Blog Post, Gardening

No Sun so I can’t Grow a Garden…Or Can I?

You’ve always wanted to grow an organic vegetable garden, but your yard is too shady… or is it?
Despite what you have heard, you can grow a thriving vegetable garden even in partial shade to full shade!  Believe it or not, all you have to do is choose the right heritage plants.

Vegetables that do well in less sunlight (2 to 4 hours) are often called “light shade” or “shade” plants. Some “partial shade” plants are also light shade, such as cauliflower and many spices. See a list of personal favorites below.

So turn a spot into a natural wellness garden, an urban garden or go for edible landscaping. You could even become a mini prepper. Take your harvest from urban farm to fork or try your hand at canning. Your options are limitless.

Arugula
Being leafy, arugula would be expected to a sun-lover, but sunlight often droops and shrivels the leaves, so this is a good “under” plant to put underneath other, larger ones.
Brussels sprouts
This is also a cold-tolerant plant and like most cold-happy plants, Brussels sprouts do well with limited sunlight.
Endive
Endive is likely the most shade-loving of all the leafy lettuce-type plants.
Kale
Like its cousins in cabbages, kale loves cold weather and less light.
Leaf lettuce
Most lettuce plants prefer less sun.
Mustard greens
A popular plant in the U.S., this one is often grown in flower gardens and near porches where sunlight is limited.
Spinach
Like lettuce, spinach needs cooler temperatures and less sun.
Swiss chard
Another delicate leafy plant, swiss chard doesn’t enjoy a lot of sunlight.
Even the most open of garden areas provide shade. Be creative with plant placement and you’ll find that you can create your own shaded areas to
maximize conditions for each plant’s preference. Tall stalks of corn, for example, can provide partial shade for smaller radishes and peas,
while heavy-leafed squash plants might provide almost complete shade for carrots and turnips.

Gardening

What can you still plant now in Michigan?

What can you still plant in your garden in July in Michigan? Or other areas with the same climate?
This is what I would feel safe with but play with it. It is Michigan after all. We have the craziest seasons of all. You can extend growing seasons for your produce with clear covers and venting. If it isn’t quite right wait a week. I will say it again, it is Michigan. We have a love hate relationship with our growing seasons, but we are blessed with four beautiful, ever-changing, seasons of the year.

Northern Half of Lower Peninsula
Beets
Chinese Cabbage
Head Lettuce
Kale
Kohlrabi
Snap Beans

Southern Half of Lower Peninsula
Beans
Beets
Brussel Sprouts
Cucumbers
Radishes
Sweet Corn

Upper Peninsula
Broccoli
Brussels Sprouts
Carrots
Cauliflower
Celery
Chard
Endive
Head & Leaf Lettuce
Kale
Kohlrabi
Radish
Rutabagas
Snap Beans

I do all of my gardening in raised bed gardens and pots. I use many different techniques to make the best use of my space.  I choose to be 100% organic in all I do and use only natural means to control any garden pests I have. If you look at a previous post you will see what my favorite garden spray is.

In todays world I would be called a hippie bordering on a survivalist or a prepper. To me I am just a woman who is living the good life. I enjoy knowing what I put in and on my body. I like knowing that I have the most nutritious food available to me and my family. I like preserving that which I have grown myself and saving money while doing so. It is  a family passion, you might say. All the grands get in on the harvesting and canning but most of all the eating. There is nothing more satisfying than seeing your family sitting outside and just plucking a few berries as they go by to munch on or grabbing beans, peas pods or tomatoes and eating them right off the vine. Knowing they are pesticide and carcinogen free.

With this method of planting you do not need much space. You can grow enough to feed the average family in todays world with a 4x8x12 space. I have chosen to rebuild ours this year to make them more of a visual focal point as well as to give us better access to them as we age.

Stay tuned for more of our Fewless follies and fine fettle blurbs as we make the change to completely edible landscaping.

Enjoy the rest of your July!

