A Journey to Grow a Little Food Close to Home

About the Garden...and the Blog

The Garden: After my wife and I bought our first house, I planted my own garden (read: no mooching off of other's gardens) in the summer of 2009. It was small (18 sq ft) but I used a biointensive method and got loads of veggies (lettuce, 3 pumpkins, loads of cucumber). In the early spring (middle of February) of 2010, I set out my first coldframe ever. I had learned of Elliot Coleman and his winter harvest concept and I was intrigued to the point of obsession. Many thought I was crazy trying to plant something on March 6th in Wisconsin (zone 5/6) but when I was eating lettuce on April 14th when it was still in the 40's I knew that I was on to something!

As 2010 rolled on, I expanded the garden to 110 sq.ft. and will have about 30 of those under coldframes this winter on a southern facing wall. My goal is to have fresh salad all through the winter! If Elliot Coleman can do it in Maine so can I.

Eventually, I would like to be able to provide most of the fresh veggies (and maybe some day fruit) that my family eats without having to devote my entire life to the garden (that's the reason for the kitchen garden concept). More on why I want to do this here. In the comming years I might need to add more protection from the cold but I really don't want to expand the size too much. It's kind of neat to me to be able to see what something small can do.

I also began keeping crazy detailed records of everything that I have been doing as well as my harvests so that I can learn from my successes and mistakes. That's really the point of the blog - to record what I learn so that others might learn with me. More importantly, through the comments that you leave, we all will be able to learn form each other.

The Blog: With all of the records that I keep, several people suggested to me that I either write a book or a blog about my take on gardening. I had tried blogging before but it never really felt natural to me. I have also dabbled in fiction and poetry writing (gotta do something with and English degree, right) but never really found my groove. I think it had more to do with a lack of passion than anything else. As friends and family would tell you, I definately have a passion for the garden.

Now that I have found that passion, I love blogging. It's informal yet informative. It can have pictures, videos, and links in it. Above all, it has the power to connect people because it is up-to-the-minute and far-reaching.

I hope that this blog will teach and inspire. I really feel that in the modern world we are losing our connection with nature and we are industrializing food production al little too much. The garden and the table used to be connected. They used to be places where people could connect with each other. In a day and age of mass production, eating on the run, rampant health concerns, and social isolation, I hope that people will use this blog to learn to reconnect with the food they eat so that we all can become healthier.

Happy gardening!