Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Monday's Chores

Over the weekend the four members of Lee's End Eden (the name of our two townhouses) went out and planted up the front yard. We now have most of the front yard landscaped. Yay! The place looks much better with plants. We also planted the two apple trees which was a chore. We had to go out and buy a pickaxe to break up the subsoil enough to plant them. Then we had to sift out the million one inch rocks. The soil was more rock than soil. In addition the lawnmower shed was put together and placed and the whole yard was weeded. I'm guessing it was about 22 man hours of work spread over two days.

Yesterday I spent a couple hours in the garden doing a lot of little things. The onion bed above was struggling for some reason. I'm not sure why. I decided to bring out the fish emulsion and give it a drink. I hope they start to take off or it will be another year without good onions.

Four of my 4'x16' beds hadn't been fertilized yet so I put on a mixture of organic fertilizer, bone char, green sand, and azomite. I haven't dug them in yet, but I will before planting. I've been chitting some sunflower seed and and early batch of zucchini seed. The recent warm weather has really made me want to start planting. I'm thinking that beans won't be too long behind.

I planted up the end of the rock wall garden with flowers. It is a mix of tall zinnia, cosmos, low zinnia, petunia, and dianthus. I had to take out the overwintered kale that was starting to bloom. So I've already gotten a good start on the next Harvest Monday. Oh and you see the fence in that photo? Well that is the fence between me and my neighbor. He was out on Monday too rototilling his garden bed. Last year he had tomatoes in his bed. He might have them here again. He has another bed, but it doesn't get nearly as much sun as this bed does and his tomatoes are his pride and joy.

I planted the dianthus between the sweet alyssum in the herb garden now that it has been hardened off. I rearranged the flats soil blocks yet again since I'd planted so many. I once again only have two flats outside hardening off. Well they are all hardened already, but two flats growing outside. One is basically my leftovers and my cumin and basil. The cumin is bolting already. Hmm that isn't good. It hasn't even been planted yet. I'll plant it up soon and then maybe it will grow. It seems to be a really finicky plant here. The other flat are my tomatoes that germinated at the proper time. The rest of the tomatoes will have to be potted up soon, but they aren't quite ready yet.

As I was going by the brassica and chard bed I took a peek inside. Things are growing so well. The only really empty spot are my two red cabbages. They haven't been all that happy. They were very slow to start, but have finally started putting on some more leaves. I don't hold a lot of hope that they will grow and head up, but I'll give them a chance. In the front are the Argentata chard. The Ruby chard is just out of the photo, but it is doing well too. It won't be long before the chard harvests start.

As I went inside to clean up for the day I looked back at the garden. I never tire of this view from my kitchen door.


  1. Are you like me, arranging your plants in a pretty pattern in the garden, then being reluctant to harvest them because it messes up the design? I so want some full heads of my lettuce, but it's so pretty out there where it's growing! I know I'll give in as soon as the replacement plants get large enough, but that bed will never look this pretty again this year.

  2. I hear ya...this is always the most exciting time for me. It's interesting to me how spring veggies grow rather slowly at first than then seemingly take off over night. I have huge tatsoi rosette that were pint sized a week ago.

    Maybe you can shoot a few aerial photos of your garden one of these days. I'll love to see how everything fits in together.

  3. Granny, none of my heads are full sized yet, so I haven't had that issue. I've just been picking outer leaves. I will though. I've promised myself that I'm just going to do it once they size up, but it will be hard to pick the first one and break the pattern.

    Thomas, I keep picking the outside leaves of my tatsoi. I may never get a huge rosette because of that. As soon as the leaves start to touch, off they come. Someday I need to do another aerial. Things are changing so fast.

  4. Everything looks like it is doing well!

  5. Your new garden sure is pretty! Looks pretty full for this time of year too. Nice :)

  6. Wow Daphne...your garden looks beautiful! I wouldn't tire of that site either. I have been having plants bolt already that shouldn't be bolting. I think it's a combination of too much rain and fluctuating temps.

  7. Your garden looks so pretty....mine is always illed with weeds LOL!

  8. That sure is pretty. I sometimes wonder at people who think vegetables aren't decorative. Maybe more planting, but imagine if shopping centers planted lettuces and onions instead of pansies and marigolds. In my area, they rip them out every few months anyhow -- why not eat them?

  9. Looking good. But where's a photo of all the work you put into planting the front with the apple trees? What a tease. You mention all that hard work but no photo?

    Rest of the garden is gorgeous.

  10. I love how artistic your plants look. Mine are a fit um where you can find room pattern! Maybe one day with enough experience, I'll be able to better plan these things! =0)

  11. You got a lot of work done over the weekend. You are so need and precise with your planting. I a the haphazard gardener. Even with a guide I can't make a straight row. It looks like some drunk planted my gardens. Maybe it is because all the mountain roads look that way that it is normal for me.

  12. Vanessa, thanks

    Dan, well parts of it are full and parts are totally empty. I'm working on filling it all up.

    Robin, We haven't gotten any rain in the last week and a half. We really need it. We are supposed to get it today, but I'm not sure we will get enough with this storm. The soil way down is pretty wet (I was out double digging this morning), but the top is really starting to dry out. I don't want to have to water everything, but I might.

    Julze, thanks

    Stefanenner, Actually I cringe at the thought. They would probably spray them with all sorts of nasty things to keep them looking nice. Though lettuce really doesn't need much if it is happy.

    Marcia, the apple trees were planted in the back actually. They don't look like anything. They were bare root trees so they look like a couple of sticks right now. When we planted the peach and blueberries out front we joked about our stick garden. The peach trees are still stick. I hope they bud out soon.

    Holly, lol I only did that bed pretty. I figured it was right outside my door and I'd be looking at it. As Granny noted I'll mess up the pattern when I start harvesting. But I did think of the pattern there. Everywhere else is going where I think they would do well, pretty or not.

  13. wilderness, Later in the year things get much more haphazard. I'll just plant anywhere there is space. I draw lines sometimes when I plant to make a nice row. Though I don't always succeed. As I was planting the dianthus between the sweet alyssum I noticed that the alyssum was pretty crooked. That happens when I don't draw my line. Also I find the soil blocks easy to make patterns with. Since you can put them out in their spot before planting, you can check the spacing better. The rock wall garden wasn't measured at all. The spacing is all based on how many plants I had to use up. I just moved them around until I had what I wanted.