We have been putting in our garden recently. I wish I could just say it happened in a day, or over a weekend or that we could even pin it down to a particular week, but it just isn’t so. It’s kind of been a process over a couple of weeks as we have found time.
Garden season actually starts in the winter with seed trays and grow lights in the basement. Joseph put in our seed order this year, and Catherine helped him get the seeds started. Temperature is important for good germination. You need about seventy degrees. This year we started tomatoes, okra, broccoli, and peppers. The tomatoes alone did well. It was a busy time with a wedding at the end of April, school, life in general, and laundry (always its own entity). So, time got away from us and our young seedlings did not get optimum care. We supplemented from the nursery.
My favorite crops are tomatoes, radishes, okra and green beans. I like radishes because they are the first crop of the season. They give me that instant gratification that I need and the belief that the other plants and seeds will eventually bring forth fruit. I can’t wait for the first tomatoes of the season and relish the joy of just eating them out of the garden all summer and fall. Green beans and okra are just good, plentiful, producers and give us fresh vegetables for the table all summer. We also are growing potatoes, cabbage, kale, carrots, and eggplant.
Raised Beds and Container Gardening
We live in town on just over a half acre of land. The part of our yard with enough sunlight to garden is quite limited, so we look look for creative ways to fit it in. Most of our garden is grown in raised beds along the south side of our property. We grow our tomatoes in earth boxes. I love earth boxes because they take the guess work out of plant care and you can use them anywhere, even in small spaces in the city. You just water them daily until water comes out of the overflow hole and thats it. They also deliver with really abundant produce.
We added some additional perrienial plants to our mix this year. Perrienials are great because you plant them once and they give you food every year with very little care. We already have raspberries on one side of our shed and rhubarb on the other. This year we added blueberries along the side of our front walk. Blueberriy bushes make a nice hedge line and turn a lovely deep crimson in the fall. Next, we tucked an asparagus bed on the south side of the chicken pen and one on the south east side of our property line. And finally, we are starting strawberries in pots that will eventually make a new bed beside our small driveway in the back. John is an enthusiastic gardener and is great at finding nooks and crannies to expand our growing capacity.
Gallery of Garden Images
We are also triying something totally new this year that we have wanted to do for a long time. We are making a green bean tipi. Our neighbor aquired an abundance of bamboo poles and shared some with us. Catherine and Samantha put it together and Catherine strung it. She confessed to kind of feeling like a spider. The beans are sprouting and we are hoping for a great tipi. Adeline loves it already even without all the green beans on it.
So that’s our garden this year. We have high hopes for an abundant harvest. But even if we don’t, it’s a great learning experience and we always enjoy it. Are you growing a garden this year? What’s in it? What are your best tips for a great garden?
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