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Holistic Health Gardening




Journal: 4/19/15

In the greenhouse I  watered all the plants.  My peas, radish, 3 strawberry plants, and 3 Mustard plants are all doing very well.  In the seed beds my beets are thriving, as are the tomatoes.

In the garden: In raised bed #3, I cleared away some of the weeds (mostly kudzu )  and found that the strawberries I planted last fall are thriving!  Since this was such a cold winter and spring, I think I will leave the ‘weeds’ there to protect the developing berries from any late-season cold spell.  There are beautiful blooms, the stalks are 12 – 14″ long and thick.  I returned the raised bed fence-dome protecting the plants from most foraging deer, terrapin,  and all birds.

I cleared Raised Bed #2.  It is ready for lime and fertilizer.

I cleared Raised Bed #7 – just as the rain started.



Hold on there – don’t throw that fennel stalk away!

I have lived in this rural community for 24 years and rarely do I ever remember seeing fresh fennel at any grocery store around here! Not sure why, perhaps because it is not part of the local culture and does not grow natively.

So here is my work-around. We have family all over the U.S. and when we visit family in the Chicago suburbs, I make a point to shop at a Whole Foods market or one of the other chains that carry a wide variety of fresh fruits and vegetables (as well as an amazing selection of anything else we might need!)

So I always buy my fresh fennel, bring it home, wash it up and chop it, place the chopped fennel in zip-plastic bags then toss in the freezer. In this way I can still use fennel in some of the tasty smoothies I enjoy.

Recently I had an idea based on a Pinterest image that I found. My idea was this – why not save the “root-end” of the fennel and try to propagate it in water? So that’s exactly what I did. To my amazement the fennel took off immediately; 24 hours later I saw two “growths” starting. By the 1 week mark, I had 2 little plants shooting up from my original “base”.

These are the photos I took on day 9:


Fennel Gardening Indoor

As you can see, each little frond is about 3″ tall already!

The actual “base” from which this started is dying back and turning dark. I think the secret to making this work so well is this: On the bottom of the base, before placing it in this dish of water, I sliced off a layer. When these plants go to market they seal the end in a food-grade wax to suppress growth and decomposition to allow the plants to withstand many days of shipping and sitting at the grocery store. So by removing that waxy layer I allowed the base to immediately start sucking up water and start to grow.

I also change the water daily to prevent it from getting slimy.


Indoor gardening with fennel

I believe I will try to cut this base in half and see if the two fronds will continue to grow independently. I will let you know!


Self Reliant Home – Time To Harvest Sweet Potatoes

Self Reliant Kitchen – Time To Plant Strawberries

Gardening Planning – Avoid the Most common mistakes

Self Reliant families garden together – Time to get started

Square Foot Gardening – The foundation of self reliance

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