Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Garden Time

Been taking advantage of the early spring to get into the garden and prep some beds, hoping for a big market garden this year. That's something I've never done, in fact I've never been more then a moderately successful home-gardener so we're not banking on my tomatoes to make or break the farm, but we'll see!

It is inconceivable around here that the ground we be un-frozen in March, I think unless you live in a more northernly place this is probably not something you can really understand, but we should have a foot of snow still. If we're lucky, a little bare ground, but the soil would be frozen hard as a rock. Well, our early spring and +20C days has meant the ground is soft, and now fairly dry, should make for an exciting season! 

Carrots & Beets
 I did plant a little, things I can cover over with plastic, and are cold tolerant for days when the temperature dips back down to normal.

3 beds all seeded
 So I've planted out lots of carrots, beets, turnips, lettuce, spinach, radicchio, arugula, cauliflower, broccoli, and some broad beans only because the turkey stole the package and dropped it in a puddle.

My very lame, and quickly throw together fence
to keep the chickens off the freshly sewn beds
(they will eat the seeds)
Mostly I've just been using the time to turn-over all the soil in the garden & try to kill all the weeds, an activity the chickens are really happy to help with! Mostly because I'm uncovering lots of delicious worms, grubs & pests that they are more then happy to scoop up and crunch down on. I'm happy because we're not just removing those things from the garden, but it's free food for the chickens!

The soil towards the back of the garden, which I didn't use last year, has been a wonderful surprise. It's very soft and wonderful having obviously been well cared for over past years (and explaining why we have such a weed problem!). The front of the garden where I planted last year (and where our beds are now) obviously needs some manure to lighten up the heavy clay soil and that's a project for a little later in the year.

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