Early May

We’ve got most of our garden in the last two weeks.  I have moved the old chicken coop back to the south end of the footprint of the old run.  Ripped off the old tin from the coop that was flapping in the wind, mismatched and full of holes.  The coop will now be reused as our garden shed.  It’s nice to have all the tools so much closer to the work.

The high tunnel is nearing the end of its life.  To be honest I did not expect the untreated wood to last as long as it has.  It was framed with a bundle of culled 2×6 lumber that I picked up for next to nothing.  I have learned so much from the mistakes of building my own, limited access structure.  If I ever get another high tunnel It will be large enough to till and run the loader inside it.  One of our neighbors just set up their new high tunnel.  I’ll be picking their brain while they are setting out on their new experience.

It’s about time to get another order of round bales of straw.  Rolling them out as mulch mats has saved us countless hours of weeding and watering, while adding a wonderful environment for a plethora of earthworms.  The low end of our garden plot had alway been the least workable of our soils.  Heavy clay that lacked the addition of all the compost that the ground closer to the pile received.  We had rolled out straw the last two years and planted our squash and sweet potatoes there.  This spring I ran the tiller through and was amazed how much of the organic material had been carried back into the clay layer.  I turned a spade length out to give it a look and was thrilled to see the shovel meet clay on the bottom two inches of the shovel.  For the longest time this area of the plot was a “no go zone” after a rain.  It would take at least a couple of days to set foot there without sinking to your ankle, and when it did dry out it set into concrete.  Now I can walk through this same area not leaving much of a trace.  I’m such a dork that I get excited about being able to dig a planting hole with my hand.

We planted a small plot of sweet corn and some hybrid beets right before the rain came in on Monday.  Tuesday and Wednesday I transplanted some kale and swiss chard starts from the greenhouse.  It’s been very wet the last couple of days so I’m only getting into plantings where I can tread on the straw.

I’ve planted all of our paste tomatoes along a fence line for the first time.  I’ll be trying out a little trellis idea I had using tree limbs and baling twine.  I hope it works well.

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2 Comments

  1. May 16, 2014 at 7:58 AM

    Garden is looking awesome Woody, you have a nice place there. Your own little piece of paradise.


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