2020-A Great Gardening Year

Hearing from everyone how awful this year has been- I agree! Until I remember everything good that came from the garden. If you don't have a garden, I commiserate. Gardening has kept me sane and quite busy this year. January I recycled my Christmas tree for the birds. Try that this year instead of setting …

The White House in Gingerbread

Having decorated for Christmas at the White House for several years, my fondest memories of the time spent there is the official unveiling  of the intricately detailed candy-adorned gingerbread house. Gingerbread Construction & Placement The annual tradition occurs around the last day that we are feverishly decorating, when the enormous and very heavy piece of …

Winter Squash Bounty

Winter squash are filling up the farmers markets, roadside stands, and supermarkets, overflowing in a bounty of shapes, sizes and colors. How to choose the best ones? Winter squash are different from summer squash (like zucchini and yellow crookneck)—the skin is hard and inedible, while the inside is firm and flavorful.  Leaving winter squash on …

Year of the Tomato – Best Recipes To Use Your Tomato Bounty

I declare this 2020, The Year of the Tomato! Forget COVID, frosts, and marauding ground hogs, I have harvested the most tomatoes that I can remember in my many years of gardening. Bad Start to a Tomato Year With an inauspicious start - an unusually late killing frost around Mother's day - I was left …

All Jammed Up! Creating Savory Tomato Jam From Heirlooms

Yes, yes, I know tomatoes and jam is an oxymoron, but when I spotted a  recipe for tomato jam that included chocolate, I was hooked. After all, I had tasted and enjoyed tomato sorbet which is another sweet treatment for my favorite garden edible, so I was willing to give jam a try.  To clinch …

Elderberry-Growing and Using a Versatile Herb

Whats blooming in my garden? Elderberries!! The sweet umbels of creamy colored flowers that can reach 12" across are so fragrant and have a unique smell, kind of like floral, creamy, and summery all in one package! All cultivars look very similar with their shrub-like plant structure, compound leaves, and big, beautiful clusters of white …

Cucumbers Are Here: Pickle Frenzy

Inundated with cucumbers this summer, the cukes in my frig reached critical mass and I had to do something about it, or we would be over run with them. I had at least 100 of them stuffed into every space in my refrigerator and I had already made cucumber salad, cucumber water, and everything else …