Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Garden, here we come!

The last danger of frost in Massachusetts may not be for several weeks, but there are still plenty of gardening activities to begin! We're going to try growing vegetables this year for the first time. I am looking forward to being outdoors, the excitement of seeing things grow, and the satisfaction of eating something we've grown ourselves. It's good for us and it's good for the environment. After all, what could be more local than your backyard?

We bought M-Braces from www.artofthegarden.net which have helped us take lumber and transform it into a raised bed with no hammers or nails. I would say no sawing, but my amazingly wonderful husband Greg actually used a borrowed handsaw in the Lowe's parking lot because their equipment for cutting lumber in the store was down. So it was actually pretty labor intensive. But there was the potential for it not to have been!

We're lucky enough to live near Volante Farms, a great place in Needham that has an amazing garden center and their own brand of organic top soil. Upon their recommendation, we're combining a 75% top soil, 25% composted organic cow manure and peat moss mixture.

This year we're going to try carrots, leaf lettuce, cucumbers, green beans, and tomatoes. I've made a chart with notes on the planting, growing, and harvesting of each to help me keep track of each one.

Besides our usual container plants, I'm also going to grow some herbs along the retaining wall in our backyard. Since it's too early to plant most of them outdoors, I am working on starting some inside from seed! Chobani yogurt containers, meet scissors, sharpie, seed and soil. I cut holes in one container, and then stacked it in another to create a place for any extra water to go. (Otherwise Greg probably wouldn't let me put them on the windowsill.) If they don't grow well, I can always buy some young herb plants, but I thought it would be fun to try. For less than two dollars a packet, it's pretty inexpensive entertainment! Who knows, maybe it will become a fun spring tradition :)

We've already gotten back something from our garden - we had a wonderful day this past weekend outside with Will on a blanket in the shade, working together to create something.

Can't wait to watch things grow!

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