Kids climbing the walls indoors? Get them out to help in the garden. It might seed a lifelong love of gardening and a better appreciation for nature’s wonders. Joshua Burman Thayer, author of our Gardener’s Notebook, offers tips for gardening with kids. Click here. Many local gardening centers can fill orders for plants and supplies. Look…

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Gardener’s Notebook       We survived the winter and March is here. That means it’s time to take action and shape the scope of our summer gardens. Everything we do in the spring months affects the outcome during the coming growing season.    My mission today is to encourage you to plant Ribes uva-crispa, commonly known as the gooseberry. This larger cousin of the currant is a lovely, lacy, and elegant upright plant that might prick you a little if you grab onto its branches. It…

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  Gardener’s Notebook     Tomato season may seem a long way off, but January is the time to sprout your tomato seeds. Knowing where your seeds come from ensures the high quality you seek in your organic vegetables. I have always been fascinated by seeds, seed savers, and the concept of seeds as the…

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Gardener’s Notebook By Joshua Burman Thayer My saying of the moment is Vaccinium for Everyone! The Vaccinium genus of plants includes over 450 species worldwide with 40 native to North America. Many are members of the temperate forest understory, which have evolved to set edible fruit in less than full sun. Among them are the…

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  By Joshua Berman Thayer   Here in the East Bay, many of us live within the confines of an urban grid. If we have space to landscape, it’s likely to be a quarter acre at most. How can we make these small urban lots produce abundant organic produce? The answer might be to fill…

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  By Joshua Burman Thayer | Illustrations by Cheryl Angelina Koehler   Have you ever imagined an orchard in your yard? Or perhaps you already have one but sense that your space is underutilized? Try composing your plantings into guilds. These are groups of plants that operate together to enhance each other’s health and productivity.…

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Gardener’s Notebook By Joshua Burman Thayer     It only takes a few cool evenings and wet mornings to give a sense that fall is coming. Squirrels stash nuts and songbirds fatten on dry seeds, giving us a little help with clearing away the summer plant residues as we make room for cool season crops.…

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Gardener’s Notebook By Joshua Burman Thayer   Tomato plants thrive in our Bay Area Mediterranean climate. They grow an amazing amount for an annual, and their vining branches can become very dense and also shoot out great distances with the increased light at the summer solstice. Your job as a tomato plant tender is to…

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Gardener’s Notebook How to fit cucumbers into your summer garden patch Spring is upon us. With nights growing warmer and the wet season soon to be over, now is the time to map out your summer garden. What you do right now to thoughtfully prepare your garden beds will determine your bounty in June, July,…

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Friends, partners, collaborators, cohabitors . . . Grown together, plants can be more than the sum of their parts   By Joshua Burman Thayer  | Illustrations by Cheryl Angelina Koehler Did you know that plants form alliances? Like humans, plants do better when they associate with other plants for mutual benefit, such as to procreate,…

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