Friday, April 28, 2017

Garden Update

Yeah, I know.  April 28--a little early to be giving a garden update up here in the great white north.  But, see, the thing is, it wasn't really so white this year, and it's been unseasonably warm, so yup, I've already planted a few things.

I planted radishes a week ago, and a week before that, and a week before that, and I'm planning on planting more tomorrow.  I'm staggering my plantings.  So, you know, Hubby doesn't have to eat 40 bajillion radishes in one day because they're all ripe and there's no good way to store them.  I also planted sugar snap peas a week and three weeks ago.

Itty bitty sugar snap pea plants
It's ok that I planted these things, because radishes and peas like cold weather.  At least, that's what I've been led to believe.  I'm not so sure, because while they've all sprouted, they're not growing as fast as the seed packages say they should be.  According to the package, the first set of radishes should be ready for harvest on Tuesday.  Um.  I don't think so.  Well, maybe.  It's hard to tell what's going on down there, under the dirt.  The weather has surely been cooperating.  It's been raining just about every day since my first planting.

The first planting of radishes.  Yeah.  Can't really tell what's going on in the root department.

It's been all I can do to keep myself from planting some corn in among the peas.  They like each other, you know.  Green beans get all the press when it comes to growing things with corn, but peas can fix nitrogen, too.  And peas need something to grow up.

Interestingly, corn is the only thing I've really been pining to plant.  It's probably because that's the last "from seed" crop that we're planning on growing this year.  I'm perfectly fine waiting until May 15 or whatever to plant the nursery-raised veggies.

So what else is going in the garden this year?  For sure some tomatoes, I guess because I'm a glutton for punishment (we lost about half our crop last year to mysterious rodents).  AKD says we need to grow cucumbers, probably because he doesn't realize they don't store well.  MC says we need zucchini, but I say we still have 22 cups of shredded zucchini in our freezer from last year, so maybe we can skip a year.  I think Bubby wanted pumpkins, which would be fun.  And I guess we'll just see what else catches my eye at the nursery.

I spotted the first strawberry flower the other day.  Now I guess I need to get serious about rodent control.  Because in addition to losing about half of our tomato crop to uninvited garden guests, we lost about all of our strawberry crop last year.  I'm not kidding.  We ate two strawberries grown by us last year.  Two.  *Sigh*

I've heard rodents don't like mint, so I thought about planting mint around the outside of the raised beds.  But I've also heard suggestions like putting altoids in the bed, especially around the perimeter, or Irish spring soap slivers, either in bags or not.  I don't know, but we've got to do something.

I feel like a garden discussion wouldn't be complete without mentioning the chicken coop.  Here it is, so far.  It'll have a 4 x 6 foot elevated hen house, surrounded by a 8 x 10 foot run.

It's been slow going, because we're busy.  So busy.  We have all the regular kid stuff, plus Hubby's training to coach AKD's bike team, plus extra review sessions and practice exams for AKD's AP classes, and AKD has started working on his Eagle project in earnest (AKD's working on his eagle project; Sawblock is working on his chicken project...).  Oh, and then there's the rain.  No one wants to be working in it, least of all when power tools enter the equation.  It's all good, though.  We don't really need it until mid-June, and even then, we don't need the run for a while after that.

And...these are my chicken boots.  They make me happy, and are especially nice to have on rainy days when one wants to take pictures of itty bitty plants and partially constructed chicken coops.  If you have recently discovered that you also need chicken boots (they also come in yellow), you can buy them here.

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