The Desert Homestead Blog
Urban and rural sustainable homesteading in the desert southwest

Archive for the ‘Gardening’ Category

How does my garden grow? A bit at a time.

September 15, 2010

I spent a couple hours on Monday making a few raised bed garden frames. They’re 2’x4’x7″ each.  The reason for the weird dimension is that it gives me flexibility to move them around in the yard as needed in order to take advantage of every inch of space. And longer boards wouldn’t fit into my […]

Spinach sprouts

August 25, 2010

My most recent spinach “crop” (to use the term very loosely) appears slightly more successful. After sprouting the seed in a dampened napkin – which took about for days – I planted it in a container of potting dirt outside. 3 days later, it pushed through the surface of the soil. I had tried sprouting […]

Gardening Update: Spinach

August 20, 2010

I’ve been trying to grow spinach and have not had a lot of success at it. The first time, I planted the seeds indoors in a pot. They sprouted, shot up to about 3 inches (a single long, pale sprout), then rolled over and died. Sources tell me this is a sign of not enough […]

Gifts from the neighbors

July 23, 2010

My city neighbors — with whom I’ve gotten along fairly well — are moving. They had asked for assistance in hauling some trash to the dump (the joys of having a pickup!) in exchange for letting us dig through the detritus beforehand. I got 2 large bags of potting soil, several large planters, a couple […]

Stealth Chickens in Suburbia

July 16, 2010

I’ve been offline for quite a while, visiting family back east. I just got back on Saturday and have spent the past week catching up on bills, laundry, and all the other necessities of daily life. During my downtime, though, I’ve been revising and refining my plans for both the backyard of my city house […]

Homemade dehydrator

June 18, 2010

A friend of mine recently was going through junk in her garage, and found the shell of a metal drawer rack. All the drawers were being used as baskets elsewhere, so she was going to toss the frame. Instead, I took it home thinking I might be able to MacGuyver it into a dehydrator.

Digging sucks

June 3, 2010

… Especially when it’s desert hardpan. I’ve been making slow progress on my condo’s backyard, digging down about 6 inches in order to put a bed of sand for paving stones. The area I’m digging is about 11’x11′ of rocky, compacted fill. You can imagine the growing proto-blisters on my hands. Despite that, I am […]

Lemon tree update

May 7, 2010

My dwarf Meyer lemon tree blossomed heavily last month, and this month I have several proto-lemons ranging in size from a pea to a large olive. I’ve been watering it nearly daily in an effort to keep them around — last year I managed to get one single lemon off the tree, and I’d like […]