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Planting a garden

We’re excited to plant a garden here at the studio and ideally would like to eat as much from the garden as possible. Right now, I have a few herbs (rosemary, sage and lavender) and some tomato plants that came with the house. My question is: what would you suggest we plant to help sustain a largely raw diet?


  • We grow lots of veggies in our back garden. We had great success with carrots. We just planted the seeds and left them to grow. It was so easy! They are still growing from before winter time and we just pull out a few a day. Sunflower greens are also easy to grow and great for a raw diet. We also grow lots of different types of lettuces and green, and just pick them as and when we want to eat them. Lettuces are very easy to grow, and come in so many varieties, all you have to do with them is keep the slugs away, which is easy enough. We have had lots of success and disappoinments in our veggie garden. But the things that were the easiest to grow for us were carrots, parsnips, broccoli and lettuces/greens.

  • Cucumbers grow well in our climate. My fave are lemon cukes. Are you saying that the tomatoes are last years plants? Tomatoes are an annual here, I have never heard of overwintering them. Most people don’t plant them till closer to the last frost (which is supposedly sometime in May, I usually plant in April). Green beans are a must. Pole beans have better flavor, typically. I haven’t had much luck with carrots but I had really heavy, clay soil. Carrots like a sandier soil. I have grown radishes, before I went raw. Now I can’t handle the strong flavor of them. My mom can grow amazing bell peppers but they don’t like my soil. We live about 2 miles apart so you might have great success, like she does, or they might not grow for you either. :) I love gardening, feel free to ask any questions at all. I am not an expert but I have been gardening since I was a kid and have learned alot through trail and error. Blessings!!

  • Thanks for all of the tips! I have a feeling I will have a ton of questions as the garden gets started. Cucumbers sound perfect – I eat so many of them. I hadn’t thought of growing sunflowers. That would actually be really great, as they are so pretty as well.

    Are you saying that the tomatoes are last years plants? Tomatoes are an annual here.

    Yes, they are out there from last year (they still had tomatoes on them when we moved in this past November). Does this mean I should just pull up the plant and replant new ones each year?

    Our house also came with a pear tree and apple tree, so I am really excited about juicing and smoothies.

  • oh-this is a great post. me and hubby are planting blueberry bushes tomorrow and fruit trees.we have been excited this yr.cause we are making 4 raised beds…for our veggies.well-on the tomato bushes from last yr.pull them up and put new in.but i will tell u what has always happened to me. i leave my tomatoes bushed out there and let the tomaotes that froze-i let them rot and fall to the ground and i get volunteer plants each yr.u will probably get little tomatoe plants all around.they ususally get some tomatoe s on them. i am excited this yr. cause last weeks home and garden weekly insertin our paper (the oregonian) had plants that are sort of better. one is a zucchini bush and it takes 40 days to harvest.well-good luck.i am ready to have some greens growing.mustard greens-loose leaf lettuces. one thing i love and can never grow-beets.

  • One of my favorite all-time veggies from the garden are yellow beans. They are so easy to grow, and taste so good fresh. As a kid I used to munch away on beans as I weeded, or as I was picking bunches for supper. Yummy, yummy, yummy…I can’t wait to grow beans this spring.

  • well Kandace…i remembered your question today while i looked at seeds.i ended up getting the zucchini squash that is a bush.the squashes are so cute and compact.we need that cause we have a tiny yard.i got swiss chard.yellow crookneck squash,spaghetti squash,green beans,parsley,lettuce,beets,turnips and broccoli.when the tomatoes come out in the stores-we will get some.i think we will get onion sets.also some cukes maybe.today we did plant blueberry bushes and grapes.now if we can just stay here long enough to enjoy out plantings.the places we always live…i plant everything and then “we move”.ooh-sunflowers is a good one.itoo am excited for spring plantings.

