Edible Flowers, Rogue Gardeners, Container Tomatoes, Community Fig Orchard

Edible Flowers

In the first half of the show we talk with Pittsburgh horticulturist and author Denise Schreiber, author of the delicious book Eat Your Roses. Denise not only eats flowers, but she cooks with them too. Nasturtium-flower lasagna, calendula-corn muffins, rose petal ice cream. Yum!

Rogue Gardeners

In the second half of the show we chat with Toronto author and garden-boundary pusher Lorraine Johnson. Lorraine will share stories of "rogue gardeners," gardeners who push the boundaries of convention—sometimes running into trouble—but sometimes changing values about what is acceptable. Two of Lorraine’s focus areas are native plants and urban agriculture. Lorraine is the editor of the new third edition of the Canadian Gardener’s Guide.

In the Biggs-on-Figs segment, Steven chats with Jack Spruill of Spruill Farm in North Carolina about the community fig orchard on his farm.

In Emma’s Tomato Talk segment, she checks in with garden expert Jessica Walliser of SavvyGardeing.com about her top tomato variety recommendations for containers.

Herbs’N Hens: Year-Round Herbs, Urban Chickens, Cooking Figs + Tomatoes

Conrad Richter from  Richters Herbs

Conrad Richter from Richters Herbs

Our first guest is Conrad Richter from Richters Herbs in Goodwood, Ontario. We will discuss what to do with herbs that don’t like being in a warm house for the winter, but are not hardy when left outdoors. (Maybe he can give Steven pointers on not killing his rosemary plant every winter!)

Then we will talk about herbs that do well in the house over the winter.

Emma’s mint garden 20+ plant mint garden was inspired by a visit to Richters Herbs!

Visit the Ricthers website for the video series, called Herbs TV with great videos on lots of herb-related topics. You will find Steven in a couple of the episodes, sharing tips about how to grow figs and how to grow brugmansias.

Our second guest is author, storyteller, and chef-turned-writer Signe Langford. Signe will tell us all about urban chickens and share tips from her fantastic book, Happy Hens and Fresh Eggs: Keeping Chickens in the Kitchen Garden.

We met Signe when she wrote an article for Toronto Life about the underground world of backyard chicken growers. Look at the pictures in the article and guess which one is Steven!

For our Biggs-on-Figs and Tomato-Talk segments, Signe will share lots of fantastic ideas for using figs and tomatoes in the kitchen.

Signe’s Fig Recipes: To get you started, here are Signe’s recipes for FRESH FIG OLIVE OIL ANISE CAKE and MAPLE-ROASTED FIGS WITH WALNUTS, BACON & TAHINI.

Foodscaping, Backyard Orchards, Growing Figs

Our first guest is Brie Arthur, a horticulturist, foodscaping expert, and author of The Foodscape Revolution. Foodscaping is about making the most of the square footage that is available.

Brie Arthur , foodscaping expert

Brie Arthur, foodscaping expert

Ross Raddi , urban orchardist and fig expert

Ross Raddi, urban orchardist and fig expert

Brie is a passionate advocate of local food production and producing food in our landscapes. Her goal is to change the way landscapes are designed and managed by planting edibles in traditional ornamental landscapes. Brie’s training as a horticulturist and previous work as a grower and a propagator give her some neat insights and an understanding of why things might or might not work in the garden.

Our next guest, Ross Raddi, is a 27-year-old backyard millennial orchardist from the Philadelphia area. Ross’ goal is to grow tasty food that’s hard to find at the store and that is not supposed to grow in his area.

His backyard orchard is home to pomegranate, persimmon, pawpaw, mulberry, honeyberry, and more.

One of Ross’ favourite fruits is the fig. He shares tips for fig-growing in his humid, cold climate. Find Ross’ fruit-growing videos on his @RossRaddi YouTube channel. His podcast is called FruitTalk.

Extend The Season With Containers, Tomato Hornworm, Montreal Figs

We chat with horticulturist Jessica Walliser from Pennsylvania about using container gardening to extend the gardening season. Jessica, an experienced gardener and former market gardener, is the author of Container Gardening Complete, a comprehensive book about container gardening.

Jessica is also a bug expert, so in Emma’s Tomato Talk segment, Jessica tells us all about the tomato hornworm. Jessica’s books about bugs are Attracting Beneficial Bugs to Your Garden and Good Bug Bad Bug.

In the Biggs-on-Figs fig segment, Steven speaks with Michal, a Montreal fig enthusiast who talks about fig plants and fig growers he has met in Montreal and in his travels.


Gardening with Kids, Tomato Talk

We speak with Sarah Pounders, an educational specialist at Kids Gardening. Sarah, who gardens at home with her two young children, has been involved in gardening activities for young people for over 20 years. Kids Gardening is a non-profit organization focused on garden-based learning.

In Emma’s Tomato Talk segment, she chats with garden expert Ken Brown. Ken is an avid vegetable gardeners and an expert in “vertical vegetables” — the art of squeezing lots of veggie plants into an urban yard.

kids gardening.jpg

Grow Nuts in Northern Climates, Figs in Niagara, Tomato Talk

We talk with Ernie Grimo of Grimo Nut Nursery about hardy nut trees for Canada and the northern United States.

Ernie Grimo talks about hardy nut trees for Canada and the northern United States.

Ernie Grimo talks about hardy nut trees for Canada and the northern United States.

Grimo Nut Nursery tests and produces a wide range of hardy nut trees. Ernie is past president of the Northern Nut Growers Association and the Society of Ontario Nut Growers.

In the Biggs-on-Figs segment, Ernie tells us about growing figs in Niagara, Canada.

For the Tomato-Talk-with-Emma segment, we talk to garden guru and horticulturist Donna Balzer.

Grow Fruit in Cold Climates, Prairie Fruit

Dr. Ieuan Evans from Alberta, growing fruit on the Canadian Prairies

Dr. Ieuan Evans from Alberta, growing fruit on the Canadian Prairies

We talk with Dr. Ieuan Evans about growing fruit on the Canadian Prairies. Ieuan will share tips for success with fruit in cold climates. Then he telld us about apple, pear, cherry, and plum varieties suited to cold areas. 

We can thank Ieuan for the Alberta-developed Evans cherry tree that has been sold in the millions across cold areas of Canada and the United States. He tested them back in the 1970s shared them with as many people as he could.

And something that is dear to our hearts: He grows figs in Edmonton!

Straw-bale Gardening and Epic Tomatoes

Craig LeHoullier (Photo by  Kip Dawkins)

Craig LeHoullier (Photo by Kip Dawkins)

We talk about straw-bale gardening and tomatoes with NC Tomatoman, a.k.a. Craig LeHoullier. 

Craig is the author of the books Epic Tomatoes AND Growing Vegetables in Straw Bales. He was co-host of Tomatopalooza, and is a co-leader of the Dwarf Tomato Breeding Project.

And something that is dear to our hearts: He has a garden where his driveway used to be!

Year-Round Vegetable Gardening

Year-round vegetable gardening with Niki Jabbour, author of a book we LOVE, The Year-Round Vegetable Gardener. Niki is a zone-pushing and season-extending vegetable gardener in Nova Scotia who tells us about cold frames, cloches, hot caps, and hoop tunnels—and what crops grow well in them. We also talk to Niki about her fabulous new book Veggie Garden Remix, which is full of ideas for new and unusual crops for the vegetable garden.