Third Time’s the Charm

“I don’t know what I’m doing, but at least I’m doing something!  “

–GAL, at the start of turning over the garden

Last year was a big disappointment for us as gardeners.  It was our second season, and I think we got a little cocky and a little lazy.  Regardless, our biggest fault last year was not starting off on the right foot early enough in the season.  This year we have vowed to be different! 

Not that we’re expert gardeners by any stretch of the imagination.  Both our families garden, and GAL’s grandfather is an encyclopedia of gardening know how, but as the JLG collective…we’re in our infant years of getting to know the soil, and completely understand how this all works.  And we don’t have much…aside from the land to do it, we’re armed with youthful ignorance, families who are willing to spend a few hours on the phone coaching us through, a 1970 something Earth Bird tiller, and Grampa’s 1950 edition of The Complete Book of Garden Magic

Today was the start–JGL got the Earth Bird going, and if I say so myself, I think this is the start we both needed to jump start the season.  We’re breaking for the rest of the day, but tomorrow we’re tackling the pathways and how we want the garden to flow, and we may even be able to get a few seeds in the ground. 

Until then, we’re soaking up every peice of information we can get, and we’re looking forward to sharing this journey with you!


5 thoughts on “Third Time’s the Charm

  1. Bre says:

    I’m so excited for you! I will most certainly be following as I’m thinking of starting a very small backyard garden. Just enough to supplement our produce purchases a bit! Question: If you don’t have a grandfather that is an encyclopedia of knowledge, any suggestions on where to go? Also, can you rent a tiller? My dad says yes, but I’m finding that the rest of the world works differently than my small town 🙂 I can’t wait to see how your garden turns out! You two are the best!

    • Gracie Lou says:

      Thanks, B! We really appreciate your support (and are both really enjoying your blog as well!).

      You probably are going to need a tiller, unless you want to tackle it by hand. However, that’s what JGL and I did last year when we couldn’t get good old Earth Bird to work, and the result was a garden full of wire grass (bleck!). If it looks like your gardening area hasn’t been worked in a while, tilling may be the way to go. You should be able to find a lawn equipment rental place–I might try a Google search, or even just a good old fashion word of mouth asking. You may find there’s a nice neighbor near by who has something that would work! The other alternative (depending on what exactly you want to grow) is starting a container garden on your porch–many of the seed catalogs will have specific seed/plant bundles designed especially for small container gardens. Even with the garden in the back 40, I still do this for a lot of my herbs so if I’m cooking and don’t have the time to run all the way out back, I can just snip some basil. There are some herbs, like mint and oregano, that can be a bit invasive, so putting them in a container will also save you a lot of heartache later.

      In terms of sources/where to go, I love thumbing through seed/plant catalogs and Burpee has a great source on their website, Burpees Gardeners Corner: . I’ve also really enjoyed going through’s blog–she has a wealth of information, and you can sort her posts by topic (inlcuding beginners 101!). Another great resource is your local nursery–they’re a great source of knowledge about what works specifcally in your area.

      Keep us posted about how your garden is going–we’d love to swap stories with you!!

  2. Scott says:

    I am hoping you could help me with something i have the same earth bird tiller could you tell me what model and year yours is for i do not have that information on mine anymore and am in need of a manual and parts list for mine any help you could give me would be greatful

    • GAL says:

      I am so sorry it’s taken me this long to get back to you! I’m sure you’ve already found the information you need by now, but our tiller is approximately circa 1978. We started having issues with dry rot and the belts, and what we found was that it is very difficult to find the belts and such that you need to keep up with the older model.

      And while we LOVED using it and still have it, we ended up purchasing a newer Husqvarna, which has really been a lifesaver. Wishing you all the best in your gardening Adventures!

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