November Gatherings – and a Recipe (sort of)
November gatherings

November Gatherings – and a Recipe (sort of)

November Gatherings - it's a great word for this time of year. A gathering of fruits, roots, herbs, seeds, friends, thoughts. Here is a recipe for Black Hawthorn Syrup made with fir needles and assorted herbs. Happy Holidays!

Continue Reading November Gatherings – and a Recipe (sort of)

A Quest for Cottonwood Buds – and How to Make Cottonwood Salve

Today, we are on a quest for the cottonwood - Populus balsamifera – and more specifically, the cottonwood buds on windfall branches with which to make a healing salve. Cottonwood is powerful medicine - the bees make propolis out of it, so that should tell you something - and now is the best time to collect the buds for making what is commonly known as "Balm of Gilead." Prepare for a sticky adventure. The scent will make you swoon....

Continue Reading A Quest for Cottonwood Buds – and How to Make Cottonwood Salve
Building an Insect Hotel
The finished insect hotel in a sunny spot at the edge of Barbolian Fields.

Building an Insect Hotel

Honeybees have their cozy hive, but what about all the other pollinators out there? Where will they overwinter? Upcycle your junk into an Insect Hotel! As crazy & elaborate as you make it. Very fun educational craft for kids, too.

Continue Reading Building an Insect Hotel

Handmade Christmas Gift Strategy

Ok. We're in countdown-to-Christmas mode. We love the idea of handmade gifts, but finding time to make them is another matter. Here's a strategy on how to manage your time and achieve your wildest dreams. Ok, maybe not that exactly.

Continue Reading Handmade Christmas Gift Strategy

Thanksgiving Dog Biscuits

Here's the basic recipe: turkey, pumpkin, whole eggs, rice flour, nutritional yeast, a little oil and molasses. No wheat, no corn, no artificial anythings. Give your dog something to howl about!

Continue Reading Thanksgiving Dog Biscuits

A Somewhat Unconventional Garlic Garden

I tried a little unconventional approach to this year's garlic garden. I built the beds in a series of circles around nitrogen-fixing shrubs and a meandering form that looks a lot like my life - er, I mean, a whirligig. Whatever. I was lost.

Continue Reading A Somewhat Unconventional Garlic Garden

A Memorial Garden Sanctuary

We planted my mother with the dogs in the pet cemetery. It’s true. She would have wanted it that way, right next to her best friend, little Lambchop. It’s not…

Continue Reading A Memorial Garden Sanctuary

Garlic Under Snow

Snowstorm in the PNW! The garlic is under a blanket. Here's a good recipe for a simple high-energy food mix for the birds.

Continue Reading Garlic Under Snow

New Year’s for the Birds

As the winter weather sets in, there has been a frenzy of activity at the bird feeder. This post gives some ideas on how to make muffins for the birds out of suet, nuts, seeds, and other goodies. We also made a bird feeder by drilling holes in a small log and filling them with a suet mix. Enjoy!

Continue Reading New Year’s for the Birds

Harvest Now for Holiday Gifts from the Garden!

No time to lose! You still have time to harvest things to use in making gifts from the garden. Holiday gift ideas include seed sharing, taking cuttings for propagating plants, herb blends, food treats, an assortment of crafts, and a recipe for calendula salve.

Continue Reading Harvest Now for Holiday Gifts from the Garden!

Fall Abundance – and a Great Recipe for Apple Cake

So many reasons why I love this simply gorgeous time of year! But aaaghhh! So much to do! …last-minute scramble to button things up for winter, can and freeze surplus produce, get the garlic in the ground, don’t forget fall cover crops…and what to do with all those apples? Try this Skillet Apple Cake Recipe - it's fast & easy!

Continue Reading Fall Abundance – and a Great Recipe for Apple Cake

Capturing Sunshine in a Jar

Save money, eat healthier, control the ingredients, be more self-sufficient – all good reasons to can your own food. It is a connection to past generations who understood the importance of self-reliance to survival. And like our grandparents, come some blustery day in the midst of winter, we can gather with family and friends, crack open a jar of those home-canned peaches, sit back, and close our eyes at the sweet taste of summer. Mmmm-hmmmm. A little sunshine in a jar.

Continue Reading Capturing Sunshine in a Jar