EdibleGarden_Calisch_PRINT-1

Seeding is Believing

I am restless behind my windows, and the garden beckons. But January always offers up slate-gray mornings and frosty nights, and though the winter solstice is behind us, I feel boxed in by these short days. As I gaze out at my streetlight-lit garden in the endless eventide, I decide that the only antidote is an armchair getaway. In a time like this, gardening catalogically has to suffice....

flowers_houses

No Manual Required

I have always maintained that if you want to get to know someone infinitely better, all you need to do is meet their parents. This year, I’ve learned that you can gauge how someone feels about their parents by telling them that yours are building a house in your backyard. From the beginning, it was always the three of us: my mothers and me. I was raised by two delightfully stubborn women who have never let anyone determine their fate, whether that meant having a baby as a lesbian couple in 1984, opening Seattle’s first woman-owned coffee roastery, or countless other quietly subversive actions that have enabled our family to thrive. ...

fava-cover-crop

Prepare Your Garden Beds Now for Winter

In late autumn, my gardening thoughts turn not to the seed, but to the ground. The philosopher, poet, and — perhaps most importantly — farmer Wendell Berry often refers to the soil, from which all life springs and returns....

thorness_bill-imag0074

A Plunge into Pungent Alliums

As pumpkins appear on porches, carved into grins, think about warding off vampires – but not by hanging a necklace of garlic across your shoulders. It would be better to spike some cloves into the ground....

roots illustration

Fall Roots

Get another crop underground now...

Carica_papaya_seedling_macro

Plotting Your Plat

On a nice day soon, I'll get down level with the soil and press my rake handle into it, creating a shallow furrow. Time for seeds to bring the garden back to life. But as I contemplate the future harvest, I focus on the past, too....

radish art

Plant a Radish

I am not a natural gardener. I didn’t grow up with carrots sprouting in the backyard. In fact, I looked with envy at my friends’ raised beds, with fence posts fashioned from driftwood logs and old fishing nets strung to keep the birds out...

kids in the farm

Learning by Taste

It is easy to say that change is too difficult. But South Whidbey dug in — into the soil, that is....

sweeterFrost

Sweeter After a Frost

Magenta hues brightened the ribs and veins of this January King cabbage as it experienced increasingly cold winter weather....

eatWell

Eat Well, Be Well

“He’s an extraordinary chef and food-service director, but he’s a better human being,” says Glenn. “His passion and sincerity about this is impossible to miss.”...

Seeds_CaitlinMoore

Wild Abandon

Perhaps you’ve admired a perfect head of lettuce in your garden or a friend’s—the spray of burgundy speckles across the rounded whorls of soft green leaves. But have you seen it six months later?...

solSeedFarm

Sol to Seed Farm

“I went out there and thought it was amazing,’” Matt says. “Even when I was just doing something mundane.”...

Kiwi-e1456031160664

Bring on the Kiwi Berries

Every year Burnt Ridge, Dolan’s fruit- and nut-growing operation located east of Chehalis, harvests thousands of pounds of hardy kiwifruits from 200 cultivated vines—grown on trellises, not in the forest canopy. The wooden and wire bracing groans beneath the weight of the grape-sized, fuzzless fruits....

nut in hand

Nuts About You- The American Chestnut

In Europe, before the arrival of potatoes and corn from the New World, chestnuts were an essential starch. Chestnuts have been grown since prehistoric times, especially in the hilly, marginally fertile regions of Northern Italy and Southern France, where much of the land is difficult to till and plow....

Cool season_Parsnips copy

Cool Season Abundance- Succession Planting

At long last, the first tomatoes are on the vine, the beans are coming in bushels, and friends are beginning to ooh and ahh over your burgeoning vegetable beds. So, what are you waiting for? Start planning for winter....

greens_with_legend.jpg

Asian Greens Demystified

We have the great fortune of mild weather here in the Pacific Northwest and while wearing a wool sweater in July is never fun, the gentle temperatures do help prolong a growing season that can last all year long....

basket of quince

The Third Pomme- Quince

Whence the quince—so beautifully ripe, organic, and local to the Puget Sound region? It's from an island farm of odd fruits. Guemes Island, Idaho, Iran, and the Garden of Eden hold in common what is thought to have been the forbidden fruit in Paradise: not an apple, but rather the quince....

Critter Control

Nothing is more annoying than discovering something other than ourselves is eating its way through the vegetable patch. Our every inclination is to launch an all-out assault with an eye toward complete eradication, but this is an unsustainable and dangerous approach loaded with severe collateral environmental damage....

new_pea

Precocious Peas

Willi Galloway gets a jump on the season by pre-sprouting pea seeds in her kitchen before planting....

seeds sprouting

The Seedy Season

Have you discovered the wonder of growing at least some of your own food? Then you know how good fresh-from-the-garden-moments-ago produce can be. This year, take the next step and sow your own. It's easy!...

heirloom_beans

Diversifying the Bean Pot

To get started with your own heirloom garden, you need look no further than the plentiful, versatile bean....

roja_garlic

Cultivating the Past- Heirloom Vegetables

When you sit down to dinner with the folks at the family homestead, a dish may circulate that sparks discussion. Not about the food, but about the vessel: an antique passed down through generations, carefully stored and brought out on special occasions. It often comes with a story about where the original owner got it, or how it has traveled to be in your hands. What if the food inside that dish carried such a heritage? In some cases, it does....

port townsend farmers market

Small Town, Big Market-Port Townsend

Port Townsend is known for many things: historic buildings, wooden boats, walkability and the sort of scenery that makes people move here from other, likely warmer, regions. But day trips aren't any fun if the food isn't good, and that might explain the town's recent notoriety. It's delicious....

Two-Step Tomatoes

I've never tried to save tomato seed. Most instructions involve mixing the jelly-like seed with water, fermenting the mixture and other more complicated machinations. Langley shared her two-step, easy-peasy process with me and assured me that even though it's pretty disgusting, it works like a charm....

artichoke_cooked

Artichokes

"When I got to Italy and started to understand how versatile artichokes were and what an amazing flavor they have, I was hooked and started experimenting with them on many different levels."...

rhubarb

The Big Red Beast-Rhubarb!

The rhubarb plant in my garden is a monster not easily tamed. I cut it back and it just grows larger, shooting up new stalks and even more enormous leaves, smothering my new dill shoots that are doing their best to find the sun....

ballardbees

Ballard Bees

Just when you thought the urban farming movement couldn't get any, well, farmier, along came something new for people to buzz about. Right on the heels of parking strip gardens and backyard chickens comes the third generation of city-based sustainability: honey bees....

chet_gerl_matts_in_the_market

The Tomato Freak

Pike Place Market has long been considered a national landmark, and a city treasure. It's even inspired a public market movement across the country. But, unlike San Francisco's Ferry Building, regularly drawing Seattleites to shop or eat can be challenging, because it's also one of our most popular tourist attractions....

A Juicy Kind of Love – Melons

When I was a little girl, I briefly wanted to marry a cantaloupe. The love affair began with my father's silly knock-knock joke involving a kid-friendly punch-line: "I can't elope tonight, my father took the ladder," and ever since then I was hooked....