Archive for September, 2009

My Floating Island Raised Bed

I was excited when I won the opportunity to have a Floating Island Raised Bed. When I picked it up, I became more intrigued than excited. Would this really work? And what in the heck kind of oddball material is it made out of ? I still don’t know the answer to the second question. But to the first, the answer is a resounding YES. We had a bit of a late start putting plants into the little quarter-of-a-pie shaped raised bed, but once we put the starts of basil, sunflower, and seeds of more sunflowers, they took OFF. They got bigger and healthier than I’ve ever seen in my gardening experience. We tucked the bed into an ugly corner of our yard and once the plants got nice, big, and green, the visual was much improved. I’ve attached some pictures of the bed and plants. I’ve enjoyed the ease of the raised bed and of watching it morph from a funny looking chunk of plastic into a nice green food machine.

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Update on garden!

So this is my second blog about my above ground garden. All is doing very well! I have gotten to enjoy an Italian white eggplant already, and my yellow bell pepper is coming right along! I was concerned about all the rain that we got a couple weeks ago because my garden is below the roof of a shed and water was literally pooling inside of it, but it drained it out and is thriving! My tomato plant is getting very big, and my zucchini has a beautiful orange flower. I ought to take some pictures.. I’ll work on that! So far I am very content with my garden, and love every single day of seeing it grow. Cheers to gardening!

Speaking of Downsizing…

strawberries0808I know it’s totally the wrong time of year to move strawberries, but nevertheless, here I am. I am moving some of my garden beds around and have dug up a bunch of June-bearing plants (variety is ‘Honeyloe’). They need to get in the ground ASAP. Please shoot me an email if you can take them off my hands quickly.

UPDATE: My dug-up plants found a home with a friend and some of her friends, but if you’re desperate for strawberries, let me know. I have 2 more people lined up to take some, but I have a feeling I’ll still have some extras.

Looking Ahead

mintI know that there is still probably enough time to get a quick lettuce or spinach crop in, but it feels like the end of the season to me. Most likely, it’s because I am trying to fit in the monumental task of shuffling my garden beds to accomodate a new, smaller version of my garden for next year. I want to get the move done now, so in the spring, I can stroll blithely out to my garden and just plant away.

In light of that, I have been compiling a mental list of things I learned this year, and before they evaporate from my brain, I thought I’d get them down here:

Next year, I will:

  • put only one tomato in a tomato cage (ok…maybe two, but definitely NOT three)
  • plant only cherry tomatoes
  • grow ‘blue lake’ green beans again
  • remember to use legume innoculant on peas and green beans
  • thin early and brutally
  • put out wasp traps in May, and replenish them all summer
  • remember that squash, zuchini and pumpkin plants get huge
  • cut back the pumpkin plants when they even hint at exceeding their bounds (that is, if I grow them again)
  • try birdhouse gourds again

Next year, I won’t:

  • start anything from seed
  • plant corn
  • plant more than 3 zuchini or squash seeds
  • let the volunteer sunflowers grow in the middle of my (soon-to-be) strawberry bed
  • forget to harvest my herbs

Side note: just how late can you start lettuce, carrots and spinach seeds?