For those of you who do not know me well – I can NOT keep plants alive. Gardening tends to be a fail due to this fact. Now that we are landowners we decided to try a rough garden before we build next summer. We want to test the soil out, see how things grow, etc. Hopefully this year is different due to my (secret weapon)!If you read my Animal Tracker post yesterday, you’ll know that we recently checked out several books from the library, one of which is my secret weapon – at least I hope it is! The Farmer’s Wife – Guide to Growing a Great Garden & Eating From it, Too! I know, its a really, really long name – but who knows more about crops than farmers and their wives? This apparently does not translate to children of farmers since I can’t grow diddly squat and my dad was a farmer….
She not only tells you how to grow things, but also how to preserve and cook with the things she explains how to grow. That is a hat trick of key information in one book! So far I am only part way in, but it looks extremely promising.
Our property seems to have pretty clay laden soil (which holds moisture but does not allow for oxygenation). She has a whole section on this soil in particular! Just my luck right? I cant wait to start a gardening journal and notebook to record: produce that works in our area, when we planted it, when we were able to harvest it, and what to plant next year.
It is a good idea to rotate crops every year. On the large farming scale I knew this because some item deplete the soil of specific nutrients and some items give back those same nutrients, and vice versa for each crop you plant. On a small personal garden I did not think it was that important because we’re only talking a few square feet of dirt per item… not a few thousand acres. Boy was I wrong! Perhaps that is why many of my items fail to grow…
Since our property has never been developed we are having to do it all by hand. Also without our driveway done we can’t bring up anything more than we can carry to help us. So it is slow going and back braking to say the least. But we have one 20 foot row done so far, and hope to get three more done before we are out of the traditional planting season.
Row 1 for us consisted of: Carrots, Spinach, Cabbage, and Onions
I’ll keep you updated as we go!
I hope you stick around for my gardening experiment and see if we end up with crops – or with really happy and fat deer on our land!