The Fewless Family Gardener

Gardening

Sherri’s Favorite Garden Spray Recipe

Garden Spray Recipe :

Hot pepper flakes ground and ready to use!
Hot peppers ground and ready to use!

1 gallon of water, 3 Tablespoons of hot pepper flakes, 3 drops Thieves dish soap.

Grind your hot peppers (or dried flakes if that is what you have) add the ingredients into a pan and simmer for 15 minutes. Heating the liquid helps to infuse the oils from the hot peppers into the water– making for a stronger spray.  Let the mixture sit for about 24 hours to absorb the juices from the hot pepper flakes – then strain and add a few drops of Thieves dish soap to the gallon of mix.  (This is a must if you want it to stick to the plants).

Spray at night after everything is nice and dry from the sun. Most of the problems have settled in as well by now. Remember though this will kill the good as well as the bad. With that being said,  don’t reach for the spray until you have to. In most cases nature will do its job if you give it time.

recipe posts

Italian Pasta Bake- FLOP not enough sauce

Easy Italian Pasta Bake
1 lb. lean grass fed ground beef
32 oz home canned spaghetti sauce
1 drop Oregano vitality essential oil
1 drop Black Pepper vitality essential oil
1 drop taste of italy essential oil
10 oz cottage cheese
32 oz ricotta cheese
1 1/2 cup grated Mozzarella cheese
1/2 TBSP parsley
1/2 TBSP basil
2 eggs
16 oz package ready to use lasagna noodles
8 oz. shredded Parmesan cheese
Directions:
In a large skillet, cook and stir ground beef until brown. Stir in pasta sauce and essential oils and heat through. In a medium sized bowl, combine cottage cheese, ricotta cheese,
grated Mozzerella cheese, parsley, basil, and eggs. Spread a thin layer of the meat sauce in the bottom of a 13×9 inch pan. Layer with uncooked lasagna noodles, cheese mixture,
mozzarella cheese, and meat sauce. Continue layering until all ingredients are used, reserving 1/2 cup mozzarella. Cover pan with lid or foil. Bake in a preheated 350 degree
Fahrenheit oven for 40 minutes. Uncover and top with remaining half cup of mozzarella cheese. Bake for an additional 15 minutes. Remove from oven, and let stand 10 to 15 minutes
before serving.
recipe posts

Chicken Cobb Salad-buffalo ranch style

4-6 slices Amish bacon cooked and crumbled
½ lb chicken tenderloins or left over chicken (I make extra for this)
2-3 tbsp olive oil to cook chicken
salt and pepper (for chicken)
¼ tsp onion powder
¼ tsp smoked paprika
½ cup chopped and peeled cucumbers-mini work well
½ cup quartered cherry tomatoes
2 hardboiled eggs, chopped
½ med avocado (sliced or chopped)
3 cups mixed salad greens
Thinly sliced green onion for garnish

For the Buffalo Ranch –
½ cup Avocado Oil Mayo
1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
1 toothpick Vitality-lemon oil
2 tsp onion powder
1 tsp garlic powder
½ tsp dried dill
1 toothpick Vitality- dill oil
½ tsp smoked paprika
½ tsp dried chives***
2 tsp- 1 tbsp hot sauce

Olive oil cook the chicken, or use your cooking fat(some reserve bacon fat) of choice. Season the chicken tenderloins with the salt and pepper, onion powder and smoked paprika and heat a large cast iron skillet (or grill pan) over med heat.
Add the chicken to the pan and cook about 5 minutes on each side, adjusting heat as necessary. Make sure the chicken is cooked through, remove from heat, and set aside. Once chicken is cool enough to handle, chop into bite-sized pieces.
To prepare the dressing, simply add your vitality oils to the mayo by swirling the toothpicks in it, then whisk together all the ingredients in a medium bowl until fully combined.
Assemble all the salad ingredients, chopped cooked chicken and crumbled bacon in a large bowl (avocado last so it doesn’t turn brown), and garnish with green onion. Pour your dressing over the top and toss before eating.
This is amazing with a tall glass of water with Lemon Vitality Essential Oil in it.

This is also a great mason jar lunch