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Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Wordless Wednesday

Pink Bleeding Heart Vine- Sarasota, FL

Monday, April 8, 2013

Inspiration for the Week

"When we heal the earth,
we heal ourselves."

- David Orr

Photographic inspiration from around the web:

Isn't it wonderful? I do have to wonder how well it ages, though.

This! This is exactly what I would have at my dream home, right off the side of the kitchen.

Talk about an efficient use of space; proof that anyone can garden if they really want to.


Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Wordless Wednesday

Setting Sun- Treasure Island Beach, FL


Monday, April 1, 2013

Inspiration for the Week

"We must adjust to changing times 
and still hold to unchanging principles."

- Jimmy Carter

Photographic inspiration from around the web:
I don't have children, but I've seriously considered making one of these just for myself!

I have a total weakness for succulent plantings

Reclaimed window greenhouse... It just has so much character


Thursday, March 28, 2013

2013 Tomatoes: Part Two

Even more of my tomato varieties for this year:

{Photo Credit}
A staple in many gardens, one that I knew I had to grow. I found mine at Green Fest from an awesome organic vendor Willow Herbal Delight Gardens. Willow is a folk herbalist, I also picked up a bunch of medicinal plants from her. According to Seed Savers: "The original Brandywine introduced by Johnson and Stokes in 1889 from seeds they received from a customer in Ohio. Named after Brandywine Creek in Chester County, Pennsylvania. Large vines produce deep red 8-12 ounce fruits. Excellent flavor. Very productive. Indeterminate, 80 days from transplant."

{Photo Credit}
Cherokee Purple
If ever there was a classic heirloom, this is it... I had to try it! I nabbed this one from the Sarasota Farmer's Market, but you can find it almost anywhere (Seed Savers, for example); according to Baker Creek: "80 days. An old Cherokee Indian heirloom, pre-1890 variety; beautiful deep dusky purple-pink color, superb sweet flavor, and very large sized fruit. Try this one for real old-time tomato flavor."

A lucky find at the Sarasota Market, this one from an organic grower that told me he used seed from Seed Savers Exchange. In fact, this variety won the SSE taste test in 2011 and was runner-up in 2012. According to the Seed Savers site: "Donated to SSE by Missouri farmer Larry Pierce, who received his seeds from an Amish woman in Seymour, Missouri. She originally got her seeds from a doctor she worked for whose family had brought the seeds with them from Germany. Luscious pink beefsteaks weighing up to one pound. Indeterminate, 70-80 days from transplant."

German Johnson
A random big box store purchase (sale!), can be found at Baker Creek. According to Monticello: "This popular “potato-leaf” variety, one of the four parent lines of the 1930s introduction, ‘Mortgage Lifter’ Tomato, originated in the southern United States. German Johnson produces large, meaty fruit with pink flesh and bright red skin streaked yellow at the top. The indeterminate vines grow up to 5 feet and mature within 80 days of planting. Sow seed indoors in pots and plant when soil warms in late spring; full sun."

Italian Heirloom
{Photo Credit}
Another from the organic vendor at the Sarasota Market, and another Seed Savers taste test winner (beating Dester in 2012). According to their site: "Outstanding heirloom from Italy. Plants are loaded with red fruits weighing over a pound. One of the most productive varieties we have grown at Heritage Farm. Excellent full tomato flavor. Ideal for slicing and canning—very little waste and easy to peel. Indeterminate, 70-80 days from transplant."

There's even more to come, you can find Part One here


Tuesday, March 26, 2013

2013 Tomatoes: Part One

Tomatoes, the prize and pride of most home gardeners; I hear that you haven't lived until you've eaten a fresh tomato straight from the vine. Here's the problem, I don't actually like fresh tomatoes; it's sad, I know. However, I love tomato sauce, salsa, soup and many other things tomato related. I also happen to live with two tomato lovers, in a house that consumes quite a bit of pasta with homemade sauce. Plus, I find myself buying into the whole fresh tomato propaganda. So, here I am, with almost no past tomato success, growing 22 different varieties. Clearly, I am insane. Since I got a late start this year I didn't have a chance to start seeds for the toms; I've cobbled together a collection from various local sources, and I'm actually pretty pleased with what I was able to find. Without further ado,  Part One of my 2013 Tomato Varietal List:

Anais Noir
{Photo Credit}
Also known as Ananas Noire, Black Pineapple, and Tie Dye Tomato. An indeterminate heirloom; I purchased this plant at Green Fest last weekend, but it is available through Baker Creek Heirloom. According to their site: " This unusual variety was developed by Pascal Moreau, a horticulturist from Belgium. The multi-colored, smooth fruit (green, yellow and purple mix) weigh about 1 1/2 lbs. The flesh is bright green with deep red streaks. Everyone loves their superb flavor that is outstanding, being both sweet and smoky with a hint of citrus. The yield is one of the heaviest we have ever seen!"

Arkansas Traveler
Another Green Fest purchase; indeterminate heirloom also available from Baker Creek. According to their site: "80 days. A medium-sized pink tomato that is smooth and a beautiful rose color. An excellent variety from Arkansas, tolerant to heat and humidity; crack and disease resistant. Good flavor, an excellent hillbilly favorite. "
Beefy Boy
Purchased at the Sarasota Farmer's Market; a 70 day, indeterminate hybrid from Park's: "Beefy Boy is a meaty, extra large beefsteak type tomato with excellent flavor. Contains more solid and less gel than other beefsteaks."

Black Krim
Yet another indeterminate heirloom from Green Fest, one that I've had my eye on since hearing wonderful things around the blog world. Available from Seed Savers and Baker Creek, who says: "80 days. Dark red-purple fruit, rich sweet flavor. One of the best. It always places high in tomato taste trials. It’s very juicy. An heirloom from Russia with very unique looking, large fruit. I really like the wonderful flavor. It’s popular at many markets on the West Coast; also a favorite of many fine chefs."

{Photo Credit}
Black Prince
An indeterminate heirloom I picked up on sale at a big box store, available from Territorial and Baker Creek, according to whom: "70 days. An heirloom from Irkutsk, Siberia. The 5-oz. tomatoes are round and very uniform; the color is a wonderful deep blackish-chocolate brown. The flavor is as deep, sweet and rich as the color. A unique salad tomato; the plants produce a large crop and early; a good tomato for fine markets."

To be continued...


Monday, March 25, 2013

Inspiration for the Week

"When one tugs at a single thing in nature,
he finds it attached to the rest of the world."
- John Muir

Photographic inspiration from around the web:

Tacoma Urban Coop Tour {credit}
How adorable is that coop? I love the window and the living roof, it's just so sweet looking! Oh, and the house numbers, too cute.

Just a beautiful arrangement of plantings

I'm going to put one of these in my front yard someday! For now, I'm seriously considering it as a layout for my medicinal garden.