My name is Debra Graff, and I live in the mountains of southwest Virginia. I have been a gardener for over 35 years, and have an Associate of Science degree in organic agriculture. I have trained New River Valley Master Gardeners in vegetable gardening, and have taught organic gardening as an adjunct assistant professor at Virginia Western Community College in Roanoke.
Most of my experience has been with growing organic vegetables in small raised beds. I have grown many types of vegetables, including celeriac, bulb fennel, endive, leeks, and more. My garden also includes eight varieties of berries and dwarf fruit trees in small 4′ x 4′ or 3′ x 16′ raised garden beds, and flowers to attract beneficial insects, butterflies, hummingbirds, and song birds.
I have harvested fresh food every month of the year here in the mountains of southwest Virginia by using inexpensive unheated cold frames. My personal goal is to produce 70-80% of the fruits and vegetables that I eat, and I am almost there. I have recently had to start growing more crops in raised containers to be able to continue gardening with my increasing disabilities.
I have worked with both lovely loam topsoil and the toughest clay. I’ve struggled with growing a garden in a major frost pocket, with killing freezes as late as May 23rd and as early as the first week of September. I also understand the challenges of gardening on a limited budget.
I love teaching organic gardening, and sharing my experiences in producing abundant crops of food in small spaces. My goal for this website is to help you learn how to grow abundant crops of organic fruit and year-round vegetables using advanced techniques with your raised garden beds, even if you have limited money to invest in your garden. I hope you find this information helpful.
…so everyone can learn to harvest abundant food from small gardens!