Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Garden therapy - A backyard garden update (March)

Well, it's springtime here in Texas and early planting has begun. Thankfully, I have a trusty guide to follow designed for my county and if ever in question, I just ask my farming guru (Lois from the farmers' market) for the lowdown.

As you can see in the photo up top, I'm still harvesting from my winter garden. The broccoli didn't do so well, though we did get a small head from them. I'm letting them sit to see if they make another head, then will chop the stalk up in some stir fry. Let nothing be wasted!  

The cabbage (towards the back) has been whittled down to 2 heads (there were 5 to start). It seemed like too many for one person, but I have to say, I'm loving every single meal I've cooked and certainly haven't tired of it yet. 

I'm picking those green onions daily (onions are good in just about anything) and they have continued to multiply, so long as I don't pick them too quickly. I'll definitely do more of these next year. I also have some 1014's in. This bed is a little shallow for bulb onions, but we'll see how they do. 

The kale and spinach (you can't really tell from the photo, but they're there), are doing well and growing a little each week. I'm really looking forward to harvesting those. I do love my greens!

Now here's one of the newest editions to the garden. My dad stopped by with two of these topsy turvy planters. Yes, you are seeing that right. We planted the tomatoes upside down (the dirt is in the bag, the plant comes out below). Dave installed a bird feeder stand so that we could hang them in full sunlight and so far so good. The nice thing is that if we do get a brief cold snap, I can whisk these babies indoors where they can stay warm (that's if I can lift them - they're a bit heavy).

And because one square foot garden is never enough, we've added a second bed. This one is twice the size of the first measuring in at 8' x 4'. The bricks are there as a square foot guide. Once the plants are in, it's easy to ID individual squares for rotating crops, but the first planting is hard if you don't have a guide. You can't really tell, but I have four tomato plants already in the bed. Eight more to go. There are a few other potted plants in the bed as well. They are the plants I had brought indoors for the winter, but the days are too nice to keep them cooped up any longer and they await transplant.

Last but certainly not least, is the indoor garden. That's an AeroGarden that I received for Christmas. The basil I have to cut on every few days - it's growing like a weed! The rest of the herbs (including the sage and second basil I have set to the side) are growing nicely as well. In the front-middle are 10 sets of seeds in potting soil (sage, basil, and mint). The AeroGarden makes a pretty good light source, so I'm using it as a mini greenhouse (thanks Jennifer for the inspiration).

I have a delivery of compost and top soil coming (sure to fill up our driveway) so we'll be building more beds soon. And later this month, I'll be planting beans, cucumber, and spaghetti squash. Peppers will go in next month. 

That's all there is to report here in Garden Therapy, but stay tuned for next month when more of that second bed will be filled in (and hopefully, lots of little seedlings to be seen). Have a great day everyone!

4 comments:

Farmer's Daughter said...

Looks great! I'm envious of your warm weather.

ttammylynn said...

How wonderful. I tilled up my beds yesterday and I have been weeding my flower beds, but best of all, we actually got a little rain today, rain, beautiful, wonderful wet stuff from the sky. A lowdown on me-- I have blooms on my oranges(greenhouse), cherries, pears, little mulberries forming...leaves coming on figs, grapes, one raspberry plant. I have onions, garlic, potatoes, rosemary, cilantro, mint, oregano, carrots. In the greenhouse I have small tomatoes, lots of tomato plants, some broccoli sprouting, as well as pak choy and butternut squash--waiting on peppers.
Farmer's Daughter shouldn't envy us, the season here is divided because mid-season is too hot and dry...at least the snow makes great soil in the springtime for people with even short growing seasons.

Glenda said...

Your cabbage is so big!! We transplanted some broccoli, kale, cabbage, and onions three weeks ago, some lettuce mix and carrots a couple weeks ago, and then a whole bunch of other stuff last weekend. I was so excited yesterday when I looked at the broccoli and noticed they are so much bigger than they were even a week ago! They're still pretty tiny, but I'll be curious to see how big they end up getting.

I posted update pics on my blog yesterday -- http://wrenandstitchy.wordpress.com -- and will continue to do so as long as we have stuff growing out there.

The best news is that today we have gotten a fantastic, slow rain. Our last good rain was late last August / early Sept -- the rain barrel was about empty, but now it's overflowing again :).

(Oh, we're in west-central Texas, by the way.)

Heather @ SGF said...

Farmer's Daughter - Thanks! Well, I WAS enjoying the warm weather. We just got our March cold snap today and I had to bring the hanging tomatoes indoors and we covered the ones in the bed. The high tomorrow is 46. Yeah, yesterday it was 80 something...

Tammy - Rain? You got rain? We got a brief sprinkling early this morning, then nothing. Nothing! :( Come on rain. Come to my neighborhood too...

Glenda - Ooh! Those are some nice looking beds, girl! And I may need to send Dave your way for water barrel training. We've been talking making our own too. Tips?