  • Kandace, I would yank those tomato plants out and start new. Down in Salem, Lifesource will put out good starts. I am sure that you can find places up there with heirloom plants in a month or so. I would start right now by getting your soil ready. Maybe look for some compost to ammend your soil with. Stay away from manures, you never know what they have in them. I like mint compost but that is because it is cheap and local.;) Even mixing in leaf compost from last year is helpful. Anything to get those little wormies up and chewing through your soil. I have used newspaper in the past, with bunches of compost and straw over them. It is amazing how quickly that wakes up the worms and brings them up to the top. They just love it. Look up lasagna gardening and you will find tons of info on preparing soil. I often find that if I wait for volunteers they aren’t true to the parent plant. Of course, I didn’t get into heirloom plants till last year and last years garden in now a dog kennel at the house we sold:( So I can’t say that if I had let heirloom volunteers grow that I couldn’t have gotten good starts. Most tomato plants that are sold right now are hybrids so the “babies” are often mutants. Sure, they might grow tomatoes but they will probably be a bit different then the parent. Sigh, blueberries…we left those in the old yard. I will miss them greatly.

  • All of your feedback has really gotten me into our garden space. I’ve been spending the evenings after work weeding and trying to get the soil ready (we have lots of compost here). We even talked to a raw food chef in town about looking through our space and helping us plant a smarter raw food friendly garden. So excited…

  • yep-i have seen what u are saying Priceless one.the volunteers do grow tomatoes from the mother plant but not too many.that is for sure. they are fine but almost not worth having cause of so little fruit.your post make me think of my daughters house.she has tons of leaves.i had raked up and put into bags just sitting there.i think i will go unload them from her and mix into my garden.i know-every place we go-i plant and then we move. my daughter is buying our old house.i planted kiwi’s and pear,apple,cherry tree,raspberries and rhubarb and blueberries and grapes. so she gets all the goodies.they don’t like the grapes-thompson and concord(silly-poos).the grandsons love the blueberries.anyway.maybe in a couple of yrs.-if we don’t move-we will have blueberries here.we got 3 bushes.

  • Oh rae-dean, that sounds wonderful. I bet it is so hard to leave it. Your dd is so blessed and I bet your grandsons will develop a taste for the grapes. I am planting grapes in the new garden so my kids will stop raiding the neighbors plants.:) I have seen people grow blueberries in pots. I bet if you shopped for some smaller varieties you could do that and then move them with you.

  • ooh! priceless one-that is a wonderful idea.i did not know there was blueberries in pots.but why not.good idea.well-if the grandsons and daughter don’t like the grapes-guess who will??hee hee.also this last fall-all the little grandsons and friends were over and i had big pot and pick them and gave them to all the other boys and my boys started eating them too.they are “not like the store”...u know??that is what they say.and thank goodness they aren’t.rae-dean

  • I love to garden. I’ve done container gardening the most since I lived in a condo for a while. Now, we’ve moved to Colorado from New Orleans – completely different gardening here! I’m growing corn, tomatoes (I do cherry tomatoes in a pot all year long in my kitchen windo), squash, peppers, cucumbers, blueberries and herbs. Next year should be even better since I’ve started a compost pile, and I can make this clay soil much richer! Here’s something exciting that my dad just told me that I didn’t know. You can put the top of a pineapple in a pot and it will produce a new pineapple. We took a trip to the botanical gardens, and lo and behold, they had a pineapple top in a pot, with a new pineapple growing from it!

  • We get a CSA share, so this year, when we started our garden, we thought to plant the stuff we never get enough of. We planted (successfully) lettuce, dill, basil, strawberries, watermelon (these are TINY now though..), honeydew melon, broccoli, sage, mint, lavender, green peppers, hot peppers, corn…. our eggplant died :( We are still watching the celery, cukes, onions, and garlic grow. We only have a small garden but it’s amazing how much stuff you can cram in a small space. We also have sunflowers growing. We are thinking about getting another garden (we have our garden at a community garden in our town) but it’s already a lot of work… maybe one day when we have the garden we have now down pat. Mmmmmm, I love my garden fresh veggies!

  • BluedolfinBluedolfin Raw Newbie

    I'm on a Oprah links posting terror today... teehee...

    To all y'all that have green thumbs (who has my green thumb? I can actually kill mint... go figure... :0) )...

