Tuesday, April 27, 2010

It's that time of year...

Garden Time!!

Last year, our garden did AWESOME! I never got around to doing a final garden roundup post last year and now I'm so excited about our new garden that I'll just do a quick summary:

The tomato plants rocked it so hard that we didn't cut them down until November-ish and they still had about 100 green tomatoes on them. It was crazy how long they kept producing!! We doubled the number of tomato plants in the garden this year.

The brussel sprouts were a major energy and space suck. They took up so much room and we couldn't even eat the sprouts once they finally matured because they got attacked by spider mites at the very end. The vegetables appeared good, but under every leaf there was a smashed spider mite. We tried to rinse/soak them off to no avail. So we nixed them this year.

Okay, enough of the past, let's get to the good stuff!

We decided early on last year that we were going to need more garden space in the future. So we talked to our super-duper landlord, Larry, about putting in another raised bed. In typical Larry-form, he offered to supply us with all the materials and even go get dirt in his "garden chariot."

Here's Jason and Larry, off to the landscape shop in the mean green garden machine (according to Jason, power steering with no power brakes makes for an interesting ride).

The old raised bed is about 3x7. Our new raised bed is 7x10. That's almost twice the size!! Here is Jason spreading the dirt in the frame that he and Larry built.

Once we had the new bed set, we went to the local garden store and picked up seeds, starts, compost, and fertilizer. I created a plannogram (thank you retail days) to figure out where we should put everything.

Then we layed it all out in its respective places and set to planting starts and seeds.

Here are both beds after we put it all in the ground.

What is really cool about our garden this year is that we got a lot of the starts from other people's gardens. Krissy gave us chives, scallions, garlic, onions, and a baby rhubarb plant. Larry gave us the big rhubarb plant from his garden and some tiny lettuce starts. We traded some parsley back to Larry for the favor. I can't wait until we have more friends and neighbors to share with!

The down side to all this is that it hasn't stopped raining since we put the garden in, thus no sun. I'm a little worried that the plants are going to drown in manure if it doesn't warm up and stop raining. Manure works best when "activated" by heat. When there is no heat, the manure won't decay properly and we could end up with moldy roots. Not good.

But I was outside today staking up the peas with a dismantled, repurposed easel...

...and noticed that the beet seeds are starting to sprout, so that's a good sign!

So for the record, here is what we have growing this year:

From last year's garden -- parsley, rosemary

From other's gardens -- rhubarb, scallions, chives, garlic, onions, lettuce

From starts -- tomatoes (8 kinds), strawberries, purple sage, spinach, romaine lettuce, salad mix, snow peas

From seeds -- green beans, beets, parsnip

Here are things that didn't make it in the main beds, but will hopefully go into containers or old tires (these work great here because they conduct heat to the veggies, we never did this in the South because it is so friggin hot that the plants would probably spontaneously combust):

Watermelon, cucumber, tomatillo, bell peppers

Until next time, happy gardening!!

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