Friday, June 10, 2011

My Garden at Home and Why I Love to Grow Food...

A lot of people think that growing your own food is difficult or time consuming.  I disagree.  I started about 14 years ago, by making a garden in my backyard and I was amazed.  I dove right in with very little knowledge of how to garden.  Plants inherently want to grow...and they did.  All that plants need is sunlight, water, and nutrients.  There was so much food to eat and share.  I was hooked from the start.

Every year my garden (yes I have made one everywhere i moved since 1997) is full of surprises, over and under achievers, and problems to solve, but as one gets more and more intuitive and in tune with plants, and gains more knowledge, one can streamline, prepare and set themselves up for success.  I am passing along my expertise and years of subtle observation, trial and error, and study: book knowledge and learning firsthand from other talented gardeners.  I can set you up with a garden bursting with potential.  Gardening is one of my passions.  The fresh food you'll eat will redefine what you think good flavor is.

Here I am in my current garden with my corn and a sunflower, and a wonderful avocado tree behind me.  They say corn should be "knee high by the 4th of July."  Because I grew up on the East Coast I can truly appreciate the magic and potential in a California garden.  This is an amazing climate to grow food in.

I tend to used a lot of recycled materials and incorporate sculptural objects.  Most of my clients don't share this aesthetic.  I am happy to help create the garden that best suits anyone.  This photo shows young Zucchini in a recycled Doug Fir box, with a headless statue that I got at the Sky Valley Swap Meet in Joshua Tree.

Cucumbers can be very prolific and they love to climb.  I created a teepee from six 6 foot bamboo poles and my cucumber plants are doing very well.  I love to eat Cucumbers fresh, makes pickles, and even juice them along with carrots, apple, ginger, etc.


Now is a good season for tomatoes, squash, zucchini, peppers, basil, beans, okra, cucumbers, corn, many types of flowers and so many other delicious and beautiful plants.

Recent Work

These beds are constructed of 2 x 6 Redwood and filled with a super rich soil blend.  I was hired for this job because the existing soil was of poor quality.  Additionally with raised beds you barely have to weed: with most weeds, the seeds are in the soil, accumulated from many years.  Plus you don't have to bend over as far to reach the delicious fresh food you are growing.


For this project my friend Aaron and I built a lot of custom beds and benches according to the plans of a landscape architect.  Redwood slats, with a zen motif, then stained and sealed.  Here we are finishing the deal by planting the starts.  A new covenant with the land is forged.  Usually my projects are less fancy than this, but I can do a wide array of styles.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

A Recent Creation for a Very Happy Customer

Look how well it thrives.  Using the method of Square Foot Gardening.  Bed is constructed of redwood and filled with a rich mix of compost, peat moss, and vermiculite.  Onions, basil, tomatoes, eggplant, cucumbers, zucchini, beans, chard and kale growing strong.

My Vegetable Garden at Home

Is made of recycled wood.  The left side is new summer crop and the right is mature spring crop soon to be replaced by more plants for summer.  One the left are tomatoes, basil, parsley, lettuce, chilis and eggplant getting started.  Broccoli, kale, bok choi, cabbage and kale towards the end of their season and sugar snap peas running up the fence.  I live 25 miles north of Hollywood where the days are very hot and dry and the nights are a bit cool.  This was and is some good eatin'.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

10 Reasons to Grow Your Own Vegetables, Herbs and Fruits

1.   You can have the best quality food available.  Organic, local, fresh.
2.   You can participate in the global movement to source food locally and reduce fossil fuel consumption.
3.   You can witness the miracle of creation.  Watch and understand the cycles of nature.
4.   You can learn a lot from a garden, and so can your children!  It's fun and educational.
5.   You can know that your food is safe, free of contaminants, and handled in a sanitary way.
6.   You can taste the difference in how amazing fresh food can be.  Direct from your garden to kitchen.
7.   You can save money on groceries and gas, and save time.  Spend time cooking rather than shopping.
8.   You can enjoy the rewarding and relaxing hobby of gardening.  Good for the mind body and spirit.
9.   You can embellish your yard with lovely structures.  Stylish beds and beautiful plants.
10.  You can lead the way and encourage your friends and neighbors to grow food too.  Lead the way to        social change, economic change, ecological change, and culinary change.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Some Examples of Past Work

My old backyard in Brooklyn NY...many edible beds providing food all year round. Beds are 100% constructed of recycled and re-purposed materials.

Corn, Tomatoes, Cucumbers, Squash, Lettuces, Various Greens, and Herbs all thriving...and providing food for the house.

A bench I constructed in front of Cafe Orwell in Bushwick, Brooklyn with herbs and flowers planted within.

Rebuilt lattice structures and tomatoes growing on a rooftop high above Central Park West.

Many planter boxes built on a Brooklyn penthouse roof terrace.  All are made of recycled decking from the site.

More of those boxes, with Prickly Pear Cactus!

Boxes....with Various Sedges and hearty wildflowers: Echinacea and Rudbeckia.