In the Garden

Note: this page is written in reverse chronological order. To start at the beginning, scroll down to the bottom.

~~~~~~~~~~   March 25, 2013   ~~~~~~~~~~

I spent a few days on the diagram and finally got it done! I do this every year, even though the garden never ends up looking like the diagram, but it makes me feel better knowing I have a plan. The herbs are not on here because I keep them in a big container on the porch so I can grab them easier during the dinner rush. And I left some room in front of the cucumbers because I ALWAYS get the garden all planted and then I walk into a store and see a plant on sale for the one thing I'm not growing and I just have to have it, but then I never have anywhere to put it, so I'm planning ahead this year. I'm thinking about putting some radishes in there. Does anyone know if watermelon radishes (or any other radishes) are any sweeter than regular ones, because I like them, but the intense flavor is a bit too much for the boys.

~~~~~~~~~~   March 20, 2013 - Part II   ~~~~~~~~~~

It's been a long winter, but I finally got my butt to the store to pick up some supplies. 
I know I need more stuff, but I was happy just to grab a little something to get me started.

This year's lineup:

Swiss Chard - new for me, I've never grown it nor eaten it (I like to try something new each year)

Sweet Bell Peppers - always a favorite, one of my best producers every year

Cucumbers - the first year went well, the second year not so much

Eggplant - I'm not sure what I'm doing wrong but I can't get anything larger than a small orange to grow out of these silly plants, but I still keep trying because I love the stuff

Carrots - I tried these once - I planted all of the seeds according to the package, but I only ended up with three tiny 2-inch nubs of the sweetest carrot I've ever tasted. Those were (supposedly) full-size ones; this year I bought a smaller breed - we'll see how it goes.

Green and yellow beans - the green beans grew quite well for me the one year that I tried them and this is our first attempt with the yellow

Tomatoes - these are a touchy subject for me. Growing up, it was my job to weed the family garden. Every time I get near a tomato plant and catch the faint almost-peppery scent from the leaves, it takes me right back to my childhood. Now that I'm all grown up, I grow lots and lots of tomatoes in my big garden. The only problem is they always seem to rot just as they begin to turn red. If I were into fried green tomatoes, I suppose this would be a good thing, but I'm not. The truly maddening thing is that my mother can produce a gazillion perfect tomatoes in containers on her back deck! Jealous? Who? Me? Never! (ok, maybe just a little.)
But, being the stubborn determined person that I am, we will give it another go.

Squash - zucchini is one of my favorite veggies to eat and my absolute favorite to grow. No matter what kind of abuse I put these poor things through, they still give me dozens and dozens of squash regularly. As for the yellow variety, I eat it quite often, but have never raised it on my own. I figured it could keep the zucchini company on the days I forget am too tired to water the garden. And the spaghetti squash? Well, my sister got me hooked on that just last month and I was so excited when I saw it sitting there next to the regular plain old yellow squash that doesn't do anything cool at all and I just had to have it.

Peas - I tried peas last year but I only ever got three pods out of the entire 24 plants I set up. 
Multiply that by six peas in each and the three of us split 18 peas for dinner that night. 
I also did snow peas but I didn't love them so much. The way I see it, if I'm going to put my time and hard work and sweat into growing my own food, I don't have time to waste on anything that doesn't make me want to run outside with a basket ready to harvest the day's catch. 
I also recently realized my undying love for sugar snap peas, so they earned a little piece of real estate this year.

Now for the sad part of the story. I had purchased more seeds but that bag somehow got left behind at the store. And that store is an hour away and I only go twice a month so they are holding them for me until the next time I am in the area. In that bag you will find my melons, bush beans, and all my herbs. I love, love, love herbs. I spent years never using anything that didn't come from a bottle in my pantry, but now I count the days through winter until I can have my mini herb garden in the spring. I keep them in a pretty white container right on my porch so I have easy access whenever I'm whipping up something awesome in the kitchen. This year's herb set includes mint and chocolate mint, flat-leaf parsley, sage, thyme, basil, and rosemary.

I do still have some decisions to make. I always plant my garden on a patch of flat ground that we roto-tilled. But the weeds are terrible and the dirt can be a bit hard. I'm torn between 1) container planting on the same ground, 2) finally giving in and doing raised beds, or 3) doing the same old, same old. Thoughts?

~~~~~~~~~~   March 20, 2013 - Part I   ~~~~~~~~~~

Around these parts, I am known as the person who can kill any plant just by looking at it. 
Plants wither when I walk into a room. You think I'm joking, don't you?
I had an "un-killable" resurrection plant (a "forever fern" or some such nonsense) that was guaranteed to live no matter what you did to it - even if you didn't water it for months. 
Yup, I killed it.
Spider plant? 
Never had a chance. 
Fresh flowers? 
Dead within 48 hours. 
Pick a plant, any plant, any plant at all - at some point or another, it has died under my watch. Living things and I don't seem to mix well. Seriously, it's amazing my kids are still here.

But every now and then, the soil is just right, the water is perfect, the sun isn't too hot, the weeds and bugs take a vacation, the planets align just right and I get to witness the absolute miracle of food being created from a tiny little seed that was nurtured under my care. 
And even if I only get one edible fruit or vegetable out of my garden all season, 
I know it will be the best thing I eat all year.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thanks for stopping by! I would love to know what you think about what you've read here today. Lucky for us, someone left this box here for just that purpose...

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...