Plan your work and work your plan

“I feel like starting each header under planting instructions with the caution, ‘Don’t crowd and don’t attempt too much.'”

The Complete Book of Garden Magic, Roy E. Biles, pg 10

Like I said yesterday, we have “being young and foolish” on our side.   We chronically take on too much, and this gardening project is no different.  We’re both wicked sore today, and finding the gumption to make it back outside to finish the job was a smidge difficult.  However, I’m proud to report that not only did we do the grunt work, we also have a solid gardening map, and the first seeds of the season went into the ground right before we called it quits.

We’re snagging the basic layout for the front of the garden from a professor I work with at SBC, and it involves creating pathways around the garden for easy access (something we’ve struggled with in the past).  We’re grateful for SB’s great notes and detailed outline on Facebook!

The basic layout of veggies that we’ve come up with are as follows: tomatoes and peppers are going to fill the front left quadrant; spinach, beans, cucumbers and zucchini are going to fill the front right quadrant; and then the back two quadrants are going to be filled with corn, peas and pole beans.  It’s the back part that I’m the most excited about because we’re going to try to tackle a major problem we’ve had in the past (creating and maintaining trellises) with a method found in CBGM (pg 161) called Partnership Cropping.  By planting the corn and peas or beans in the same row, as the corn grows the peas/beans are able to use the corn stalks as a trellis.  Since the peas and beans enrich the soil with more nitrogen than they take up, they’ll help to enrich the soil, and also the heavy nitrogen feeding corn.  It’s a beautiful partnership!

We ended our time in the garden today by planting the first few seeds–snow peas, spinach, and basil.  We celebrated our success of the weekend by taking a trip to Lowes to check out all the seeds, fencing options, and general fun that comes with that trip.  And as always, we came out with bigger ideas then when we went in with…apparently, we don’t do “don’t attempt too much” all that well.  Sorry, Mr. Biles!

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3 thoughts on “Plan your work and work your plan

  1. SteveB says:

    My goal one day is to have a garden big enough to make a full labyrinth, with tomatoes and sunflowers for the walls. It also makes a perfect way to walk the garden in the cool of the evening, wine glass and basket in hands.

    Whimsy aside, the paths make it easier to get to both sides of the bed without busting your back or, worse, stepping on the beds and compacting the soil. Wider beds that are mounded give much more surface area to grow—the trick is to keep them mulched after a bit so the weeds don’t overtake.

  2. Gracie Lou says:

    Probably a very silly question for you–what do you use to mulch your vegetable garden beds? We haven’t done that in the past, but would love info on what medium to use! Thanks so much for the input and advice!

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