Gardening at the grocery store

Last week, I bought some dry garbanzo beans at the grocery store and planted them. Will they grow? I don’t know. But I have reason to believe so: Beans are seeds. And I’ve grown other types of dry beans bought at the grocery store in the past, like black beans and...

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What is organic, actually?

When people learn that I grow a vegetable garden and have fruit trees they sometimes ask, “That’s great. Is it all organic too?” Awkward silence. I don’t know how to answer. I genuinely don’t know what people mean by “organic.” It’s not that I don’t know the word, of...

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Your fruit tree is grafted — Why? And so what?

We buy a fruit tree -- a Pinkerton avocado, a Cara Cara navel orange, a Flavor King pluot -- and we think the tag tells us what we're getting, but it tells only half the story. Almost every fruit tree you buy has been grafted. In other words, almost every fruit tree...

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Growing onions in Southern California

Timing is everything . . . when it comes to growing onions, too. If you sow the seed at the right time, you’re almost guaranteed a nice bulb to eat. Conversely, if you sow at the wrong time there’s no hope. So many times I’ve heard people say their onions didn’t grow...

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Fruit trees hiding at the San Diego Zoo

Last week, I took my boys to the San Diego Zoo and we headed toward a less crowded area where the giant Galapagos tortoises reside. As often happens, on our walk I pointed out the plants as much as the animals. "Cass, do you see this avocado tree over here?" Then I...

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Growing avocados in Southern California

Avocados are California. They are our heritage fruit. My great great grandfather grew a huge seedling avocado tree at his house near Los Angeles. When my mother was a child, she climbed in her neighbor's Fuerte avocado tree. I have planted avocado trees over the...

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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 post every Friday morning.

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