Vegetable

Vegetable

How to Grow: Sweet Potatoes

Learn about sweet potatoes, including how to plant and grow this vegetable. Listen to Podcast: podcast transcript How to Grow: Sweet Potato Now here’s a vegetable you normally don’t think of growing in the Northeast, but you actually can. Sweet potatoes (Ipomoea batatas) are a traditional Southern crop and need heat and a long season (up to 4 months) to form potatoes. However, with a few tricks, I’ve been able to grow good-sized sweet potatoes even in Vermont, so it is possible. The keys with growing sweet potatoes in our sometimes cool...

AnnualsVegetable

How to Grow: Edible Flowers

Learn about edible flowers, including how to plant and grow them. Listen to podcast: On this week's Vermont Garden Journal on Vermont Public Radio, Charlie profiles edible flowers. There are many varieties to choose from that are good for salads, drinks, stir fries, soups and desserts. Charlie delves into the history of edible blossoms and discusses the best methods for preparing floral foods. Tune in Friday evening and Saturday morning for more about edible flowers on the Vermont Garden Journal on Vermont Public Radio. When someone sees a...

Vegetable

How to Grow: Jack O Lanterns

Learn about Jack O Lanterns, including how to plant and grow pumpkins. Listen to podcast: The leaves are dropping, the cold is coming, and it's time for carving pumpkin. But did you know that the first Jack-O'-Lantern was actually a turnip? The Irish story goes there was an unsavory character named Stingy Jack who tricked the devil into not claiming his soul. When Jack died the devil couldn't take him so he sent him off into the dark night to wander endlessly with only a piece of coal burning in a hollowed out turnip to light his way. He's...

Vegetable

How to Grow: Gourds

Learn about gourds, including how to plant and grow them. Listen to podcast: It's one of the earliest plants domesticated by man and is grown around the world. We use it for a multitude of purposes, except eating. What is it? It's the gourd. Ornamental gourds originated in Asia thousands of years ago and have spread around the world. There are two types of this cucumber-family plant that are commonly grown; the decorative, or soft-shelled gourd and the larger, hard-shelled gourd. The soft-shelled gourds are those warty, odd-looking,...

Soils & FertilizerVegetable

How to Grow: Cover Crops

Learn about cover crops, including how to plant and grow them. Listen to podcast: We have a new property and lots of land to farm and garden. But before I go hog wild and buy trees, shrubs, and perennials, I want to build the soil. One of the many things I've earned over the years in gardening is you need to take care of your soil before anything else. One of the best ways to feed your soil is by growing cover crops. Cover crops are legumes and grains that are specifically grown to be turned back into the soil. They have been used for...

Vegetable

How to Grow: Plants for a Fall Harvest

Learn about planting vegetables for a fall harvest. Listen to podcast: I was planning on planting the vegetable garden in May or early June in our new home. I really was. But rain, work delays and mud stopped me in my tracks. But did that stop this intrepid veggie lover. No! My wife Wendy and I just planted a fall veggie garden last week and you can, too. While most lucky gardening souls are noshing on fresh tomatoes, squash, beans, and cucumbers, remember to make room for a fall garden. Many cool weather loving veggies thrive in September...

Vegetable

How to Grow: Ornamental Edibles

Learn about edible ornamental plants, including how to plant and grow them. Listen to podcast: There are varieties of many shrubs and trees normally thought of as ornamentals that also produce great fruits for eating. The service berry, that's blooming now, has a selection called the saskatoon that produces shorter plants with tasty, blueberry-sized fruits. Another ornamental edible that I'm going to try is the honeyberry. Honeyberies are in the honeysuckle family. They're native to Russia and Japan, widely adapted, easy to grow, pest...

Vegetable

How to Grow: Dandelions

Learn about dandelions, including how to control and eat them. Listen to podcast: Peter Campion called it "the flower that is a weed that is a flower". We call it the dandelion. Dandelions are one of the most maligned flowers in our yard and they shouldn't be. They have a rich history in Europe as a medical and edible plant stretching back to the 11th century. The name derives from the French "dent de lion" or tooth of the lion referring to the serrated leaves. When the Mayflower landed in North America, there were no dandelions. Blame it...

Vegetable

How to Grow: Garlic

Learn about garlic, including how to plant and grow them. Listen to Podcast: podcast transcript How to Grow: Garlic Being an Italian-American who likes to cook, I eat a lot of garlic (Allium tuberosum). Lucky for me growing garlic is almost as easy as eating it. Growing your own garlic offers some distinct advantages. You can try unusual varieties with spicy hot to almost a nutty flavor. You can grow softneck garlic which is great for braiding or hard neck varieties that produce scapes (green curlycue flower stalks) in early summer that...

Vegetable

How to Grow: Putting Food By

Learn about preserving vegetables and fruits, including canning and freezing. Listen to podcast: I'm greedy when it comes to vegetable gardening. Not only do I like eating fresh produce from the garden from spring until fall, I want it in winter, too. Although you can grow some vegetables all winter in Vermont with a little help from a greenhouse, an easier way is to preserve veggies for winter meals. Freezing, canning, drying, or storing are great ways to extend the tastes of summer. Here's a few of my tips. There's nothing better than...