Thursday, May 19, 2016

Garden post: Spring 2016

It's been a while. This is always an off and on thing. Sometimes, life is just full of stuff you don't want to talk about on the internet "out there," or sometimes it's the status quo. There's been a lot of both in my life.

But I'm here today to talk about the garden! I do this mostly so I can reflect in years to come on what I did each year. I actually have checked back here to see what I was thinking, or what worked/failed in the past.

Last year, I remember the irrigation system I spent months working on just wouldn't cut it. I gave up on it by late June and decided to use a half-assed elevated sprinkler instead (I put a sprinkler on an upside-down barrel in the middle of the garden). I didn't amend my soil at all, which was probably a huge problem. I've never really amended the soil until this fall, when I reflected on the overall failure of my 40+ tomato plants. 

So this year, we actually sifted our soil and amended it with gypsum and fertilizer specifically for vegetables and tomatoes. We sifted our soil because we still had massive amounts of gravel mulch in the garden area from the previous owner's wonderful pool installation. It's a terrible thing to have to do, inch by inch, foot by foot. We used an old panel to a chicken coop run to sift through shovelful after shovelful of dirt. It's still not all gone, but hopefully, we'll see a benefit after all the work out in the cold.
We've also got three new 4'x8' beds. One currently has well over 100 onions planted, the middle bed has five Waltham butternut squashes planted (I hear they need mega amounts of space, and possibly a trellace!), and the third was prepped today by my dear husband for 24-72 sets of corn. I want 72. We can feasibly get 72 in there, but I've been met with resistance. 

Unfortunately, my luck with the corn seedlings didn't come through and we had to buy 24 plants. I'm hoping I may still have time to get a bunch more planted and sprouted. Fingers crossed. 

Here's a run-down of what we have planted. No one knows how successful it will be! Hooray science! (Some of these have very low numbers because the seedlings didn't all make it):

- 64 tomatoes (varieties include Bill Bean, San Marzano, Indigo Blue, Boxcar Willie, Amish Slicer)
- 4 Black Beauty eggplant
- 2 generic zucchini
- 3 Canadian crookneck squash
- 12 peppers (varieties include a red, yellow, and purple; can't remember the names)
- 30 Homemade pickles (everyone we know enjoys the pickles we make, so we grow many!)
- 6 Bok choy
- 6 Lacinato kale
- 32 hardneck garlic
- 3 fennel
- Detroit red beets
- Provider bush beans
- Sugarsnap peas
- Appaloosa dry beans
- 100+ red, yellow, and white onions
- 5 Waltham butternut
- 24-72 Honey n' Pearl corn
- Kennebec potatoes (approx. half a bag of "seed")

We've also started growing things in window boxes on our chain-link fence, that goes all the way around the yard in the back. We've got lettuce, strawberries, and some herbs in zip-tied window boxes. So far, vertically, they're only on the top rung of the fence. We plan to put a lot more on the fences (and probably annoy our neighbors) and grow things which will work in a window-box sized space.

We're hopeful for this season's garden since we've tried some new things to start out. What have you got growing?

1 comment:

Pangalin said...