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Thursday, June 28, 2018

TDN Newsletter 06-28-18



June 28, 2018

Dear Gardening Friends,

 

Please join us for our Annual
"Before the Barbecue"
4th of July Sale!!

Wednesday, July 4th
from
10am - 3pm


Everything (except Fruit Trees) will be 20% Off!!
...yes, 20% (or 17% if you pay with Credit Card)

 

Certified Organic Veggie & Herb Seedlings,
Organic Potting Soil, Compost, Worm Castings, Fertilizers,
Pest Control 
Products, EarthBoxes & Smart Pots, and all
 Strawberries and Blueberry & Raspberry Bushes!!  

 

The Two Dog Home Nursery:

 

914 S. Cloverdale Ave.

Los Angeles, CA 90036

                                          
Click Here for More Details!
               
 
  


 

 

We hope you plan to join us, and bring a friend!
Street parking is available.


PLEASE NO PETS!

Check out our full line-up HERE 


 

 
It's time to get your Pumpkins in for Halloween, 
and those additional
Heirloom Tomatoes which
will carry you through the Fall and beyond,
so we hope you join us!  

Oh, and don't miss 
Sweet Potatoes!!
They're super-easy to grow...and VERY LIMITED!

Happily, it's a very long season! We’ve been planting lots of “second rounds” here in our own garden - Corn, Beans, Lettuce, Cucumbers, Butternuts and Tomatoes.  
Plus LOTS of Sweet Potatoes!  


I like to grow quantities of those things that
keep well; Winter Squashes and Sweet Potatoes
will keep for about 6 months!!

 
Summer is a busy time in the garden...

The main growing stage is complete, fruit
is ripening, and now harvesting, fertilizing, and keeping watch on all sorts of flying, chewing, infesting creatures become significant rituals.  


...here are a few tips:

* If  your Tomatoes are being bird-pecked or squirrel-sampled, bring them in a little early; they'll ripen nicely on the kitchen counter.

* Be sure to keep the first 8" of your Tomato plants free of foliage: this will aid in air circulation. Powdery Mildew and Early Blight are worse when leaves dip down into wet soil and the foliage is too dense. 


* Be sure to harvest your Beans every day (or at least every 2 days); this encourages them to produce like mad.  Since I'm always outside, I check our beans a couple times a day.  I pick what's ready and store them in a plastic bag (not closed tight) in the crisper drawer of our fridge.  Then by the end of the week, I'll have close to 2 pounds to cook up!!

* An excellent tip I got years ago from our friend and early mentor, Yvonne Savio (who taught more people to garden in the greater L.A. area, through the Master Gardeners Program, than one can even imagine!!):  Put a few drops of Mineral Oil on the Corn Silks once they're nice and full. This prevents Ear Worms from going in and eating all the tender kernels.  

Alas, I forgot to do that on our first round of sweet corn this year, and sure enough, the worms were in there having a field day!  Of course, you can simply cut off the bad part and enjoy them anyway (those worms are not stupid...they know homegrown corn is the best!!)  And you can bet I won't forget with the second batch!!


*  Not sure your Corn is mature enough to pick??  
Here's an easy way to check:  Without removing it from the stalk, just peel back a portion of the husks, far enough to expose the first kernels. Puncture a kernel or two with your thumbnail: 

...if the liquid is clear, it's not ready (simply close up the husks and check again in a few days.)

...if there is no liquid, it's dry and way past being good as fresh corn, BUT you can cut the kernels off the cobs and roast them with potatoes and other veggies...yum!

...if the liquid is milky, it's perfectly ripe!!  Harvest NOW, even if you won't eat it for a few days; it's better to keep in the fridge than to leave on the stalk where it will over ripen.

* Cucumbers and Summer Squash can hide!  Be sure to check from every angle...just last week I found 5 not-so-baby Baby Persian Cucumbers hiding in the back, at least 3 times the size they should have been! Nothing goes to waste here, though, and they became part of our Breakfast Smoothies for a full week.

* While many Melons "slip" from the vine when ready, Watermelons do not. How to know when they're mature? First, be sure you're not jumping the gun according to the "Days to harvest" number; it's a good idea to note the date you plant things... Check for a yellowish spot on the underside of the watermelon where it lay on the ground. Then, very importantly, check the "pigtail"...that's the curlicue closest to the fruit itself; it should be completely dry. And if the melon has a nice sound when you "thump" it, I say, go ahead and harvest!

* It's a very good idea to feed your plants every 4 weeks or so.  Just "side dress" the fertilizer around the plants, scratch it in a little and water well.  Or if you're an EarthBox gardener like us, you can simply pour some undiluted Liquid Fertilizer or Great Big Tomatoes (we sell both) right down the watering tube; it'll mix itself up with the water in the reservoir below. Either way, your plants will appreciate the boost!!

 

It's time to harvest the Garlic!
 
I think we can all agree:  it's been a strange Spring so far.
 
In our garden, the California Early White was ready about 2 months earlier than normal!  Happily, it was huge and really fabulous.  

The Hardneck varieties aren't quite ready yet, though.  We cut the "scapes" last week - these are the false seed heads that shoot up out of the Hardnecks and curlicue around themselves; they don't produce viable seed, and are a drain on the main bulbs which are sizing up right now, so it's best to remove them.  

We'll wait another 2 weeks or so before lifting them out of the soil.
 Ooh, there is nothing like the smell of freshly-harvested garlic, straight from the warm soil!!  

Be sure to cure your garlic for a few weeks in a shaded, breezy location, and then review our little video on "How to Clean your Garlic" so it will keep for many months!
 
