Among all of the unique experiences I’ve had here at the MOTHER EARTH NEWS FAIR this weekend, one of the standouts was watching my friend and MOTHER EARTH NEWS Associate Editor Shelley Stonebrook talk about her passion — gardening! — to a crowd of more than 80 equally enthusiastic gardeners.
A self-proclaimed “gardening addict,” Shelley presented the workshop “10 Great Ways to Make Gardening Easier” over on the Organic Gardening stage, where she offered practical tips on when to plant, choosing varieties, succession sowing, crop rotation, and much more. Shelley’s presentation also included a demonstration of the MOTHER EARTH NEWS Vegetable Garden Planner. For the demo, attendees shouted out the names of crops they’d like to grow and Shelley entered them into the Planner to map a wonderful, healthy, productive garden that included everything from tomatoes to melons to kohlrabi.
Here, check out Shelley’s tips for establishing permanent beds and paths in your garden, which will not only make gardening easier and more efficient but will also lead to healthier soil.