June 16, 2010

Lindsey's Garden, Post I

Did I tell you guys that Steve built me a garden?

My very first garden ever!

The last few years I've grown an assortment of things: Tomatoes, Peppers, Basil, Onions, Lettuce, Peas...but always in containers out on my deck. This method is great if you have limited yard space or if you don't like weeding.

The problem with container gardens is this: some plants just don't grow right in containers! Another issue is that you have to water more frequently. I also had problems with space (last year I had 18 large pots of various shapes and sizes on my deck, which didn't leave a lot of room for anything else), and the pots started to leave dark rings on the wood of the deck. Clearly, I was starting to outgrown container gardening.

Then, Steve and I went and bought new patio furniture...lots of it. And a fire bowl that we can set right on the deck (observing the proper safety precautions of course, Mom).

This left no room for my vegetables. How sad! But after talking with Steve's Mom and doing some research, we decided that it was probably time to built a raised vegetable garden.

The first thing I did was call my Daddy. He is the one who inspired me to start growing vegetables. I would help him plant his garden, and as a thank you, he would give me some starter plants...a couple tomatoes, a couple pepper plants, some onion sets. The first couple of years I totally killed everything I planted. Brown, withered, dead. Then I realized what I mentioned above: you have to water containers more frequently than beds! And, like most things in life: you get out what you put in. The more time, care, love I put into my plants, the more I got out of them! Not only delicious, healthy vegetables...but the other benefits of gardening: stress relief, sense of accomplishment, responsibility, nurturing, etc...

But I digress...

The reason that I called my Dad was because I wanted his opinion and input on what kind/size/shape of garden I should put in...and so between him, Steve and I, we came up with this:

A 4 foot x 16 foot garden made out of landscaping timbers, 12 inches deep. Steve hauled in a bunch of dirt...which, you would think would involve the back of a pickup truck and possibly a wheel-barrow, and/or shovel...but instead involved a dump truck and heavy equipment.


This is what I get for asking a man who owns an excavating company to build me a garden. Oh, and did I mention he is a perfectionist too? Let's just say that the garden is very level. Hee hee hee - thanks sunshine!!!

After the dirt was in place I went and bought several bags of organic hummus and manure (yum), and mixed it in. By hand. Alone. With mosquitoes eating me alive. Now where was my big strong man and his heavy equipment??? I was abandoned. But, don't cry for me...I'm just being dramatic (as usual). It was hard work, but I knew it would pay off in the end.

Later, Steve built a fence around the garden to protect it from deer, rabbits, Kempton, and other thieves and mongrels. Finally I planted (with Steve's help): 7 tomato plants (plus 2 in pots on the deck), 5 bell pepper plants (including one Giant Marconi that my dad gave me...see picture below), 3 jalapeno plants, basil, romaine lettuce, onions, carrots, sweet corn, sugar snap peas, and green beans.

I'll continue to update you on the status of the vegetables I'm tending, including pics of the progress of the plants! I'll leave you with a picture of my dad's contribution to my garden...A Giant Marconi Pepper (Italian Grilling Pepper):

Thanks Daddy!

1 comment:

  1. Tell Steve when he's done building you a garden that I'll take one too :)