Friday, May 31, 2013

An Indiana Raised Garden

I have always loved gardening, and have had a bit of a green thumb all my life.  So, now that we are back in a home that we own, one of the first things that I decided on doing was building a raised garden bed.

It is a bit of a hodge podge square foot garden.  It is actually 5x5 instead of 4x4 because the cheap wood at Home Depot was 10 foot planks, but I laid it out in a 4x4 grid.  For us it ok that it is a little bigger, because my husband is 6' 4" and has a long arm span.  If you are all shorties in your house stick to a 4x4.  I didn't follow the rules as far as what you put in the garden for dirt.  There are no sources near where I live for compost in bulk or any of the other components that are recommended for a square foot garden.  So, it is about half topsoil, one quarter peat moss, and 1/4 compost.  I had intended to add unflavored gelatin to the mix (it helps to hold moisture in the soil) but forgot, so maybe I will add it this Fall when I turn the garden.

Another nontraditional thing about my "square foot garden" is that I have it laid out as a diamond instead of a square.  The reasoning for that is the area I wanted to put it, it would only fit in that orientation.  I have it in one of the beds around my house, because I didn't want to kill my grass.

I started some of the plants from seeds and others I bought already starting to grow.  I have beets, carrots,  both head and leaf lettuce, zucchini and yellow squash all starting from seeds.  I got already started plants of tomatoes, basil, an assortment of bell peppers, and rosemary.  There are also a few marigolds in the garden.  They help with attracting pollinators and are supposed to help suppress aphids, though there is much debate on this subject, and some say they attract red spider mites.  We also have a patio tomato plant for cherry tomatoes, a mint plant going vigorously in another part of the yard, and my little guy has 3 hanging strawberry baskets (though I am not so sure how well these are going to do, we will transplant them to a bed come Fall).

My Winter herb garden is now perched outside for the warm months, and the herbs seem to be doing quite well.  The rosemary is hardy, the parsley seems to produce a fresh crop every week, the thyme is running all over the place, I am finally getting some nice sized leaves on the oregano, and the poor sage is growing a little better now too.  I should have never planted the sage next to the parsley, but you live you learn.  I also have a pitiful hydrangea that was given to me as a houseplant earlier in the Spring.  I thought it had died out completely then much to my surprise it started shooting off new foliage.  It is sitting outside getting used to the weather right now, and I will be putting it in the ground sometime within the week.

That is about all that is happening in my garden right now.  I will post photos, and some gardening tips soon.

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