Tag Archives: gardening





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Laundry greywater

When we moved in there was already a hole in the side of the house where the PVC pipe is coming out. The previous tenants must have done this as well. The washer is right on the other side of the wall, making this a much easier project. On the inside behind the washer the pipe “Ls” up and the regular drain hose is easily clamped to the “L” outside in the spring. The it pours out the pipe end into the bucket. I’m bummed now I didn’t get an action shot!


Then the water flows out the bucket into the hose treadled into place in a hole we cut in the bucket.


We have two 30 ft. lengths of 1.5-2 inch hose tied together with a hose connector to go the distance, but its easily disconnected for closer watering. Oh, and its got to flow downhill somewhat.


And now with the biocompatible laundry soap…

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Big weekend transplant

Super flashy shade set up for the transplants from the hoop house outside.


We stake with what we can find…no kitchen utensil is safe.


Tiny bit droopy but hanging in!


But its better than the heat of a greenhouse for these brassicas.


Not too shabby for the chard either.


Onions and parsley!




pig out on peas!



saving the dandelion and mallow root for medicinal teas and tinctures.



Proof that the weed whacking was done 🙂


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Weekend gardening list update

Well, I did pretty good with the list considering I hosted out of town friends and in-town friends excited to see them. I also played Legos, played on the playground and held a brand new baby. I have pics of the work in the garden to come!

Had a little licorice and mint tea to close a wonderful weekend of commotion.


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Obsessive before-work weekend garden list

We’ll see how this goes…


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Transitions in the hoop house

Right now, I’m working on an experiment to try transplanting the more cool season plants out of the hoop house into the garden outside. Several weeks ago I did the red Russian kale and it seems to have finally adjusted and is growing more new leaves. It got totally buried in a freak snow storm, so I am quite proud of its progress. Today I transplanted the parsley outside and harvested a lot to dry. This weekend I plan to take the broccoli and Brussels sprouts out too as its getting pretty hot in the hoop house. We have it vented all day and night now.

Today I took out the cauliflower plants since I read they don’t often form side shoots once the main flower head is harvested like broccoli does. I picked the leaves off the plants and will be making them into ‘kale’ chips for our upcoming 5 day backpacking trip. We’re planning to juice the stems as well.

We harvested and ate all the beets over the last week or so. (pink number one and number two!!!) And, the carrots have been tested and seem totally ready to go as well.

The baby seedlings are growing well and some slow chile germinators are still joining in. We are ready to put some of them in the ground in the hoop house along with squashes, fennel and dill. We also have a second crop of chard coming up in the hoop house and planted malabar spinach. Yum! Now if I can only relax enough to let my friends take care of them while I’m gone!

I can’t wait to share more updates!












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Soap for safer grey water use

Did some research and found this soap that seems best for greywater use. In the high desert we just don’t have enough water to foul it all up. We have to maximize use of all of it, so we have the laundry water go outside onto the yard!




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Increased and improved germination

I am very excited to share that the use of the electric blanket under the seedling containers i talked about in a previous post (starting seeds indoors) seems to be dramatically increasing and improving germination. I started half the veggie seeds about a week before the second half. I only added the electric blanket under them when I started the second bunch. And that second bunch is sprouting much more quickly than the first bunch.


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Preserving cilantro

I love fresh cilantro. Lately I’ve been eating guacamole almost every day and I like to make it pretty salad-y with cilantro and green onions from the hoop house. But, I know the happy cilantro plants will be less and less happy as it gets hotter in there. So, to preserve the fresh taste, I severely trimmed the cilantro leaves and tender stems and stuck it in the food processor with some water. Then, I froze it in I’ve cube trays. This morning for the guacamole, I used one ice cube of cilantro, adding a tiny bit of the boiling water from making tea to thaw it quickly. In a cooked Thai dish you could just throw the ice cube in there.

Dried cilantro just isn’t the same, and this method keeps the flavor nicely. Hopefully I’ll get one more crop of cilantro before its too warm.



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