The placement of this garden was an important decision for me. Not just for sunlight hours, (we have a six acre field that surely would get more), or soil quality but because of sheer location to the house. I knew that a garden that made me stray too far would go untended. In the past my only real vegetable garden was a community garden spot a few blocks away from my house in Flagstaff. And while I surely did visit it often, it sometimes went a few days without a caring hand. Not the case here. Tucked in right next to our house, it is most definitely my most favorite place to be. Surrounded by this spectacular fence made from the timber on our land by the hands of the most amazing man I know, watching the food that will nourish us (with some hope!) all season long, this is something I truly can’t get enough of.
This week with the completion of the fence behind us, I began in earnest filling in the gaps that I think may be growing in our garden. Side alleys were filled with bush bean seeds and more cucumbers were placed by the gardens edge. Another few rows of carrots were woven into the mix and I sowed black radishes, red top turnips and blood-red beets. More slobolt lettuce was scattered in by my biggest boy, and some eggplant and brocoli starts we picked out at last weeks farmers market were interspersed among my slow-growing sweet peas. The dahlia tubers that I planted on the outside of the fence are starting to show their deep purple stalks. I also purchased some hyssop to place in with the herbs making the herb garden look a little brighter and bigger with the new addition. All the squash beetles seem to be being kept at bay (for now) by the white fabric and diligent picking and are growing strongly know. We have been tasting lettuce and onion tops and scallions and radish greens and the regular, anticipating that first home-grown meal.
In other news… the perennial gardens has been a place of much thought and discussion. Behind our little hops contraption lies an untended raspberry patch I would love to clean up. Right now its over run by comfrey and sedum, only the latter being something I would like to keep (there is SO much comfrey!). This may turn into a project for next year for my energy level is dying off, and fast! Besides, all the advice my mama has given me has pointed to waiting. “The first year,” she says, “Just watch. Mark things if you can, and take lots of notes.” This is a good plan I shall stick by.
And whew, just now and I was typing this, I took a quick break to run (as fast as my giant belly would allow) towards the sound of the mystery egg laying location as Dark Red announced her job was finished. I searched and searched these garden beds, for that is where her fluffy proud self emerged from, and finally, FINALLY found five gorgeous large brown eggs. Oh how I had missed those occasional double yolkers.
Yes, the garden is full of intrigue this time of year and we are loving every moment of it!