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How to successfully grow asparagus in your garden. purple-green asparagus spears emerging from soil.

How to successfully grow asparagus in your garden

Asparagus is one of the few perennial vegetables that is commonly grown in gardens. But don’t let that intimidate you - it’s a relatively easy crop to grow. However, you’ll need to exercise some patience when growing asparagus. What type should I grow? When growing asparagus, you’ll have a choice...
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Sweet corn

How to Grow Sweet Corn

Having 8+ years of experience with growing field corn and a master’s degree in crop science, I thought I knew all there was to planting sweet corn; however, my first time planting it was a flop. I planted the seeds as if I was raising 350-bushel field corn (who doesn’t want lots of sweet corn?),...
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three lettuce varieties

How to Grow Lettuce

Did you hear about the tomato and lettuce? Well, the lettuce was a-head and the tomato was trying to ketchup. I haven’t seen any lettuce and tomatoes racing lately; however, being a fairly hardy, cool-season crop, lettuce tends to thrive more than tomatoes (a warm-season crop) in...
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Sprinkler head

Starting a Garden: Irrigation

Watering. The inescapable task of any garden. No matter what, at some point, you will need to water your plants. That’s just the fact of the matter here in Illinois. We do get lots of rain, but then there are times we go through some very hot, and dry weather. Can Watering Wait?...
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basil seedlings in seedling flat

Starting a Garden: Hardening Off Indoor Seedlings

Much like humans after being cooped up all winter, plants require acclimation to the outdoors prior to being transplanted outside; for plants this is termed hardening off. Hardening off is the process of slowly introducing plants to outdoor conditions after being started indoors. Growing...
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Vegetable garden sketch

Starting a Garden: Begin with a Plan

Starting a Garden: Begin with a Plan The key to a successful and productive garden is a plan; it saves time and makes the garden easier to care for. By starting with a plan, you will be ready to get to work once planting time is here. So let’s get started! Site Selection...
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Food Waste

Examining the American Food Waste Problem This Holiday Season

‘Tis the season for…potlucks? That’s at least what it has felt like these past few weeks. Here’s the thing about potlucks – there’s always way too much food and you must try everything! To top it off, I throw out all the rules when it comes to making food for others to enjoy. I use lots of butter,...
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Parsnips – An Underrated Vegetable

I love parsnips. But have you ever bought parsnips at a grocery store? Let me share my experience. At the checkout lane, the cashier always has a befuddled look when parsnips are up for scanning. A look that I know all too well. “Oh, those are parsnips,” I tell the cashier. Satisfied the...
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