Tuesday, July 28, 2009
How our garden does grow!!
This is our Square Foot Garden. It's doing amazing! Drew calls the soil mixture 'Drew's Mix' instead of 'Mel's Mix'. He insists he told Mel all the information he wrote in the book. :) He's having a great time with it. We have harvested some lettuce and some basil and cilantro here and there. We'll have another salad today, as the lettuce leaves are taking over the whole box now!
The first picture is the box on our landing, there are 8 square feet boxes. The 2nd picture is the one on our deck, you can't see it all, as I can't get the right angle without going down the stairs.
It's so much fun to see it grow and to start to harvest some things from it. Now I am looking into seeds that I can plant and harvest before winter, and, if I'm lucky, I'll also find some seeds that will grow throughout the winter, and then we can harvest them in the early summer before we start our summer plants. It's so much fun to play with, learn from and nourishing out bodies with!
Next year we hope to start a lot from seed and go with heirloom varieties mostly. And then we can save our seeds every year and know we are getting the best varieties.
Oh, and I'm trying my hand at compost. It's nasty smelling, but I'm convinced that it's the best way to insure high nutrient content in the food we grow. It's cheaper then vitamins! So I'm not giving up on it yet-my poor family!
The first picture, while I may not remember everything (Drew is the master gardener), has turnips, cucumber, lettuces, carrots, squash, tomato, peas and zucchini. The smaller box to the right has a green pepper plant and another squash I think. The white planter, which is mostly covered by the rail, has Myia's watermelon plants in it. The zucchini, cucumbers, tomatoes, watermelon and squash are supposed to grow up the trellis of nylon netting that is in the picture. Mel from the Square Foot Garden book insists it works great, so we are going to give it a try. You tie plastic grocery bags to the netting to hold each of the heavier plants as they grow. That is the part that Drew is most excited about.
The 2nd picture has cilantro, green onions, wintergreen, mint, red basil, asian variety lettuce (yum!), pepper, broccoli, oregano and parsley and cabbage.
The things are growing like weeds-but without any weeds. The kids are enjoying the project almost as much as us adults. :) I do hope it will eventually pay itself off in produce that it produces. And for now, just going out to cut some fresh cilantro or basil is so fun and rewarding. I do hope to bring some of the herbs and lettuces inside for the winter.
In the backyard, we have a gray trash can that we planted some potato sprouts. We hope it will grow a bunch of potatoes for us. And I've read that you can plant winter potatoes that you can harvest in December, and spring potatoes that you harvest early as well. So, ideally, we'll eventually have 3 harvests of potatoes from that one container. Although that may be asking entirely too much. :)
Here is a picture. It's not great, but I'm very proud of our efforts. :) We're not sure if the sprouts will work, but we're hoping. Once we get a crop going, then we'll just save a few potatoes to replant. Drew cut some holes in the bottom of the trash can, and then we put the Mel's Mix on the bottom, put 5 cuts of potato, sprouts facing up, around the outside, and one on the inside, and then we put about 2 inches of soil on top of them. If they grow, then we will continue to add more soil to cover the sprouts until they read the top of the can. And then they should stop growing up and just start growing potatoes. It's a very exciting thought!
It's fun to dream and plan......