I can now sit at my computer, look out the back sliding glass door and see this:
I love it! It makes me smile all day long. After all my planning in Jan and gathering all the supplies the week before, I spent this past Saturday building the boxes:
and mixing the soil:
Yeah, I should have done that in smaller batches! 30 cubic feet of soil is lot more than I realized. I tried doing it with a shovel for a while, but it just wasn’t efficient, so I ended up getting good and dirty!
Once, the boxes were built and the soil was in them, I had to find a way to get the trellises and tomato towers to stand up in just 6 inches of soil. The trellises were simple, I just screwed them into the box. The tomato cages were a bit tougher. I ended up turning them upside down and using zip tie fasteners to secure them to the lath grid.
Then we planted carrots, green onion, yellow onion, 4 types of lettuce, June and Everbearing strawberries, and peas. I’m waiting a few more weeks to plant the warmth loving tomatoes, cilantro, oregano, basil, cucumbers and peppers. While we are definitely not at risk of a frost, it does still get a bit chilly here at night. I will also plant more of everything we planted over the next few weeks so we get a more continual harvest.
Funny….I didn’t even think to check how deep the seeds should be planted. So, the kids and I went around and planted everything about 2-3 inches deep. Well, I found out about 30 mintues later when I actually read the instructions on the packets that most of those seeds (especially the teeny-tiny carrots, onions and lettuce) should have only been 1/4”-1/2” deep. BIG difference. So, I assumed they wouldn’t sprout from that deep and just planted a 2nd set in the same place, but at the correct depth. I figure if both end up sprouting, I can always thin one out, right? So that is my first big “oops.”
We also put our composter together and added some produce waste, grass clippings, shredded paper and leaves to it. Unfortunately, it wasn’t nearly enough for it to actually start composting yet. I’m hoping we will have enough eventually! I don’t really want the stuff to just sit there and stink up the place!
It was a LOT of work for one day. I was actually out there for over 8 hours. I was exhausted and dirty, but SO HAPPY at the end of the day: nothing quit like working hard and finishing a big ‘ol project like that. The kids helped on and off all day. My good husband helped take care of them & fed them all day so I could keep working. But, they did have fun helping “hold” the boxes while I screwed them together and mixing the soil (EVERYoNE got baths that night!), and helping to plant the seeds. The run out every day to see if the seeds have grown into plants yet. I’m loving it!
Becky is a wildlife enthusiast and pet and livestock care expert with a diploma in canine nutrition. With over a decade of experience in animal welfare, Becky lends her expertise to Simple Family Preparedness through insightful info about pets, livestock, bee keeping, and the practicalities of homesteading.