Tartine Bread

Monday, September 14th, 2015 / Leave A Comment

For all you bakers out there, here is a recipe you must try.  It comes from the Tartine Bakery in San Francisco, considered by many to be one of the finest bakeries in the world.  I am a dedicated baker and would rank Tartine right up there with Poilane in Paris. Tartine's country loaf recipe may be a little intimidating, but it is well worth the effort.  I try to bake a couple of loaves a week and croissants or baguettes on the weekends and the results are stunning. Continue reading...

I think I always plant too many cherry tomato plants.  I really can't help it!  If there is just a small spot in a couple of my raised beds, I throw a plant in there.  If I find an unused container on the patio, I put in a cherry plant. I'll even fill a rusting old wheelbarrow with some soil and put cherries in there.  Now that we are into September, I walk out into the garden and find that I have hundreds of beautiful cherry tomatoes ready to be picked. Continue reading...

Fall Carrots

Monday, July 27th, 2015 / Leave A Comment

I can't believe it's almost August! While we may be in the midst of tomato and corn harvesting time, there are signs in the garden that the season has turned the corner.  Here in Zone 6, we are actively picking peppers and cukes, summer squash, kale, melons and herbs.  My potato boxes are absolutely loaded!  Look closely though and you'll notice that some of your squash leaves are turning yellow/brown, the onion tops are beginning to droop and some of the asparagus ferns are fading.  Fall is coming, but that doesn't mean you have to stop planting. Continue reading...

Thoughts on J.I. Rodale

Wednesday, July 15th, 2015 / Leave A Comment

J.I. Rodale is widely considered to be the grandfather of modern day organic gardening. Eleanor Perenyi wrote a lot about Mr. Rodale in her book Green Thoughts, published in 1981. Here is an exert worth reading and remembering. "Soil isn't a substance to hold up plants in order that they may be fed with artificial fertilizers, and we who treated it as such were violating the cycle of nature. We must give back what we took away. Moreover, we must stop using man-made poisons to deal with pests if toxic residues weren't to build up to intolerable heights. By relying on chemicals we were contaminating the food we ate, the air we breathe, the earth and the waters under the earth." Continue reading...

Today is July 8th and we are right in the middle of prime tomato growing season. If you planted your young tomatoes near the middle of May, they should now be about three feet tall and covered with small fruits or at least the yellow flowers that will become tomatoes in a couple of weeks. You are now at a critical stage where the elimination of "suckers" is vital. Continue reading...

What a nasty winter we had up here in the Northeast!  We had well over 10 feet of snow where I live, and while it was backbreaking work to do so much shoveling, the gardens emerged unscathed.  As a matter of fact, the insulation provided by all that snow proved to be a real blessing and the crops like garlic and shallots that I planted last fall are beautiful right now. Continue reading...