Thursday, April 19, 2012

Early Morning Sun on My Garden

    I love the way the early morning sun shines on my garden. It lights it up with a warm glow that warms my heart. The peas are all facing the sun. They seem to be so happy as the sun kisses them on the forehead and tells them to grow.

The garden I'm looking at is a new garden. I'm imagining what it will look like in its full glory this fall. Tall tomatoes, green beans and cucumbers, huge squash plants, I can see it. I have about twice as much room as the last garden so I'm planting more, but still having trouble fitting it all in. Every year I plant something I've never grown before.

Here's the backyard before much had been done.
This year I'm planting tomatillos, green and purple. Yes, there are purple tomatillos! I'm excited about anything purple in the garden. I grew some purple green beans one year, but they turned green when we cooked them, disappointing. I was hoping to serve purple green beans to my kids, but instead it ended up being a fun, magical experience to watch them turn green while they cooked. I love being surprised by new plants.  I've also planted peas, which I've never grown successfully so far. The peas are about 4" tall now and seem fine so I think we'll get some peas this year. I planted two varieties, Sugar snap and
Regular peas.


 I've built raised beds, a bench, some stairs from the deck and made a path so far.
 The yard was just dirt when we got here. A little grass, but mostly dandelions and other weeds. I dug up a wheelbarrow full of dandelions yesterday, enough for one day, my back told me. Still have more to do. I want to do it organically so I'm digging them up. I will follow with vinegar and soap mixed with water in a spray bottle. It helps some.
 Here's the bench I made, I used the same wood as the garden. I call it my back bench. When my back hurts I can lay on it for a while till it feels better. I've wanted to make one for years, finally I did it!

When we moved in here the 'stairs' from the deck to the back yard consisted of a big rock and pavers piled up. I dug those out, poured a concrete pad (my first one), and built some stairs.

 They look fine, and they're safe. The cement was rough when it dried so I added finishing cement on the top 1/2". When I took the wood form off, it made the cement crack. It's not perfect, but very usable. My first stairs as well! They turned out fine, no complaints.

 Okay... lessons learned when pouring cement.
Go 6" deep instead of 4" like I did. (I was using up cement I had and didn't want to by more.) I'll do 6" next time. I think maybe it wouldn't have cracked if it was 6" deep, but I really don't know.
 Before and after, so far. I made a pathway, which is still in progress. I found the rocks on the property so  I thought I'd use them line the path. We were considering edging but didn't want to buy anything.
This works and the cats seem to like it.
 I have grass to plant and a few flowerbeds to make before I'm done. Well, the list is long. That sandbox in the middle had play equipment on it. Not sure what to do with that area as well as the corner. A greenhouse in one spot, a green bean tepee in the other, but haven't decided which is which. That's OK, inspiration will strike one day.

  I have enough weeds to pull and double digging the new raised beds has to be done. Plenty to keep me busy for a while. I've planted lots of flower seeds, and plan to fill the new beds with them. They're in the little greenhouse with the veges and doing fine!
I did make this little raised bed for a couple roses and sweet peas that I planted to vine up the trellis behind it. I made that trellis abut 15 years ago out of apple branches. A storm damaged it a bit right before we moved here. Another thing on the to do list.
  All in all I think the yard is coming along. One thing at a time and before you know it we'll have a beautiful yard. Then the front......Food first then pretty.

We have lilacs in our new yard. It's my favorite flower so I'm pretty happy!

More to come...

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