Sunday, March 11, 2012

Inch by Inch, Row by Row - Gonna Make This Garden Grow!

Whew we've been busy! Stevo has been logging some serious hours with work in one of their busiest busy seasons yet since he's been at the company (yay for lots of new clients!) and Bean and I have been spending our days doing some Spring cleaning. And then to top it all off, we started our very ambitious garden project last weekend! While my initial desire was for just a small vegetable patch, we are really good at going overboard. So...needless to say, it turned into a MUCH bigger project than either of us were really anticipating. We are very excited about it though, and have had a lot of fun together already with all of the planning and construction.

We started out by buying this book:

Apparently Mel Bartholomew is the fellow that developed the concept of square foot gardening, which is what we're attempting to do. We have a very limited amount of yard space that gets any kind of decent sun, so we figured this was a good way to go. This book was great because it was very easy to quickly read it and get the general gist of how to get started - we were in a hurry to get the beds done and get the frost-hardy plants planted! It was also helpful in figuring out how to plan out the garden, what seeds to buy, and when to get the seedlings started. We had (have) absolutely no idea what we're doing, and this book has been great for us beginners!!!

We then went to Home Depot and bought wood, poles and netting for the climbing veggies, weed cloth, soaker hoses, a hose timer, seeds, and some seedlings. When we got home, we were amused to find that Anna had added a few of her own flower seed selections to the pile when we weren't looking - it made us laugh but we're going to plant them! We ordered the dirt through a local landscape supply store, who delivered it in one big dirty pile...doing it that way saved us almost $500 vs. buying it retail at Home Depot!

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Building the actual boxes was surprisingly easy, but then getting them installed took pretty much an entire weekend. Steve had to do some digging in the yard to get rid of the grass and to get the ground level, and then it took some work to get the boxes themselves level and then filled with dirt. My poor hubby was quite sore by the end of the weekend!!

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We took Mel Bartholomew's advice on building a permanent grid structure to help partition out the garden and to keep the plots organized. It made it very easy to pencil in what we wanted to grow where, and to help us figure out how many seeds we needed to start. Between the two gardens (both are 4'x12'), we had plenty of squares for all of the veggies we wanted to plant, and then plenty left over for flowers. I am SO excited to have a flower garden - it's something I've always wanted and I would be beyond happy if I could have flowers to cut for the house!

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Luckily we've had two awesome weekends weather-wise, and Anna has greatly enjoyed getting to run around in the yard with her pup and especially getting to play in the dirt. It's been fun seeing her "help" and it makes me look forward to her being older and learning how to garden too!

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Anna wanted to plant ping-pong balls

We got the frost-hardy seedlings planted this past Saturday and we also got our seeds going inside. Now we just have to water and wait...and I think the waiting is going to be the hardest part of this process! We also will have to build the climbing plant structures but other than that, our gardens are done and ready to go!

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1 comment:

Nicole said...

Ooh I can't wait to see how this turns out! Keep us posted!