• Hanging container gardens: NAILED IT! (A story of an almost-fail, but not quite.)

    Hanging Container Gardens: A Story Of An Almost-Fail, But Not Quite

    It was about six months ago when I saw this article in Rodale’s Organic Life filled with bountiful hanging vegetable baskets. After last year’s container garden garden success, including growing tomatoes up strings on our front porch, I decided hanging container gardens like these—reminiscent of the Hanging Gardens of Babylon—were going to be my produce project this spring and summer. Not only would they be easy to maintain, like last year’s container garden, they’d also be gorgeous to look at—and practical to boot! All super important for someone, like me, without a green thumb. Things started off smashingly! My mom helped me pull together plants that would work well in hanging…

  • Explore "Edible Communities" in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic!

    Edible Communities

    Funny things can happen when you talk about blogging with people. Often, you find out (after they’ve browsed your site) they share similar interests … interests that you may never have stumbled upon in conversation, otherwise. This happened to me a few years ago during a chat with a co-worker who happens to be—unbeknownst to me—a serious foodie. Not only do he and his wife love to dine out, they also love to cook (think 4-course Christmas Eve spread, complete with a roast good and all the trimmings), AND they love to read food blogs! It’s interesting to get some perspective from someone who’s not a part of the blogging world about…

  • Eat Local: Josie and Shawn at the farmers' market!

    How To Eat Local

    Simple reasons why it’s so important to eat local and support the local food community! In the United States we’re becoming increasingly aware of how important our food sources are, beyond just choosing organic options from the produce isle at the grocery store. In fact, what I’ve learned over the past few years is that while organic is good, you can eat just as healthfully by understanding where your food comes from, and also how it’s grown. Most people don’t realize that it’s expensive to be “Certified Organic” by the FDA. Small-scale farmers often don’t have the ability to pay for the process, even if they are farming organically. Get…

  • Starting a container garden in a window box.

    5 Beginner Tips for Starting a Container Garden

    Starting a container garden is easier than you think! Over the years I’ve acquired basic knowledge for seeds and plants and growing things. That said, I hesitate to actually call myself a “gardener” because growing plants — and, more importantly, keeping them alive — has been been, shall we say, problematic. The irony of my lack of a green thumb isn’t lost on me, of course, given the fact that my mother and sister are experts in the field of gardening and farming (respectfully). And, while I don’t profess to want to be a master gardening with crops galore, I do enjoy having a few freshly grown herbs and veggies…

  • What Kind Of Eggs To Buy At The Grocery Store

    What Kind of Eggs to Buy at the Grocery Store

    The best kinds of eggs come from happy chickens. It sounds cliche, I know. But after being around the hens on our property—hens who are free to roam around all day eating bugs, leftover veggies, and grass—and enjoying their delicious, deep orange (like the color of a tangerine!) yolked eggs, it’s hard to imagine eating eggs from any other source. Except sometimes I do have to buy eggs. We typically have fifteen to twenty hens in our flock. And by “we” I mean my parents—the chickens are theirs, but since we all live on the same homestead property, using “our” is practical. And while I don’t take care of the flock…

  • Kauffman's Fruit Farm & Market

    Kauffman’s Fruit Farm & Market

    APPLES! We love them. The fact that it’s turning the corner into fall makes me even more excited about apples, because suddenly the scents of apple-cinnamon everything is everywhere. YUM! I make my fair share of apple pies and apple sauce, and I’ve even made savory dishes, like this pasta, that include apples. And coming up next week, I have a new recipe to share that uses the items you see below! I’m very excited about it, and so is my daughter—it’s one of her very favorite lunch items. But first, I have a fun new partnership to tell you about! For the next year, I’ll be working with Kauffman’s Fruit…

  • Josie and Shawn at the Farmers' Market with Truffula Seed Produce

    Support The Buy Local Challenge With Local Farmers’ Markets In Maryland

    There’s nothing I like more than talking about the fabulousness of buying local things. Especially Maryland local things. Even though I’ve lived other places, I grew up in Maryland, and I have so much love for the state as my “home” state. Within a three hour span, you can visit the Atlantic Ocean in the east, and also the Blue Ridge Mountains in the west. There are rolling hills that are perfect for horse farms, and quaint historic downtown main streets. And, Annapolis isn’t only our state capital, it’s also America’s Sailing Capital! We also have lots of farmers here, even though Maryland is relatively small compared to so many other states. Sure,…

  • Growing Organic Potatoes

    Growing Organic Potatoes

    I don’t have a green thumb, but thankfully when it comes to things like growing organic potatoes and tons of other produce, my mother, sister and brother-in-law do. Two weekends ago it was time to start digging up the potatoes in the big garden on the homestead. My mom’s a seed-saver, which means she carefully keeps seeds from the produce she’s grown (mostly heirloom and all organic) to use for planting the next season’s crops. In this case, all the potatoes in these rows are from just a few russet, white and red potatoes she kept and planted. There are various machines you can use to unearth the potatoes (which…