Garden, Plant, Cook!

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Around The Garden - Upcoming Events

Dear Folks,

Strolling through the garden the other day I snapped these pictures.

Part of the reason for showing you these is to remind you that most of them have been growing all summer, through the 115+ heat and up and down humidity.

Top to bottom:

Jerusalem Artichokes aka Sun Chokes
Garlic Chive Flowers
Limequat fruit and flower
Sugar Peas sprouting (I sowed them September 2nd)
Purple Sugar Cane

I share pictures through out the year to hopefully inspire you to experiment with new-to-you plants or ones you did not think could be grown here.

. . .

On October 3rd, I am giving a free lecture at Chandler Sunset Library

Grow Herbs - Add Flavor To Your Table!

On October 24th, I will be participating in the Annual Herb Festival at the Boyce Thompson Arboretum.  I will be giving an informal Talk/Q&A at my table in the afternoon.

This is also the last weekend of the BTA's Fall Plant Sale , so come on out!

BTA Events

November 21st is this years Author Day at the BTA,  More details to be announced, but I will be participating along with other regional and related authors at a day to come out, enjoy the last of the fall color and get to know myself and other authors.

Arboretum Book Festival

. . .

Link to my publications

Have fun in the garden.

-- Catherine, The Herb Lady

Disclaimer: Clicking on links on this blog may earn me a small commission if you purchase something. Your price does not change.

Monday, September 14, 2015

El Nino and Water Harvesting.

Dear Folks,

Many of the predictions for this coming winter are that El Nino is expected to be one of the strongest on record.  That means the probability of more rain.  Which is great!  However, is your property set up to take full advantage of it?

Brad Lancaster is THE water harvesting guru and expert on water management in the Southwest.

Below is his wonderful short video on why it is important to manage your property for maximum rainfall retention benefit.

I want to stress the importance of the point he is making about HOW you set up your gardens.  In 4-season areas with high rainfall gardening tends to be done ON TOP of mounds or rows to maximize drainage.

Here in the desert with an average of 7 or inches of rain per year we need to:

1)  Maximize water retention in the root zone, and
2)  Make sure soil salts are washed AWAY from the root zone by flooding the beds.

Brad's muffin tin illustration is superb to illustrate all of this.  It is easy to understand that water runs off hills, but settles in depressions.

He further shows just how much water a non-hill garden captures.

Brad Lancaster water harvesting illustration.

Check out Brad's books at

I urge you to try to really understand just how much water runs off your property.

Deane bermed our entire property except for the driveway, so most of the water falling on our property stays on, soaking into the soil.  As a result we are able to forgo routine watering (a week's time or more) when we get a .5 inch of rain, depending on temperatures.

 -- Catherine, The Herb Lady

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