Archive for March, 2012

Whatcha Working With?

To have a blog about gardening you should probably first have a garden. To have a garden you need a place to put said garden. Tonight I’ll tell you about what I’m working with.

THE SPACE
…is minimal. Seriously. I have an average size backyard. Nothing over the top or special. There is a yard with a privacy fence. I cannot even say that I’ve got good grass because I don’t. We’ve got a very lush and green weed mixture! I recently asked my husband if we should put out some weed and feed- his response- “well then all we’d have is dirt!” True. I love my backyard though (probably more than I should but it’s our first home so I see it through rose colored glasses!). There is one really good Post Oak shade tree but other than that the entire yard gets direct sun- all day. We get a lot of birds to the feeder that we have in that tree- Blue Jays, Cardinals, and Dove are the most frequent visitors 🙂 they are super fun to watch!
The chickens have their own small space is the back corner of the yard. This way they are 1) not ruining what little grass (weeds) I’ve got and 2) we don’t have to look at their coop every time we step outside. Seriously, it’s not very cute. I got completely ripped off by a friend who claimed to be a “carpenter” but that’s a story for another day.

THE BEDS
I chose to go with raised beds for my garden because of the above stated issue. My yard doesn’t grow grass very well so I don’t have a lot of faith that vegetables would do any better. My husband, “D”, built me 4 raised beds out of 8ft privacy fence pickets. They measure 4′ x 8′ each and are rectangle shaped. Obviously. I truly do not know why I felt the need to clarify that 🙂
We filled the beds with soil purchased for $60 a truck load from a local nursery.

THE PLANTS
There was no method to my madness when choosing plants for my garden. I wanted to plant things we would actually eat and I did not want to spend a whole lot of money. Here is a list of what I currently have planted:

Tomatoes
Arkansas Traveler
Celebrity
Homestead
Bush Goliath
Golden Jubilee
Husky Red Cherry
Early Girl

Peppers
Serrano
Jalapeño
Cayenne
Green Bell Peppers
Sweet Banana
Thai Hot Red

Lettuce
Romaine *started from seeds given to me by a dear friend.

Okra
Clemson Spineless

Cucumber
Straight 8
Boston Pickling

Onion
Purple *sprouted from part of an onion D threw in the dirt just to see if it would work. It does!
Yellow *given to me by my neighbor

Strawberry
I have no clue what kind this one is!
Number of total plants in my beds: 40
Total cost of plants: $60.00

I bought everything at my local feed store except the strawberry plant. It came from Home Depot.

I did try to be somewhat picky about the plants I bought. I inspected the leaves carefully and only chose plants that had no discolorations, small bugs, or visible damage. They all looked healthy and fresh.

There you have it! The foundation of my garden. I hope it will all come together and produce a great bountiful crop soon!

20120327-211743.jpg

20120327-211855.jpg

20120327-212206.jpg

Advertisements

Comments (1) »

My Brood

20120326-210352.jpg

Meet the loves of my life! Daisy (a Pekingese) and Cotton (a Blue Heeler). They are full of energy and have been enjoying the new babies we’ve added to our family!

20120326-210706.jpg

We have 6 chickens. I adore them! From what I can tell at this point we have 4 Rhode Island Reds, 1 Turken, and 1 random brown chicken. I have no clue what kind he is, but his name is Rosebud. My sweet little 6 year old neighbor thought that was a fitting name. I didn’t have the heart to tell her that #1 I’m pretty sure Rosebud is a boy and #2 I’m not down with naming the chickens! So- Rosebud it is. All the others are stuck being called little chick chick.

Speaking of the little chickens, they got out today! Not just out of the coop. Out of the yard! My neighbor sent a text around noon saying all 6 of the babies were in her backyard. I was panicking with images of her trying to herd them back into my yard as the animal control truck drove by…thankfully, the crisis was averted and the bitties were safely returned to their coop!

Comments (1) »

How Hard Can It Be?

First of all, I’d like to say welcome to my blog 🙂 I am new to blogging (as well as gardening) so I am sure this will all be a great adventure.

I’ll start our relationship with a confession. I love projects. Okay that’s a lie. I love the idea of projects. More than once (really more times than I can count) I have gotten a very lofty idea, became overly excited about it, and then ran full speed with it for about a hundred yards. Unfortunately that is when I usually realize all the crap that goes along with my “super cool idea” and decide that maybe project X isn’t for me. My husband can attest to this. He is logical. Realistic. He thinks about the negative aspects of ideas before he nose dives into them. If I had a quarter for every time I have heard him say “are you sure you want to do that? It’s really a lot of work” I’d be a very rich girl. Instead of thinking about his question- I usually end up giving him a lengthy lecture about how I can do ANYTHING! And OF COURSE I WANT TO DO IT! I’VE WANTED TO DO THIS MY WHOLE LIFE!!!!

So this is pretty much how we’ve ended up where we are now. Shoulder deep in another project. The only difference in this project and the others is that this one contains live animals…and a garden…a pretty big garden for someone who has never gardened before. Remember, it’s an adventure! Why just grow a garden when you can grow a garden and have chickens?!?! And we’ll do it all right in the middle of town on our 1/2 acre lot. Recent reading tells me what I am doing is called “Urban Gardening”. I’m glad it has a name- it makes me feel more legit and a little less like a hippy (not that I have a problem with hippies, I actually enjoy the vibes that hippies put off).

Back to the story, I’ve raised chickens before (in high school for 4H) and I helped my grandparents in their garden when I was young so I am not going in to this totally blind. I know it is hard work. But, I want to grow my own food. I want to taste things that taste as good as they did when I was a little girl. I am going to do it. Jump on board and join me. I’ll share my successes (and failures), humor, pictures, maybe even a few recipes here and there. It’ll be fun!

Comments (4) »