My Garden(s), Spring 2013

Well, after the snow melted last week, I finally went great guns on the great outdoors for the first time this year. Yesterday, I rototilled the sad mess that was last year’s flooded garden. I churned up quite a few giant old taters that somehow survived the deluge. But the main focus of my energies this week has been on fencing a new, second garden at the back of my house.

After last year, I figured it was best to face the climate-changed world of rainfall feast-and-famine was with a wet garden and a dry garden. That is, one that would survive a wet year and one that would survive a dry one. The ideal spot for my new spread is the back yard, which up till a few days ago belonged exclusively to my zillion and a half dogs. Obviously, it was already fenced. But I built a second fence inside, leaving my critters a big L-shaped area, about thirty feet one way and forty the other, each part about 12 feet wide. My inner area, which the deer will be seriously reluctant to hop into, is about 20′ by 30′, which is plenty for two apple trees and a bunch of raised beds.

And that’s the key feature of my little new plot. Raised beds. It’s not going to be anything fancy. I bought a bunch of 8 foot 2x6s and am going to make three beds, each one 4×8′ and two 2x6s high, so about 11″. There I can have multi-year things like garlic and parsnips, but also greens that would otherwise be eaten by deer in my big garden.

So the fence is in. It’s page-wire and a combo of wooden posts and T-bars. I’m quite happy with the gate, which I made, picket fence-style, from 1x4s, with a rounded top.

Next week I’ll head into town and spend a happy morning in the seed store picking out the stuff I’m going to grow. Since I gave up eating wheat a few weeks ago, there should be no reason I can’t grow and store damn near everything I eat this year. Well, barring a tornado, that is.

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