Tour de backyard

Things are finally greening up, and our chicks are rounding out. Here’s some photos taken during a brief moment between rainshowers.

View from the deck


Rhonda, guest blog writer
Deck, featuring our newly painted privacy/shade; cue Jaeda.
deck and le spa
coop backside: painting in progress, also still need to build on the roost boxes

Shroomage II

This is a long-awaited followup post to this one, chronicling the growth of my diy fungus colony. The oyster mushrooms were slow growing for the first week or so, then suddenly sprang up over a few days. Here they are nearing full bloom. Creepy alien lifeform…yet so tasty.

Mushroom kit home mushroom kit


With the warm weather ramping up, our front garden has really come alive. Perennial stuff abound, especially herbs: chives, pineapple mint, rosemary, lavender, oregano, thyme, lemon balm, and sage.

In the foreground is our awesome succulent vertical garden (currently horizontal, ha), made for us by the talented folks behind and


This second shot below is of our side deck and the hops, which seem to be taking over the thing a couple feet a day.

Also, tomorrow is the Summer Solstice, just lettin’ ya’ll know 🙂


Grunions vs Scunions

Wanted to share a nice little trick that the wife found online and had me try. Basically this:

Green onions (scallions) will thrive in a glass of water.


Not like scallions are expensive, merely $1 (or I believe $.69 here at Hy-Vee) for a bunch, so allow me share some great reasons to try this yourself:


Scallion in water

  • Leaving them in a glass of water will keep them fresh perpetually. Scallions only last a couple weeks in the fridge before getting wilted and slimy. You can start now! Cut off the nasty parts and submerge the roots, it’ll come back to life. I’ve been growing the same bunch for over a month now.


  • They will re-grow, fast! You can cut from the plant often, and it will send up new green shoots if given lots of sun. I’ve noticed a couple inches of growth in a day for some of the larger stalks. They grow taller than you see at the stores too, have a few getting close to three-feet tall!


  • They’re clean and organic. No soil, no bugs, no chemicals. Even if they were not organic when you bought at store, i’d assume they will become ‘organic’ – free of chemicals – after a few weeks.  (though some may argue otherwise). I don’t even wash them…except a good rinse before the ‘planting’.


  • Scallions make great houseplants. They are a vivid spring-green, are incredibly easy to care for (just add water), and look stylish in a mason jar or vase. They are perfect in a kitchen window or table – being food themed – but honestly look good anywhere from an office cube to a patio. Also, they’re cheap.


Couple quick tips:

-Change the water at least once a week.

-Only keep an inch or two of water.

-Peel away any dead pieces or husk.

-I’d recommend filtered water if you’ve got highly chlorinated tap water.

-Sometimes the stalks fill with goo, just like aloe vera. Squeeze-out before visiting the cuttingboard.

-Most people, me included, prefer to the green parts of the plant… more flavor, color, texture (in my opinion). If you primarily eat the white end first, chopping off the root nub will likely kill the plant and not re-grow the roots.


Oh, also please feel free to vote for either Grunion vs Scunion in the comments, ha.