Veggie Gardening in Hot Areas: Long or Short Growing Periods?

Long or Short Growing Periods

Contrary to popular opinion, long hot summers do not necessarily mean long growing periods for vegetable gardens.

Some vegetables like tomatoes, cucumbers and squash don’t do well when the weather is extremely hot for long periods. There are also many varieties which are resistant to common tomato diseases.

Growing Periods

Tomatoes

Vegetable gardeners who live in areas with long, hot summers should plant early maturing varieties of tomatoes.

In fact, starting them indoors before last frost date, and then planting them in the garden after any threat of frost, will give the gardener a little more growing time, and allow the plants to set fruit before the weather gets too warm.

Many heirloom and older variety tomatoes have longer growing seasons...

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Container or Backyard Gardening: Should You Plant Patio Pots or a Garden Plot?

Most of us love fresh, delicious fruits, vegetables, and herbs; and gardening is how to get your hands on the freshest. But perhaps you’ve been hesitant to start a garden; worried that your thumb isn’t green enough, hesitant to commit to what looks like a time demanding project. The key to a manageable and enjoyable garden is to keep it small and simple. Your first decision…container or terra firma?

Container Gardens

If you live in an apartment or condo that has a patio but no yard, container gardens are the only way to go. Containers allow you to garden just about anywhere, but to be successful there are a few guidelines that you’ll want to follow.

Containers and Soil Moisture

Use the largest containers practical for the space available...

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Understanding Vegetable Culture

As a rule, we choose to grow bush beans rather than pole beans. I cannot make up my mind whether or not this is from sheer laziness. In a city backyard the tall varieties might perhaps be a problem since it would be difficult to get poles. But these running beans can be trained along old fences and with little urging will run up the stalks of the tallest sunflowers. So that settles the pole question. There is an ornamental side to the bean question. Suppose you plant these tall beans at the extreme rear end of each vegetable row. Make arches with supple tree limbs, binding them over to form the arch. Train the beans over these. When one stands facing the garden, what a beautiful terminus these bean arches make.

Beans like rich, warm, sandy soil...

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Camping, Tips for the First Timer

Camping, Tips for the First Timer

Many people are curious to try camping for beginners, but actually getting started can seem difficult to those who have never gone. Camping really is fun even for beginners and amateurs. Read this beginners guide to camping for some easy tips on getting started without spending a lot of time and money.

Camping for the First Time

Above all else, a first-time camping trip must be relaxed and fun. An unsuccessful first-time trip may turn even the hardiest soul away from trying again. Therefore, do not try anything too challenging or try to fit too many activities into one trip.

For a successful beginner camping experience, it is best to stay fairly close to home, go during nice weather, and plan to stay two nights. One night does not allow enough time to get organized and have fun...

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Using Your Lawnmower to Grow Food in Your Garden

Using Your Lawnmower to Grow Food in Your Garden

Can you imagine growing tasty veggies and fruit in your yard using just your lawnmower once every year or so? Talk about a minimal effort! You can do it with these plants.

First, pick your patch. Select a sunny but out-of-the way area of your property that could be allowed to totally go to weeds (or already has). Start with a clean palate by preparing a bed as you normally would.

Asparagus Patch.

For asparagus, all of the work comes up front in the soil prep.

Start your patch in Fall by Double-digging your rows about four feet apart. To double-dig, first till or break up the soil in your row. Shovel the tilled soil into a wheel barrow so that you have a ditch. Now till the bottom of the ditch...

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Garden Ideas: Try a Heirloom Tomato This Year

Try a Heirloom Tomato This Year

If you garden like I do, you stop at one of the local home improvement stores in the spring, and pick up six or eight tomato plants. You don’t worry much about the type of tomato, as long as the stems look strong and there are a lot of healthy green leaves on the plants that you put in your basket. For those of us who don’t discriminate much when we buy, we’re convinced that any plant producing a red tomato, big enough to make slices for hamburgers, will be fine. We may take a quick look at the label, and find some information about how large the plant is going to get, how much shade it would like to have, how much water it will need, and to see if the name is familiar...

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Basic First Aid Guide

As a homesteader, whether urban or rural, you should know basic first aid. The below guide offers guidance for many common injuries and ailments. At the end, we have included for FREE a Pocket First Aid Guide, because in an emergency you might forget something important,  and it can serve as a great reference while camping or backpacking.

Another important aspect of proper first aid is a well-stocked first aid kit, for your home and for your vehicle(s). Just like the Boy Scout motto: “Always be Prepared”.

For more first aid advice, check out the Mayo Clinic Website First Aid advice section.

Check Pulse

The heartbeat causes a rhythmical expansion and contraction of the arteries as it forces blood through them...

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Homestead Guide to Edible Plants

As a homesteader, it is valuable knowledge to know about edible plants, nuts, and berries. I have compiled a large list of approximately 110 different edible and medicinal plants from all over the world. Below I am sharing some of the plants from the e-book “A Homestead Guide to Edible Plants”, which is available for download at the end of this article.

 Excerpts from “A Homestead Guide to Edible Plants”

 edible plant- acaciaAcacia

Acacia farnesiana

Description: Acacia is a spreading, usually short tree with spines and alternate compound leaves. Its individual leaflets are small. Its flowers are ball-shaped, bright yellow, and very fragrant. Its bark is a whitish-gray color. Its fruits are dark brown and podlike.

Habitat and Distribution: Acacia grows in open, sunny areas...

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Urban Sustainable Living Tips

Living in an apartment or a house in the city, it can seem hard to live a sustainable lifestyle. Do not fall for that lie, it is completely possible to embark on a journey of urban sustainable living.

A sustainable lifestyle is one where a person attempts to reduce their impact on the world, where they try to reduce their use of natural resources, and leave a minimal carbon footprint.

Living in the city it might seem harder to lead this sort of sustainable urban lifestyle, but in reality, no matter where you live, you can have a positive difference. Honestly in an urban environment it is easy to have a positive impact on the world, because your daily habits can be positive without even thinking about it...

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