Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Spring Preparation

We got a bit of a late start, but we have already purchased and received our seeds and began garden preparation. Last year we had six raised beds that were 6' x 6' each. We then tried square foot gardening in each of them. This proved to be difficult because of how hard it was to weed and harvest the middle, from standing outside of the boxes. so this year we took all of those boxes down but one and plowed over a much larger area to plant in rows.
The smaller garden near the house

We plowed the garden with a tractor that has been in Josh's family for quite some time. His father brought it to us last week and Josh could not be more thrilled. It's too tall to store in our barn due to the opening and layout of our barn, so he erected a carport next to the barn. The less exciting part of that day was picking rocks out of the garden. A rite of passage for any southern Missouri gardener, I believe.

The big garden
We are still deciding between renting or buying a tiller to pull behind the tractor to finish readying the garden. After that, we are going to divide the soil into wide rows for planting. Our seeds are either harvested from last year's crops, (mine and my grandfather's), or purchased from Baker Creek. I'm a little late starting some of them indoors, but I hope to get that going soon too.

Last year I mentioned several books that were used as garden resources when we were getting started (Square Foot Gardening and Carrots Love Tomatoes). This year, we are keeping the close container / square foot garden that's next to the house for lettuce, herbs, and a couple of tomato plants that we will be able to reach easily, but for the big garden, we are using Storey's Basic Country Skills as our primary resource.

Our little weed picker

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