Wednesday, December 30, 2020

Hügelkultur Garden Border

 Hi everybody. Today I tried out an idea I've been considering for awhile now: using a hugelkultur to create a boundary between the garden and the rest of the yard. This has many useful advantages for me. Not only do I get to have a hugelkultur that functions as a low fence but my hay mulch is close by in the garden and the hay won't rot as fast since it is on top of wood. The hay mulch had originally been stacked up directly on the ground and the hay near the ground was in bad shape. This should make the hay last longer but also help the wood it is currently on decompose faster since the wood cannot dry out as quickly. I hope everyone has a safe and happy new year!

Sunday, December 27, 2020

Announcing the poppy of 2021: Hungarian blue bread seed

 After careful consideration, I have selected the Hungarian blue bread seed poppy as the best overall flower the represent the large majority of the poppies that will be in Poppyville garden. Not only is it beautiful and easy to grow but you also get edible poppy seeds that are (so I've read) in the highly desirable color of blue. As you can see, my first batch was acquired from Baker Creek heirloom seeds and I already have another batch on the way. I hope to document the process of growing the poppy flowers from site selection all the way to seed collection right here on Poppyville.

Monday, December 21, 2020

The power of garlic against deer


As this year begins to wrap up, I want to share a small victory with you. Deer have destroyed my garden for the most of the growing season but I have two food crops that have proven to be deer resistant. Please give to a warm welcome to garlic and the distantly related elephant garlic. As you can see, both appear to be untouched unlike the winter wheat to the right of them that has been decimated. While I won't be able to feed myself on just garlic, it will be a great addition to anything I grow in the new year that survives the deer onslaught.

Wednesday, May 13, 2020

Planting Potatoes and Website Update

     Hi everyone. I have a gardening update and a couple of important announcements for you today. We finally got the no dig potatoes out. We placed at least five varieties on ground that had been covered with cardboard. We then gave them some compost and covered it all with straw and cut grass.
     The first big bit of news is we had a successful trial launch of our little seed business. Thank you to everyone who purchased our seeds. We are now temporarily sold out but will have plenty more seed in about a month.
     That leads me to the second bit of news.While we are waiting for the seed in the fields to mature, we are going to do a website redesign. The main change is going to be individual product pages that will feature prominently toward the top of the home page. Several other tweaks will be made to the features and appearance of We'll see you next time!

Wednesday, May 6, 2020

Near Record Cold Weather

     It's always important for gardeners to pay close attention to the weather and also to have a moderate amount of patience. As much as I wanted to put out our warm season crops I knew I needed to wait until all chances of frost had passed.  For us in zone 6b, that was suppose to be the first Saturday of May. As the day approached, the local meteorologist began to warn that the unusual cool temperatures we were experiencing were going to get even colder. Sure enough, they are now predicting we will get at least frost and maybe even a freeze. The people who put out tender plants in their garden will lose them all.
     While I was smart enough to wait, I'm still faced with a problem. This late frost or freeze has effectively shortened the warm crop growing season. My peanut plants may not have time to make peanuts. My corn, millet and sorghum plants could have reduced yield because they will get planted late. Thankfully, I have a solution. Buckwheat is warm season pseudo-cereal that has a fast time to maturity. Assuming there are no "acts of god" there is a very good chance for buckwheat to return a high yield when planted late in the season. Many thanks to High Mowing Organic Seeds for getting my order to me quickly.

Thursday, April 30, 2020

You Can Never Have Enough Compost

     Hi everyone! We are just about to enter our frost-free growing season here in zone 6b which means I need every bit of compost that I have. No dig has been the best way I have found to garden so far but compost and is always the limiting factor. Last year we had just enough for one long row and the difference it made in that row was impressive. This year we have at least twice as much compost but it's still not enough. The plan is to put down three inches of compost as far as we can and plant seeds into just those places. All other sections of the garden will get heavy cardboard mulch that should give us areas to garden later in late summer to early fall.

Thursday, April 23, 2020

Happy (Late) Earth Day!

     Nature has been busy here on our little slice of heaven even if I haven't. I'm out of the foot cast but now I'm having to wear a protective boot so work has been slow going for me. Our lonely apple tree is in full bloom and some turkeys made an uncommon appearance at our place. In the garden our pea trails have already provided valuable data. The Little Marvel peas are doing great while the Green Arrow variety are having difficulty germinating. Even the Alaska peas that were planted later than the Green Arrow are germinating better. While harvesting some spinach planted last year, we found a huge spinach plant that caught our attention.
     Even though Corvid-19 seems to be overshadowing everything right now, we need to remember what Earth Day is all about. Everything going on means nothing if we don't have a world to live on. This is our one and only home and we need to give this planet the care and respect it deserves. I hope we learn some valuable lessons from this epidemic about how to better care for not only each other but for the environment as well.

Tuesday, April 14, 2020

Working Outdoors

The work getting done outside has greatly slowed due to me having an injury. A bone broke in my foot more than month ago and I've been in a cast ever since. However, this will change soon because the cast is going to be removed in two days. After I get used to walking in a protective boot, I should be able to start going outside farther than my back porch. Thanks to my wonderful wife for planting the vegetable section of our garden.
I'll give you an update on the vegetable garden. The barley and peas love this cool weather and are coming along very well. The radishes and kale seem to be doing just fine also. The spinach is less noticeable but it's definitely germinating as well. We also put out corn salad which is very hard to spot without searching for it. I hope to mow the little field below our house and get plenty of barley and orchard grass seed sown.

