About eight or nine years ago I was given a few iris plants that my grandfather had purchased a bit before he died. I lost one, the other two have struggled and have never bloomed. Last year they put on quite a bit of new growth. This year a blossom...|
I am currently reading The Vegetable Gardener's Guide to Permaculture by Christopher Shein and it has inspired my newest experiment. This area is right next to the water and receives 6 to 8 hours of full sun.
*The containers are where the root crops are growing. My garden has very rocky soil which can make root crops difficult to grow directly in the ground.
*The one gallon containers in the wash tub have radishes, carrots, beets and lettuce. Once they have sprouted I'll move the containers out of the wash tub and plant more seeds in the containers below. I'm hoping in this way to have a longer harvest of these crops. After I harvest from the containers I'll mix in some compost with the potting soil and plant something different.
*The strawberries and cucumbers are being grown in the buckets that are hanging from the hooks (pest prevention).
*The summer squash will not just be a crop to harvest but also "living mulch" for the area around the pear tree.
*This is also a budget experiment. All the seed was purchased
last year and have grown enough produce to have paid for itself. The
same is true of the strawberries and pears. I'll have about 16 dollars
for potting soil, a tomatillo as a start ($2.00), and $6.00 worth of
seed potato. I'm going to keep track of the total harvest from this
area so that I can make some comparisons.
This is the first one. I will be making more. The pattern is from Hip to Crochet by Judith Swartz. The wool is some hand spun from Jude (Thank you again!). It still has quite a bit of lanolin in the yarn so it's perfect for something like this.
And we sure did get sunshine! I went out to the garden at 10 AM and completely lost track of time...
Garden projects: I am trying artichokes one more time. Many years ago my father built me a cold frame with a reclaimed sun window. The wood finally rotted out to the point it wasn't usable this winter so I propped the window up on some cinder blocks. I'm hoping this will give the artichokes a bit of shelter. I also buried a bucket full of chicken compost underneath.
The window box that has lost it's bottom will be filled with potting soil and then planted with carrots. I have very rocky soil which makes it hard to grow root crops.
Neighbors: Two of the chickens are laying eggs consistently again. That's good 'cause I'm going to have a new neighbor and I'll want to share eggs. Hopefully they like chickens...
Trees: A bit of fabric drifted into the garden. I needed to stake and tie two of my new apple trees. I planted four new trees this spring. I think I've run out of space for fruit trees, even if they are mostly mini-dwarf, dwarf or espaliered. This makes 15 fruit trees and 3 hazelnuts. On a city lot.
Community: And that brings me back to a TED talk I listened to this morning...
Love what he has to say:
"I use the garden, the soil, like it's a piece of cloth...." Ron Finley
Cloth: I'm building up the front side of my "When I Grow Up" project by adding a layer of woven fabric around the wheel. I can already feel how much more sturdy the fabric is.
The stitched side of my current sewing project, the one that I am calling "When I grow up."
I think for my most of my childhood if someone asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up I would have answered "Maybe a teacher." I know by the time I was in high school I was set on that course.
I don't think I would have said, "When I grow up my life style will be focused on sustainability." That probably started in 9th grade. I took a class called "Energy Education," a science class focused on energy sources. My dad helped me make a solar hot water heater for a class project...well, my dad made it while I watched and I presented it to the class. (As an aside, some of my favorite gifts from my parents have been tools.)
Sometime we talk about countries being older or younger. What does it mean for a nation to grow up? What would it mean for humanity to grow up?
Maybe I am thinking too much again...
Today was the second "Winter Market." There are three scheduled for the community I live in: one was in January, today's and then one in March. In April the market will return to being weekly. Today a friend of the family who has a booth at the market observed that I am faithful to the market. And I am. I go to almost every scheduled one.
Today I bought: pears, swiss chard, potatoes, bread, cheese, a turnip, dried beans, a cabbage and sunflower sprouts.
By the time I made it home from the market the clouds were breaking up and the sun was coming out. It felt warm enough that I turned off the heat and opened the windows up... it was good to air out the house. To dream of spring.
"When I grow up I will eat organic local food. I will grow fruits and vegetables and herbs. I will sell my car. I will make most of my clothes. I will be a caregiver and teacher. I will be a story teller."