How to Grow Carrots

Carrots are another pantry staple and a much-celebrated garden vegetable. 

Early spring is the preferred time to grow carrots in most of the United States. They tolerate the cold weather of the spring well. In fact, if the weather is too warm, carrots can take on a bitter taste.  In the southern regions of the United States, carrots can be grown in the fall and over the winter. 

The vegetable we know as the carrot...

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How to Grow Onions

I've not been super-successful growing onions in the past, but then, I never really dug in and learned how to grow them well. 

In this article, I'll share what I've learned about growing onions, and we'll both have a great crop this year! 

This turned into a long article - if you want the summary, scroll to the bottom.

 

Types of Onions

Onions are an old, old crop. Humans have been cultivating onions for at least...

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How to Grow Peas

Peas are a wonderful cool season crop! They're one of the earliest crops you can plant in the spring in most of the country because the seeds will germinate a lower temperatures. Warmer parts of the country plant peas over their mild winter season. 

Types of Peas

There are basically 3 types of garden peas: shelling, snap, and snow. 

Shelling Peas (also called garden peas, English peas, or sweet peas) have an inedible pod. You have to...

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How to Grow Green Onions

Green onions are a wonderful crop that you can grow at any time during the growing season. You may think they are the same as growing onion bulbs, but they are not - they're grown from seed. Seed companies often label green onion seed as "Bunching Onions." 

Scallions and green onions are the same thing - the difference is when you harvest them. Scallions are harvested when they are younger. Leave them to grow longer, 

Green onions...

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How to Grow Spinach

Ah, spinach. One of the best vegetables to grow in the garden. Every year I allocate some space to spinach for salads.  If you haven't tried it yet, let me encourage you to do so.

Spinach-Growing Season

Spinach is a cool season crop and grows best in spring and fall. In warmer parts of the country, spinach can be grown in the winter. Using a cover over the growing spinach plants can protect them when the weather gets unexpectedly cold,...

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How to Grow Beets

Beets are an easy crop to grow and in the last decade or so, they've become more popular on the plates in American homes and restaurants.

Beets are a root vegetable. Their binomial name is "beta vulgaris," which basically means "common beet." Curiously, Swiss chard also has the binomial name "beta vulgaris," because they are closely related. They originated from the same plant subspecies centuries ago. 

Beets are easy...

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Late Season Frost

 

Here in the Kansas City region, we've awakened to a mid-April snowfall today (April 20, 2021) and a temperature of 32 degrees Fahrenheit. It's unusual, but it does happen some years. Technically, we're past our average last freeze date (April 17), yet this morning it was 32 degrees, which technically is a freeze!

If there's one thing I've learned living in the midwest for the past 17 years, the weather here is unpredictable. It can change...

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I'm a Complete Beginner - Where Do I Start?

Every once in a while I see a plea for help from a complete beginner, who has never gardened before in online forums. 

  • I've never gardened before! I'm a complete beginner!
  • I have NO IDEA where to begin!
  • This will be my first garden ever!
  • How do I start gardening?

It's courageous when someone jumps in, admits they're starting from scratch, and looks for help. And we always need more gardeners, so I'm happy to help however I...

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Succession Planting - How to Extend Your Harvest

Succession planting is a wonderful technique for the home garden. It's a way to enjoy fresh-picked vegetables from your garden for a longer period of time. 

When you plant all of your seeds for a crop at the same time, they all get started at about the same time and they also become ready for harvest all at once.

This is great if you want all of your harvest at one time, but if you're gardening for fresh eating, you may become...

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Tutorial: A Beginner's Guide to Reading Vegetable Seed Packets

Seed packets for consumers like you and me are required by law to contain truthful information about the seeds in the packet. The intent of the law is to ensure the buyer knows exactly what they are buying, and to provide the consumer with some basic instructions for how to plant and grow the seed successfully. 

It seems pretty obvious. The information on a seed packet is regulated at a national level to provide...

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