gardening

Cold frame insulated and ready to go. Bungy cords hold the windows on the frame.
(Mary Lowther photo)

Mary Lowther column: Cold frames are essential for winter gardening

A cold frame is a solid structure that covers crops to keep them warmer than the outside

  • Sep 5, 2020
Cold frame insulated and ready to go. Bungy cords hold the windows on the frame.
(Mary Lowther photo)
Kohlrabi leaves burst with nutrition. (Mary Lowther photo)

Mary Lowther column: Leaves of cruciferous veggies unsung nutritional heroes

One cup of broccoli leaves contain 100 per cent of the RDA of vitamin C

  • Sep 3, 2020
Kohlrabi leaves burst with nutrition. (Mary Lowther photo)
Early Girl hybrid tomatoes produce reliably and abundantly. (Mary Lowther photo)

Mary Lowther column: Hybrid veggie varieties can be great choice for the garden

Hybrid seeds often out-perform open pollinated

  • Aug 22, 2020
Early Girl hybrid tomatoes produce reliably and abundantly. (Mary Lowther photo)
Today’s radish harvest, Aug. 6, 2020. (Mary Lowther photo)

Mary Lowther column: Radishes as good as gold

Radishes grow quickly and need a lot of water.

  • Aug 15, 2020
Today’s radish harvest, Aug. 6, 2020. (Mary Lowther photo)
New seeds are ready to sow for a fall and winter garden. (Mary Lowther photo)

Mary Lowther column: Time to plan the winter garden

Weeds have gotten away on me, I’ve just finished laying out my soaker hoses

  • Aug 8, 2020
New seeds are ready to sow for a fall and winter garden. (Mary Lowther photo)
David demonstrating how he and the cat stretch after a gardening workout (Mary Lowther photo)

Mary Lowther column: Cool down exercises ease the summer gardening strain

Cornucopias of vegetables don’t arrive at the table by themselves.

  • Aug 1, 2020
David demonstrating how he and the cat stretch after a gardening workout (Mary Lowther photo)
Flax plants beginning to flower. (Mary Lowther photo)

Mary Lowther column: Choosing crops: how much processing do you want to do?

The oats and quinoa were more trouble to process than an old granny lady like me cared to deal with.

  • Jul 18, 2020
Flax plants beginning to flower. (Mary Lowther photo)
Transplanted corn seedlings plus one acorn squash at the end with Remay ready to cover the bed. Once roots are established it’s safe to remove the Remay. (Mary Lowther photo)

Mary Lowther column: Growing out your own seeds

Some crops like tomatoes don’t cross pollinate well

  • Jul 11, 2020
Transplanted corn seedlings plus one acorn squash at the end with Remay ready to cover the bed. Once roots are established it’s safe to remove the Remay. (Mary Lowther photo)
These pre-sprouted corn seeds are ready to be potted. (Mary Lowther photo)

Mary Lowther column: Pre-sprouting corn in paper towels

My new packet of spinach didn’t grow when I put the seeds directly into potting soil

  • Jul 4, 2020
These pre-sprouted corn seeds are ready to be potted. (Mary Lowther photo)
A small stand of alfalfa grown in shade, contaminated with a bit of buttercup that has seen its last days. (Mary Lowther photo)

Mary Lowther column: The many charms of alfalfa

A few years ago I bought a small packet of alfalfa seeds

  • Jun 27, 2020
A small stand of alfalfa grown in shade, contaminated with a bit of buttercup that has seen its last days. (Mary Lowther photo)
I went away for two weeks last summer and returned to this corn that had been watered by a soaker hose attached to a timer set for half an hour every four days. (Mary Lowther photo)

Mary Lowther column: A good garden is in the watering

David says I’m two-timing the garden.

  • Jun 20, 2020
I went away for two weeks last summer and returned to this corn that had been watered by a soaker hose attached to a timer set for half an hour every four days. (Mary Lowther photo)
This patch of garden is left bare in spring for the next crop of lettuce and peas. (Mary Lowther photo)

Mary Lowther column: Planting for a year round harvest

The mid-July sowings produce crops that will become large enough to take them through the winter

  • Jun 13, 2020
This patch of garden is left bare in spring for the next crop of lettuce and peas. (Mary Lowther photo)
These seedlings have outgrown their pots and need transplanting right away. (Mary Lowther photo)

Mary Lowther column: Sometimes life gets in the way of gardening

The cover crop of winter rye still waves at me from the garden

  • Jun 6, 2020
These seedlings have outgrown their pots and need transplanting right away. (Mary Lowther photo)
Salad fixings from the garden and a B.C. apple make a tasty, nutritious snack. (Mary Lowther photo)

Mary Lowther column: Nutrition in our food on the decline

When crops don’t contain the minerals they need, they cannot provide other nutrients we depend on.

  • May 30, 2020
Salad fixings from the garden and a B.C. apple make a tasty, nutritious snack. (Mary Lowther photo)
Soil blocker for seedlings. (Mary Lowther photo)

Mary Lowther column: Starting seeds to beat the slugs, wood bugs

My favourite sorts of seedling starters are the plastic cells that fit inside trays

  • May 23, 2020
Soil blocker for seedlings. (Mary Lowther photo)
Seedlings re-potted, hardening off outside awaiting drier weather to be transplanted. Cruciferous seedlings are protected with Remay. (Mary Lowther photo)

Mary Lowther column: On sowing seeds and watering efficiently

To get a jump on the season and avoid early spring predation, I sow most plants in flats inside

  • May 17, 2020
Seedlings re-potted, hardening off outside awaiting drier weather to be transplanted. Cruciferous seedlings are protected with Remay. (Mary Lowther photo)
A pantry makes a cook’s life easier. (Mary Lowther photo)

Mary Lowther column: Pantries as a way to store food

Houses used to be built with a cool room intended for food storage

  • May 9, 2020
A pantry makes a cook’s life easier. (Mary Lowther photo)
David enjoying the company of garden varmints. (Mary Lowther photo)

Mary Lowther column: Keeping unwanted varmints out of the garden

Animals seem to think we planted our gardens just for them.

  • May 3, 2020
David enjoying the company of garden varmints. (Mary Lowther photo)
The bumblebees are back to help pollinate our gardens. (Mary Lowther photo)

Mary Lowther column: Cover crops feed the soil and the bees

Until I read Gojmerac’s book on bees, I hadn’t realized the value of allowing cover crops to flower

  • Apr 27, 2020
The bumblebees are back to help pollinate our gardens. (Mary Lowther photo)
Seedlings that soon will be ready to set outside. (Mary Lowther photo)

Mary Lowther column: Time to sow veggies, and start thinking about next year’s seed sources

I’m hearing that some gardeners in the States cannot find seed packets for sale

  • Apr 19, 2020
Seedlings that soon will be ready to set outside. (Mary Lowther photo)