Frugal

Doing more while spending less money

Go Camping

Tent Camping in the Aspen Conifer Forest of Northern New Mexico

Get out of the house, away from town and Into the Woods! It's summertime and your tent and sleeping bag are crying out from neglect (well mine were anyway). My wife and I love camping but over-scheduling and other excuses get in the way much too often. Not this weekend!

Why I Garden #9

Morning Glory in Bloom

The garden can be full of surprises. An interesting vine sprouted a few months back. Although I didn't recognize it, I decided to let it grow. My theory is that with as many wildflower seeds as I've sown I try to give any new plant a fighting chance to prove it's not a weed. My bet paid off with a Morning Glory.

Why I Garden #8

Delicata Squash Blossom

Blossoms on Delicata Squash (Cucurbita pepo) vines in the garden. Delicata (a.k.a. Sweet Potato Squash) is a heirloom variety with great flavor, but it is uncommon in the grocery store given its softer skin which doesn't stand up well to rough handling. So far it's been pretty easy to grow for us and forms the base of our Three Sisters (corn, beans, squash) garden bed.

More Info:

Wikipedia - Winter Squash

The Omnivore's Solution - a review of 'In Defense of Food'

In Defense of Food cover

Eat Food. Not Too Much. Mostly Plants.

Those were the simple directions at the end of The Omnivore's Dilemma. It's a straightforward and direct answer to the question "What should people eat?" Yet somehow, that wasn't clear enough for a lot of people. What is food? How much is too much? What kind of plants? Etcetera and so on. So, Michael Pollan wrote In Defense of Food: An Eater's Manifesto.

Why I Garden #7

Freshly Harvested Bosque Early Garlic

Got Garlic?

Freshly harvested Allium sativum L. (i.e. Bosque Early Garlic). I dug these bulbs up yesterday evening and they are now hanging up to dry. The laundry room is quite aromatic at the moment. My wife informed me that we will be planting 'three times as many' after seeing the ten garlic plants I pulled up. I have no argument with that whatsoever. I may have to try a few different varieties like Spanish Roja or a hard-neck garlic.

More Info:
Wikipedia: Garlic

Why I Garden #6

Ladybug on a Chives Blossom

While I was watering the garden yesterday I saw something lurking in the leaves. It was a Coccinella septempunctata hunting for prey amongst the Allium Schoenoprasum. If your garden Latin isn't up to speed - I saw a Ladybug on a Chives bloom. It's nice to know that beneficial insects have found my garden and are chowing down on aphids and the like.

More Info:

Coccinella septempunctata - Ladybug

Allium Schoenoprasum - Chives

Rebel Without a Hose

Seed Bomb sprouting grass

Have you ever walked past an empty lot in your town and thought, 'What a waste.' You might just be a guerrilla gardener in the making. In every town and city I've ever known there are vacant lots and open patches of land that fill with weeds and trash due to neglect. What if you decided to 'adopt' an otherwise ignored patch of dirt, plant some seeds and let it grow?

Drive Me Crazy

Blue Tesla Roadster

Gas prices are spiking, already above $4/gallon in California and climbing nationwide. So, what can you do to save money on gas? The are two answers to this: drive less and drive more efficiently. Driving less requires trip planning, combining multiple errands into one outing and choosing the most direct routes from place to place. Driving more efficiently, also called hypermiling, is about using thrifty driving techniques and maximizing your vehicle's M.P.G.

Drive Less

Get Unlimited M.P.G.

Bike To Work Week 2008 Logo

What: Bike To Work Week
When: May 12 - 16, 2008
Where: Nationwide

If you're looking for a way to save money on gas this year, here's a way to get unlimited miles per gallon. Instead of a gas-guzzling car, truck or SUV, try driving a bicycle to work for a week. The League of American Bicyclists is sponsoring their annual Bike to Work Week and Bike to work Day from May 12 through 16 this year. Check out the Bike Month Special Events to see what events may be happening near you.

Love Food, Leave Nutritionism

Michael Pollan discusses 'In Defense of Food' for the Authors@Google series on March 4, 2008.

Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.

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