    I thought this article has an interesting method of gardening:

    Lasagna Gardening

    Want to garden but afraid of the work involved? Lasagna gardening is for you! With warm weather just around the corner, learn more about this easy, earth-friendly gardening technique from its creator, Patricia Lanza, author of the book Lasagna Gardening: A New Layering System for Bountiful Gardens. Learn how to make your own lasagna garden! http://www.oprah.com/article/home/outdoorspaces/pkggarden/20090220_orig_lasagnagarden101

  • Great discussion here - I've just moved into a new apartment with a beautiful deck. Does anyone here have a deck garden, and if so, what would be the easiest things to grow? I've heard cherry tomatoes and herbs, but would lettuce work? I'd love to grow my own greens.

  • thanks for that link BlueD!!! that article makes it sound pretty easy to start a little one in my back area...I'm inspired to try it anyway. Wish me luck

  • BluedolfinBluedolfin Raw Newbie

    Hi Glam~ My privilege. Pretty cool, ha? Glad to hear you are inspired. Wishing you yummy abundance beyond your dreams in your growing adventure. :) Keep us posted on your bounty. Did you notice the garden is right next to a lake? How cool is that? That Oprah gal sometimes puts up some useful and interesting stuff... go figure... teehee

  • Oh lordy you are almost as baaaaaaaad as me LOL my friend swears by "O" if it was on or promoted by "O" it HAS TO BE gospel. I wanna smaaaaack her sometimes we have fun times laughing about it tho.

    OK thx again doll. Enjoy your week.

  • BluedolfinBluedolfin Raw Newbie

    glam~ I want to have a Dr. Oz of my own. :0)! I can't imagine (or want) having that much power. Talk about living in a fishbowl! YIKES! I do admire Oprah for having the courage to put some stuff out there that "mainstream" thinks is controversial/"out there". She exposes many people that would not be otherwise exposed to some of these great things and ideas... challenging people to expand their thinking... more options... She's not perfect (who is? sometimes I forget she is human and has her issues also)... but a great contribution. Gotta give O lotsa props!

    Have a great week also... actually, make a great year... well, how about a great forever. :)

    PS. For your friend... I think it might be on YouTube... there was a gal that did everything Oprah said for a year... she had an interesting year to say the least. lol

  • ROTF...I keep telling my friend I'm going call O and have her do a special on this or that...anything I want my friend to try. I had spoken to her a few years ago about Louise Hay she wanted nothing to do with her...recently O had her on and NOW my friend is trying to tell me about Louise I was like OH noooooooo you NOT trying to tell MEEEEE bot some Louise HAY I will keeeeeeeel you...she totally forgot...then she was like OMGaaawd it was YOU that told me about her dur dur durrrrr!!

    I do agree O hads alot of power and influence and I really hope she does MORE to shed light on better ways to health not just thru the Oz and that but more holistic practitoners and with better EATING. I would love her to expose the FDA and their lies but we know that ain't gonne happen ((sighs)) BUT I CAN DREAM and hope is what the whole world lives on.

  • If there is a nursery in your area (not a big box hardware store, but a place where people who know gardening) they should be able to help you select edibles that do well in your area. What works for me in SoCal may not work for you and vice-versa.

  • BluedolfinBluedolfin Raw Newbie

    That's to funny about your friend... but all to common.

    O had Kathy Freston (writer of Quantum Wellness) on last year and did a vegan "diet" (I think it was even predominantly raw). O's adventure into vegan/raw was really foreign to her... this is the type of thing that brings home how human O is. It was also funny to watch O get her first acupuncture treatment... I would have thought someone with her access to all sorts of things would have been exposed to acupuncture way before that... she also said one of Dr. Oz's raw green smoothies tasted "fresh". Gotta love O for her humanness. lol ... MP3s of a talk with Freston is at http://www.oprah.com/article/spirit/inspiration/pkgoprahssoulserieswebcast/20080915_oaf_oss_archive/3... might be of interest to your friend. There are also other really interesting talks with people in O's Soul Series like Tolle, Dyer, etc... many I had never heard of and expanded my world. I admire Dr. Oz for his openness and being public about exploring (and incorporating) all sorts of healing modalities and prefers to use his surgical skills as a last resort... now I would call that "fresh" and hopeful.

