Tomato number three

This was an incredibly bad year for tomatoes in the Chicago area. At least, I don’t think I’m the only one who had a meager harvest! My cherry tomatoes only really kicked in once September arrived, and by then they didn’t last very long. The few tomatoes that grew on … Continue reading

Suppressing weeds while beautifying

So, in this still new-ish house, I’m slowly working on the various garden beds, getting them back into healthy shape. The foundation beds along the south of the house originally seemed like ideal fruit and veggie plots–until I realized the soil hadn’t been worked in years and was not particularly … Continue reading

Do fall rains bring flowers?

It’s been weird, weather wise, around the Chicago area this year. Most recently, after an unusually hot September week, a cold front passed through and brought torrential rain with it. We’re talking more than four inches of rain in roughly 36 hours. This is the kind of thing that usually … Continue reading

The fire pit and all its toys!

Our fire pit is now mostly finished, and, this being “fire pit season,” we’ve put it into action! I know it’s not anything unique, but I do find that it’s a fun option for teenagers. Out with the swing set, in with the fire pit, and in with all of … Continue reading

Ferment–don’t can!

I have my favorite pickle recipes. Mark Bittman is responsible for my all-time favorite–fresh garlic dill pickles that stay crispy and fabulous. A close second? Freezer pickles that are sweet and spicy, with plenty of zing. They ferment for a few days in the frig, and then can be frozen … Continue reading