Tag Archives: Growing Vegetables

Time to start planting summer vegetables!!

growfood,not lawns

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

May 15th is around the corner and many of us are chomping at the bit to get growing!

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My trusty KRQE weather app on my phone says we are over the freezing nights and I believe we are out of the woods.

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wall of waters

However, having said that, I would not plant my tomatoes in the ground without protection. I use wall of waters to protect them from the still chilly nights.

wow done

Temperatures in the 40’s at night are still cold (just not freezing). The wall of waters will absorb the heat from the sun in the day and give it back to the plants at night keeping them warm.

Other warm season crops can be started from seed outside especially when we get up into the 50’s at night. If it gets cold again at night, cover the new baby plants with row cover to protect them-think of it as a nice warm blanket on them.

I will still WAIT TO PLANT my PEPPER PLANTS until the FIRST WEEK OF JUNE as they really hate being cold and will usually stall out if you plant those now. Just keep them in your house until then.

 

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5TH ANNUAL KITCHEN GARDEN & COOP TOUR – JULY 26

IT’s ALMOST HERE! OUR BIGGEST FUNDRAISER AND BIGGEST EVENT OF THE YEAR! PRE-BUY YOUR TICKET AT THE EVENT BRITE BUTTON BELOW OR PAY AT EVENT AT FIRST HOUSE YOU GO TO.

2015 HGNM KItchen Garden Tour_ad _green

Sunday, July 26—OUR MAJOR FUNDRAISING EVENT!
Kitchen Garden & Coop Tour
Time: 9 am-3 pm
Cost: $25. children under 12 free. You can pre-pay below or pay at the tour at any of the homes. Cash, Check or credit cards accepted.
Locations: see below

The 5th Annual
Kitchen Garden and Coop Tour
Sunday, July 26, 2015 from 9 am to 3 pm

See five kitchen gardens in Santa Fe. Pick up ideas that you can use at your place or just enjoy these beautiful, edible and functional landscapes.

The properties on the tour this year will feature many gardening ideas—beautiful vegetable gardens, herb gardens, fruit and nut trees, backyard chicken coops, goats, beehives, composting,  green houses, a neighborhood community garden, edible landscapes and rainwater harvesting systems.  Master Gardeners will be at each location to answer gardening questions and support the event. Pre-purchase tickets here on the eventbrite button or buy them at the tour at whatever house you first go to.

Eventbrite - 5th Annual Kitchen Garden and Coop Tour

5 Properties on tour-get the Home Grown tour_map (revised Jul 18)
#1 • Lisa Sarenduc, Suitable Digs
712 Chicoma Vista
Santa Fe, NM

#2 • Amelia Moody
1951 Osage Dr
Santa Fe, NM

#3 • Deb Farson
2215 Paseo de los Chamisos
Santa Fe, NM

#4 • Bert & Mari Tallant
2389 Camino Pintores
Santa Fe, NM

#5 • Jannine Cabossel, ‘The Tomato Lady’
56 Coyote Crossing
Santa Fe, NM

Garden Tour Bios
Lisa Sarenduc-owner of
Suitable Digs. This property has unique green vacation lodgings on her sustainable property where she lives. Her property features a greenhouse, fruit and nut trees, raised vegetable and berry garden, greywater system, a dome greenhouse with fig trees, another greenhouse with olive trees, a large rainwater catchment system, 1.5 acres of native grasses and flowers lining her driveway using key line design, a swimming pond and is completely powered by solar energy.

Amelia Moody has been gardening at her home in Santa Fe for 10 years. Her lovely garden is continually evolving, as she acquires “gift plants” from her friends. She has mature fruit trees and bed with mixed plantings of vegetables, flowers, medicinal plants and cacti, keeping a constant supply of flowers pollinated by her own honeybees. A giant Saguaro Cactus skeleton dominates her back yard. She also catches water from her roof, storing it underground in a 1000gal tank. Chickens will supply her with eggs through the year. A well tended compost pile rounds out her very balanced landscape.

Deb Farson lives in a townhome with her cat Charley in town. She has been a master gardener for 5 years (in fact, she is the president of the Santa Fe Master Gardeners Association). She has been a Master Composter since 2002. Her property has a small footprint, but she has been able to pack in a lot of sustainability. Her perennials are xeric and include many native plants and shrubs in beds, pots and planters. She connects with the National Weather Service daily – measuring precipitation in Santa Fe. She catches rain from her roof to water her landscape – including raised vegetable beds. She fosters community – cooperating with neighbors in a truly neighborhood community garden. She crafts some of the best compost in town with the help of her neighbors, who contribute their food scraps all year round and get tomatoes in the summer in return.

Bert Tallant and his wife Mari have been gardening in Santa Fe for over 25 years. Their garden showcases many of the sustainable features that can be accomplished in an urban setting. They converted almost half of their property into a vegetable garden. In the compact garden, they grow a substantial portion of their food for the year, including tomatoes, chile, corn, squash and raspberries – lots of raspberries. Bert has experimented w/ espaliered apple trees along the walls that enclose the garden. They use water captured from their roof and piped to the garden underground. A newly captured swarm of honeybees buzz about pollinating and making honey. Eggs are gathered daily from their chickens. They make their own high quality compost gathering materials from neighbors and the city.

