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The Cultivator
Weeds, Bees and Zucchini
The CobraHead Newsletter
July 2013
Hello, Friends of CobraHead,

I had a two part fig harvest this year. Well, I should say I almost had a two part fig harvest. About a month ago I harvested about half of my black mission figs, more than enough to fill the dehydrator. The other half still weren't ripe, so I left them for later. I found that these figs taste best when they get almost overripe; what would be considered bad if they were a peach, for example. So I let the second half of the harvest get even riper than the first half. And then thought, one more day won't hurt.

But the next day, every fig was gone. Even the ones that had fallen to the ground. I don't think it was birds, because the birds usually leave half eaten fruit hanging on the branch. I suspect a possum, as I've seen some in the neighborhood, but I can't say for sure.

Oh well, I'm still enjoying the dried figs from the first half of the harvest and I sent a package of them to my parents, Judy and Noel, in Wisconsin where figs would be difficult to grow. They should receive them about the same time that you get this newsletter.

In case you didn't see it, we got an excellent mention in the New York Times on July 4. It's a big deal for a small company like ours. See the link in Noel's sidebar.

In this issue, Noel identifies Common Strawberry Weeds, Judy shares a recipe for Zesty Lime Grilled Zucchini, and I describe how to build Nesting Logs for Native Bees.

What's the worst four-legged pest in your garden? Drop me a line at

Happy gardening,

Geoff (Austin, Texas)

Wood sorrel
Wood Sorrel in Strawberry Bed
Noel identifies several of the most common strawberry weeds and shares his strategy for keeping them under control.

See the article here.
Grilling Zuchinni
Grilling the Zuchini
Good food awaits those who read this recipe.  It's easy.  It's tasty. Not much more to say.

Bee Nesting Log
Nesting log for bees

Want to provide some shelter for pollinators working hard in your garden?  This project doesn't take take long and looks cool, too.  See how to make your own bee nest here.

If you like our newsletter and our products or if you have some suggestions, we'd love to hear from you.

If you have gardening friends or if you know potential gardeners who might be interested in CobraHead and what we have to say about gardening and eating, please to them. 
It is the mission of CobraHead to help people grow their own food and to provide exceptional products and services to all gardeners.  We try hard to "walk the walk" when it comes to issues of sustainability and in deciding what is best for ourselves and the environment as we grow our little company.  We've chosen to make our tools locally, here in Wisconsin, and we think that bigger is not necessarily better.  Gardening might just be earth's great hope, and in any case it's a great hobby.
Thank you,
Noel, Judy, Geoff and Anneliese
The CobraHead Team
In This Issue
Common Strawberry Weeds
Zesty Lime Grilled Zuchini
Building Bee Nests


Bumblebee on Oregano

I got up on the Fourth of July expecting to relax, enjoy some down time, and catch up in the garden going into the long weekend.  I hadn't yet trellised my tomatoes, I wanted to get another bed of potatoes planted, and there was always more weeding to be done.  I turned on my cell phone to check e-mails and saw that over a dozen CobraHead orders had come in during the night.  Wow!  That was not usual.  I immediately thought of a possible upcoming mention in the New York Times, and sure enough, one of the orders cited the New York Times as to where they had heard about CobraHead.


In early June I was contacted by Bob Tedeschi, a writer for the Times, who told me he had been commissioned to do an article on ergonomic garden tools.  I told him that we did not promote our tools as engineered to be scientifically ergonomic, but they certainly were ergonomic when evaluated on efficiency and ease of use.  He told me he had heard good things about CobraHead, and we sent him some tools for testing and possible photographs.  The tools got a glowing review. See it here.


The impact has been great for CobraHead.  July 4th was the largest single Internet order day in our history.  But success has nearly done Judy and me in.  We ran out of inventory for our Long Handled tool which created a big backlog and we've been working long hours every day fulfilling orders.  We are barely caught up, and it's been totally exhausting.


The down side to this is that I haven't done anything in the garden since the review showed up.  We barely have enough time to pick the ripe vegetables.  I've just begun to trellis my sprawling tomatoes, the potatoes never got planted.  This year's garden will not end up to be one I can brag about.  Most of my efforts now will be just to salvage what I've already started.  


But I'm super happy for our mention in the Times.  This was by far, the single biggest publicity event we've had, and more confirmation that we are producing a couple excellent garden tools.


We'd like to remind all our readers that we love to grow our own food and to help others do the same.  We post articles about food growing and cooking with home grown food on our website blog, and we almost always have a discussion or several going on about food and growing on our Facebook page.  You can help us spread the word by forwarding this newsletter to a friend and if you have any gardening questions, drop us a note.  If we can't help you we'll find someone who can.


Thanks for reading our newsletter.


Noel (Cambridge, Wisconsin) and the CobraHead Team


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