Three gardening books for children

– Posted in: Book reviews, Fruit, Pests, Plagues, and Varmints, Seeds and Seed Starting, Vegetables

Many gardening books for children take what I think of as the art project approach: here's what you need, this is what you do, isn't that cute?, now show it to Grandma. Very few books out there take children--or a child's interest in gardening--seriously. I prefer to regard children as apprentice gardeners, gradually acquiring more [...]

Our best apple recipes

– Posted in: Fruit, Recipes

We have three apples trees. They came with the place. That is how I know the secret to good apple pie and crisp is to start with delicious baking apples. When I started using these apples in the same recipes I'd always used, the compliments increased dramatically: "This is the best apple pie (crisp) I've [...]

What to do with Concord grapes

– Posted in: Fruit, Recipes
slip-skin grapes

When we moved to this land, there were some grape vines already growing here. They were slipskin grapes, and if they weren't Concord grapes, they certainly were similar to Concords. That's not too surprising, since the hardiest grape species are slipskin. But you know what? Those kinds of grapes are too tart for me. They [...]

To Complain, Or Not

– Posted in: Fruit, Garden chores, Miscellaneous, Weather

Early summer is the time when I pass from the state of “getting behind” into the state of “being behind.” It is a time when there are a lot of beautiful things I might take joy in, but instead find myself wallowing in guilt or despair over unaccomplished goals. Nobody knows how to ruin a [...]