Northwest Gardening

  June 2018

Gardening With Wildlife

One of the first chores of spring is to let a few winter-hardened brassicas, such as kales or collards, go to seed. The early flowers attract native bees and the cultivated honey bees, as well as the now commonly over-wintering … Continue reading

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  May 2018

Planning for Change

The fertile flats of the valleys west of the Cascades were formed over geological time by river flows and frequent floods. The clay soils and cool climate of the Skagit Valley, situated at the same latitude as Northern Europe, are … Continue reading

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  Oct/Nov 2017

Harvesting the Garden

With the arrival of fall it is time to harvest the last of the summer vegetables in the garden, set up protection for the fall greens recently planted, and put in over-wintering cover crops. And finally, sow garlic by the … Continue reading

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  September 2017

A Winter Fortress

September is the turn of the year from expansive heat and sun to the oncoming cool rains and cloudy days. I often think of the oncoming fall season as the slow start of a gradual siege that begins in the … Continue reading

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  August 2017

Time to Plant Greens for Fall and Winter

August in the Pacific Northwest offers the best weather of the year, reasonably cool yet sunny and dry. Rain is a distant memory, for now. Other regions have sticky humidity and drenching thunderstorms, face the threat of tornadoes and flash … Continue reading

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  July 2017

Gardens Need Summer Heat

After a long winter of record rain, our Northwest gardens in July will be long overdue for heat and light to ripen our tomatoes and corn. An easily grown garden standby such as zucchini, however, will leap into high volume … Continue reading

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  June 2017

Expand Your Food Growing Horizon

Compared to the rest of the continental United States, the Pacific Northwest is unique in offering a relatively cool, year-round gardening season, akin to the maritime clime of England and coastal Northern Europe. The tempering effect of the Salish Sea, … Continue reading

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  May 2017

Great Tomatoes

Growing tomatoes in the Maritime Northwest can be a challenge, even with the warmer summer temperatures of the past few years. Tropical plants native to South America, tomatoes struggle with our more temperate, though sunny and dry, summers. For the … Continue reading

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  April 2017

Harvesting Crops Throughout the Year

Before plunging into the first plantings of spring, it is useful to look back and consider what survived the bouts of snow and cold temperatures that came down from Canada this winter. Beyond the vegetable garden, under the second-growth cedars … Continue reading

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  March 2017

March Winds

As an early herald of spring, March usually blusters in with winds and cold temperatures, but then settles down at the end of the month into a bit warmer weather. The annual temptation is to start digging the soil and … Continue reading

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