Gardening People, Places & Things

Gardening & The 7 Dimensions of Wellness

good health

A wonderful site called Bonbon Break was looking for submissions recently on the topic “Fill Your Bucket”. They had partnered with a really cool company named OurPact that produces an Ap that parents can use to limit their kid’s e-interaction time.

Hmmm…. I wonder if it works for adult kids. ;-)

Anyway, I had been thinking a lot about what I might write when I remembered a woman I had met long ago who told me how gardening had saved her. She was so extremely depressed, she said, that she could barely function in her daily life. Gardening had changed all that.

What a fantastic thing that something so seemingly simple, can make a world of difference to a person.

And I knew why. Psychology is actually my field by profession, and part of that education was learning about the different dimensions of wellness. This was more recently fine-tuned by a professor I know, who in working with my staff and our senior population, taught them about overall wellness.

What does Fill Your Bucket meant to you? To me, it is a healthy life in balance.

Please follow this link to learn more, and pass it on.
You never know when it might get to someone who really needs it.

Namaste my gardening friends!

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Categories: Gardening People, Places & Things, Keeping up with the Joneses

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Getting Kids to Garden

getting kids to garden

As a member of the Garden Writers Association and as a blogger we often get things in the mail like the book shown above. No obligation, but if we want to share we can.

This is a cute book aimed at kids, that tells the story of a carrot that got kidnapped by “Mean Gene – a scientist who is paid by Grendal Greed to do genetic research on different fruits, vegetables, fish, and soon, even farm animals.”

It ends on a happy note of course.

The website offers a free ap to download, that when used with the book and seed packets makes the characters ‘come to life’ and offer growing tips. There is also a line of seeds to represent many of the characters, more to come in other books.

We liked the way the information is given out, making it fun and easy to understand. We really like the fact that they include the botanical names of the plants. It’s not just vegetables and fruits, they also include many other plant life characters.

If you have a smart phone and come across a seed display case, we would recommend you check it out.

Anyway to get kids interested in growing food is two thumbs up from us!

Here’s their website for more info.

Categories: Gardening People, Places & Things, Keeping up with the Joneses

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Seeds and the Seasons

The following is a guest post by a lovely woman named Amber from England. Their weather is similar to ours here in the northeast, but much less extreme and with milder winters. We always find it interesting to learn how others garden. Enjoy!

what to plant when

Growing your garden can be so rewarding whether your passion is for pansies or potatoes. However, it’s not just about planting seeds, watering them and waiting for them to grow. Knowing the best time to plant your chosen seeds can have a big impact on how well they grow. Doing the right researching can leave you with a luscious garden that has flowers in bloom all year round.

January offers an array of flowers, salad and herbs to sow. For more colour in your garden why not look at growing Sweet Pea. Sweet Peas not only produce beautiful blooms but also have a gorgeous scent. To add different levels to your garden arrangement why not give them plant supports and create columns of summer colours.

Tip – Annual Sweet Peas give off an incredible fragrance but only last one season while everlasting Sweet Peas return year after year, but with less fragrance than their annual cousins.

For something more edible why not start the year by planting broad beans. They’re a great vegetable to grow and fun to grow with children. Remember when planting them to sow one bean directly 5cm deep and 23cm apart for the best results.

The month of Valentine’s Day where love is in the air is a great month to plant a number of flowers including the Snapdragon, a beautiful plant with an unusual marble effect in an array of colours. Snapdragons are a very hardy plant which makes them great for beginners especially as when the outcome is a plant of sheer beauty. Another great plant for February is Chinese Forget Me Nots, a stunning little blue and white flower. Spinach, radish, aubergine, chilli, cucumber and tomatoes are all great foods to start growing in this month. Don’t forget to support your tomatoes with a sturdy stakes or strings to ensure they grow properly.

As we move into March the question is what flowers can’t you grow? After all the options are almost endless. You can pick from pretty poppies to an array of bloomers from the sunflower family. March is the month to get excited about the colours your garden can display for the rest of the year. If you are looking to involve children a sunflower competition is a great way to get the kids excited about gardening.

