Common Sense Gardening - Over 40 articles featuring seed starting, seed sources, wildcrafting, soil testing, growing transplants, specific crops, vertical gardening/trellising and more.

Getting Started Gardening

New to Gardening – Start Here – 10 Tips for Beginning Gardeners

Small Space Gardening:  10 Tips Everyone Should Know

Getting Started with Herb Gardening

Simple Record Keeping Tips for the Garden with Printable Seed Starting Chart

Soil Testing – Why I Use Worm Castings

See Working with Nature – Shifting Paradigms and Building Soils Naturally: Innovative Methods for Organic Gardeners for more information on building a healthy garden ecosystem.

Seed Starting

Build Your Own Simple Seed Starting Shelves

Seed starting for Biodiversity, Seed Starting Setup

My Favorite Seed Sources, Seed Storage and Germination – Printable Seed Longevity and Germination Charts

When Should I Start My Seeds? Printable seed starting calendar

Tomato Mania – Seed Starting, Transplanting and Troubleshooting

Plant Supports, Pest Control

5+ Terrific Tomato Trellis Ideas

Transform Your Landscape with Vertical Gardening – 10 Reasons to Garden Up Instead of Out

Natural Pest Control in the Garden

6 Ways to Use Garlic in the Garden

Coffee Grounds and Mud Pies

Eating Bugs – Free Food from Your Backyard

How to Grow Tomatoes Organically - From planting to harvest, 8 simple steps to Homegrown Tomatoes Without Chemicals, plus Innovative Gardening Techniques.

Specific Crops

How to Grow Lots of Tomatoes Organically, Plus Innovative Gardening Techniques

How to Grow Lots of Pole Beans for Easy Picking and Preserving

Grow Stevia and Make Your Own Liquid Sweetener

How to Grow Garlic – From Planting to Harvest

Grow Your Own Pepitas (Hulless Pumpkin Seeds)

How to Grow Blueberries – Grow Your Own Superfruit

How to Grow Raspberries

Strawberry Spinach – Add Some Variety to Your Salads

Growing Asparagus and Rhubarb

Before You Plant Sunchokes, You Need to Read This Post

Early Greens from the Garden

Season Extension/Crop Storage

Extend Your Growing Season – Easy Tips for Gardeners

Planning for Storage Crops

Four Season Harvest

Root Cellars 101

Above Ground Root Cellars – Enjoy Your Local Produce Longer

How to Harvest, Cure and Store Onions

Harvesting Peas and Carrots and How to Freeze Peas

How to Harvest. Clean and Store Shell Beans

The Parsnip Squid and the Rock That Moves

Garden Tools and Equipment

Cleaning and Sharpening Garden Tools

How to Build a Rain Barrel, Plus Care and Maintenance

Food Preservation/Cooking

New to Food Preserving – Start Here

Getting Started With Home Canning

Getting Started with Home Food Drying

Favorite Garden Cookbooks

How to Grow and Cook Nutrient Dense Foods

How to Infuse Herbs in Oil, Water, Vinegar, Alcohol or Honey

Don’t for get to check out the recipe page for recipes that use fresh garden produce, including canning and preserving instructions for several crops.

Miscellaneous Garden Links

Sustainable Methods for Dealing with Drought

8 Health Benefits of Gardening

Confessions of a Messy Gardener

What if I Told You Weeds and Bacteria Could Save Your Life?

Gardening Book Reviews

Building Soils Naturally – Innovative Methods for Organic Gardeners

Working with Nature – Shifting Paradigms and The Essence of Organic Gardening

The Planet Whizbang Idea Book for Gardeners

Restoration Agriculture:  Real World Permaculture for Farmers

The Market Gardener: A Successful Grower’s Handbook for Small-Scale Organic Farming

The Common Sense Homestead Garden 2011

Slide show view from our deck


2011 Garden – 360 view from the center of the garden wheel

Garden Guests – Photos of some of Our Garden Visitors

Wildcrafting – Using Your Weeds

Although not standard “garden” elements, my weeds are also harvested for culinary and medicinal use. I host Wildcrafting Wednesdays here every week, and also write a “Weekly Weeder” series during the growing season, along with other weed related posts.

View the Weekly Weeder and Herbal Posts.

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  1. Susan O'Leary (Oregon Natural) says

    What great photos! That was fun! I love the idea of a round garden. I do everything on the side of hill so it’s all in raised beds that are sort of terraced. Your garden is beautiful! Love the 360 view from the center of it! Thanks for sharing!

  2. Ellen Peavey says

    I have moved my tomato seedlings from a milk jug to a big plastic tote, holes in the bottom for drainage. My question is I move about 40 small ones in this tote that is 14 inches deep and 20 inches wide have I over crowded them? I planted so many ran out of little pots and containers so went to the much bigger ones, your advise on this would be appreciated. Thanks Ellen from Georgia

    • says

      It’s rather hard for me to visualize exactly the size of everything, but it does sound like they may end up overcrowded as they grow. If you transplant outside before they get too big (after hardening them off), you may be okay.

  3. Sam Peri says

    You have amazing garden photos! I’m going to bookmark your website and I will open each links in this topic. This is really interesting. Keep on posting! 😀

  4. aisha says

    Hi I live in apartment building.Love to grow my vegetable .I am very new to it What can i grow in the pot ,and from where should i start?I need help.I live in chicago.

  5. says

    I just got an email from you about your garden and all the rain. I’m surprised you are planting crops like broccoli and cabbage at the same time as beans and corn. If I tried that my broccoli and cabbage would bolt before I got any while the beans and corn are loving the warm weather.

    It also seems a bit early for parsnips as I usually plant them in September for harvest the following Spring. I’m in NW AZ at 3700 ft elevation so we do get into the 20’s and once in awhile the teens during December and January.

    I like the climate here as I can grow food outside year-round. Where are you located?

    • says

      I’m in northeast Wisconsin. Generally speaking, our summers don’t tend to get very hot, so bolting isn’t usually an issue for the cabbage and broccoli, although Chinese cabbage is more fussy. Ideally, we would have had the cool weather crops in a bit sooner, but we were busy putting in all the new trees and shrubs this year. The growing season is fairly short, and the winters are cold. I put my parsnips in now, they grow to maturity over the season, and then I mulch to protect them over winter and dig them in spring. Without protection, little survives over winter.

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