This year was my first ever since leaving my parents house that I have voluntarily planted a garden. The apartments where I live put in a raised bed garden for their tenants. It has been so much fun. I have a 4 ft x 5 ft space. I did some research before starting and decided to plant in 1 ft squares. I had some failures and some wonderful successes. Thanks to youtube, I learned how to prune tomatoes, cukes, peppers, and squash. Successes - radishes, sugar snaps, tomatoes, summer squash, spinach, arugula, poblanos, jalapenos, pole beans,basil, parsley, and garlic. Surely I forgot something. Planting in the small squares made it easy to take something up and replace it without a lot of trouble. failures - carrots, chives, black eyed peas, and some other stuff. I did take up my tomatoes when they slowed down their fruit setting and replaced them with two new tomatoes for fall harvest crops. One of the other gardeners stopped watching their garden so I took it over; It has tomatoes, peppers and a blackberry and a raspberry. It was amazing how a little water, a bit of nutrients and bam, it is looking good, producing fruit from all of its plantings. Making life fun and interesting here in the fly-over land of Oklahoma.
Notes from a beginner gardner
Posted 11 September 2017 - 03:00 AM
Posted 11 September 2017 - 04:31 AM
i envy you. i have a lot more space but not very much sun. the house we moved to a year and a half ago is on a heavily wooded street. there's a community garden nearby that's been dormant for a couple of years on account of a soil infection but once they're back i'll probably stop growing anything but herbs in my garden. it's either that or spend thousands of dollars taking down trees--which will make for very expensive tomatoes.
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Posted 11 September 2017 - 06:38 PM
I ran by a woman in Carleton tshirt this morning. I almost stopped her to ask her to teach me about tomatoes.
"This is a battle of who blinks first, and we've cut off our eyelids"
Posted 10 October 2017 - 04:37 PM
Some of my fellow garden neighbors gifted me with some okra and chinese long beans last night. THere is enough okra to make a small pot of okra gumbo. And I am picking enough collard leaves to make a small amount to go with dinner. Baked chicken, corn on the cob and cornbread.
Posted 16 October 2017 - 01:28 AM
Community or neighborhood gardens are a great way to get to know your neighbors a little better.
The local charity with which I volunteer has established three neighborhood gardens, the oldest is now on year 2. In Florida, the outdoor growing season is October through June. Last year, we dug out a 50x100 foot space, mixed in peat moss, rotted chicken manure, and several loads of "muck". Muck is an organic dirt + plowed under sugar cane + compost substance. Incredibly rich, able to hold moisture. We had 2x8 by 8 feet long boards to create a raised bed environment. And boards inside to allow walking. Sprinklers hooked to a hose from the sponsor's church building.
The sponsoring organization provided 3-4 people to help us. By the time they were ready for planting, about 10 people had spoken for plots. Melons, tomatoes, peppers, okra, spinach, beans. I don't believe there were any problems about folks poaching stuff. That garden will be able to launch on its own with minimal help from us.
This year, we hope to add two more gardens. same principle. Maybe try to get some benches to encourage people to hang out. And rent a roto-tiller...
Posted 25 October 2017 - 08:17 PM
Meredith Sorensen talks about using food waste as compost in NJ Monthly.
"Coffee grinds are a prime composting material, for example. So are vegetable scraps, particularly greens such as carrot tops and leafy vegetables. Put them in a compost bin or pail, let Mother Nature run her course, and the resulting compost can power your backyard garden. For restaurant chefs, who work regularly with local farms, contributions of nutrient-rich compost that springs from a farm’s own vegetable scraps can be a welcome exchange."
“Put a little tray in your fridge and label it, ‘Eat me first.’ Put the pear, the cheese, the leftover that needs to be eaten today, and reach for a food on that tray first,” Sorensen says. “If you fail to eat it today, compost it tomorrow.”