Dealing with squirrels in a food garden

When we moved into our house six summers ago, no one had lived here for a few months, and squirrels dominated the yard. The boulder in front of the house (pictured above) had oranges filling its crack. I soon learned that this was the squirrels’ stash. Over the course...

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Summer pruning deciduous fruit trees

Summer pruning is monkey work. I love its simplicity. There is joyously little thought or skill involved. But it is necessary monkey work. If you want to keep a deciduous fruit tree small and you skip a summer pruning, you start to lose hold on the size and...

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The Reed avocado tree: a profile

The Reed avocado variety is the first I ever grew. It is a great beginner’s avocado tree because it is relatively tough and productive. In addition, the fruit itself stands among the finest tasting avocados so it deserves consideration for planting by the first-time...

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Growing a Bee Garden

When I write my weekly Yard Post I’m often sitting in my garage, where my view out of the door used to be a weedy hillside but is now this: a dedicated Bee Garden full of color. The notion to grow a Bee Garden has been germinating for years, and finally last winter I...

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Thinning fruit

The most pleasing chore I have had in the yard over the past few weeks has been making sure that branches don’t break under the weight of their fruit. This certainly hasn’t been needed on all of my fruit trees, but there are some this year that would be torn apart if...

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I'm Greg. My goal is to help others grow some food at home, with a focus on vegetables and fruits -- especially avocados -- in Southern California. I write a new "Yard Post" every Friday.

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