hello i am new! and i have my first raised box...
i posted this earlier in the vegetable gardening forum but perhaps i should have actually posted it here so now i am reposting. sorry if this is bad form.
my name is annaliese and i live in southern california. this is my first post on this forum. i spent about an hour looking over some of your posts tonight and i found everyone to be very kind and knowledgeable and i am glad to have joined. i have a lot to learn!
as of two days ago i have my first ever raised garden box for vegetables. i am not an experienced gardener. about a year ago i dug up a bunch of flowers in my back yard and improved the soil with just potting soil and some fertilizer and planted peas, broccoli, lettuce, cauliflower, onions and some herbs. the peas, lettuce and broccoli were pretty much all that really came into fruition. the rosemary and lavender are still there but they are not very big even after this time. the spot is rather shady and i don't really know what i was thinking.
i was just excited to garden. i planted some beets and additional lettuce in terra cotta pots in a better part of my yard and they did fine. the beets were on the smallish side but i imagine this is because they were underfed and crowded. i didn't do anything for the vegetables except for water them. i kind of feel like i am confessing to neglecting a child right now or something. =P
anyhow-- for valentine's day i was gifted with two large wooden barrels so that i could start a new garden. they are a wine barrel that has been cut in half i believe. they were given to me filled with a good quality soil. i planted some starter plants in them recently and before i did so i made the soil moist again and used some dr. earths fertilizer. i planted some tomatoes, a cantaloupe, a beet, an onion and (something else i can't remember.. it's really early here).
so far everything seems happy. this year i had only intended to grow some heirloom tomatoes in those pots but once again i am excited and overly ambitious.
so on friday a man who i had hired delivered a box that he built for me, filled it with all kinds of good soily stuff and i went to the nursery to get plants.
here is a photo of my bed box.
i kind of just grabbed vegetables that i am excited about and stuck them into the box. you all probably think that i am really silly. i feel silly now. i just read that the artichoke plants will grow to 6 feet in diameter each. a friend came over tonight to look at the box and see what i planted and remarked, "i think artichokes get really big..." with a concerned look on his face so now i am doing research after the fact.
another friend who i spoke to told me that 6 feet is an exaggerated estimate and to not worry about it. i am not sure what to do now. my box is 4x5 feet. will i need a whole additional box in order to grow one artichoke? can an artichoke grow in a barrel like the other ones i have? are there any other huge errors in my planting?
the 4x5 box has cucumbers, eggplant, persimmon, lettuce, artichokes, onions, beets and a black variety of heirloom tomatoes. the plants on the ground in pots in front of the box are things that i didn't have space for.. serrano chiles, sage, more onions, zuchini and a couple of mystery plants. my neighbor who works at home depot proudly brought me over some plants that home depot was going to throw away and the man who built my box also gave me a few things. i plan to get a few more barrels to try to accommodate them.
if anyone has any tips or pointers for this completely novice and maybe slightly foolish wannabe gardener they would be very much appreciated. i am an avid cook and would like to be good at gardening as well.