once in a while and collect eggs.
  5. You are One step closer to sustainable living – it feels good to have chickens, like you’re a real farmer
  6. Household leftovers are food for chickens – These birds eat just about anything. When I peel cucumbers or carrots or chop of mushroom stems, I save it for the chickens (along with fruit rinds and skins) everything but potatoes and garlic. Unless you want your eggs to taste like garlic.
  7. Save a chicken from factory life – Have you ever seen the crap-holes commercial chickens live in? Enough said.
  8. Pest prevention – These hens cruise around and eat up a slew of bugs like; slugs, snails, leatherjackets and more.
  9. When they get old and stop laying you can eat them – I haven’t done this yet and I’m not sure I can.
  10. Be the best neighbor on the block – I thought my neighbors would complain about the chickens but in fact, it was just   the      opposite. They bring them veggie scraps and their grandchildren rush over to see the chickens upon every visit and…..wait for it…. They all get free eggs.

My wife hated all birds and not because of the classic Alfred Hitchcock movie The Birds about a bunch of crazy birds attacking people in growing numbers. She was scared of birds cause she was chased by a Pelican when she was little. Poor thing. So, talking her into chickens was tough but she bore no responsibility so she really didn’t care. Besides, she liked fresh eggs.


I bought a book called “Storey’s Guide to Raising Chickens” but you really don’t need it. It’s not hard. I mean this birds are the very definition of low-maintenance. Just go to your local feed shop (I always support local stores) or Tractor Supply and pick up the following (for a dozen or so hens):

  • 3 Gallon Drinker
  • 10lb Hanging Feeder
  • 50lb Bag of Egg Layer Pellets
  • 50lb Bag of Cracked Corn

and that’s about it. Find a local farm or look on Craigslist and pick up some hens. I love, love, love Golden Comets.


The Golden Comet Chicken is a sex linked cross breed created from a White Plymouth Rock hen and New Hampshire Red rooster. This breed has not been given recognition by the American Poultry Association.

They’re a great dual-purpose breed. Great egg layers and good for meat as well. Though I’ve never eaten one of mine.

Stay away from roosters! You don’t need them for hens to lay eggs, just to fertilize them. Roosters are mean and they sing, not just in the wee hours of the morning but day long. Hens are friendly little creatures that follow you around the yard eating unwanted bugs and fertilizing your yard at the same time.

Get some 12-18 month old chickens if you’re a beginner. They’re already laying and can adjust pretty quick and they’re pretty cheap (usually about $5ea.) If you’re transporting a dozen or so, you’ll most likely lose one because of the stress of travel.

I built a nest box out of some reclaimed or (repurposed wood) and a small area out of some old landscape timbers and a few rolls of wire fencing I found it the back of my barn. Chickens need a box to lay in and lay eggs in or else they’ll just lay them on the ground….then they’ll get broken then the other chickens will eat the eggs (since chickens are cannibals) and the last thing you want is chickens finding out what they produce is delicious. Then they’ll break them and eat them and you won’t have any eggs.

I rebuilt the roof of the coop this past summer with all reclaimed wood and shingles. What a chore and I did it on the hottest day of the summer fighting off a swarm of carpenter bees.



I let them out in the evenings to run around the garden and eat unwanted pests. At dusk, they just head back into the coop to roost and I close the gate. They like to sleep off the ground so I attached a small 2×2 to the spot in front of their nests. They feel safe up there.


So there it is. Go out and get some for your backyard. If you have any questions, just ask below in the comments and I’ll get back to you ASAP. Ohh and my wife…… she loves the chickens. She heads out there and feeds them and collects eggs and worries about them on cold winter nights.

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by: in the New York Times

May might you want to think twice before buying Organic tomatoes at Whole Foods in winter time. Buy local please! Though they may be considered organic, it’s against all the principles that organic is founded upon.

Organic Agriculture May Be Outgrowing Its Ideals

American demand for year-round organic fruits and vegetables has incited a farming boom in the arid deserts of the Baja Peninsula in Mexico.


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