Pinks from Second Year Woad

Hello fellow plant dye enthusiasts! I’m here today to tell you about a use for your 2nd year woad leaves (other than waiting for seeds, chicken feed, or compost additive)! As we know, woad (Isatis tinctoria) is a rather plain looking plant from Europe that has a long history as a source for blue dye.Continue reading “Pinks from Second Year Woad”

Growing Dyer’s Coreopsis

A lovely North American native prairie plant, a bee magnet, and a strong orange in the dye pot – what’s not to love?! Dyer’s Coreopsis (Coreopsis tinctoria) – Click for seeds! A cheerful North American native, this annual plant is easy to grow and will produce hundreds of beautiful little flowers in tufts 2 toContinue reading “Growing Dyer’s Coreopsis”

Growing Japanese Indigo

Here is a quick little growing guide for this great plant! Japanese Indigo (Persicaria tinctoria) – Click for seeds! A member of the knotweed family, this easy to grow annual plant has long been a part of Japanese culture and is used to produce a beautiful blue dye. This dye is present in the leaves,Continue reading “Growing Japanese Indigo”

Growing Woad

A quick post for those of you interested in growing a plant to produce blue dye! Woad (isatis tinctoria) – Click for seeds! A member of the mustard family, woad has been used since ancient times to produce a beautiful blue dye. It is an easy to grow hardy biennial, but is classified as anContinue reading “Growing Woad”

Dye Project #2: Rhubarb Leaves (plus Rhubarb Crisp recipe!)

As any Midwesterner worth their salt knows, rhubarb is the true sign of spring. Specifically a pie, crisp, or other culinary delight. My family has been blessed by the rhubarb gods – our plants are prolific, massive, and darn near impossible to kill. They may or may not have even emigrated to Utah (shhhh). InContinue reading “Dye Project #2: Rhubarb Leaves (plus Rhubarb Crisp recipe!)”

I think I want to Dye (Fiber. Naturally.)…

I would describe my recent obsession as starting with an epiphany, but that wouldn’t be quite correct. It more snuck up behind me, tapping my shoulder and peeking around doors and corners (especially as I learned to spin from some fabulous hand-dyed roving) until one day I smacked my forehead and wondered why I hadContinue reading “I think I want to Dye (Fiber. Naturally.)…”

Garden time – Row cover tutorial!

Spring is rolling along here in New England – I’ve calculated that we’re about 5 weeks from our last frost date, so the veggie gardening is getting busy. We built 3 raised beds this year and a cold frame to give the veg an extra head start. Everything is crammed in the sunniest corner ofContinue reading “Garden time – Row cover tutorial!”

Planning the growing season

If I haven’t updated the blog as recently as we might have liked, blame the weather. It is unseasonably warm and lovely, filling my head with dreams of this summer’s garden. Since we recently moved into our home, this season is the first to start painting on the canvas of our property. While a littleContinue reading “Planning the growing season”

Dreaming of Spring

Yet another winter storm warning tonight and tomorrow and we’re all starting to feel the winter gloom. However, spring is just around the corner and it is garden planning time. To keep motivation high, it seems like a good time to share some photos from last year’s deck garden. I have to say, my EarthboxContinue reading “Dreaming of Spring”

Feeling extra crunchy today…

…in a granola and back-to-earther sort of way. Our home has officially become a vermicomposting site! I meant to get this whole thing going right after the holidays, but better late than never. I’d been reading (in various crunchy publications of course) about the joys and benefits of composting with red worms. They are easyContinue reading “Feeling extra crunchy today…”