Veggies - Spring 2010!
Im gonna start this because several of you are already talking about starting your veggies for this year, and I managed to get out to start turning over my veggie garden todayÂstill havenÂt actually started anything, in OR out! Actually, I take that back! Read on!
I was going to get new siding for the house last year, so I never planted anything in the veggie garden on the side next to the houseÂbut never actually got around to getting the siding anyway! This year I canÂt afford to get the siding, so I decided IÂm just gonna cover up the falling-off-the-house siding with heavier plastic and plant the veggies! How can I go without "real" peas TWO years in a row! So this is what my veggie garden looked like before I started. ThatÂs one of my two piles of ready-to-use compost on the left side between the two batches of "winter time vermiculture leaf bags!"
So I turned over the right side of the garden next to the house, and since it was walked on all last year and wasnÂt worked at all, it was NASTY to dig inÂand in about half of it I was running into two years worth of cottonwood roots! I think IÂve mentioned once or twice around here how much I HATE cottonwood roots, havenÂt I? ;-)
One thing that always amazes me when I turn over the garden is how much more soil I wind up with every year! ItÂs like the Magically Multiplying soil! As near as I can figure out, itÂs because as the clay improves more, it kind of "fluffs up" and takes up more space. Not sure about that, but I sure donÂt remember ever running into Magically Multiplying soil in Illinois for the twenty years I lived there! Well if it multiplies much more IÂm gonna need a step ladder to get on top of the garden, so when I got into the areas with the REALLY heavy clay, I decided I was just gonna throw it in the dumpster this yearÂbut it was all full of worms! I felt SO sorry for those wormsÂliving in that "stuff!" Since I didnÂt want to put the worms in the dumpster I threw all the big clumps of "stuff" on a pile on a corner of the undug part of the garden, and I figure that within the next few days, with the cold weather and the snow, the worms will quickly migrate down into the garden soil, and then IÂll throw the clumps into the dumpster when it dries out enough again after the storm. Anyway, hereÂs what one of those clumps of "stuff" looked like when I was turning it over! I guess itÂs kind of hard to tell in a picture, but you could use that stuff on a potterÂs wheel!
And hereÂs my "clumps of stuff" pile, with the, hopefully, migrating worms! ThatÂs whatÂs left of the one pile of compost on the right of the "clumps" pile after I had added a whole bunch to the area I was turning over!
And hereÂs the turned over section after I finishedÂitÂs still at least 6 to 8" higher than it was the first year I planted in it five years ago! When I rake it smooth after the snow, IÂll throw out all the smaller clumps that come to the surface that donÂt easily break up too.
And then thereÂs my first planting for this year! When I finished with the digging part I decided to plant my first batch of potatoesÂwhich I had growing in the kitchen cabinet! A bunch of you are gonna think IÂm nuts, but if they didnÂt get planted soon they were gonna get thrown on the compost pile anyway, so I planted them! HereÂs my "potato garden" after I planted themÂtheyÂre about 8" deep.
And here it is after "placing" their "snow storm and cold weather protection!" I covered them with three bags of maple leaves that I had left to insulate them!
WeÂre supposed to have cold weather for at least a week now, and I figure itÂll probably be a couple weeks before I get around to moving all the leaves from the potato garden to the compost pile, so, hopefully, by then they'll be rooting out and be ready to start coming up when it warms up for real again! WeÂll see! If it works I should be able to get at least three batches in there this yearÂand if it doesnÂt workÂI have some more potatoes that are starting to grow in the cabinet! Easily replaced commodity!
I plan to get my tomato seeds started in the next couple daysÂwhile itÂs cold outside. Have a nice big bucket of soil warmly inside and just waiting to be used!
So what all are the rest of you doing with your veggies at this time of the year? HereÂs a place to keep everybody updated on the spring part of your veggie garden!
Braced for the snowÂwhich sounds like itÂs gonna actually require shoveling this time,