About Me

Welcome to my organic kitchen gardening blog.

This is me, in the middle of the picture, and in the middle of my potager,
picking carrots with a couple of my favourite little garden visitors. 

About me....

I'm Tanja and I live on Vancouver Island, the wet and wonderful west coast of Canada, with my husband of nearly 30 years, two sweet English Mastiffs, Ruby Tuesday and Penelope, and Beaner the kitty.

We all live happily on 1.1 acres on the edge of a small city. Not rural, but not quite suburban either, somewhere in between, kinda like a country-style 'burb ; )

The gardening here on the island is pretty fantastic, a Zone 7 gardening area with mild and wet winters followed by temperate but dry summers.

Planting companion flowers with edibles. 

I LOVE to grow food.

In my raised garden beds, I grow whatever the family wants to eat, plus extra to share, and I like to experiment with the new things, too. It's (usually) not actually a new thing, but just something new to me. I have to grow it and test it, you never know when you might stumble upon a new favourite thing! Like growing sweet potatoes!


Heirloom tomatoes are my absolute passion though, all colours and kinds. I have been crazy about them ever since I grew my first purple tomato over 20 years ago. Purple Prince blew me away with both flavour and vigor, and I have been hooked on heirlooms ever since. I still grow Purple Prince every year, it never ceases to amaze.



The Nitty Gritty Potager blog is all about growing food ... in a cottage style kitchen garden fashion, using poly-culture practices.

Poly-culture is just a fancy schmancy way of saying that I create diversity in the garden by planting flowers and herbs in with the edibles for a healthier, happier, bee-buzzing, organic food garden.

My flip flop feet ; ) 

I share what I do each month, as well as tips about how to grow organic year round. You will also, occasionally, find ideas for crafting or canning ... whatever has caught my fancy at the time.

 The potager on a rainy afternoon.  

As a passionate organic food grower, I not only grow food my own using these techniques, but also teach, advocate, and promote kitchen gardening ... plus, folks are free to roam my gardens for ideas, and sample the goods, too ; )

I find the Urban Homesteading movement to be one of the best things to have happened in many decades! It excites me that we are all slowly but surely starting to rip out lawns in favour of food crops, mini orchards, and chicken coops, getting back to the land, so to speak... even if our land happens to be a small city lot!


Ps... I recently became a new grandmother, too. Little Gage is the apple of this Nana's eye ; )