Thursday, July 16, 2009

July Garden

It occurred to me that it's been awhile since I've posted garden pictures. Some of you could probably care less, so if you are one of those people, come back tomorrow. So sorry to disappoint.

Our first successful attempt at broccoli

We had great rain this spring and early summer, but it's been pretty dry lately. We haven't had water in our back (near the garden) cistern in awhile. It's times like these that we are glad we mulch heavily with straw/hay/grass clippings. Mulching this way isn't without it's flaws. Sometimes seeds sneak in with the hay and introduce new weeds. Sometimes it's a bit of a pain to plant in (because you have to move it all aside to get to the soil).

basil and some of the onions

Overall, though, it has worked well for us- keeping moisture in, weeds down (or at least in moister soil, so they can be pulled easier), providing non-muddy paths for walking and breaking down into organic matter that adds to the richness of our soil. Once the chickens are allowed in the garden in the fall, they scratch the decaying mulch into the soil along with their gifts of fertilizer, assisting in the process. To me, the pros win out over the cons big time.

one of the carrot beds, a lone chard plant and sunflowers in the back

It does look different. And, at least to Jamey, who grew up in Amish country, it takes a bit of getting used to. You can't see those lush rows of rich soil in between your plants. They're all covered up when you mulch. But, they are under there none the less. And so, we mulch.

tomato plants and some sad looking peppers (on the right)

the back garden (potatoes, corn, green beans, dry beans, etc.)

By the way, if you live close by and would like some basil, beets or green beans please give me a call.
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  1. Oh I wish I lived near by!! At the beginning I tried to grow beets but I was using those pine boxes that poisoned everything unbeknownst to me at the time! beets for me. And pickled beets are one of my favorites ever! Your garden is beautiful...

    ps...when do we get to see pics of Miriam? Or do you not post pics of the kiddos?

  2. Michelle, I tend not to post pictures of the kids- just my preference:-). I wish, too, I could share my beets with you!

  3. I would gladly trade you one of my pies for some of you basil.....if I only lived closer. :( I happen to like the garden photo''s nice to see what everyone else is growing.

  4. When do you mulch with the straw? Do you wait for the plants to come up for those you direct sow or do you do it as soon as everything is in?

  5. Lily Girl,
    We keep the garden mulched all the time, adding more as it gets thin. When it's time to plant, we move it aside, plant and then move it back (around the plant) once it's established. In order for it to provide good weed control, we mulch thickly. You know those big round bales of hay? We simply unroll them in the garden. This puts down a good 4-5 inches of packed hay. We use 5-8 of those big round bales (total) each year (over both gardens).

  6. Looks lovely! I always like garden pictures myself!

  7. I'm late reading this one.

    Wow, what a gorgeous garden!

    Take this for what it's worth. You mentioned about the sad looking peppers. Try not mulching them at all until they are very well established. Even then, don't mulch too heavily right up next to the plant. They are one plant that doesn't take too kindly to heavy mulching. This is what we have realized after years of failed peppers. They also produce better if not so heavily fertilized. They get gorgeous bushy plants but don't produce fruit if I fertilize too much. They do like a lot of water though.

    Aunt V


Just a friendly reminder, if you know me personally please try to refrain from using my name. There are those who may try to locate me, break into my pantry and steal my pickled beets. Thanks:-).

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