I have had panorama photos that turned out much better than this one, but it gets the idea across. Things are starting to get a bit unruly down there. Weeding needs lots of attention soon. It’s time to harvest beets and their greens. Soon I will harvest the carrots, followed by the cabbages and then the garlic. By that time I will be getting many red tomatoes.
I still need to plant the green beans I promised my wife.
Okra, Brussels Sprouts, Sweet Potatoes, Garlic, Cabbage, Strawberries, Beets, Carrots, Peas, Potatoes, Squash, Watermelons, Zucchini.
I need to plant cucumbers where those peas are, but I’m giving them ONE MORE week before they are evicted.
I have done my share of trellising projects in my garden over the last few years. Today I would like to share with you one good reason NOT to trellis the bigger vines of melon, pumpkin, squash and gourds.
In the photo above, I have circled in yellow the area where my vines left their raised beds. If you look closely you will see that in each case the original vine has died. Perhaps due to lack of enough rain, and perhaps due to a vine boring insect (I have no idea which) all of these vines have died off in the original spot where I planted the seeds.
But look again and you will see that, indeed, they live!
These types of vines will sprout new roots anywhere they come into contact with moist soil. Given enough time, the new roots will grow large enough to support at least a portion of the vine. In this case the new roots are keeping my vines alive and growing, even through their parent plant is dead and gone.
If these were trellised, I would have lost the whole vines when the one and only set of roots died back.
In the kids’ square foot gardens, they are going to have quite a few vining crops. In just the bed for H., there will be Watermelon, Zucchini, Jackolantern and Gourds. Of course I realize that these vines won’t stay in their 4-square-foot space for the next 3 or 4 months, but I will try to keep them in the bed for as long as possible by turning the growing end.
Without looking it up, I couldn’t say for sure why these things are planted in hills. I expect it is because the hill of dirt will warm up quickly in the morning sun and also drain especially well. These are warm loving crops, which is why I will probably have to replant them all.
These pictures were taken last Sunday when we put the seeds in the ground. Today and tomorrow the overnight low temperatures are right around freezing. That will probably kill the just-emerged seedlings from last weekend’s direct-seeded planting. Oh well, I have more time and more seeds. I can’t be upset about a tiny setback like that.
I am adding two new 4 ft x 8 ft garden beds this year, so I decided to let my kids each plant one. I’ll also let our wonderful friend and neighbor, M., plant one of my existing 4×8′s. These children are 8, 6 and 6 years old, so I made them up a planning guide that you see above (and in color below).
I helped them cut out the plant rectangles that are sized to cover 1, 2 or 4 square feet in the bed, and then let them arrange them any way they pleased. So far, two of the three are finished:
Kids' 4 x 8 foot garden plans
Feel free to take this idea and run with it, but make your own. Absolutely all of the pictures in mine were “lifted” gently from Google searches, so I have no permission to use them.
I haven’t shown you my community garden plot because I never remember to bring the camera. So here are some blurry cell phone pictures.
Community Garden Plot 10 x 30 feet
At the front right corner is an improvised trellis trying to support 9 tomato plants and already sagging in the middle.
The rest of the space contains alternating hills of either corn and pole beans together, or a vining plant such as a squash, cucumber or watermelon. This is my three sisters garden. It’s a very fun experiment and I think it’s going to work out.
In addition to my home garden this year I’ve been given a spot at a community garden. I stepped off the size of the plot and it seems to be about 10 x 30 feet. There is quite a rabbit problem in the yard at the community garden, so I have fenced in my area. I have big plans to try a full blown three sisters garden in a 10 x 20 space, leaving me about 10×10 for “miscellaneous.”
I planted 10 tomato plants there already, but there is much work left to be done. Planting is supposed to be completed by the 15th of May, so I need to get a move on.
Pictures are coming!
P.S. Tomato list for community garden:
- Ace 55 (determinate)
- Celebrity (determinate)
- Supersteak (determinate)
- Banjan Roomi
- Murray Smith
- Gardener’s Delight