While you’re planting all the colours of the rainbow you can also get started on your parsnips, lettuce, beetroot, brussel sprouts, carrots and why not get ready for Halloween by planting your very own pumpkins.

April, the month of fools; but even fools can plant themselves a stunning garden. Dropmore is a striking blue flower which can be frozen into ice cubes to make your summer drinks stand out. Why not grow Borage ‘Blue’ as well, these can be added to drinks to give a cucumber like taste but with a beautiful vibrancy. This is also the time to get your onions, leeks and butternut squash started.

Why not add a little magic to your garden in May by planting ‘Snow Pixie’, a beautiful white flower or ‘Pink Fairy’, Lupin, or why not use May as the month for ‘Falling in Love’ with Papaver rhoeas. Sweetcorn and runner beans are also perfect for planting in May.

Cosmos, ‘Dwarf Sensation White’, are a stunning little flower ideal for planting in June, along with Echinops also known as the ‘Globe Thistle’. Wild Rocket and Artichoke or Artichoke are also all great choices for planting in June and July.

Papaver somniferum or ‘Black Beauty’ is a glamourous deep red poppy while Orlaya grandiflora is a beautiful and delicate white flower. Both are great choices for growing in August.

When it comes to vegetables, August is a great month for planting cucumber, chive, a number of lettuces and spring onion.

As the leaves turn orange in September the Calendula officinalis, ‘Indian Prince’, is the perfect flower to plant as you can enjoy the orange flower in the months to come. Staying on the orange theme the Eschscholzia californica ‘Orange King’, is also a stunning flower ideal for planting during this month.

During the spooky month of Halloween why not plant a Ladybird also known as Papaver commutatum, a beautiful red and black flower. The poached egg plant is also a brilliant and easy plant to enjoy with bright yellow and white flowers which resemble a poached egg.

November and December sees us returning to the same flowers and vegetables of January including Sweet Peas and Broad Beans. It’s especially handy if you’ve kept the seeds from your last successful crop.

Each flower and vegetable is different and needs to be planted and grown in different ways. Some like moist soil while others prefer drier soils, but before worrying about any of that the most important thing to know is when you should break out the garden tools. For more information about plants and seeds have a look around online.

Author Bio: Perrywood is an Essex based garden centre that sells a variety of seeds, plants, tools and furniture. They regularly release guides on how to care for your garden from what to plant to dealing with pests.

This post was printed with permission from the author, no compensation was received, just sharing gardening love. <3

Categories: All About Seeds, Gardening People, Places & Things

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Product Review: The Veggie Mold

reshaping your edibles

I’ll be honest, when I first saw this product I thought it was a cute idea, but not something I would have any use for. Perhaps it is my restaurant background, but if I want a garnish I know plenty of ways to make one.

Then I had a grandson.

So when I was asked to review The Veggie Mold, I jumped at the chance. It is too early to try it outside yet, but I wanted to share what I think so far. I’ll post again later in the season when the garden is in full swing.

I find it easy to open and close, very easy. It’s durable plastic and will likely last many years. And I’m thinking my grandson and I are going to get a big kick out of it.

According to the literature provided, a cucumber can fill the mold in less than a week. It can be used on tomatoes as well as a whole lot of other veggies too. What fun it will be to choose what to use the molds on together, and then have him back to see, and eat, the results.

This is more than a cute garnish maker, it’s a gardener’s toy and I bet a great way to get kids to eat more veggies.

After all, who doesn’t secretly love playing with their food?

For more information check out their website The Veggie Mold and enjoy some of the pictures. The one of the kids is my favorite!

Categories: Gardening People, Places & Things

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2 Ways to Win Free Gardening Stuff

growing tomatoes

Think Gardening!

Everyone likeS free, no strings attached stuff, right? And if it is gardening related, well… so much the better!

So here are 2 very simple ways you can increase your chances of opening some packages of free stuff:

1. Join the new Facebook group Garden Blogger #GIVEAWAYS. Bloggers holDing contests are posting those links in the group. One person has already won a copy of Plants with Benefits by Helen Yoest.
Share the group as well. As more people join, more bloggers and gardening companies will join and get involved in contests. It’s a win-win!

