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This past weekend we gave ourselves a few days off after working without any since the beginning of March. We headed to Austin for a photography class given by the Garden Writers Association at Lady Bird Johnson’s Wildflower Center on Friday. That left the rest of the weekend to meet up with friends and tour a little more of Austin. I read on Facebook that a garden blogger I follow, Dee Nash, was giving a talk on Kitchen Gardens at The Natural Gardener. I was so excited because I love her new book The 20-30 Something Garden Guide. The tag line says it all A no-fuss, down and dirty Gardening 101 for anyone who wants to grow stuff. I was interested to hear the talk but also thought it would be great to get some signed copies of her book to give as thank-you gifts to our customers.

Dee Nash speaking on Kitchen gardening in the Revival Tent at The Natural Gardener in Austin

Dee Nash speaking on Kitchen gardening in the Revival Tent at The Natural Gardener in Austin

We thoroughly enjoyed the talk and were happy to see so many people there to listen to a talk about growing food. I love the trend of having a kitchen garden. Even though we know quite a lot about gardening there were some new tips regarding growing vegetables I can’t wait to try.  In Oklahoma they have long hot summers just like we do here in Houston. Dee relies on drip irrigation to get her plants through the summer. We only use drip (micro-irrigation) in beds when we install irrigation systems. She explained that vegetables, like many plants, don’t like city water on their leaves!

The Portage at Dee Nash's home.

The Portage at Dee Nash’s home.

If you are looking for a good gardening 101 book that is easy to read and put into use, I highly recommend this book! Dee has been gardening for a couple of decades in her native Oklahoma. She lives on 7.5 acres between the Great American Prairie and the beginning of the deciduous forest. She is also a freelance writer and speaker. I really enjoyed her wonderful positive attitude. The advice she gives is easy to follow and very useful. Meeting her and her husband in person was a treat. It is a bit awkward meeting someone whose blog you read regularly because you feel like you know them already but they don’t know you. I have been following her on FB and reading her blog Red Dirt Ramblings for a while. I enjoy her passion and her dedication to sharing her gardening knowledge with others especially the next generation. Her children are becoming young adults and she speaks their language which is evident in her book. I am putting this on my list of books to recommend to clients that want to do more gardening but don’t know where to start! And if you have been reading this blog for a while you know I love to put raised veggie beds into my designs and encourage folks to get out into their gardens.

Dee Nash book

One of my favorite parts of the book is the Seven Habits of Gardeners who care!

  1. Say no to chemical pesticides.
  2. Say no to chemical herbicides.
  3. Learn how to compost or buy some that’s organic.
  4. Keep it clean. (the ground)
  5. Mulch.
  6. Grow native plants for your area.
  7. Conserve water.
Dee signing some copies of her new book!

Dee signing some copies of her new book!

What I hadn’t realized is what a fabulous garden they have at the Natural Gardener. There where so many different garden areas set up to walk through. It is a very kid friendly place and even allows dogs. The day we were there is was a bit humid and overcast but the temperature was  pleasant. I took lots of photos to share! I will save that for another post : )

Happy Gardening!