Jannine Cabossel-The Tomato Lady
Jannine can be found selling her heirloom tomatoes at the Santa Fe’s Farmer’s Market in the summer and features her artisan farm on the tour this year. She strives toward sustainability. Her 6.5 acre property includes 3000 sq ft of raised vegetable gardens that supply her with food year round, garden art and flowers that feed her soul, over 30 varieties of heirloom tomatoes, fruit trees, strawberries, grapes and raspberries, 2 busy beehives, many drought tolerant, bee friendly gardens, chickens that give her eggs daily, Koko the horse and her buddies-the goats, a terraced herb garden, an unheated greenhouse full of tomatoes now and greens in the winter, a cold frame for fall/spring gardening, composting systems and even a resting hut fondly called the Tea House. Be prepared to wander and get lost on this lovely property that will surely inspire gardeners.

 

Chitting potatoes-You chitting me?

chitting potatoes_closeup

Chitting Potatoes
by giantveggiegardener.com

What is chitting potatoes? Why do we want to chit potatoes? Basically it is ‘prespouting’ the potato ‘seeds’ to force healthy new sprouts before you plant the them. It will knock off a couple of weeks to harvest time so you’ll get be able to harvest sooner.  Potato seeds are not seeds at all but the actual small potatoes.  We keep potatoes we want to eat in the dark so they won’t turn green and quite often they start to develop smaller flimsy white sprouts while in the dark but what you want is thicker healthier sprouts that are either green or purple. If you missed the opportunity to chit the potatoes, it’s ok to just plant them when the time is right. This year I’m growing fingerlings-French fingerlings.

chitting potatoes

Here’s how to ‘chit ‘ them (sounds southern doesn’t it?!)

1. Get a couple of egg cartons so you can stand the potatoes with the pointed side down. The blunt side generally produces more sprouts so keep that side up. The egg cartons make it easy to support them this way. Sometimes there is no pointy side which you should then just look at your potato and put the side with the most ‘eyes’ or sprouts up.

2. Put them in a cool space that gets good indirect light in your house and they will develop thick sprouts  in 2-4 weeks instead of those flimsy one that grow in the dark.

3. Plant them outdoors when the soil is 50°F or warmer. Use a compost therometer to see how warm the soil temperature is. There are many ways to plant potatoes which you can research on the net but if you plant in a bed, dig a deep trench about 10 inches deep in heavily amended fluffy soil.

4. Place the presprouted (or chitted) potatoes with the sprouts up-the sprouts become the leaves, not sideways and bury them 4 inches deep depending on the size of the potato. BE CAREFUL NOT TO BREAK OFF THE SPROUTS. Spacing them 12 inches apart and rows 12-24 inches apart.

5. After the leaves come up, start filling more dirt around the plants till they are almost covered. Bury the whole plant-leaves and all except leaving the top 3 inches of plant exposed. Continue doing this every time they get about 6 more inches tall Basically till you run out of soil. The potatoes will grow up above the potato seeds in the dirt above it. Below the potato seed the roots will grow for the plant.

6. You should see sprouts/leaves come up through the dirt in a couple of weeks. If it is still freezing at night, I will cover the plants with row cover.

7. Potatoes will start producing tubers when they flower.

8. Fingerling potatoes should be ready to harvest when the plants die back in about 90 days. Other potatoes may take less time or more. Leave them in the ground 2 weeks to harden off before harvesting. In fact, you can leave them in the ground until just before a hard freeze happens. That way you can harvest a few as you go and the rest in late fall. Don’t leave in over winter.

For more information on growing and buying good potato seed go to: http://www.irisheyesgardenseeds.com/growers10.php

Next potluck—Thursday, March 27 from 6-8 pm

strawberry rhubarb pie 2

Home Grown New Mexico Potluck:
THURSDAY, March 27, 2014  from 6-8 pm Whole Foods Community Room (St. Francis and Cordova location)

Guthrie_TomThe next potluck will have guest speaker Thomas Guthrie as well as great food and comradeire with other gardeners. Thomas Guthrie will discuss his research on efforts to revitalize local, small-scale agriculture in northern New Mexico and why he thinks strengthening home economies is important, the significance of disengaging from a capitalist economy at the home level, and his experience working with the Transition movement (an international movement that promotes re-localization in the face of climate change, resource depletion, and economic instability). Please come out and support him. It should be great!

We will also have our question and answer session about what to plant in April and other gardening/sustainable workshops/classes happening in April in our community afterwards.

Please bring a dish to share and your own dishes as this is a zero-waste event. We have do have reusable dishes to use at our potlucks if you forget.

Winter Garden Update

iStock_000001276625XSmallFresh greens and herbs in January?  You can have them in Santa Fe. Winter gardening takes some planning in the late summer and fall to prepare a covered space for a winter garden.