2. Subscribe for Free to emails by clicking this link or going to the tab above. We send out a personal email once or twice each month. We would never share your email, as if we knew how, nor bombard you with stuff as some do. You will sometimes get a head’s up on what we are working on, a garden tip, and always links to the most recent posts.
We will also post our contests in the Garden Blogger GIVEAWAYS group.

Here’s the bonus- because Facebook doesn’t always share what we post, you might miss out on something; and we want to stay in touch. So for all our subscribers we will be occasionally offering private contests through a link on YouTube. Only subscribers will get this link and be able to enter.

Of course you can easily unsubscribe at any time. It happens, but very rarely.

So let’s think thoughts of spring, and get ready to win some free cool gardening stuff!

Categories: Gardening People, Places & Things, Keeping up with the Joneses

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Horticulture Magazine and Me

snow jan 24 2015

Hello y’all,

Blogging has blessed us in that we have been connected to many wonderful gardeners like you, whether you subscribe to our emails, follow along on assorted social media, or we have e-met on a more personal level.

It has also linked us to people involved in the gardening and publication industries. One such connection is with Horticulture Magazine. We were fortunate to win a contest to get an article published in their magazine, and from that they invited us to contribute to their online blog. How cool is that? My hands were shaking so hard I pert near dropped the phone!

After a few years we took a bit of a break while we worked on our garden system, primarily on finding ways to lower the cost of production without sacrificing quality.

They had no problem welcoming us back, and we are happy to say they have even featured our last two articles on growing Flax and Sunchokes both for their beauty and their edible components on their main page!

So if you are in gardening withdrawal from the cold, or for my friends down under it’s the heat, check out these links to get a little more green in your life.

You can find a new post there and on the Gardening Blog every week.

Color us happy, blessed, and waiting for spring…
Oh, and choose any color you want; anything is better than this snow-white!

Categories: Gardening People, Places & Things, Keeping up with the Joneses

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The Gardener and the Cook

The Gardener and the Cook

Now that we are no longer in the restaurant and catering business, Mandolin and I have found we have more time for the things we like to do best; namely gardening, cooking, and playing music.

Our involvement with social media has shown us that there are many people just learning to grow their own food, which of course makes us happy. What makes us sad is the disconnect with our food that we have also seen. A lot of people simply don’t know what to do with what they are growing, or even how it grows. We were surprised a lot ourselves way back when, we understand.

So it seemed a no-brainer to us that we should share what we know on both subjects, which we have been doing here and on our food blog.

We decided to take it a step further, and put this into book form. This way the beginning gardener can have the most important information right at their fingertips. No need to get online and look things up, it’s all in the book.

Included are how to’s for over 40 of the most common veggies, with tips and techniques to help make the whole process more successful.

To that we added more than 100 of our own recipes that focus on what you grow, and numerous pictures to help show you what your veggies and some of the dishes should look like.

This really is a work of heart. I’ll be honest and tell you our royalties for a book sold on Amazon are $1.06. Of course, that does help cover the cost of maintaining the blog, but it isn’t the reason for writing the book.

Y’all are. You, if you are new to gardening and/or cooking, or someone you may know. For that reason we would appreciate it if you would help us spread the word, by sharing this link.

Happy Cooking and Garden On!
~ The Joneses
Find it:
Direct from the publisher
On Amazon

Categories: Gardening People, Places & Things, How to Grow, Keeping up with the Joneses

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Gardening and the Internet

Another spaghetti squash and even more beans.

It was easier to learn to grow food in the days before there was so much information available at your fingertips.

You could read a book or magazine, or ask a neighbor. The backs of seed packets and seed catalogs held the information that was easiest to access.

Now all you have to do is type a word and a world of information, both correct and not, is right there for you to sort through. And it can be mind boggling.

There is so much information that a lot of people have turned to social media for help. Again, there is good information and there is bad, though well-intended.

Did you see the one about how to tell the male sweet peppers from the female? Seriously.

So what’s a gardener to do?

First, find a source you can trust. Since you are here, we hope you consider us one. We turn to Mother Earth News and a few e-quaintances we have been reading for a while. We also read the .edu sites, though we know their info is primarily for farmers.

