Elmhurst Hooplah leads to new “Right to Garden” state law

The Illinois General Assembly has passed and sent the Garden Act, aka “Right to Garden Law,” to the governor for signing. I first wrote about this situation in 2018. Hooplah started when Nicole Virgil and her family decided to take their raised-bed organic gardening to the next level by growing as close to year-round as…

The Hooplah in Elmhurst

Sometimes it helps perspective to check out what other communities are doing. DeKalb’s not the only municipality with code enforcement that sometimes looks inconsistent or arbitrary. I’ve been following such a story in Elmhurst for more than a year. A documentary about the Elmhurst controversy is titled “Hooplah” and residents have adopted the same name…

Mid-Season Garden Blog: Abby, the Beetles, ‘Volunteers’ & More

Here is an on-the-job shot of our gardening supervisor, Abby. She joined the family late last fall so we do not yet know if she is also a garden tomato lover like our other German shepherds have been. We had one, Heidi, wouldn’t even wait for an offer, but would sniff out a fat ripe…

Welcome Juliet

Juliet is sized a tad bigger than what I would expect for a grape tomato but smaller than a Roma. Last night she ended up in a salad of just-snipped shredded basil, red onion, avocado, tuna and white beans. We’re having fun with the salads this summer. Earlier this week, it was a mango slaw…

Fried Dandelions

Lots of the “weeds” found in yards have culinary and/or medicinal uses. If you visit mine, you’ll find burdock, chicory, garlic mustard and of course the ubiquitous dandelion. Now is the best time for a salad or spring tonic made of fresh, young dandelion greens that haven’t become embittered, but one of my fave uses…