In The Garden – 2015

You might think now that I have a perfect lounging spot on my porch I’m just going to loll about all summer, drinking wine and reading books and not doing doing much work…

Right.

Except in all of my spare time (that I haven’t been building patio furniture or getting chased around my property by bees) I’ve been working out here.

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Oh, this garden. You know, I can see it in my head: a beautiful, relaxing, well-tended space with raised beds and gravel paths, and a funky little greenhouse in the middle. But damned if it won’t be a couple more years until we get there. (Didn’t I once build a house over 18 months in my spare time? What the hell.) Three years and this garden is still… well.

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There’s some work to do yet.

Still, two summers ago all I had was a couple of boxes stuck in the middle of my lawn, so I’m making some progress.

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(Any asshole who knocks out a full 20-bed, fenced-in garden in a weekend–cough-HGTV-cough– is full of it. When you have a full-time job and ADHD that shit takes years.)

Now, previously, the hard part was that I had to do all the “building” before I could even start growing anything, but this year I finally reached the turning point and had a good set of beds ready to go so I could actually get things growing first, then work on all the building. (Well. That’s a novel idea.)

So, even though it’s a couple of weeks early, I happened to drive by the greenhouse last weekend (conveniently located just down the road from the liquor store, uh, speaking of good ideas) and this happened…

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Who’s surprised?

I just… guys, listen. There is a part of my soul that just needed to have some shit growing in the garden already, okay? With the full understanding that I might have to run out at night in my pajamas and cover all of said growing shit with buckets should there be a threat of frost in the next 4 weeks WHICH I TOTALLY DID. (Plus a bottle of wine.)

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It didn’t even frost that night, but I WAS READY.

Okay, so, here’s what went in last weekend (with the help of my mom, obv, because this is totally what we did for Mother’s Day):

  • Cucumbers
  • Zucchini
  • Yellow Squash
  • Tomatoes (Early Girl, Better Boy, and Sweet 100’s)
  • Broccoli
  • Beans
  • Peppers
  • Radishes
  • Celery
  • Spinach
  • More strawberry plants

Really, it just feels good to have something growing out there, but there’s still a ton of work to do.

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(Also, those trellises/chicken-guards came from terrain.com if you’re wondering… not sponsored, just awesome. And kinda expensive, but I still like them.)

So much work. I wouldn’t even mind hiring help for this, but how in the hell do you hire help for your half-assed half-finsihed projects? You don’t. At this point you’re committed to finishing that shit yourself.

So, fine, I got this. Over the next three weekends here’s what I’m hoping to do:

  • Till and plant corn
  • Install 10 new beds
  • Start on the gravel paths & massive weeding on “the other side” of the garden
  • Plant more herbs in the existing borders

Hahahaha. Of course 1.) It took me two summers to get the first ten beds in, and 2.) According to the weather forecast it’s supposed to rain until, like, October. So.

So.

No excuses, you guys, if I have to till shit in the rain, I’m going to till shit in the rain.

Anyway, once the beds are (and filled with another 4000 pounds of dirt), here’s the rest of my planting list for this year:

  • Pickling cucumbers
  • Roma tomatoes
  • Acorn squash
  • Butternut squash
  • More beans (bush and kidney)
  • Brussels sprouts
  • Onions
  • Potatoes

I’d guess this is about 30% wishful thinking, but you never know because sometimes I surprise even myself. And also sometimes I buy a lot of tools that help me get the job done faster (tractor implements, I’m looking at you.) We’ll see. It took me three damn days to write this post, but I promise to check in quickly after the weekend to let you know how I did.

And also, just because, Spring donkey faces…
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Okay. I’m done now.

24 Responses

  1. Send some rain my way! Great list and am sure a huge portion you’ll accomplish, if not all! Me? I have one edible ready to pot … lol … Italian Basil, of course! May have to find a few peppers and plum tomatoes to go with it. Now my flower beds are in awesome shape!

  2. I’ve found bamboo online that’s relatively cheap that makes for good trellises. All it takes is some wire, a 1/16″ drill bit and a bottle of pinot. Two bottles works too, if you don’t mind spending half the time singing along to cheesy 80’s music on Pandora. Not that I would know anything about that.

    If you’re cramped for space, look into vertical potato beds… You start with four posts, ~3′ high or so after their buried and 1×8 planks. Start one course of planks and fill with compost. Add your plants and as they grow add another course of planks and more dirt/compost until full. You harvest by removing the planks starting at the bottom and work your way up as needed.

  3. ok..loong time lurker who might just be your Mom’s age. My own gardens started like yours and have grown to about an acre..don’t fight the grass…its much easier to mow..w/ a tractor and belly mower if you set things up right, then fight weeds in gravel or mulch. If you step back your beds will be surrounded w/ a nice clover grass mix that will feed your bees as well as add lots of nitrogen and provide great garden bed mulch for all your veggies. Most picture worthy gardens are unsustainable in the long run w/o wasted energy weeding. Besides..why do u think subcompact tractors have cup holders ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. yeah we have been talking about building wooden raised beds for years but with cinderblocks being so easy to get for free around here and no hammering or measuring needed, we still have all our beds made of those. whatever works ๐Ÿ™‚

  5. Love your setup Kit. I know the heavy wire cattle panels 50″X 16′ cut to size needed, work awesome for trellieses or very good heavy duty triangular tomato supports. Just cut to size and hook corners together with simple hog ring plier and hog rings, last forever. Horse security panels the same size with about 1-1/2″ X4″ openings would work good for nugget garden guards – cut to size. Possibly when doing the house in 18mos. you had some subs, more help and fixed deadlines.
    It’s been icky rainy cool weather most of the midwest messing up garden planting, landscaping projects and moral mushroom hunting.
    Enjoy the donkey faces for sure!
    constant growth…:-)
    JLC

  6. Hi Kit – Is it my wonky old OS? This is the 3rd notification I have gotten via email, all with different titles, but linked to the same article. I am beginning to think you are being held hostage and trying to communicate an SOS! Just thought you might want to check into it – or not – like I said – it might just be me. I do enjoy reading about your escapades though. Hope all is well.

    1. It’s not you! I don’t know what is going on with my email subscription service… it just randomly sent out a post from two months ago. Sorry for the confusion!

  7. I see – when I click on the first header – I get here. When I click onto the second header, I get to the duck.
    Glad you’re not being held hostage by anything other than donkeys and nugs.

  8. Are you OK Kit? I have to say that I am suffering from withdrawal symptoms โ€” it’s been 13 days since you last posted ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. I’m wondering the same thing… maybe she fell off the tractor and is lost in the back acres, and they’ve grown to heights taller than petite Kit! She is lost… I wonder if the pets can track?? We should all start calling loudly.

      1. Ha. I’m totally fine, just a bit overwhelmed with all the work (day job and farm work) over the last couple of weeks…

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