Category Archives: Vegetable gardening

Home Gardening: Ways To Find Space

One big problem for many home gardeners or small space farmers is finding enough space. You may have the knowledge, you may have the experience, you may have the tools and materials for a fantastic home garden, but if you can’t find the space to get your plants planted, your garden is just a dream.

Don’t let the dream disappear! There are many ways to find the space for your vegetables even if your space seems limited. You just have to think outside the box, and on more than one plane.

  1. If you have a lawn, plow it under, or at least enough of it to grow your garden. Lawns use a lot of resources, so why not make that space work for you and turn part of yours into a small farm.
  2. Use the space that your landscape plants now occupy. Remove those old shrubs and plant peppers, cabbages, kale, squash, sweet potatoes or other naturally decorative plants in their place.
  3. Replace decorative trees with fruit trees. Fruit trees are attractive additions to home landscapes, and offer many other advantages, particularly, the fruit!
  4. Build a raised bed on your patio area, or use your patio as a platform for a container garden. You can even build shelving or racks to increase available space.
  5. Grow vine plants on a trellis, wire, arbor, or your fence. You can even line your wooden fence with racks and shelves for container plants. Think vertical, and grow your garden to new heights on new planes!

I am sure you can think of other unusual ways of finding space, creating space, or making better use of available space for your gardening project, just don’t let traditional thinking of what a home garden or even a landscape should look like get in the way of your gardening venture.

Cooking Sweet Potatoes

Plowing, planting, and growing and digging sweet potatoes can be a pretty big job, especially when done on a large scale for the market. It can be daunting for a kid when he looks down the row in both directions, and can’t see either end! Of course, they, along with all the other crops we grew paid the bills, and there were always plenty to eat.

In fact, there is one way to eat sweet potatoes which almost made the whole process worthwhile by itself. Baked sweet potatoes, with lots of butter.

You can have all the sweet potato pies, and sweet potato fries, and candied yams, just give me mine baked, hot out of the oven with a pat of butter!

I can remember walking up the long hill after school, with the fragrance of baked sweet potatoes floating in the cool autumn breeze. It was a calming influence, and meant that the crops were in, the summer heat was over, and Thanksgiving and Christmas were on the way.

How do you prepare such a delicacy? All it takes is sweet potatoes, preferably about 2 to 3 inches in diameter, foil, an oven, and patience.

This is how it’s done:

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Wash the sweet potatoes.
  3. Slice off a small part of the ends of each.
  4. Wrap the sweet potatoes in the foil.
  5. Place the foil wrapped sweet potatoes in a baking pan.
  6. Place the pan in the heated oven.
  7. Cook for from 30 to 70 minutes determined by size and maturity.
  8. The skin will be a dark brown on the outside and blackened on the inside and the potato will be soft when done.

Some juices will probably leak out during the process. This is normal.

  • Allow them to cool a little while to make working with them easy.
  • Unwrap the foil, and remove the potato.
  • Place it on a plate.
  • Slice lengthwise.
  • Add butter
  • Eat

Notice that there is no spice added. Why ruin a perfectly flavored dish?

Learn to grow, cure and store sweet potatoes:

Growing Sweet Potato Slips

Curing And Storing Sweet Potatoes

Sweet Potatoes The Curing Process

For even more information on the subject of sweet potatoes see:

Sweet Potato Culture for Profit. a Full Account of the Origin, History and Botanical Characteristics of the Sweet Potato

Sweet Potato: An Untapped Food Resource

The Sweet Potato: A Handbook for the Practical Grower [ 1921 ]

Sweet Potato: Post Harvest Aspects in Food, Feed and Industry (Food Science and Technology)

Sweet potato culture. Giving full instructions from starting the plants to harvesting and storing the crop