The blog of Hope Grows

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Friday, April 16, 2010

Garden Dreams

It's getting down to the wire, and we're scrambling to get our new 1/5 acre garden set up. Right now it's little more than a dirt field, but while spending the day shoveling paths (we don't have a tractor, by the way) we pause occasionally to look wistfully at our epic garden-to-be, dreaming of pink and yellow tomatoes, striped eggplants, purple okra.

So what's our vision? Semi-permanent raised beds, laid out with drip irrigation and black plastic mulch. We're definitely not wild about the plastic, but the invasive Bermuda grass we have a bounty of here on the farm would keep us hand weeding around the clock. In the paths we'll mulch with the paper chicken feed bags we've been saving for months (yay, recycling!) and a thick layer of oat straw.

You can see the soil is quite sandy and depleted, so we're amending with compost from our friends at Longwood Plantation. In addition to the compost we'll be fertilizing with the chicken manure/straw compost we accumulated in our very own coops over the winter. In an ideal situation, we would be producing all the fertility and organic matter we'd need to use in our garden, but unfortunately our 3-bin compost system didn't produce nearly enough to revive this piece of land. So we're importing to close the gap--because you can't have healthy plants without healthy soil. Here's a video of the drop-off:

Look for future posts on transplant productions, laying out drip irrigation, and other garden adventures.



  1. Wow, that really is a lot of old s**t...
    Sorry, couldn't resist. :-)