Monday, April 14, 2008

Garden 2008 plans...

The kiddo and I (presently stuck indoors with her stomach bug) have been discussing what we want to plant in our food garden this year. So far, this is the list:
  • tomatoes (cherry and full-size)
  • peas (usually we do sugar snap peas)
  • green beans (we had much better success with pole beans than bush beans last year, so will probably do them again)
  • basil
  • parsley
  • cucumbers
  • potatoes
  • watermelon
  • pumpkins
  • sweet corn
  • spinach

Now, the last 5 are the kiddo's requests. I have a sneaking suspicion we'll wind up with very sad looking potatoes if we try them, given how craptastically the carrots turned out last year. As far as the spinach goes, I'm happy to try planting some this year, as it is presently her favorite veggie (raw, with ranch dressing for dipping), and it seems silly (and expensive) to keep buying if I can grow it myself. I had decent results the year I planted romaine lettuce, so I'm hoping that spinach will be similar. Hmm, I might even plant a few heads of romaine again this year, too...

We tried corn one other time, and it failed miserably. I'm going to have to do some research and see if there's anything I can do to grow corn that is higher than a bunny rabbit's eye. Pumpkins and watermelons similarly have not been good crops for our little garden plot, but I'm hoping to use a method I inadvertently developed last year with the cukes and see if that helps. You see, last year my cucumbers went crazy and were taking over not only their section of the garden, but the lawn surrounding it as well. Out of desperation, I stuck some tomato cages around them and wound the vines up and around the cages. Whaddya know - best cuke crop I've ever had! I've read about growing vined fruits and veggies on a trellis (with appropriate supports for the fruit as it grows) and I think I may try that for the melon and pumpkins. Maybe we'll get a few melons and a pumpkin or two out of it - something larger than a golf ball, even! I'll also need to step up my vole and Bunny Foo-foo garden defenses, as last year Bunny Foo-foo ate my tomato seedlings down to the ground overnight and the voles took out most of my melon blooms before they'd had a chance to fruitify. The netting I used to protect the berry patch from the birds worked well - I might try to do something like that over the food garden too, or at least some sort of edging/fencing to keep the critters out.

We haven't started any seeds yet, actually we haven't even bought any seeds yet. I'm thinking in another week or two, we might be ready for our first trip to the garden supply store of the year, so long as the weather stays warmish and sunny... Woo-hoo!

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