Here's our "How to Clean your Garlic" Video
We're always grateful for your very kind "Yelps"!!  Here's one recent Review:

JoAnne and Alex have created the promised land for someone like me. Well done folks! Don't waste your time anywhere else. This is your first and last stop if Organic veggies is your life. 

Neighbor Nick

Gee thanks, Neighbor Nick!!!

Wishing you & yours a very Happy 4th!! 

That's it for now, Friends...

Please don't miss our 
4th of July Sale
next Wednesday from 10am until 3pm.

we'll have cookies & lemonade waiting!

We hope to see you soon, and as always,

Happy Harvests, and many thanks!

 

 

Jo Anne, Alejandro, Lalo & Charlie
 

Saturday, May 26, 2018

TDN Newsletter 05-26-18

May 26, 2018
Dear Gardening Friends,

 
~YOU'RE INVITED~

Please join us for our 

"Here Comes Summer"
Open House!! 

 
Saturday, June 2nd

     
from 10am until 4pm

at the 

Two Dog Home Nursery
     

914 S. Cloverdale Ave.
Los Angeles  90036
   

No Appointments Needed, Cookies & Lemonade will be served!
Bring your Gardening Pals, but PLEASE,
not your Dogs... Thank you!


Street Parking is Available

By Request... here's my Green Bean Recipe again...

Usually with 2 EarthBoxes planted, I'll get upwards of 2 lbs of beans per week.  I harvest every day (which encourages production), store them in the fridge, and on Fridays I'm ready to cook a nice "mess" of beans, which will last us most of the week.

*First, using a 2-qt saucepan, I saute some of our own homegrown Garlic (maybe 4 nice cloves) in a liberal amount of  Olive Oil, and add Salt & Pepper.  When lightly browned, I turn off the heat, and let the pan cool. 

*Then I hand-snap the beans (cutting with a knife doesn't let you see if there are "strings") and rinse them well in a colander.

*Put the beans in the saucepan and just cover with water.  I put the heat on Medium, gently bringing it to an easy boil; then I turn it down as low as I can and let the beans simmer for 2 hours...(yes, hours).  

*Then I add in about 1/4 cup of Organic White Wine Vinegar and a big handful of Slivered Almonds and simmer another hour or so.  At this slow simmer, the beans honestly don't get mushy or fall all apart but instead are tender and rich with flavor.  

My parents used to cook them this way; I don't know if the original recipe came from Tennessee or Indiana, but I've tweaked it for us (no ham hocks, for example!)

Please let me know if you try it!!


 
P.S.  I love to grow all the colors & sizes of Beans, and I'm always excited to see the purple turn to green as the water heats up...if you've got little ones in the house, invite them to watch the magic!
 

It's been a very busy time in the Nursery, and here's what will be ready for next Saturday's Open House:  

 
Heirloom Tomatoes (a new batch!)

Hot & Super Hot Peppers

Sweet Peppers

Eggplants

Winter Squash & Pumpkins

Summer Squash

Onions & Leeks

Melons
 
Corn

Cucumbers

Bush & Pole Beans

Okra

Rainbow Chard


Blueberries, Strawberries, Raspberries, Blackberries
& Goji Berries!


...plus lots of Herbs & Edible Flowers!
 
Fern Leaf Lavender, our all-time favorite!
Pacific Beauty Calendula will happily reseed itself!
French Tarragon is gorgeous, delicate and perennial! 
Dill Bouquet...a Summertime staple!

SWEET POTATO UPDATE...

Our Grower has advised us that cooler-than-normal weather has slowed their production (we can relate!)

We expect to receive our Certified Organic "slips" very soon, and once potted up, they begin to leaf out immediately, so watch for our announcement!  


 
This year we're offering:


    "Beauregard"
             &
   "All Purple"

    
 


Supply is always limited, so
please don't miss out!

Pre-Order HERE!

We grow as many as we can because
they're super-yummy and "keep" for months!

 
Check out our "Helpful Growing Guide" to see
just how easy it is to grow your own!!
                

 
 

This Tip Really Works!!!
 
 

It bears repeating...

Simply drenching your Blueberry bushes every two months with a solution of water & Distilled White Vinegar will keep the pH nice and low where they need it to be (4.5-5.5)  Here's the formula:

 
2 tablespoons Distilled White Vinegar per
1 gallon of water...couldn't be easier!

We're having another bumper crop on our own bushes this year; honestly, I think I must eat a million blueberries a day!
 
Don't forget, we sell the most gorgeous, most mature Blueberry bushes around, and all the materials you'll need to get them growing! Check out our "Helpful Guide" to see how easy they are! 
We run like mad to keep them in stock and should have plenty on hand for Saturday's Open House.
It’s one of the best investments you can make!! You’ll love them year-round, and most especially during those Spring months where you just stand in your pajamas eating them right off the bushes!

 
1 gal. water + 2 tbsp. Distilled White Vinegar = Huge Harvest!
 

A lovely new couple
came to the Nursery this week with their little boy... it was surprising how adept he was at identifying the various plants.  

He was obviously very happy with his parents' purchase of Blueberries, Raspberries & Blackberries!!



 

That's it for now, Friends,

 
We hope you plan to join us next Saturday for our

 June Open House  

...Here Comes Summer!

Charlie's getting his bath so he'll be ready to greet you!! 
He loves to look out into the Nursery from the vantage point of the kitchen sink!!  hahaha!

 




Many Thanks and Happy Harvests!

Jo Anne, Alex, Lalo & Charlie