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Fruition Garden Journal

video tutorials, tried-and-true tips + our latest learnings to surround you with abundance all season long

Fish Emulsion Demystified + Fruition's Fact Sheet for You!

Aug 15, 2019
 

Fertility is the foundation of soil health and plant health, which all very abstract, but it's as simple as this: Abundance begets abundance, so don't skimp and don't be shy!

There are many ways to increase the fertility of your gardens, Friends. 

Always, there is compost. Glorious, glorious compost. Soon I'll share more about this, one of my favorite facts of life :)

In the meantime, like two sides of a coin, our fish emulsion and granular fertilizer are easy to use and immensely effective across soil types. Of the many other approaches we use, cover cropping is a passion of ours and I look forward to sharing more with you about its art and science in the coming seasons.

Fruition's Granular Fertilizer (a brief intro)

Our granular fertilizer is Matthew's special blend of finely ground vegetables, animals and minerals, building soil as it feeds our crops with over one hundred micro- and macro-nutrients. We apply it in spring when we turn over our soil, allowing its...

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Introducing Dulcinea (or, Don't Judge a Carrot by the Cover)

Aug 07, 2019
 

Don't judge a book by its cover...

...or a carrot, either :)

Friends, Fruition has just released a new carrot variety, Dulcinea, though I must warn you: She is orange, long and tapered. At first glance, she is simply a carrot. But she's so much more. And if we've done our work well, Dulcinea will outlast us by countless generations. 

The Backdrop

Some fruits and vegetables we know by name: Granny Smith apple, Sugar Snap pea, Sungold Tomato, Cafe au Lait dahlia.

But most varieties are anonymous in our gardens and at the grocery store, the nameless commodity that fits our quintessential assumption of what is romaine lettuce, what is an onion. This is basil, this is butternut squash. There are hundreds of varieties any carrot could be, but many of us simply recognize it as a carrot. Nonetheless, every carrot has a name. 

You may not have heard of 'Bolero' carrot before, but you've most likely eaten it many times. Bolero is classic...

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3 Keys to Great Carrot Germination

Aug 07, 2019
 

Freshly dug carrots, brilliantly sweet and oh so crunchy, are among the most rewarding moments of my childhood garden.

I especially loved the carrots twisted, spiraling around one another.

Indeed, my first carrots were darling but would never have flown at a farmer's market. It's true: Straight carrots that are long strong are impressively challenging to grow, so often surrounded by weeds and accompanied by frustration.

Here are keys I've learned across the years to grow root crops --- and especially carrots and parsnips --- with confidence:

3 Keys to Increase Carrot Germination

1. Prepare Soil Well

A word to the wise: If you don't prepare your soil well, nothing else matters.

Carrots love deep, rich, well-drained soil, the looser the better. If you're not tilling, snag a fork and work the soil well at least eight inches down, incorporating organic matter like compost or our granular, slow-release organic fertilizer throughout the soil. Light, loose soil encourages...

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#wearefruition

Jul 19, 2019
 

 #wearefruition, Friends!

Because truly, we are.

We are the hope that sows, that reaps, that composts and comes alive, time after time. Deceptively small, we are the seeds. We transform the world, we begin with ourselves. Always coming to fruition, always seeding the next generation. Our work is never finished and neither is our hope: To plant a seed is to believe in tomorrow. 

We do this, together.

And Friends, so many of you have been sharing photos --- of your gardens, your families, your beauty and abundance, your questions and quandaries, of how much you've grown --- and to celebrate, we've made a home for them all:

#wearefruition

And can I tell you? 

What's in a Name

The birth of #wearefruition is so much the story of Fruition. It's the story of deep love + hard work + resisting convention + a little help from our friends.

Deep Love

We love seeds and the people who sow them past, present and future as well as the people who eat them --- and yes,...

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Fruition's Favorite Garlic Scape Recipes & Harvest Tips

Jun 20, 2019
 

Garlic scapes rise just before summer solstice here in Zone 5, the harbinger of high summer and abundance yet to come, and one of our favorite delicacies of all time.

Scapes only form on hardneck varieties. In fact, the scape is the extention of the 'hard neck' at the center of each bulb. Softneck varieties lack such a hard 'scape,' making them ideal for braiding. If you want scapes on your table, plant hardneck varieties, Friends! We grow about 8,000 heads of garlic each season, both hardneck and softneck, so we revel in the ocean of scapes we harvest each June.

Did You Know?

Garlic scapes emerge one month before bulbs mature, so once they emerge we make sure we're ready for harvest. We clean out the barn where we cure our bulbs, make sure our fans are working and get enough twine and tags so we can hang them immediately. Once one-third to one-half of a garlic's leaves are brown and drying down, it's bulb is ready to lift gently with a digging fork to eat fresh or cure for the...

