Wednesday, January 26, 2011
Sunday, January 23, 2011
Parson Weems may have gotten his story wrong, but I sure didn’t. Ever since I started my veggie garden I have been dealing with areas that don’t get the full sun I need. This is chiefly due mainly to two main culprits: a good-sized juniper tree at the west end of my garden and my
mortal enemy neighbor’s fifth-wheel trailer. For years now, I have been cursing both of them but since I can’t (legally) chop down my neighbor’s trailer, I CAN cut down the tree, which I finally did this weekend.
I do not have a chainsaw, so I borrowed one from my friend Vance (who was currently borrowing it from a friend of his). So he and the chainsaw came over on Saturday afternoon and we set to work. The chain was really dull so it was taking quite a while, so when we came to the bigger parts, I decided to head on over and get a new chain. MAN, that makes a big difference. It cut like butter after that.
Viola! One step closer to ‘full sun’ and now I have a good amount of fire wood for later in the year and I can add the wood ashes back into my compost pile! Now, what will the future hold for the trailer?
Over the fall and winter I never expect much from the garden, but this year I decided to sew a few things that were 'winter-friendly' and see what happened. I planted some lettuce, spinach, broccoli, and green onions. Not much of it really took, except the lettuce, until the week of rain we had just before Christmas last month. So today we had a taco salad using a head of butter lettuce.
Green Fruit Beetle grubs, which are breaking down the organic matter. I also started adding some of the compost material into the beds to get ready for this spring's planting.
So when I got home today I re-planted some of the beds. I actually started some seeds back in November last year so I do have a few things growing already. Alot of things I planted in the fall didn't make it but the carrots and butter lettuce did so that's cool.
I am trying a new seed company this year -- Sustainable Seed Company. Since I started the garden in 2004 I've used Burpee but I wanted to try a company that offered more organic and heirloom seeds (plus the prices are really nice). So I am trying to do an all-heirloom vegetable garden this year. I come from a long line of American farmers who worked their way from Virginia to Kentucky to Missouri to Colorado to California. Perhaps some of these veggie varieties may have been the same that they ate sometime somewhere.
So here's what I got in the ground so far:
Broccoli (Green Sprouting Calabrese) - I've had trouble getting this started from seed
Carrots (Scarlet Nantes) - I have some of these growing and just filled in the bald spots with some more seeds.
Lettuce (Tom Thumb) - Got a little bit of this growing already and planted some more today.
Spinach (Bloomsdale Long-Standing)
I always wanted to have my own vegetable garden but after we got married we spent almost three years in an upstairs apartment. Yeah, I tried the whole "herbs on the balcony" planters and pots of tropical plants I bought at the fair, but everything eventually "past away". If only I had an irrigation system out on the balcony (and sunshine). Now that I think about it, I seemed destined to fail...=-(
So when we moved into our house in the summer of 2003 I was pumped up to have a garden!!! Now, my backyard is loaded with bougainvillea that blocks alot of sun and frankly, I'm scared of it so I try to stay away from it...so the backyard was not looking good for a garden spot...so it was up to the front yard to fulfill my dreams (no pressure, front yard).
Well, there was a small area between my driveway and my neighbor's driveway that was choked with crabgrass and Lilies of the Nile (ugh!). So I figured there was no rule about putting a vegetable garden in the front yard so I dove in and tore out the grass et al. and tilled up the dirt and in the spring of 2004 I put in my first veggies and every year since then, around February or March I get out there and get my seeds in the ground.
This is by no means a garden meant to save us money or get us through the winter like Barbara Kingsolver. It is for us and our friends and I like it that way.