A winter garden will save money buying expensive perennial herbs and cooking greens. Parsley, oregano and thyme can grow inside of a hoop house or cold frame to use in the winter. These are all perennial herbs that can live through frost and will live inside of a place with a warmer daytime temperature.  The herb starts are the best thing to plant in August to grow larger for the winter. A community garden has parsley growing and we do not have to purchase it at the grocery store.

Cooking greens taste wonderful as a side dish or mixed into soups. These include Swiss Chard, Kale, Collard Greens and Arugula.  Some heavier lettuce can also grow in colder temperatures. Planting the seeds inside of a hoop house or cold frame in August or early September will have them large enough to eat during the winter. January has less light so the greens do not grow as quickly, but late February and March are prime time to harvest these and save money from purchasing. Here is a great way to cook your greens.

Here are some tips to start your garden and updates on the community garden’s harvest.

1. Build a hoop house or cold frame in your yard.  Here are some tips.

2. Take the temperature. A simple thermometer that takes the temperature of your cooking turkey can be taken outside to measure the soil temperature. The soil can freeze and still have these plants live, but it should stay above 40 degrees for them to be edible. We have used a larger hoop house and smaller (2′ hoops and row cover) inside to keep the temperature higher this winter.

3. Use water to raise the temperature. We moved 55 gallon drums into the hoop house and filled them with water to keep a few degrees higher at night.  Take the temperature with your kitchen oven thermometer.

4. Keep the doors closed when it is cold.  These past few weeks have had a closed hoop house at the community garden. We open the doors when the temperature is above 50 degrees and close them at night.  You can also purchase a heat sync to open the windows without going to the hoop house each day.

Green Drinks, Potluck and Garden Fair

This is a busy week for Home Grown New Mexico.  We have just completed Earth Day with events at Earth Care, The Santa Fe Community College and La Montanita Coop.  Our celebration included snap pea seeds for all attendees, so they could start their gardens with a healthy treat.  It was great to meet all of the people that want to grown their own food this year.  We hope to see you at our monthly potlucks, education classes and the Kitchen Garden and Coop Tour.

This week includes three important events:

  • Community Homesteading Potluck
    Tuesday, April 26th at 7pm
    Santa Fe Complex at 632 Agua Fria Street, parking on Romero
    We will have a seed exchange and hear from Food Depot, Santa Fe Time Bank and Beneficial Farms CSA
    For more information, click here
  • Green Drinks
    Wednesday, April 27th at 6:30pm
    Joe’s Diner at 2801 Rodeo Road
    We are excited to share our 2011 plans for connecting individuals, local business and organizations in gardening and urban farming.  The New Mexican wrote a great article on the program and Kathleen Chambers who founded Green Drinks in Santa Fe three years ago.  Congratulations Kathleen!
    For more information, click here
  • Master Gardener Fair
    Saturday, April 30th at 10am
    County Fairgrounds at 3229 Rodeo Road
    Our booth will be outside the exhibit hall and you can come learn about our education sessions from May to October.  We will also be selling heirloom tomato plants!
    For more information, click here

Seed Exchange on April 26

Community Homesteading Potluck Gatherings
The Fourth Tuesday of Every Month and the Santa Fe Complex
Grow, Raise, Cook, Preserve
Teach, Learn, Mentor, Share

The Santa Fe Complex and Home Grown New Mexico continue the Community Homesteading Potluck Gatherings at the Santa Fe Complex. They take place on the fourth Tuesday of each month.

Next event is Tuesday,
April 26th at 7pm

  • We will have a Seed Exchange Table so bring  any seeds to share with others, envelopes or small baggies and a marking pen.
  • The Santa Fe Time Bank will discuss using their system as a way to share skills.
  • The Food Depot will talk about their program to grow an extra row of vegetables for donation.  We will accept donations of produce for the Food Depot at our potlucks.
  • Beneficial Farms CSA will discuss  their short-term shares, so that gardeners can enjoy local fruits and vegetables in May and June before their plants begin producing.  The CSA is year round!  Gardeners can join again in October for a winter share.

The goal of our potlucks is to bring individuals together and organically create an environment of education between the different levels of experience. Come if you are a novice, an expert, or anything in between in the topics of gardening, beekeeping, backyard chicken coops and urban farming.

Bring a dish to share with the group. We want this to be a zero waste event so please bring a plate, silverware and a cup.  You could even bring your dish or drink in a reusable container.

Bring food donations for the Food Depot.  They will accept locally grown produce, canned goods or dry packaged food.  We will be delivering these donations to the Food Depot at all future potluck events.

Home Grown New Mexico hopes to continue to communicate these events and add more speakers and activities to our calendar. To facilitate this there is a suggested donation of $5 or more. The Santa Fe Complex is located at 632 Agua Fria Street with parking off Romero Street before the Ark Bookstore and visit http://sfcomplex.org/ for more detailed directions. For more information on the potlucks, email homegrownnewmexico@gmail.com or call 473-1403.