2014 was the first year we planted a garden at our new place.
Ready Made Garden
When we moved in in September of2013 there were cucumbers, tomato & pepper plants that the previous owner had planted. We really benefited from the produce because the garden spot was very productive!
You wouldn't expect to be unpacking boxes and canning tomatoes at the same time but that year some how we did both.
New ideas this year
In 2014, we decided to try something new and make Square Foot Garden's after reading the book by Mel Bartholomew.
You might ask why we would do that if the garden spot was so productive. We had our reasons.
Our Goals for using Square Foot Gardens
- Less weeding
- More plants in a small space
- Less squatting & kneeling for me. My bum hip doesn't like doing those things at all
- Keep the garden closer to the house so we'd remember to water it
What did we plant?
SF Garden #1 had broccoli, cabbage & cauliflower & lettuce in it. All did well except the cabbage. I didn't keep it watered enough. It was the first year we grew cabbage so I think this year it will be easier. *fingers crossed*
SF Garden #2 had acorn squash, spinach, green beans & peas in it. Acorn squash were small but again it was a watering issue.
SF Garden #3 & 4 were identical. Cherry tomatoes(which went crazy), carrots, beets, peppers & okra. These beds were even farther away from the house so again water was an issue. The carrots & tomatoes did fine. The rest were not as fortunate. The beets did nothing and the peppers never got any fruit.
In July we were gone on vacation for a whole week & had a friend watering. My tomatoes got blight and never really recovered. NEVER had to deal with that before. Then my mom got a lot worse & passed away. In August, I got a fungal infection in my eye(which led to a cornea transplant in December) and basically all gardening stopped. So I'm expecting a much better garden in 2015. But I wanted to list what we planted last year to show that you can get quite a variety of plants in a very small space.
"Regular" Garden Space
We also planted pumpkins, watermelon, & cantaloupe in the "regular" garden space. My main reason for doing this was to keep the weeds from taking over. We planted our seeds and managed to much half of the garden with grass clippings. You guessed it that half of the garden did great and the other half was a weed patch. Even with just half of the garden doing well the pumpkin harvest was CRAZY!!!! I think we ended up with close to 20 pumpkins--not bad for a $1.29 seed packet. There were no cantaloupe and we only got two watermelon that weren't very big.
- Relocate 2 of our SF Gardens. They just are in the wrong spot so we emptied them and moved them.
- Build 2 new bigger SF Gardens for a strawberry patch in the orchard. (Next weeks garden post!)
- Use SF Garden's for cauliflower, broccoli, cabbage, lettuce, spinach, beets , green beans & more.
- Use our regular garden spot again for pumpkins, watermelon, cantaloupe, tomatoes, peppers, squash, potatoes & sweet potatoes.
- Put up a fence around the regular garden & berry patch to keep the dogs from tromping through and destroying things.
- Implement a drip system for our watering. (More on that in a few weeks!)
- And probably a dozen other things that will come up along the way! Spring is so busy in the garden that it is hard to remember all of the to do's.
What are your 2015 garden plans?
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