Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Veggie Garden Time!

I love me some veggies! And thankfully I did not inherit my mothers black thumb lol.
Growing up I was always exposed to fresh veggies from my uncle and my dads garden.
My dad pretty much showed me everything I know about cultivating my own food.
Our garden this year
It was and still is his passion to work out in the yard, and I am so thankful that I still have him here today to answer all my questions.
This will be our fourth year of growing our own veggies,the first two years we planted a small garden in back of our carriage house, the soil was very rich back there, (it used to be a place where people would compost their garbage, so the soil was ridiculously fertile and rich.
We started with a few tomato, some cilantro and some peppers. Over the years we have added more and More veggies as we learn what grows best in our climate.
Last year my wonderful husband decided to build me a raised garden bed, this one is much much bigger, we planted cucumbers, tomato and peppers, some things worked and some didn't, but this year I'm learning more about minerals and soil testing. Since we made a raised garden bed, we had to move the actual garden and get fill soil installed in it, the problem is,this soil is devoid of most nutrients, so we will have to work for years so enrich the soil, but that doesn't mean we can't grow anything, just that we will need to feed the plants more often.
This year I decided to make the most room of my garden that i possibly could, I bought some garden twine, and made a grid of plantable areas. I also added some containers in the middle of plants that I wanted to grow but are invasive in nature, meaning i need to keep them contained.
So far we have, 4 pepper plants (2 Hungarian wax, 2 sweet hot banana peppers) 5 cucumber plants, 2 Genovese basil, 1 raspberry bush,loose leaf lettuce,  4 cherry tomato plants, and Mint, spearmint,lavender and Kale in containers. PHEW!
Rocket lettuce we planted
Growing a garden is easier than you think,if you are interested in starting an out door garden, I highly recommend a soil test, you can pick one up at the store for like 4.99 and it will be the best investment you make, we winged it the first few years and didn't test it because the soil was rich and you could see it, but with the raised garden, we found that a few plants did real well last year and few really didn't do so well, testing was necessary to get to the bottom of why certain things never took off. Come to find out, our solid is alkaline (excellent for growing lettuce and cucumbers) but devoid of Acid (real bad for growing peppers and raspberries) I spoke ot my dad who suggested we feed the acid loving plants with Miracid and the non acid loving ones with  regular 10-10-10 fertilizer.
Hopefully that helps us grow more productive crops this year.
If you have a small apartment or just want to start out small, I highly recommend container gardening, you can even buy soil that has all the nutrients already in it! And you can grow practically anything in a container, give it a try! Its the easiest way to get started.
We just planted everything this weekend, except for the lettuce which I planted in late winter from seed, that's already coming up, so far none of the veggies I planted have keeled over yet lol. So lets pray this is a fantastic growing season! Ill keep you updated!


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