Month: May 2017

Traditional Organic Gardening

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Please help me welcome the newest worker in our little greenhouse!  I have been watching with eager anticipation for the day I would see this little fellow.  He is a baby Praying Mantis and he will become one of my best gardening friends. Why, you ask, well let me share.  Praying Mantis’ are the enemy of almost all the little pests that eat your plants.  He will be on patrol to make sure the aphids, white flies, potato beetles and other such insects get settled in his stomach instead of my plants!

By helping nature balance itself, we have no need for chemical insecticides, fertilizers, etc. nor will we ever use them. This little guy is a huge step in the right direction.  Another little friend who showed up this week but was too shy to let me get a portrait of, was a little toad, and I am hoping he has a big family.  He also will be munching away at all the bad guys and I don’t have to do a thing except make sure they are comfy in their new home!

In years  past, we have had an awesome balance within the garden but I wasn’t sure we would have it back with the building construction, soil compaction, etc.  I am over delighted to see the worms in abundance, which is a great help with soil health.  Lady bugs are also a very welcome site to see within your gardens , as are lace wings and many other little insects.

All these little guys make my job easier and our food more healthy.  With true, traditional organic gardening practices, this is the desired population you want to see. It pays to do a little research to help you identify the good guys from the bad ones and then take the actions to encourage them settling into your little paradise.

I titled this little post “Traditional Organic Gardening” for good reason.  So much of our food production in this country has been totally taken  over by corporate agriculture.  Even behind the ‘organic’ labeling of products that show up on the shelves and produce bins of our stores is a pitiful effort to try to make wholesome food.  Garden centers and nurseries are no better.  If you are purchasing your plants for your garden from these venues, you are receiving compromised plants, without a doubt. Big money is behind big business and our food is BIG business. In recent years the big guys on the block have realized the demand for organically produced food and have jumped on the bandwagon and are driving it fast and hard! The results make me very sad.

The solution is easy and hard all at the same time!  Easy in that we just need to shift our thinking and actions to produce our own food and what we are unable to grow for ourselves, purchase from our friends and neighbors who have the same vision and goals but different products.  It’s the ‘traditional’ way of living and it has served mankind for thousands of years! Getting the vision, education, desire are the easy part.  The harder half of this is doing it!  Many of us did not grow up this way, don’t have the space or time for gardening/farming/ranching and yet when we dedicate ourselves to this awesome work, miracles do happen!  It is hard to get a garden site ready, hard to put up fences to keep animals safe and a million other actions that need to take place.  Some are one time efforts, others are on-going but let me just encourage you that all of it is so very worth it!

If you are only in a place to add a few potted herbs to your porch, let me be the one to cheer you on!  If you are a full time rancher, let me sing you praises.  If you are somewhere in the middle, keep on keeping on. It is very hard work to grow food, yet the satisfaction is worth every effort. Preparing and eating these good foods will become your delight as you educate and perfect the art of eating seasonally and learn to appreciate the value of eating locally or regionally.

I hope your gardens are bursting this year. I hope you have many little friends in your gardens to help you in your work.  I hope you have some awesome pantries and tables filled with the work of your hands.  I hope you have a table full of friends and family to share your work with.  Most of all I hope the Creator of all the goodness will bless you and keep you in good health as a result of your efforts!

I do not claim to be an expert by any means but if you have questions or need help, let me know.  I am ready and willing to help others get healthy from their food and herbs.  If you are in need of some healthy, traditionally grown, organic  plants – stop out to our greenhouse, we can get you going!

Bullnose Pepper

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Isn’t this a beautiful pepper?  It is part of the Montecello Gardens of Thomas Jefferson!  Absolutely exquisite and rather rare, one I have not seen before.

Your in luck because we are growing these plants in our sale this year! We can all have ‘presidential’ gardens!  Here is the description provided by the Monticello Garden’s web-site.

“The sweet bell pepper was grown as early as 1681 by enslaved Africans in Panama, who pickled the “Green Indian-Bell-Pepper.” It was introduced to North America most likely from the West Indies by the early 1700s. McMahon included “Bell” peppers in The American Gardener’s Calendar 1806, and Jefferson recorded Bull Nose in his 1812 garden calendar. Jefferson’s Bull Nose likely resembled the heavily lobed pepper we know today.”

As always, our plants were started right here in our greenhouse in Sidney, Nebraska.  Grown for their distinct and awesome wholesomeness just for our friends and neighbors.

Come on by and grab you some of these little pepper beauties and see what other rare and hardy plants we are growing for you.

We are the big blue greenhouse at the Sleep For Less Motel in Sidney, Nebraska.  We sit at the Junction of Highways 385 and 30.  Our official address is 954 East Elm Street.  We will be open from 7:30 until dark, each day except Saturday (we have to rest too) until sold out.