Sunday, April 5, 2020

Making Magic Happen

Happy April to everyone! We've been keeping ourselves busy at home while corona virus is continuing to spread in the United States. We have filled the vegetable garden with some of our favorite plants and are looking forward to offering far more seeds after harvest. In other news, Pernie is doing great. Here's a picture of her enjoying some orchard grass grown right here at home.

Monday, March 30, 2020

Deer Fence

This is what it takes to keep the deer at bay. As we began putting seeds into the garden we knew we would have to protect the emerging plants somehow. We had already put a net fence around the garden but at least one deer was still getting in. So now we are having to put fencing inside our fenced in areas to keep their garden visits to a minimum. We are also using fishing line about two to three feet high to trip up and deer brave enough to enter the garden. I'll let you know how well it works.

Monday, March 23, 2020

Spring is Here

Happy spring to everyone! While it may be hard to spot them all, we have plenty of cold tolerant vegetables in this small garden bed. We have spinach, rhubarb, claytonia, and plantago. I think there is also a carrot in there as well. A new one we are trying this year is corn salad. It's also known as mache or lamb's lettuce. We're getting it planted before it gets too hot for it to grow well. As always, we'll keep you updated with some pictures in the future.

Tuesday, March 17, 2020

Getting Ready for Spring

Happy St. Patrick's Day! We've already got some of our seed started to they can go out the moment all frost is past. Some of the plants we're trying this year are kale, honeydew, corn salad, peanuts and radishes. Some barley has already been seeded into the garden as well. We hope to bring you some pictures of the garden in the near future. Catch you later!

Thursday, March 12, 2020

Betting Big on Barley

Our order of barley came in today. It will be our main crop this year. The main goal with the barley is to cut the grass before it has dried and use it as hay instead of letting it become straw. We will also let some to the barley mature to make sure we have enough seed to plant it out again if the rabbits and guinea pigs like the hay. We'll keep you updated on how it goes.

Saturday, March 7, 2020

Rose Balsam Seeds for Sale

Welcome back to the website everybody! We are proud to offer a third product from our Pernie's Brand lineup. This time we have seeds for beautiful rose balsam plants with pink flowers. Just search for perniesbrand on ebay to find this and all our listings. Have a great weekend!

Monday, March 2, 2020

Orchard Grass Seed for Sale

Welcome back everyone. We have a new product to offer from Pernie's. This orchard grass seed was collected on our own property and we want to give you a chance to grow some as well. Our rabbits and guinea pigs love orchard grass both fresh and as hay. We hope to have this available by March 8th. Don't forget that we have an active listing for our marigold seed on ebay as well. Just search for the seller perniesbrand. We'll catch you next time!

Monday, February 24, 2020

Marigold seeds for sale

Hi everyone. We have some bad news but also some good news. The bad news is that shipping costs prevent us from offering potting mix for sale. Charged charcoal may also be too expensive but we will continue looking into this. The good news is that we will have our marigold seeds available for purchase on March 1st. They will be listed on ebay from the seller perniesbrand. The variety is Red Marietta and will likely be offered by the thousand.

Thursday, February 20, 2020


This is one of the very first flowers to bloom on our property. Not sure of the exact genus but it might be a "woodland" crocus. They are a wonderful sight to see in the middle of February.

Thursday, February 13, 2020

Even the hawks are tired of the rain

It's been raining so much here that our local red tailed hawk gave up on it's usual hunting practices and decided to go after worms instead. In other news we've decided to also offer "charged" charcoal as part of our Pernie's brand product line. We're still hoping to have both the potting mix and now the charcoal available starting March 1st.

Friday, February 7, 2020

Tuesday, February 4, 2020

Making Good Progress

We've been preparing much more of Pernie's Potting Mix lately and hope to have some available starting on March 1st.

Friday, January 31, 2020

A Rare Visitor

Around April last year we had three morel mushrooms growing in our front yard. It was a real treat for us because we had never seen any in person and here they were on our own property. They lasted at most three weeks so it was no surprise that it's easy to miss them with such a short growing season.

Thursday, January 30, 2020

Wood Gravel

Good Thursday to you. I'm experimenting with some pruned branches to see if they can used as a substitute for rock on garden paths or even driveways.

Wednesday, January 29, 2020

Pernie Approved

Pernie likes the direction we're going with the woodland theme. It only took a little bribing to get her to agree. :-)

Tuesday, January 28, 2020

My Life as an Amateur Botanist

Be sure to check out the "My Life as an Amateur Botanist" page. Each night I dig through my photo collection and upload one plant pic that I feel is noteworthy. For example this one:

Monday, January 27, 2020

Pernie's Adventure Prop

Hey everybody. We are in the early phase of setting up a mini-series of adventures for Pernie. Our main concern is to make sure all props are safe for her which means most will have to be made from cardboard. We'll definitely post a preview once we have some footage.

Sunday, January 26, 2020

Container Gardening

Here's a short video about container gardening. We hope you find it informative.

Saturday, January 25, 2020

Potting Mix, Marigolds, and Munching Deer

Happy weekend everybody. We are pleased to present two new items into Pernie's product line-up: soil-less potting mix and marigold seeds! In other news, we had a deer munching on weeds instead of the grass in the lawn. I suppose deer like a varied diet also. :-)

Friday, January 24, 2020

Podcast Preview

 Hi guys! We are working on producing a monthly podcast in the near future. Here is a small sneak preview of what to expect. Don't be surprised if there are many changes to the platform as time progresses.

Thursday, January 23, 2020

Pernie's Adventure

In a world where one bunny holds the fate of us all in her paws, she embarks on a perilous journey.

Wednesday, January 22, 2020

Getting Started

Hi everybody! We are still in the process of getting Pernie's website up and running. Please check back often as we will be updating on a regular basis. Pernie appreciates your patience! :-)