Vegetable Garden Week 5

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This was here when we moved in.

I can’t believe it’s been 5 weeks since I started my garden project. It’s actually been 6 weeks, but you’ll get week 6’s update on Monday. I’m falling behind on my updates already!

By now I thought the cardboard would have been assimilated into the soil. I keep standing out there calling the worms. “Come and get it, worms!” But if they’re coming, I can’t tell. I suspect I may have gone about this whole thing all wrong, but I keep looking to my husband, who has two green thumbs, for approval, and he keeps not disapproving, so either he’s humoring me and trying to make me feel good about it, or he really thinks I’m onto something here.

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Garbage bowl

Something I’m trying to help enrich the soil is trench composting, which means you dig a trench between your garden rows (in my case there aren’t rows, exactly, because of the cardboard), fill them with compostable materials, and then cover them back up. For the last two weeks I have collected cucumber peels and strawberry stems and onion skins and banana peels – all vegetable trimmings – in a big bowl. I cover it with a kitchen towel to protect it from flies and to protect ME from the smell. When the bowl gets full, I have my husband dig a trench, dump the bowl’s contents in, and cover it over.

kid digging hole in garden

Last night I had my 8-year-old son do it. He loved this project. I loved not doing it myself.

I also plan to do something about the cardboard, and break up the now-dried horse manure and work it into the soil, both to incorporate in a little bit better, and also to make it so that my pictures of my garden do not show giant balls of dried horse poop. Nobody’s going to want a salad from this garden if they see these pictures!

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Either way, the fava beans have me worried. Four of the plants’ leaves seem too yellow, and two of them are doing okay but they are flowering so much I wonder if that is too soon. They are supposed to get much taller before they flower and fruit. Today I will feed the yellowing plants with a nitrogen based fertilizer. Next week I am going to get stakes and tie them all to the stakes to support their upward growth.

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The kale seems to be doing just fine. I thought the plants would grow faster, but what do I know? I can read books and study up on the internet, but nothing teaches me more like trial and error. If this turns out to be a big fail, so what? At least maybe the soil will be ready for next season.

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Rosemary. Just plugging along, not getting any bigger, not dying. No news is good news?

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Behold, a paperwhite or narcissus plant. I thought it would be daffodils. Who knew?

 

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