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7 Steps to Transplant Tomatoes Perfectly (#2 May Surprise You)

May 23, 2019
 

Hooray!

It's finally Memorial Day!

Here in Zone 5, we're so ready to transplant tomatoes!

And Friends, transplanting is deceptively simple. Doing it well is the difference between harvesting a bit and harvesting abundance.

Here is exactly how we transplant tomatoes, after years of trial and error, and I hope these keys surround you with great abundance!

First things first:

Timing is Everything

Friends, resist planting too early.

It's counter-intuitive in our short seasons to not plant warm-season plants like tomatoes as early as possible, but here's the thing: Young, healthy transplants yield greater abundance compared to older, stressed transplants. Every time. 

Also, think of tomatoes, basil, peppers and other warm season crops as ‘cold-sensitive’ rather than ‘frost-sensitive.’

A pepper, for example, experiencing temps less than 55 F will cross her proverbial arms and pout for a few weeks (if not months) in protest of her apparent lack of...

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Spring Seed Collections for Mother's Day

May 02, 2019
 

In celebration of spring and Mother's Day just around the corner, we've made some fresh collection to share with the people who love us best and grow us most :)

Each of our collections includes six easy-to-grow packets, plus growing instructions.

And Friends! Enjoy 

free shipping 

 on any order including at least one collection through May 10th with promo code

yayformay

Here are a few of our favorites:

  edible flower collection  

Our easiest flowers to grow, becoming a glorious spectrum of color for garnishing salads and cakes as well as bouquets, our edible flower collection includes annuals as well as perennials for you and your pollinators!

  culinary herb collection  

Here are the herbs growing just outside our door, easy to grow and abundant all season long. Our culinary herb collection thrives in both gardens and containers.

  pollinator collection

Our pollinator collection is easy...

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Easy Flowers to Sow Four Weeks Before Final Frost

Apr 26, 2019
 

The warblers are returning and peepers peeping, daffodils bright gold and Friends, we're getting closer every day to SUMMER! In the meantime, a glorious spring is unfurling around us. Here are the easiest seeds we're sowing now to surround us with abundant blooms this season, plus a few keys to keep in mind.

Before We Begin

As you start seeds this season:

~ sow only seeds 2 to 3 times their depth (ie, not very much) and read the packet instructions, since some flowers actually need light to germinate.

~ sow only 2 to 3 seeds per cell and thin to the strongest single one as quick as you can.

~ bottom-water whenever possible and allow the soil surface to dry, ever so slightly, between overhead waterings.

If you haven't already seen it, we made a seed starting infographic for you here! And for detailed step-by-step instructions for starting seeds, check out Rise & Shine: Starting Seeds with Ease, my ebook. Also, Fruition's Seed Starting Academy has hours of...

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8 Seeds to Direct Sow in the Cold

Apr 18, 2019
 

As robins flock, days warm and daffodils rise, our psyches itch sow seeds. That first delicious day in the 60s sends the shoes off my feet as I scramble to plant peas, spinach cilantro and those first, sweet radishes of the season. Truly, there are few finer feelings.

So Friends, I'm excited to share what I'm sowing directly in the ground ~6 weeks before final frost here in the Finger Lakes, Zone 5!

But first, two things about soil temperature and texture, everyone's favorite subject:

Before You Sow Seeds in the Soil This Spring...

...let's talk texture

If your soil is soupy, even a little, your seeds will likely rot. We typically direct sow and transplant into our raised beds and containers, which warm up and drain much more quickly than the garden soil, between two or three weeks before we plant into our gardens. Even light tillage of wet soils will compact and destroy your soil texture, sometimes taking years to recover. 

How do you know if your soil is...

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Timing Is Everything: Fruition's Seed Starting Calendar

Mar 14, 2019

In our gardens and in our lives, timing is everything.

And Friends, it is so easy to start seeds way too early. 

My dear friend Sal and I created a planting calendar for you to help nail your timing this season!

It's counter-intuitive, but plants started too early often get stressed (too little light, too few nutrients) and thus produce later and less abundantly than younger plants that are less stressed.

So hold your horses, dear Friends!

And here is our calendar for Zones 4 through 6 to keep you on track:

Each online order this season will receive one of our planting calendars, as well :)

You'll find a ton of information on this chart and each of our packets are mini-encyclopedias of information, as well. In addition to longer growing instructions, there is a quick reference tab with some pretty handy advice to have at arm's length. You'll find plant spacing after thinning, whether to direct sow or transplant (or both), days to germination, when to sow and seeding...

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