These pictures were taken April 25, 2010: I've been really busy and have not had a chance to post anything for a while, but I do have some new pictures to share. My garden has come a long way since March 23rd when we first started preparing the boxes. One thing I really love about SFG is that you don't have to wait for the dirt to dry out enough to be able to till. Mel's mix drains well & doesn't pack down. In my old garden I would not have even planted my corn yet or set out tomatoes.
These pictures were taken this evening before heading off to church, just a little over a month after starting the project. I have erected a shade for my bok choy, sugar snap peas & lettuce to try and keep things from bolting. It seems to get hot around here really quick. I have peppers & tomatoes planted in here too so that when I harvest the lettuces they will be ready to take off. Everything is growing so good & I'm really excited.
I haven't done anything to my paths, but my son was gracious enough to weed-eat for me after these pics were taken, so things are a little neater now.
Here is my asparagus bed, 2' wide. I have 30 Jersey roots planted & they have been really slow to come up, I still have lots of empty spaces.
This next-to-last box has my sugar snaps, 2 kinds of bok choy, romaine & leaf lettuce blend at one end, covered with a sheet for shade.
The sugar snaps should start to bloom soon. Yumm, I can hardly wait.
Speaking of sugar snaps, I am a self-professed magazine junkie & hoarder. We found my collection of Organic Gardening & Farming mags from back in the 70's & 80's. DH had just gotten out of the Navy/Viet Nam war, hippie age, & we bought our 10 acres with the idea of being self sufficient. We liked comfort too much to go too far with it, but did follow a lot of ideas from the magazines. While thumbing through them I found this article about sugar snaps the year they were first introduced. We pretty much take them for granted now, but they were a big deal back then.
OK, back to the present
My next bed has cucumbers, Peaches 'n Cream corn, Roma bush beans, carrots and onions, Texas Grano sweet type. I still can't get over how the corn is growing. The raised beds heat up so much quicker than soil.
I need to thin the carrots. I'll try to get that done this week. This bed also has a couple of yellow squash.
Peppers and tomatoes I started from seed: Serrano, Big Dipper, cascabella, Tam jalapeno, early jalapeno and Ancho. It seems like there were other varieties, but that's what I remember right now. For some reason none of the Ancho germinated, must have been bad seed since I planted them all the same. (Wonder if I could have forgotten to put the seed in? You never know). I plan on making lots of chow chow & pepper relish. My youngest granddaughter loves the stuff - I've caught her eating it out of the jar with a spoon.
I still have a lot of peppers & tomatoes to plant after my other boxes are built. DH said he would get the other boxes built tomorrow. They are still looking good, but need to be repotted or planted soon. I've been feeding them with weak manure tea.
Finally, here are the figs!
Thanks for stopping by & I'll have more to share later on.
I'm always trying new things for earring displays, most of them don't work & I go back to my trusty window shutters, but at least I found a use for this one - It is a panel from a storage unit I got at Target. It is 12" square & worked perfectly, I just pressed it down & poked my finger wherever I wanted to plant a seed.
Here are a few pictures of our progress. It's hard to work full time & garden.
This isn't in my SFG, but I had planted from red garlic from the grocery store last year & didn't harvest it. This is where the individual cloves put our new growth this year.
All of these pics were taken on 4/5/2010
First potato peeking out.
Mixture of Bok choy and cabbage planted before my grids were in place, unevenly spaced.
Assorted seedlings waiting to be transplanted.
Boston PIckler Cucumbers
A friend from church gave me a fig off-shoot last year. I couldn't believe it had figs started this year. I told her about it yesterday & her's hasn't even broken dormancy yet. Mine is planted very close to the house & is sheltered, so I guess that's why mine has come out so early.
We got the boxes filled with Mel's Mix (1/3 coarse vermiculite, 1/3 compost and 1/3 peat moss).
Our other granddaughters were with us that day and they had a blast helping. These pictures are not "staged", they really did help a lot. Hopefully, I have some future gardeners here.
Jadiel fixed a planter to take home: She transplanted lettuce and sowed sugar snap peas.
You have to admit, this is one cute kid. Look at her feet - Her mom forgot to send play shoes, so we wrapped her feet in plastic bags & put DH's black work socks over them. It worked.
Another use for my Mantis - Mel's Mixer (Just look at all those M words!)
Here is the potato bed. We had left over vinyl siding & DH braced it up
and put in a few inches of mix & planted seed potatoes.
Finally, DH constructed framing from electrical conduit from Lowe's for a make-shift greenhouse so I could harden off my peppers & tomatoes. I planted lettuce, bok choy, cabbages & spinach in 12 squares on the left and I placed my trays of seedlings at the other end - tomatoes, peppers, yellow squash, zucchini and cucumbers. The wind started blowing something fierce that day so I had to "batten down the hatches". It held up quite well and my plants didn't suffer any damage.
I had intended to chronicle this as I went, but that didn't happen. I was too busy playing in the dirt and hanging around the forum at Square Foot Gardening and the SFG Forum at Gardenwebs. Be sure to check them out - lots of great information from very friendly people.
(Excuse the mess...we had just finished a remodeling project, have a big orange dumpster & lots of trash to clean up, but that will all have to wait til I get my garden planted.)
Here's what has happened so far:
MARCH 23, 2010: First I had to dig up a lot of iris & peonies.
Here is a tub of peony rootstock from my grandmother's family, well over 100 years old, and some iris to transplant. I also gave lots of iris away.
Here is where my new Square Foot Garden boxes will be. It is my front yard, which turned out to be an odd terraced area when we added a basement addition to our house a few years ago.
Isn't this beautiful? Only a fellow gardener would understand. See the classic VW's in the background? DH restores these & does a great job at it. I found my compost on Craig's List and it was delivered in about 2
hours. Living out in the country has definite advantages - you can
have 13 yards of compost dumped on your driveway if you want to.
While we are at it, here is where my blackberry patch will be. It is quite long, but doesn't look like it from this angle. I have 3 Triple Crown plants in the middle and this end has bookoodles of red garlic from the grocery store that I forgot to dig up last Fall.
This is the lower side of the retaining wall. I have put in a potato bed since this picture was taken and will have a compost pile here. It will be really handy to just toss trimmings into it.
Now, back to my compost. This is some good stuff - not like the bags of composted manure from the big box stores that seem to be mainly burnt wood chips.
I had to buy a new Mantis tiller this year, the transmission finally went out on the other one. I would probably still be using it except I got a good sized rock stuck between the tines. This is my third one since the 1980's. I don't know how I could garden without it. They seem to last forever and almost always start on the first pull. They are everything the advertisements say they are, plus things they never even thought of (see the pictures of Mel's Mix being mixed below).
DH definitely didn't want his picture taken. Too bad. The following pics are of the boxes being prepared. When our son showed up the work went a lot faster.
They got 3 boxes finished before quitting for the day. That's quite an accomplishment (and expression of love) after already doing a full day's work.
One granddaughter was excited about it, one wasn't.......