Spring! One of my most favorite times of year.
The weather starts to warm again. We come out of our hibernation and begin to spend as much time outside as we can. In fact, the kids and I were outside for five hours the other day. You would have thought that would have quenched the outdoor thirst for my little ones, but my two year old still went to bed whimpering, “Side, side.” That’s “outside” in toddler-speak. Poor little guy.
We’d been way too cooped up and my family LOVES being outdoors.
One of our favorite things to do outside is work the ground, plant, water, and harvest our little garden.
We’ve had a garden for six-seven years now and every single year I learn something new. No joke. I told Ken last night that maybe by the time we’re 90, we’ll know something about keeping a garden. Ha!
Since we started our garden almost seven years ago, we’ve pretty much managed it in the traditional way: till, compost, plant, deal with countless weeds, and water non-stop. I’m not going to lie, it can be a lot of work.
This year though, we’re going to try a bit of a new “style”. I watched the film Back to Eden and it has completely changed my outlook on traditional methods. Paul, the main character on the film, has been a gardener for his entire life. After many years of backbreaking labor, he began to look at God’s creation and the trees and forests that grow without anyone tending to them. How was this possible? He claims that the Lord through scripture, revealed to him attributes about himself that applied to gardening. It’s a fascinating film and I encourage anyone who is even remotely interesting in growing anything in your yard, to watch it. Whether you are a Christian or not, this guy has a fantastic garden that he tends with only his rake. He never waters, has minimal pest and weed problems, and his produce is lush and juicy. I think his results speak for themselves.
His secret? The covering. Keeping the ground covered with woodchips and organic matter so that they are not exposed to the elements. Over time they break down and produce beautiful compost that doesn’t compact, rarely needs watering, and greatly improves the soil quality over time.
Anyway, watch the film. It’s somewhat long, somewhere around 1 1/2 hours I think, but I think you’ll enjoy it.
We’re excited to implement some of Paul’s ideas into our garden this year. Can’t hurt to try, right?
Here’s what we have growing so far this Spring. I didn’t get everything in that I wanted. Spinach, kale and potatoes didn’t get planted. I may see if I can still get some going, with the wood chip method, but I’m afraid I might be too late. We’ll see.
Blueberry bush with some green blueberries. Ignore my unpruned areas. I’m still learning, friends.
Blury pic of some buds and baby figs on our fig tree. I love this bush because my husband’s brother and his wife planted it before he died. Also it’s something that not too many people have in their yard. I just think it’s neat.
Broccoli with some beautiful heads forming! I’m so excited about these.
This is our second year for broccoli and they are already doing much better.
Cauliflower plants. No heads yet, but I’m very hopeful! This is our first year for cauliflower.
Strawberries! This is one of my absolute favorite things to grow. They are extremely low maintenance, and the fruit is unbelievable. I have never tasted sweeter and juicier strawberries in my life. Perfectly red completely through and not sour at all. I can’t wait for these babies to produce. Those blooms mean they’re coming soon!
Lettuce. Not much else to say. We grow lettuce every year and we love it.
Collard greens. These are going a little slower than I would like, but they are trucking along.
I’ve got two rows of these so I’m hoping to have plenty for the freezer. I just love them.
Cabbage. This is the first year we’ve done cabbage as well. They’re looking good so far. I think that’s a wee little baby head forming in there too, but I can’t be sure. Like I said, we’ve never grown cabbage before.
That concludes the tour. I know. Riveting. I’ll do another tour in the summer, when we have tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers, squash, zucchini, green beans and eggplant growing. Until then, happy gardening, friends!
Do you have a spring garden? What do you have growing? Have you seen Back to Eden or have you tried the no till and mulch layering method?
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