    BTW, do contact O with ideas. The more O hears about new ideas the stronger a chance they will get into her show queue. Yes, it would be interesting to see O take on the FDA. I would be surprised if did she though... remember what happened when she said she was going to avoid beef when Mad Cow started to become public? O was sued by the beef industry... imagine if she said she was going to avoid pharmaceuticals or some such thang... yowza!

    For those who are wondering what these musings have to do with gardening... we are planding and cultivating the heart, mind, and soul garden... ;0)

  • For those who are wondering what these musings have to do with gardening... we are planding and cultivating the heart, mind, and soul garden... ;0)

    Nicely said BlueD! You are a beautiful soul...very refreshing thank you for being YOU!!

    I will send my friend the link thanks LOL. She knows I crack on her bot being an "O" worshipper to others LOL she used to SAY she was a vegetarian...I always called her FAVioooo which stood for Fake Azzzz Vegetarian she would get so annoyed. I was like why you so interested in having a TITLE...I said if you want title then at least LIVE the life...broke it down for her...showed her how to make stuff and ultimately BUY items she needed 3 yrs later she is a real VEGAN not just by title LOL she is more open and receptive BUT still believes "O" before anyone else ROTF which is fine by me. Progress is progress. We are talking more and more about RAW so who knows what will happen. Only good things!!



  • Back to the garden. I have a 90' by 60' garden. Have been gardening on raised ground for years. Last year I started using earth boxes. By the way, I made my own. You can get the instructions on the net. Many are there. I filled my green house with them, and others right on the ground out side in rows. This year I will be making 14 more. It was asked for ideas for decks. These would be perfect for decks. No water spillage, (depending on earth box you make) plants stay watered, and fertilized when needed. Less disease and bugs. Over all, less time consuming.

    You may be interested in a book called, " Incredible Vegetables from Self-Watering Containers" by Edward C. Smith

    Happy Gardening to all,

  • Kandace, with all that is going on for you, I have an easy garden idea. It works well in the OR Coastal MT. . Plant Kale in a out of the way spot.. Let a few go to seed. Do this and you will have Kale every year. I separate them by hoeing around them, if I feel like it, and throw out some fertilizer at times. Other than that, no work.

  • BluedolfinBluedolfin Raw Newbie

    Thank you Glam~ Backatcha. :)

    PS. Celebrate who your friend chose to believe in and your friend didn't choose to believe a "worst" source like big business, FDA, AMA, etc. :)

  • FYI...thought this is very important news so have posted it couple of times!!!

    Subject: Monsanto: A bill to outlaw organic farming next week?

    US House and Senate are about (in a week and a half) to vote on bill that will OUTLAW ORGANIC FARMING (bill HR 875). There is an enormous rush to get this into law within the next 2 weeks before people realize what is happening.

    Main backer and lobbyist is (guess who) Monsanto (aspartame maker) - chemical and genetic engineering giant corporation. This bill will require organic farms to use specific fertilizers and poisonous insect sprays dictated by the newly formed agency to "make sure there is no danger to the public food supply". This will include backyard gardens that grow food only for a family and not for sales.

    If this passes then NO more heirloom clean seeds but only Monsanto genetically altered seeds that are now showing up with unexpected diseases in humans.

    There is a video on the subject.

    And another one:

    The name on this outrageous food plan is Food Safety Modernization Act of 2009 (bill HR 875).

    THIS IS REAL, FOLKS! PASS THIS ALONG TO ALL CONCERNED ON YOUR MAILING LISTS & CALL YOUR SENATE REPRESENTETIVES TODAY! Get on that phone and burn up the wires. Get anyone else you can to do the same thing. The House and Senate WILL pass this if they are not massively threatened with loss of their position.... They only fear your voice and your vote.

    The best thing to do is go to

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