Archive by Author


It’s Time To Plant A Hedgerow

When extolling the virtues of organic farming and gardening, I always feel that it’s important to focus on the positive impacts we’re able to have on our soil and environment, rather than just reciting a list of the things we don’t do. Sure, we don’t use harsh pesticides and other chemicals, we tend not to […]

Zinias from B-Side Farms

The Best Flowers To Grow This Summer

Late June in California is a funny time for summer flowers. The early spring-blooming bulbs like ranunculus and anemones are long gone, the peonies have just passed, and many of the heat-loving summer annuals are still small plants in the ground, far from flowering. Without careful planning and manipulating their season a bit, it’s a […]

Growing Melons

All About Melons

I’ll forever remember the first time I tasted a melon from California. I was visiting a big organic farm in a hot valley somewhere near Santa Cruz, and I almost declined the offer to try a slice (melons had never been my favorite). But it was hot out, so I obliged, and with one bite […]


Why You Should Build a Berm

Why You Should Build a Raised Berm For Woody Shrubs Most farmers start their operations on short-term land leases. I’m no exception, and for the first few years of B-Side Farm I grew mostly annual flowers because I wasn’t sure how long I could farm at each location. Annual flower (and vegetable) seeds tend to be […]


Compost Awareness Week 2017

I don’t know about the rest of you, but I celebrated compost week this year by having ten yards of rich, dense compost delivered to my farm. I apply it throughout the season with a particularly big push in the spring. What about the rest of you, how and when do you use compost throughout […]

wet garden

What To Do In The Garden In A Wet Spring

Farmers and gardeners alike are throwing their wet hands up in the air this spring as it keeps raining and raining. We’ve all got so many transplants just waiting to get into the ground, so many projects put on hold, and so much store-bought produce and flowers at home when we really want to be […]


Sonoma Flower Market – 2.0

I met Nichole Skalski about three years ago through our involvement in a group called the North Bay Flower Collective – which started as a way for local flower farmers and florists to get together and share resources and support, but has grown to be a lot more than that for our ever-growing membership. Nichole, […]

doughnut seed

April Fools’ For The Gardeners

By the look and feel of mid-afternoon in Sonoma County these days, it’s spring! You feel like you want to be out in the garden all day, digging, amending with compost, planting spring crops, and cutting fresh flowers to bring into the house. Even if the morning is chilly, by late in the day you […]


Grow Your Own Succulents

Californians and their succulents, man. They’re a people obsessed! I remember when I first moved out here a mere seven years ago and we were just on the cusp of the succulent rage. From weddings to gardens to plant shops to casual conversations, it seemed that succulents crept into every aspect of life in one […]

Contaminated plant

Composters: Beware of Herbicides

Most of us don’t have to be convinced of the importance of compost in the garden. The list of benefits could fill a book. Compost does wonders for both building your soil long-term and for boosting your plants in the season you apply it. The first benefit of compost that comes to mind is organic […]