Stock Tank Pools Are Going to be Super Popular This Summer

As the temperatures rise, installing a pool in your backyard probably sounds like a really good idea—until you learn that the average cost of a backyard pool is $20,000 to $30,000. Instead of dropping a ton of cash just to stay cool this summer, you may want to consider a stock tank pool.

These inexpensive farm staples, originally designed as water troughs for livestock and affectionately referred to as “hillbilly hot tubs,” are popping up in more backyards across the country than ever before.

“More and more, we see our customers turning to this innovative solution as a way to enjoy many of the benefits of a pool without the high cost,” reads the Tractor Supply Company‘s website.

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Not only are they more affordable than traditional pools, they’re easier to set up, too. Once you’ve chosen a smooth area in your yard, you can seal and install the cow trough and even add a pump to make it easy to fill and clean.

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Fawning over this baby – Digging

May 22, 2020

A young visitor dropped by my garden yesterday. Actually I think she was here a couple of days ago, although I didn’t see her that day. I was moving around the side of the house and heard a startled rustling in the sedge and thought I might have flushed a fawn from its hiding place.

Yesterday I was dragging trash bins down the driveway and through the back gate, and when I reemerged into the front garden, something caught my eye along the foundation of the house. Curled up behind an ‘Everillo’ sedge, a tiny fawn held still, hoping its camouflaging spots would keep me from seeing it. No luck this time, but I kept a quiet and respectful distance while using my long lens to get these photos.

What a sweet baby, waiting for her mama to come back and collect her. I’ll be on the lookout for her again tomorrow, maybe in a different spot.

In the back garden, another happy sighting: the screech owl that’s been hanging out in the owl box. I don’t really think it’s a nesting female, mainly because it doesn’t sit for long periods in the doorway, like nesting females

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Onions: A Growing Guide

Onions are one of the most indispensable and flavorful ingredients you can cook with. Experiment with raw onions in salads, add them to breads, toss them in soups (you can’t go wrong with a French onion recipe), or use them in casseroles. Plus, onions are known for offering a range of health benefits—they can boost your immune system, regulate your blood sugar levels, and even help to keep your cholesterol under control.

Along with their medicinal properties and ability to bring more flavor to all types of food, they’re also fairly easy to grow, as they can be tucked into spare corners and along the edges of garden beds. If you’re curious about how to incorporate them into your own garden, here’s a helpful primer on how to grow onions:

Varieties of onions:

Onions come in a wide variety of shapes, sizes, and colors. The white, yellow, or red bulbs range in size from small pickling onions to large Spanish cultivars; they can be globe-, top-, or spindle-shaped.

Most types can be pulled young as green onions, but there’s also a perennial bunching type called Allium fistulosum that’s practically disease- and insect-proof and produces superior scallions.


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7 Ways to Grow Potatoes at Home

If you’ve been thinking about growing your own potatoes, now’s the time. But before you get started, you need to consider the right planting approach for your yard. A few years ago, I conducted a test: I grew German Butterball potatoes using seven different planting methods. Throughout the course of the growing season, the pros and cons of each became quite transparent.

Take a look at the different planting methods you can consider, including those that worked the best and which ones delivered less-than-stellar results.

Cheapest: Hilled Rows

Mitch Mandel

Dig straight, shallow trenches, 2 to 3 feet apart, in prepared soil. Plant seed potatoes 12 inches apart and cover with about 3 inches of soil. When the shoots reach 10 to 12 inches tall, use a hoe or shovel to scoop soil from between rows and mound it against the plants, burying the stems halfway. Repeat as needed through the growing season to keep the tubers covered.

Unlike container gardening, there’s nothing to buy or build and no soil to transport. This is a simple, inexpensive, and proven method that farmers have used for millennia. It’s practical for large-scale plantings, also.

However, the quality of the soil

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