Friday, May 18, 2007

Growin' in the Garden

I've been keeping busy lately by getting my garden in shape and I now have most of it planted. And I'm soooo happy to say I'm almost done. Are gardens ever "done?" I mean, it's like a WIP but you never really finish... The spinach is up, the cucumbers are peeking through the soil, and the beets are well on their way, and we are already eating radishes! Weeds should be minimal this year (yah, right) because I've put black plastic down, as well as 9 bales of hay on top of newspaper in different areas. I'd do an Indian weed dance, spin on my head, and plant human hair if I thought that would help because I think I've done just about everything but howl at the moon naked at midnight! I don't know how soil can grow more weeds than I have rocks but every year they seem to come back worse than ever, mind you the rocks were pretty bad this year too (just where do they come from?) Hopefully the hay & newspaper/black plastic will work and keep them down. (I feel a howl comin' on).

I've done a lot of things differently this year than in the past, only because of Ed Smith's book "The Vegetable Gardener's Bible." I've had the book for a couple of years and this year I sat down and did more than just leaf through it. What a surprise! He really is a down to earth guy who knows what he's doing. I wish I would have looked at the book better last year. I think the biggest thing to having a nice garden is to organize before you even start planting. This year I put in all my beds, rows, and fences and then planted. I finally realized that you don't have to have one kind of vegetable all together. This year I have carrots in two different spots, onions the same, tomatoes running down three fences as well as cherry tomatoes in a completely different area. I know, I know, it doesn't sound very organized but believe me it's way better than I've ever had it. I still have more tomatoes to plant and I have yet to get my peppers in but I'm waiting until I know the weather will be a bit warmer than what's predicted for the weekend. There's only one thing I wish I could have done differently; I didn't leave enough space at the top of the garden (gasp) and had to plant my watermelon and cantaloupe way too close, so we may end up with "waterlope" or "cantamelon" oh well I hope it tastes good :) At least by blogging about it I hope to remember that glitch next year.

This year I treated myself to a large rototiller as well as a fence sprinkler. The sprinkler should be here any day now (fingers crossed). What's a "fence sprinkler," you ask? Yah I asked the same thing when I heard about it. Take a quick peek over at Lee Valley and you can see it here. Okay I live in the "sticks" so things like this excite me. It sprays up to 11 feet across and that's about 1/2 the width of my garden. I'm hoping to have it all the way down one side or face each other at one end...either way I don't want to haul hoses and sprinklers for the whole garden this year. And if it works... well I just may buy two more sets and I can toss most of the hoses & sprinklers I have! There is nothing worse than dragging around a muddy, wet, hose or dodging a twirling sprinkler in your slippers and jammies first thing in the morning.

Have a great long weekend, and if you phone and I don't answer... I'm in the garden, probably howling at the weeds :)

Here's a photo I took a few days ago... I still have more hay to add and stuff to plant but I'm gettin' there :)


Little Old Liz said...

Oh Kansas!
This City girl says that's no garden, it's a farm!. Good luck putting a hurt on the weeds this year.

Anonymous said...

I think the sprinkler looks like a great idea, it should make watering so much easier. Wow no dragging hoses over plants and pulling a few as you I have done that before and ran over a few precious flowers to boot. The beds look great. It just feels like ummmm "Job well done", you say to yourself. Congrats from me I think it looks like a job well done also. Good luck with the weeds.