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Sunday, February 14, 2016

Subterranean Hot Bed Valentines

Wishing you a Happy Valentine's Day, from my awakening garden to yours! 
The snow is starting to melt... it won't be long now. (I took this photo last week.)

This is what I'm seeing out the windows as I write. Perhaps a little less spring-like, but I'm still going to plant beet seeds in one of the covered beds this afternoon! Planting is my Valentine's tradition: first direct seeding of the year. The soil is still frozen as hard as a brick in many places, but in the covered beds, it is soft. The seeds will wake up as soon as they feel ready.

This is a potato I pulled from the garden last fall at sunset... and saved for Valentine's Day here at the Wood for Food blog. All of the photos below were taken throughout the past year, except for the last one.

This is what it looked like close up. What says, "I love you," more than a heart-shaped potato? ;-) Hey, I guess it depends on who you are.

Some people like roses...

...and I do too. But I also like magenta colored Swiss chard!

And shiny red onions that reflect the blue sky.

Whatever your favorite way to say, "I love you," just make sure you express it. 



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About the title of this post: Big thanks to Kristin Ackerman for sharing the apt name, "Slow-Burning, Subterranean Hot Beds," to describe the Wood for Food garden.  Till now, "Hugelkultur" is the name I've been using to denote the use of rotting wood, since it is the technique that inspired the main idea of my beds. Hugelkultur denotes hills above the ground, with hügel meaning hill in German. Since I've built my hugelkultur underground, it does not form a hill. So, "Slow-Burning, Subterranean Hot Beds" makes a lot of sense for the way that I'm gardening.


  1. Sorry to say our garden isn't awakening..... Wish your Opa Vanderwal was still alive to enjoy your gardening enthusiasm! :-)

    1. Believe it or not, your garden may be starting to awaken from beneath the snow. You may be surprised. If you have chives, they may be ready right below the surface of the soil, light green, yellow,and white nubs just waiting for the snow to go. Our garden is mostly blanketed in snow, and as it begins to recede in places, there are Johnny Jump-up leaves already green at the edges. I feel the same way about Opa Vanderwal, wish I could share in the joy of gardening with him. I sort of feel like I do. To whom do I have the pleasure of writing?


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