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Thank you for all your support over the years!

I’m Back

February 19th, 2020

It’s been a while, thanks to those of you that have been e-mailing to see if things are all right. Last year was a bit of a crazy year for us, mostly we were super busy because we built a commercial building (office/warehouse space) for Mr Chiots’ company. This took up lots of our spare time and made things a bit crazy. We are just buttoning up this project and things look like they’ll be getting back to more of a normal pace (whatever that means). Last week we were lucky enough to head out to California to thaw out (sort of, it was chilly while we were there). We flew into LAX and then headed south to San Diego for a few days, stopping at the San Diego Botanical Garden on the way.

It was so nice to see so many tropical thing, so much color, and so much green. The blooming aloes were stunning, a breath of fresh air since we had left snow and sub zero temperature behind in Maine.

The gardening season is kicking off here, when we arrived home I started onion seeds for the coming year. This year will be a building year, I’m growing less in the main garden and focusing on building hedges and walkways. Stay tuned for more details and the garden plan I designed a few years ago finally gets implemented.

What’s up in your neck of the woods? Cold weather? Planting season?

Quote of the Day: Monty Don

August 11th, 2018

“The original plan for that part of the garden was to be a circular lawn surrounded by a yew hedge. I duly planted yews and mowed the grass but it was never convincing. Some things never fit, however much you want them to or however good idea they seem on paper. Making a garden is as much about finding it and letting it reveal itself to you as constructing or taming it.”

Monty Don in ‘Nigel’

Mr Chiots got me a copy of ‘Nigel’ for my birthday. We’ve been watching Monty Don on Gardener’s World for many years and have grown to enjoy seeing Nigel on there. We were pretty happy when Amazon added Gardener’s World to BritBox and we’ve been subscribing and watching ever since, not more YouTube! If you’re looking for a show to watch and enjoy gardening, give this a go. It’s worth every penny in my book. At the moment, the Kindle version of this book is only $2.99, so grab a copy while you can.

What great books are you reading at the moment?

Getting into Full Swing

March 28th, 2018

Seed starting is starting to get into full swing. This past weekend, all the peppers were started. I started almost an entire flat, 31 cells in all, featuring 12 varieties.

I like to grow a wide variety of peppers. This year I’m adding peppers to make canned green chiles and to dry for making mole. I’m always excited about trying new varieties, this year is no exception!

What kinds of peppers are you planning on growing this year?

Winter Wonderland

January 23rd, 2018

Last week we woke up to a winter wonderland, which was quite nice after a lot of rain had melted all the snow. A few inches of snow had fallen overnight and the sun was shining, it was truly spectacular. I ended up going for a snowshoe in the morning instead of working in the office. Here’s what I saw:

What’s the weather like in your garden?

Friday Favorite: Labeled Plants

January 12th, 2018

When I first started gardening, I wasn’t very good at labeling things as I planted them in the garden. Over the past 10 years or so, I’ve tried numerous products for labeling things in the edible garden. After much trial and error, I finally settled on a few products that work well and help keep me organized.

I discovered a few different types of wooden plant markers that work very well. Another great benefit is that they are made at a shop only abut 20 minutes from my house. When I ordered wholesale boxes of these labels and markers for my shop, I drove up and picked them up. They use birch wood from the northeast, another bonus. I love it when I can support a small business with my purchases, especially one that is so local! I use the small labels in my seedling trays and the medium and large labels in the garden.

Another thing that always frustrated me when it came to labeling plants was the fading. There’s nothing worse than checking a plant tag only to realize it was unreadable. After trying pencils, grease pencils, sharpies, and a few other products, I finally found these Garden Markers (also made for the local company I get my tags from).

These will last for a year in the garden, sometimes more. I find they last longest on the large plant tags. When I harvest my garlic, I can still easily read the varieties on the tags. I’m so happy to have found these. Which is why I decided to sell them over at Seeds & Sundries. These have become one of my most favorite garden tools in the past 5 years since I discovered them!

What garden tools have you discovered and fallen in love with recently?


This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.