DIY Cages & Checking Your Canning Supply Inventory – The Wisconsin Vegetable Gardener

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Joey shows how to make your own tomato cages and Holly talks about checking your canning supplies so you are ready for canning season.

Hsu compost
Dollar Seed Garden Seeds
Manure Tea
Winchester Gardens
The Garden Stamp
Body Mind and Soil Water Filters

Hearty Pantry Throw Together Soup

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I like to use my slow-cooker.  There’s certain things I always keep stocked, like lentils, beans, canned tomatoes…etc. So I was looking through my pantry and came up with this soup.  It is hearty, filling, simple but very tasty!  This is the kind of soup you could add other items to and it would be delicious.  I was going to add some mushrooms but I think I have weekend plans for those, so I held off.


1 28 oz can of diced or crushed tomatoes (if you can your own use a quart of home canned tomatoes)
1 16 oz can of black beans (you could use pinto or white beans too)
1 & 1/2 cups dried lentils
1 packet of dried onion soup/dip mix
1 tablespoon dried italian spices
5-6 cups of water
1 lb of ground turkey or chicken (this is optional, if you dont have this on hand then just add another cup of lentils)

Here’s things that you could add to the soup.  Mushrooms, more tomatoes, corn, carrots, peas, celery or potatoes.  I decided to keep it simple.  Plus, I HATE cooked carrots.


1. Rinse and drain canned beans.  Toss in slow cooker with canned tomatoes, italian seasoning and lentils.

2. Take soup packet and stir it into 1-2 cups  of water, just to help dissolve it.  Put that in the slow cooker.  Add anything else extra, except the meat. Add about 2-3 cups more water. Then stir everything untill well combined.

3.  If you are going to add the meat start rolling into 1 inch sized meat balls.  Drop them into the slow cooker, trying to spread them out.

4. Add enough water so the slow-cooker is about 3/4 full.

5.  Now heres the hard part…Put the lid on and wait 😉

You want to leave it on low for 8 hours or high for 4.

When ready to eat just give it a big stir & serve it up.  I always like to have a nice hearty piece of whole grain bread with my soup.  You could also sprinkle some grated parmesan or mozz on it.  Yum.

Growing Radishes in Coco – Growing Indoors

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Joey and Holly show how to start radishes in coco coir.