Our box gardens are finally in, and planted. The building of the gardens by this weekend was a big goal for me, and I was really happy to see them planted. This is really our first big sqft garden. As such, traditionally this is the year we learn what we are doing wrong, what not to do, and how to royally mess things up. I hope lessons will not be too painful. I think foraging has spoiled me. I am used to just walking out with a bag harvesting what the season provides. This gardening thing is a lot of work.

I Thought I would pull together all the photos of the build.



Entire family is working on garden boxes. Doing six 4’x4’ and on one 10’x2’ (for three sisters planting). Using up the scrap off the rafters from last years addition. The extended feet are just help anchor them down. I am lining the wood because it is untreated pine. The last one I built lasted 10 years and was still not rotten. I just took it out to help sell my house. Also putting down chicken wire to keep the critter from borrowing up into them. I will post more pics later but having so much fun building them thought I would post some now. Again more practical then pretty. (I have 5 done so far)

I was just wondering, any particular reason you staggered the joints at the corners instead of flushing the boards uniformly? Does this create more stability or is this for aesthetics?

I am going to trim out the top, when I finish my coop and a couple other things. Once the top trim is on I will put in 3/8” corner rods for strength. Probably overkill, but I have the rod and drill bit left over from another project.

So a bunch of oyster mushrooms bloomed. Today I harvested some for lunch. I never have time to cook decent lunch so here is my quickly receipt for oysters. I make them up in the toaster oven.

Toaster oven oyster mushrooms
3 or 4 cups of oyster mushrooms (see picture)
2 tbs of butter
2 egg whites
Seasoned bread crumbs (I think my wife puts garlic powder black pepper and dried parsley in them)
Old bay 1 to 2 tbs
And some flower to toss the mushrooms in.

Melt the butter and add 2 egg whites.
Add the old bay to the bread crumbs.

Toss mushrooms in flower, then the egg wash, then the bread crumbs. Bake gills up at 450 for 10 min., flip then 10 min. more or till golden brown.

They taste awesome, I do not dip them in anything. I think most dips make oyster mushrooms taste like fish, and if I wanted fish, I would go fishing. I make oysters in just butter all the time. They have a unique taste. I have been told that the foraged oysters taste different from the store bought. I have never bought them, but I can see that being true. The foraged ones seem to all taste different from each other, some stronger tasting and some very mild.
Happy hunting!

Hi! I just reblogged your dandelion wine post because my mom and I harvested today & are making some. What I didn’t realize was I’m from the Erie area too! I showed her your blog and we’re both psyched because we love stuff like this.

Right on, I saw your post on the dandelions. Looks like you do a better job of picking the pedals then we do. (We are a little messy). Looking forward to seeing what you two find this summer. Cool to have someone looking around in the same area. Happy hunting.

Inky caps (Coprinus micaceus) jumped up yesterday. I am having them for breakfast today and some tomorrow. They are a good mushroom for omelets or just cooked up on some toast. You will not find them in store because the decompose into black mush with-in a couple hours of harvest. Because they have poison look-a-likes they are not a beginners mushroom but they are close to one and can be learned with relative ease. In this area they are one of the fist mushrooms of spring….

I wrote the above last night. This morning and went out to pick some. I cooked them up in butter with a little salt and pepper, and put them in a bowl for use in an omelet. 15 minutes later I walked back up into the yard again to find more because I had eaten all of them while trying to help the kids make mothers day breakfast. They taste way more awesome then I remembered.