Organic Gardening Blog

Welcome to my organic gardening blog. At certain times of year I post gardening tips weekly and other times much less frequently. Sign up for my ebook over to the right if you want to get my best stuff :)

Meet My Sister!

Click for video transcription

Phil: Hey guys, it’s Phil from and for those of you who follow me, you may know that I spend almost all of my time filming videos that go into my online gardening course and it just has turned out so far that I rarely have enough time to film videos to put out for free on YouTube or on my public website. So what I am going to do, what I’ve done is I’ve hired someone to help me just get my butt in gear, like filming a few more videos and she’s going to help me with a little bit of editing, a little bit of writing here and there and just odds and ends stuff. So this video is just to introduce her. So why don’t you introduce yourself.

H: I am H and I am Phil’s younger sister.

Phil: Yeah, everybody thinks you are older, because maybe you are more mature or something, but you are four years younger, right?

H: Yup, I am.

Phil: So let’s tell people just where you learned about gardening and that kind of stuff.

H: So I basically had the same start that Phil had growing up, working in my parents' garden center and quite fell in love with that. So after that, I ended up going to college and studying horticulture there.

Phil: What kind of classes that you take there?

H: I did a lot of different plant identification classes, soils, greenhouse management, turf management, arboriculture, things like that.

Phil: It was like, that was a two-year degree, right?

H: Yeah, two years, yeah.

Phil: And that wasn’t organic. So neither you or I were organic when we were younger but I started an organic gardening business and then you eventually took that over when I moved to the West Coast, right?

H: Yeah, I mean basically, I didn’t start learning about organic gardening until Phil did and then he kind of passed that torch over to me when I took over his business.

Phil: So the other thing is where are you right now?

H: Now I am in Amsterdam, I am in the Netherlands, and I am back in school, doing another degree over here.

Phil: So what are you studying?

H: I am studying psychology.

Phil: Yeah, cool, so not gardening but you are still -- like whenever you are back home, you are always doing gardening jobs.

H: Inevitably, right?

Phil: So that’s just a quick video today. So you guys could do me a big favor and welcome my sister down in the comments below, maybe tell us where you’re gardening, where you are from and just welcome my sister to the gardening group here.

H: Yeah!

As you may know, I’ve been rather busy for the past 2 years filming videos for the Academy.

It's been loads of fun, but it means I rarely get around to doing free videos, and sometimes it's 3 or more weeks between blog posts.

So I've finally decided to get a bit of help. I'm still doing everything around here, just with a bit of help from... my sister! I’ll let her introduce herself:


Hobbit Garden: 2 Gardening Tips I Learned From Hobbits

I went hiking in the mountains on Tuesday.

My surroundings got me thinking we could learn a thing or two about organic gardening by a good old-fashioned hobbit garden.

Did you know they just wrapped up filming for the new hobbit movies in New Zealand?


My Home Vegetable Garden - Video Walk-through With A Few Tips

Yesterday, I was recording a video in my home vegetable garden that will serve as an introduction to the growing food section of the Academy...

(Note to Academy members, that section will be ready this fall)

...and I decided to take a walk through my vegetable garden with the video camera, and also post the video here.


Growing A Vegetable Garden (And Skipping The Doctor)

Phil Growing A Vegetable Garden

We had a family get together a couple of weeks ago.

It's always fun trying to explain to family or friends who I haven't seen for awhile about what I do for a "living."

"I have a website where I teach people about growing a vegetable garden, and organic gardening in general."


Intensive Gardening VS Permaculture Gardening VS Biological Gardening

Intensive Gardening With Permaculture/Biological Gardening Principles

The scope of this topic probably calls for at least a few thousand words.

But this isn't meant to be an authoritative or conclusive comparison on these organic gardening topics.

It's just a few thoughts I've been having this week that I figured I'd pass on to you.

First, a few notes:


Companion Planting Chart - Boost Your Garden With Companion Plants

Growing Organic FoodThe 3 sisters: corn, beans and squash

Today, I have an excellent companion planting chart to share with you.

But first, let's briefly get into what companion planting is and why it can be useful.

Companion gardening involves pairing plants that work well together.

I'll use the 3 sister guild as an example, which are 3 plants that were originally combined by Native Americans in such a way that the plants all helped each other out.


Self-Sustaining Garden - A Garden That Cares For Itself

Praying Mantis In My Self-Sustaining Garden
Insects like this praying mantis take care of my garden for me.

One of my goals is to have a self-sustaining garden.

Today is a good example of why. Heather and I are visiting her brother and his family in New York City.

I don't know how anyone gets anything done with a 3 year old (sorry, 3 and a half) and a new baby in the house!


Compost Tea Recipe To Inoculate Your Organic Garden With Microbes

Compost Tea Recipe

Update: Nearly 2 years after writing this, I decided to start selling the same compost tea brewer that I use. You can check it out (and learn more about compost tea) here.

A compost tea recipe doesn't have to be complicated in order to be effective.

In fact, the simplest compost tea recipes are often the best because they're easier to experiment with.

In case you don't know, compost tea doesn't look like my literal interpretation in the picture here.


Garden Watering - Exciting? No... Important? Absolutely...

Watering Vegetable Garden - Adhesion

Watering the vegetable garden. Chances are you don't want to spend much time reading about it, because water is just always there for us.

We take it for granted because it comes so readily out of our tap, so we find the topic rather boring.

But man, is it ever important, vital for all living things. Go 24 hours without drinking it and we would all become more interested. The fact is, we're made of it. Throughout the course of our lives, our bodies contain between 50 and 80% water.


Plant Sickness - Why Do Pests Eat The Sick Plants?

Studying plant sickness is fascinating because we know pests only dine on sick plants.

What I have for you today is some info on why those plants invite pests when they're sick, and how to avoid that.


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Organic Gardening Ebook
"The Holistic Gardening Handbook: Condensed Version"
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"You have been a source of wisdom, humour, encouragement and influence" Marylin, B.C.