Hope to see you soon!

Collective Farm Woman Melon

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Have you been looking for a hardy, short season melon that has exquisite flavor?  Guess what, we have these melon plants for you, ready for your gardens!

A Favorite of Seed Savers Exchange, this melon originates in the Ukraine and is an 80-85 day melon. The skins start out green but ripen to a lovely gold color which helps identify it’s readiness for your table.  The white flesh is both crunchy and sweet and the fragrance is delightful.

We started these seeds over a month ago and have some mature, beautiful plants ready for planting. You wont’ find this melon in any grocery store and the seeds are all sold out from Seed Savers.

We delight to bring you this very rare and beautiful melon plant and are quite sure you will enjoy the melons that should be ready for eating by late July or maybe earlier?!

We’re Growing For You

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So much is happening here at Amazing Grace Wellness Connections.  I thought it may be time to try to catch everyone up.  Can I share a bit of our work with you?

This time of year is all about gardening for us, and hopefully you too!  We want to be well and full of health and know how much growing our own food and medicine plays into that picture.  As many of you know, we have been so blessed with a new, larger greenhouse and this year we are offering some of our good starters to you, for your garden.  Plants are ready to go home any time and are already moving out at a rapid pace.  I would dearly love to see you have some of this goodness in your gardens!

We are growing totally organic, from seeds to soil,  every step, completely here on site. We don’t order our plants from out of state and hope they send us something that will grow here and still has a hint of health to it. Our plants never travel anywhere, grow in natural lighting in an un-heated greenhouse within organic, wholesome soil and fertilizer. This means they are HARDY for us right here in Nebraska.  Our plants are all open pollinated/heirlooms so you are more then able to save your own seed for next year (or we’ll be happy to take care of that step for you, if you’d rather). No GMO’s or hybridized plants at all!

We are filled to the brim, and then some with veggies and culinary as well as medicinal herbs.  There are a few plants that don’t want to be confined to those classifications, but we still love them too.

We also have some awesome, handmade, cedar birdhouses to add to your gardens (because we all know how beneficial those little birds are to help us control the insects that would otherwise destroy our plants.  These houses weather beautifully outdoors but lend themselves to your youngsters involvement with a custom paint job as well.

There is a very limited supply of our organically produced honey available on the counter, at the office. Don’t even get me started about how crazy in love we are with our bees!  I would love to share a conversation with you about how we tend to our little friends, so if your interested,  just give me a shout.

Not wanting this to become to long, let me just share a few other items with you.  I will be putting up some specifics about the wonderful food plants we are selling, right on this blog over the coming days.  Keep watch to learn about some of the very rare and special plants available to you.  There is a tab at the top of the site for “Plant Profiles” where you can find general planting information and usage facts for the herbs, both culinary and medicinal.  We will be adding more and more information to that page just as soon as we can catch up with the physical work of growing the plants.  In the mean time, we have “cheat” sheets hanging in the greenhouse for you.  When you come out to shop, bring your phone and click a picture of any or all of them that hold an interest to you!

We  are open from 7:30-7:30 Sunday through Friday, taking Saturday off to rest.

We are located in Sidney, Nebraska at the junction of Highways 385 and 30, northwest corner, at the Sleep For Less Motel — just look for the big blue greenhouse! You can phone us at 308-254-4009 if you need more information.

Okay, that covers the things you may want to know but. . . why. . . ?

Well, simple put, we have a vision to help as many people gain health and wellbeing as possible!  We have a very dear place in our hearts for our local community! Put those two things together and this is a logical step in the right direction.

There is lots of great plans to follow this; workshops and clinics on topics such as “Kitchen Medicine” where you can join us to learn how those aromatic beauties that transform our meals can also transform our health, during illness/disease as well as preventatively. Other subjects will be announced later but keep watch for details here. An “Herb Walk and Talk” will be coming to you in June, where we will tour the grounds here and look over both the garden plants and natives in order to learn more about what and how to grow in our area.  So many plans, it can make you dizzy. We are hoping to share our harvest with the elderly and shut-ins of the community, lend a hand to your garden work with whatever knowledge we may be able to share and watch our neighborhood glow with health!

Please share us with all you know, it makes all the hard work so much more worth it, if we can meet any needs you have, please be sure to let us know.  Take a little time to look over the site, there is lots of help for you.  By signing up for our e-mail updates, you will receive a copy of my essay on Herbal Infused Honey, with that information and a visit to our greenhouse, you will be well on your way to taking some positive action for yours and your families health.  Thank you so much for supporting our work and our vision!  It’s neighbors like you all that make this an awesome community to live in!!