Thursday, March 15, 2012

My Garden Project

I always liked the idea of having a garden and planned to plant one whenever we bought a house and had a yard.  I had always planned on having some flower beds too- (in our yard at our house).  Currently we don't really have much of a yard so neither a garden nor flower bed seemed like a good possibility.  (We do have a little area in the front where I could have a flower bed but I have never wanted to invest the time or money in it since we were only going to be here for a year...and then one more year...and then just one more year...)

Behind our row of townhouses there is a pretty big drop off into a large ditch with some trees that separate us from the backs of other townhouses. We've been here three years (or at least Chris has) and it is somewhat embarrassing to admit that I never really looked back there.  I had seen lawn men throw their grass clippings back there; Chris has thrown away dead house plants back there, and one of the neighbors always warned her daughter not to go back there because there were snakes.  So really I thought it was basically a wasteland and never bothered to walk around or pay much attention to it.

Well because we've been out back quite a bit throwing the ball with Knox (and he will venture back into the wasteland) I actually went back there and walked around, and guess what I found?  There are some beautifully terraced garden areas.  Turns out one of my neighbors and her late husband built them years ago and had a pretty nice garden.  The area hasn't been used in several years; its a shame for it to sit there unused- hence my garden project.

Look at this- it is just calling my name asking to have vegetables planted in the dirt. (sorry the light isn't great in the picture)

So when my parents were here last weekend my Dad and I ripped up all the old rotting ground cover, and he helped me rent a rototiller to till up the soil to get it ready for planting.  Thanks Dad!  I couldn't have done it without you!

We even tilled one strip of land in what probably used to be a flower bed, but hasn't been cared for in awhile.

The neighbors are very excited and this will definitely turn out to be a community garden.  Its quite a bit of space so I'm hoping not to get myself into a project that I can't keep up with.

One of my neighbors helping already...

It wasn't cold enough for snow this winter, so she decided
to make dirt angels instead...

We tilled up a golf ball that is now Knox's favorite.
The trouble is going to be keep him out of the garden

Look at how good this soil looks now.

OK so maybe its a little hard to tell, but it looks good and I'm pretty proud of it so far.  I took a soil sample to the extension office to have the soil tested to see exactly what type of fertilizer I'll need and if I need any lime.  I should hear back from them in about a week.  We're planning on planting a summer garden so we'll wait another month or so to plant.  I did go ahead and plant some spring vegetables- peas, lettuce and then I have three broccoli drills to plant today that a lady from church gave me.

If anyone has any gardening advice, I welcome it.  This is new territory for me...  And I'm currently looking for some mulching recommendations.  Any thoughts?

If this works you can all come over and pick some produce because I'm sure we'll have more than we can eat!

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