Saturday, March 15, 2008

The Garden is Ready!

WOO HOO!!!!! I am SO excited. We went and got a load (3 cubic yards) of compost today. Filled four half barrels, filled the garden bed (and I mean FILLED - we are now officially raised bed, because the soil is to the top edge of the cinderblocks). We didn't even till because it ended up being so much soil.

I planted the peas and beets in the garden itself, and I planted a lettuce mix and some assorted salad greens in two of the half barrels. We'll get strawberries for the other two half barrels.

I've decided to try something different this year. Instead of planting in rows, I'm going to plant in chunks. We're going to get some more cinder blocks to make a sort of path down the middle of the garden (one cinder block wide).

While we were shoveling dirt out of the trailer, we had a long conversation about year-round gardening and how we could get by with buying as little produce as possible. I think we're going to give it a shot. In the fall we're going to expand the garden (we were going to do it this spring but it's been too rainy and the one weekend we actually could have done it, we were both sick). That will help a lot.

The one type of vegetable we haven't had success with is the brassica family (broccoli, brussels sprouts, cabbage, stuff like that). They grow fabulously well, but they end up COVERED in aphids and we can't get them off. We've killed the grass around the garden this year, so hubby thinks if we stay on top of keeping that dead (and maybe I'll get get some organic aphid spray) we'll be ok. So I'll just buy a single broccoli plant this year and see how that does. Broccoli is hubby's favorite vegetable, and it would be wonderful if we could grow it ourselves.

In the meantime, the seeds I started inside are doing fabulously. The tomato plants are HUGE (for those of you who live near me and have a garden, I'll have some tomato plants to give away this year), and the celery root is actually starting to look like a celery plant. Soon I'll move the tomatoes to a different container and start some leeks. I need to give the onions a hair cut - they're getting awfully leggy.

I am so excited about gardening season this year! Now, I just need to maintain that excitement, through all the weeding, and watering, and harvesting, and prepping before eating...


MamaZuzi said...

I have to admit, you blow me out of the water with your gardening ability and timeliness. I always think this will be the year I'm on top of it and it never is... of course running after a 5 and an 8 year old distracts me a bit. I am both inspired by you and frankly put off thinking I'll never come close to your efforts. Ugh. Maybe next year! :-)

kbeeps said...

I think vegetable gardening is in my blood - other than a few years when I lived in a dorm room and/or apartment, I've always grown vegetables in some form or another (even if it was just tomatoes in five gallon buckets!).

From the time I was old enough to dig in the dirt, I had a garden plot. We had a fairly large garden growing up, and Dad gave us each our own space to plant whatever we wanted, so we all worked in the garden together, one of our family activities (well, except Mom, she has a black thumb, LOL!).

MamaZuzi said...

By the way, if you are giving... I just may be wanting to have some of your green thumb tomatoes! If you ever get bored and seriously want to help me garden, you are also more than welcome! Maybe you could have a career as a veggie garden designer/consultant.

Norma said...

Woman you are on top of it. I bought my seeds this weekend and now just get have to get my lettuces and peas in the ground. Today I hope. We are seriously committed to a garden this year. I am all about saving money and growing my own. You inspire me. :)

kbeeps said...

I finally saw sprouts in the lettuce this morning! Teeny tiny, but sprouts nonetheless. And I think I saw a pea seed sprouting (somehow it got kicked to the top of the soil), but I may have imagined it. I'll have to go confirm it tonight.

Norma - let me know if you want a couple of tomato plants! I should have four extra of each kind if all goes well, so there can be two for you and two for mamazuzi!

Norma said...

I better take your freebies. My own may not take sprout consider I have a black thumb. YOurs may be my only hope. :) Thanks.