Monday, March 21, 2011

Landscaping & Gardening

Successful first attempts at landscaping and gardening, I think. My neighbors across the street have 'done up' their front yard in a similar way. My lot is really sloped toward the street, and I just didn't have it in me to dig down into the rocky soil to make the bricks level, but I think it still looks just fine. It took 89 of those concrete limestone bricks, which weigh 20 pounds each, I think.

I planted a pink rose bush and a white rose bush against the house in the back of the bed, and kept the 4 holly bushes. Then I added 5 more bushes. I don't know the names, but I kept the plastic tags, so I can find out if I need to. I took 4 trips to Home Depot between Thursday and Friday, and then a friend stayed over Friday night, and we got up early early to beat the crowds at Home Depot on Saturday. We got there at 7:20am to get a full pallet of topsoil. Topsoil is cheap, just $1.25/bag. Each bag is 40 pounds, and lifting/moving it gets very old very quickly. Between the front yard landscaping and the garden in the back, I used 3,200 pounds of topsoil. Crazy!

For the garden in the back, I copied what my younger sister and her husband had done: they bought a 4x8 foot garden kit. I thought it would be too small, but it seemed to fit everything I wanted to plant. And I can always buy more kits that interlock with it later if I want. My friend and I built it and dumped the dirt on Saturday, then I planted it Sunday afternoon. I have TEN strawberry plants, and I cannot wait for them to produce fruit!

My radish seed packet said they are ready in 22 days, which means i will have my first micro-harvest just a couple weeks into April. Some of those vegetable seeds were so tiny that I just tossed them into a furrow, so I'll need to go back and buy more seeds for future plantings, or move some of the sprouts to a different location if they are too close together.

I planted strawberries, pumpkin, watermelon, cantaloupe, jalapeno pepper (2 plants, I love jalapeno peppers and use them often), mucho nacho pepper, poblano pepper, beefsteak tomato, heirloom green tomato, sugar snap peas, cucumber, zucchini, carrots, white onion, yellow onion, bunch onion, celery, bibb lettuce, dill, basil, thyme, cilantro, radish, kentucky long beans, red bell pepper, orange bell pepper, green bell pepper, okra, and I think that's all.

I'd like to plant potatoes, but I ran out of room. I plan on letting the cantaloupe, watermelon, and pumpkin vines spill over the sides and into the yard, thereby not taking up much room. in the garden itself, which really is quite small. We shall see what happens; I don't know what kind of pests to be on the lookout for or what kind of fertilizer to use, so I'll be investigating that. Right now, I just have that topsoil in the garden.

I'll do my best to post pics as the garden progresses. I figure some things will grow very well and some will be a complete bust, but I guess that's the way it is with anything in life.


vq said...

Nice job! My back hurts on your behalf.

emma said...

looks beautiful . . . but you planted too much in your vegetable beds. The pumpkin alone will run all over it!

CatBoy said...

Emma is right about the quantity you planted, but once they grow beyond the seedling stage and become small plants you can transplant the healthiest of the bunch into an additional bed.

As you said, though, the first time you plant a garden, it is and should be a bit of trial and error. Actually, however many times you plant a garden you should look at that way.

Jenny Robin said...

My radishes are supposed to sprout seedlings in 4-7 days. Today was day 4, but I didn't see anything. I can't wait!

I need to go buy another bed and more topsoil tomorrow so that I can transplant the strong survivors.

I intend on letting all the super-viney plants (pumpkin, cantaloupe, watermelon) grow on the ground and not in the garden bed, which is why I planted them in the corners. I'm going to try to raise a milk-fed pumpkin like Almanzo Wilder did in Farmer Boy to see how big it will grow. What a hoot that would be to roll a HUGE pumpkin around to the front of the house in the fall! I bet my HOA would freak!!!

CatBoy said...

I have never heard about of a milk-fed pumpkin, but I am really intrigued thinking about it.