Personally, we avoid E-How, About.com and Yahoo Answers.
These venues allow anyone to submit, right or wrong. Sure there is some great info there, but we have also seen completely wrong information on all 3 sites.

If you can, ask a neighbor. The local farmers’ market can be a great source of information, and it is local practices that were successful in your area.

Above all, learn by doing. Have fun, experiment, keep it simple or complicated based on which you enjoy the most.

Don’t be afraid, don’t hold off planting something just because you might make a mistake.

Well, unless it is horseradish. ;-)
Garden on!

Categories: Gardening People, Places & Things, Jonesen', Keeping up with the Joneses

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4 Reasons to Use a Garden Sink

garden sink

An adjustable nozzle and 2 attached drainboards.

My husband purchased a garden sink as a birthday gift, he’s so sweet. He found it at Tractor Supply, and I just love it.

Here’s why:

1. It saves time.

Instead of harvesting veggies and bringing them into the kitchen, they get a quick cleaning first. Now there is no longer a dirty kitchen sink to deal with, and less time spent chasing those freeloading bugs you sometimes find.

This particular sinks made by Vertex has 2 drainboards, so some trimming can also be done, and cuttings deposited in the composter that is right next to the sink.

2. It saves water.

It hooks directly to a garden hose. It also has a drain that goes into a bucket as shown, allowing for the water to be reclaimed back into the garden.

If you pay for your water use, this can also save money.

garden sink

It even has a little shelf for a bar of soap. Aww.

3. It saves good garden soil.

No longer is soil washed into the septic tank, but along with the water it can be added back into the garden. Even cleaning the sink itself brings some more soil back.

Okay, it’s a little thing. But it’s a good little thing.

garden sink

2 drainboards fold over to keep the sink free of fallen leaves.

4. It’s a toy.

Admit it. Chances are you like gardening toys.
With most hobbies, the ‘tools’ are part of the fun.

Just a note: You can find this sink and similar ones on Amazon, but you can also DIY a set-up of your own.

Categories: Gardening People, Places & Things

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5 Lessons Learned at a Garlic Festival

garlic festival food

1. You can put garlic in anything.

Oh sure, we all know the most common foods, and this sign was just the beginning.

It went on from there to sauces, garlic-hot pepper jelly, oils and in case that wasn’t enough… garlic ice cream.

Yep, you read that right, and it was surprisingly not as bad as we expected.

2. That German White and Purple Stripe are two of the best varieties for colder climates.

Every farm stand that was selling garlic had at least these 2 selections. Both are hardneck and cold hardy, something we need here in the northeast and even up into Canada.

The Purple Stripe is also considered to be the ‘Grand-daddy of all garlic” in that it is thought to be the oldest type still around. Kind of neat, right?

How to freeze garlic.

3. You can freeze garlic.

And perhaps you should. Frozen garlic will hold its flavor better than refrigerated bulbs.

We never really thought about it before, but it does make sense. It certainly is easy enough to try.

4. That a garlic bed should be fertilized twice.

At planting time, here in zone 5/6 that is mid-October, and again when the ground thaws in the spring, add bone meal, blood meal and a fertilizer that is about 10-20-20. Of course that depends on your soil, but generally a good plan of action.

This summer we saw how well bone meal worked for our onions, so knew it would likewise be good for the garlic.

Garlic Viengar shots.

5. That some people will try anything.

Garlic is good for you, vinegar is good for you. Why not combine them, right?

Mandolin was just one of a number of people, men mostly, that tried the garlic vinegar. Perhaps it was the sign ‘More potent than Viagra’ that got their attention.

We’ll leave it at that. ;-D

Categories: Gardening People, Places & Things, Garlic

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Everything here is original (unless otherwise noted) and has legal copyright 2009-2015 by Gardening Jones™, and cannot be re-posted or reproduced without permission. Any re-posting of information, photographs, and/or recipes is considered theft and subject to prosecution.

As gardeners, we love to share, so just let us know what your intentions are and we can work together. Please feel free to link any post you see. They say they call that Link Love.

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