Saturday, May 7, 2011

Gardening Season has begun!

If you've been paying attention, you know Smiley is obsessed with plants, flowers, trees, gardening, and anything involving seeds and dirt. To satisfy this itch we planted a small garden last year, but the soil in my yard is so poor it yielded next to nothing. After some consideration I we decided to follow the "Square Foot Gardening" method of author Mel Bartholomew this year, and establish raised garden beds that don't depend on the native soil.

My mother-in-law, Smiley and I made the trip to Home Depot Saturday morning for the supplies, then enlisted the help of YaYa and a lil' red wagon to unload the van.

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For each of the two boxes, I used 2x6 boards in four foot lengths and fastened them with deck screws to form the frame.

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The sound of the drill drew the other kids outside to 'help'.

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By the time frame one was done it was time for the kids' swim classes, and a cold, sporadic sprinkle of rain had started. I finshed the first frame and filled it with topsoil, peat moss, and some compost, butunderestimated the amount I needed and didn't have enough to fill the second box. I concentrated on finishing the first one before any serious rain began.

As part of the 'square foot' method, the 4x4 foot box is divided into 16 seperate growing areas, laid out by a simple grid of lathe that 'floats' above the box. Because I know my kids, I figured it would 'float' its way to pieces on the trampoline. So I secured it on two sides. Aside from one piece I forgot to pre-drill (which promptly split), it was pretty easy to rig together.

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Come to think of it, the whole project was easy-peezy. Now I just have to fill the second box, grid it out, and get to a'plantin'. Here's hoping we get a better crop this season!

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2 comments:

Fred Oftencold said...

That brings back memories of my Mom working on her planting beds in the spring in Florida.

The part for us kids was to go forth unto the pasture and collect the soil-enriching gifts of the cattle.

We had to become quite adroit at differentiating between the nuggets left buy the bull and cow, and that left by the ponies, which was considered too strong for most plants.

Bucko (a.k.a., Ken) said...

Hope you have a bountiful harvest.