Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Another Project

Since I really could go shopping every day (the honest truth) I decided that it would be a really good idea to dive head first into another hobby. Over the winter I began dreaming about growing some of our families favorite fruits and veggies. I was gifted a few strawberry plants last year, and I ate some of the most delicious tomatoes from my own plants, so this year I decided to go BIG (300 square feet big)!

Starting a garden can be expensive if you need to start from scratch. After rototilling the grass behind our garage, we brought in 6 yards of half soil & half peat to create a less clayish environment. We also purchased some fencing to keep unwanted critters out of my garden. I planned in advance for the majority of these expenses by hosting an early Spring yard sale where I earned most of the money needed for my garden.

I LOVE to eat salad, so when I found out that Earthbound Farms was offering FREE packets of lettuce seeds I signed right up to get a packet, and I immediately began growing them in my windowsill. I also got a jump start on the pumpkin seeds that Boaz received for Easter.

After rototilling the grass and before dumping the soil... I laid a quadruple layer of newspaper on the ground. This layer will reduce the need to weed, it will help to retain moisture for the soil and the plants and worms love to eat newspaper- worms are the best composters for soil!

My husband read about gardeners in Alaska hanging gutters on the sides of their houses to grow their herbs/vegetables in. We decided to adopt this idea as well to give us even more gardening room.

Last year I was gifted about 25 strawberry plants, this year, when I moved them to my new garden, I was shocked to find that I have over 75 plants! I'm hoping for a great harvest!

Here are a few of my fruits. Last year, between the birds and the squirrels, I only munched on two strawberries- hopefully the fence (and the netting that we will put over the top of the garden) will help US to enjoy more of our berries!

I picked up (9) 18" tomato's from the farmer's market. I had amazing success last year with my plants from a specific vendor, so I visited them again this year.

Between plants from the farmer's market, what I started at home, and seedling gifts from another friend, I will be growing: Strawberries, tomatoes, corn, pumpkins, sunflowers, green peppers, red peppers, hot peppers, summer squash, lettuce, broccoli, green beans, cucumbers, and watermelon. Hopefully my thumbs will green up as I grow up into a real gardener.
Here is my first tomato, a Juliet. I also have Roma's and Beefsteaks! Yum!

And I LOVE they way my lettuce looks growing happily in the gutter... too bad I will soon be eating it!!!



Who did you buy your tomato plants from? We're going to go out and buy our seedlings this weekend. :)

Laura Webber

I purchase from the Walled Lake Farmer's market... located downtown WL, on Wednesday's from 7am-1pm