Thursday, March 21, 2013

The Intelligent Gardner....Test Results and Amending

I first talked about the Intelligent Gardner here and had sent my soil samples off to Logan Labs for the analysis. Several day later, I received an email with an easy to read report of what each of my planting areas needed.  The theory is that with the proper balance of minerals and salts you can create and environment that encourages soil symbiosis for everything from micro organisms to worms and insects that help grow nutrient dense food. Combine this with increasing disease resistance and you have a winning combo!

Soil Report From Logan Labs

The report contains values of anions, cations, and trace elements. There are some calculations that need to be done to figure out the amendment prescriptions and those can either be done by hand or you buy the Soil Amendment Calculator for $10 that does all the number crunching in a matter of minutes.  The easy to use calculator gave me the amendment recipes that look like this.

OrganiCalc Prescription Report

I gathered all the elements and compounds I needed for amending and mixed a prescription for my ten growing areas on the property.

Spreadsheet of amendments

I put all the results in a spreadsheet and then bought the ingredients by the pound. Since this is the first year of this remineralization process I am excited to see if all the fruits and vegetables taste better, grow more vigorously and are more resistant to diesese.

This post is also part of Simple Lives Thursday.

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Companion Planting an Update to Plays Well With Others

Companion planting is a good way to cultivate plants that compliment each other. Planting in this method helps enrich the soil, sustain beneficial insects that help pollination or reduce harmful pests, and it helps plants grow and produce to their full potential. I've updated my Plays Well With Others companion plants spread sheet which was originally posted here. I hope you find it helpful as you plan your gardens for this season!

This post is also a part of Simple Lives Thursday.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

A Wonderful Cookbook...ebook Style

I am a cookbook collector, it brings me joy to read stories about an author's history, and what ingredients inspire them to cook, gives me inspiration to cook. Great pictures on culinary techniques are so helpful when I'm prepping a new recipe and they make me feel more confident learning a new method. has a really wonderful Kindle cookbook and I thought I must share it with you. The book is Ruhlman's Twenty by Michael Ruhlman. In this book he covers twenty fundamental techniques, the nuances of how they work and then he follows up with recipes that allow you to use your new knowledge in the kitchen. A gifted translator of cooking and the science of cooking Ruhlman's Twenty is a must have for the novice and seasoned cook.

While most of my cookbooks are hardcopy and I do have this one in hardcover, I just couldn't resist having it in an ebook format so I can read it just about anywhere.

I'm also reading: