Monday, March 19, 2012

Follow Through--Part 2: The Garden

Last year I attempted a garden.  I built a small garden box (ok, so I didn't really build it, we had a friend who had the tools come build it) and filled it up.  It was actually pretty successful.  I grew spinach, chives, parsley, and basil.  I planted 3 pepper plants on the side of our yard which failed.  once I planted them they just didn't grow anymore.  I don't know what happened.  The peas did ok. . .not great.  The tomatoes did great for a while, and then the ants got to them.  They hollowed out the stem and the tomatoes before I even realized they were there.  It was frustrating to say the least.

So I gave up.  I was just so frustrating at spending the time just to not have most of the stuff work out!  But I'm trying again this year, and am DETERMINED to have success.  We are kind of isolated out here in our little town.  Not too bad, but the closest anything is 10 minutes away.  We don't have cell service, and "when the wind blows, the power goes" is kind of a theme.  So being self-sustainable is becoming more and more important to me.  I would love to be able to provide everything I need here in my yard, but that's not quite possible.  But I want to get as close as possible.  

A garden is a great place to start!  And maybe in the next year or so I can talk matt into some chickens. . .{{crosses fingers}} I would really love 2-3 chickens, just enough to give us some eggs, but Matt is pretty adamant about NOT getting them.  

So here's the game plan:

Top of the map is East, left is North, etc. etc.  

I even have all the wood to do this, and 3 of the 11 boxes built!  Almost all of the boards are stained as well, to help the boards last longer.  

And then the weather drastically changed and the boards are now piled up on my porch mostly out of the elements.  Maybe in another day or two the weather will brighten up and I can get them finished.  

They're pretty self explanatory, but here's a few pictures of my ideas for the boxes (thank you Pinterest)

Strawberry Box (probably not planting any strawberries this year, just reserving the spot):

Vining Squashes (cukes/zucchini, etc):

I won't be using chicken wire, but part of a cattle panel instead, so the squash can hang down below (suspended with fabric of some sort).  That'll be another project, probably next year.  This year I'm just planting the squash in the box, and my lettuce/spinach in the front yard box instead of under the trellis.

Potato Bins (will be built up as the plants grow):

Source: via Krystal on Pinterest

Trellis for Beans, Peas, and Raspberries:

Tomato Cages (instead of 12 tomato plants in that one box, I'm doing 4--1 per 4 squares):

I want our garden to also be pretty, not just functional.  Which is why it's a work in progress.  In between the beds, we hope to put paving stones around the boxes as walkways--the kind where you use a mold and cement.  Yeah, work in progress for sure.  I'm not even going to take a picture of the weed pit we're calling our garden area. . . .

So yeah, I'm hoping to get all those boxes built soon, and the seeds started in the next week!  Cross your fingers for me, that the bugs (and random rabbits we have roaming) don't get my garden this year!