Tuesday, May 08, 2007

As the Garden Grows

Despite an insanely busy weekend (again) we did get some garden work done. There is still much to do, but last weekend we did start a last-year project, running a simple black plastic 3/4 inch water line to the vegetable garden area, to make it easier to water the chickens, the blueberries, new shrubs for the border, and when needed, the vegetable garden.

The first step was to
bury the water pipe under the new garden bed and the path; the remaining line will be laid on the ground along the edge of the property amidst the shrubs, and covered with mulch to avoid UV degradation. Of course, we found the pipe at a tag sale, making this an inexpensive project. Dan came up with a clever idea for protecting the water line from damage -- we threaded the black plastic pipe through the old downspouts replaced a few years ago when we repaired the gutters on the house.

No doubt inspired by the countless times we have inadvertently cut Fishy's Invisible Fence wire while gardening, we thought that by threading the pipe through the downspouts in the garden areas, we would prevent damaged to the line while digging in the garden. A clever way to use those downspouts which have been cluttering up the barn for a few years!

We have a sink back by the vegetable garden already, having found a lovely porcelain double sink by the side of the road with a free sign on it 2 years ago. We made a frame for it with some recycled lumber and set it by the edge of the yard near the garden, made a gravel draining bed and popped some wet-loving perennials next to it; it is great for washing veggies, etc. We'll again this year have rain barrels set up, but for potable water for chickens, wahsing veggies and occasionally running a sprinkler, this will be way more convenient.

We also transplanted some plants to the new garden bed, and set up a concrete pedestal marking where the water feature will be in future years. Finally, we turned over (again) our pile of shredded leaves with some wood shavings from Henbogle Coop added, and I used that to mulch the blueberry hedge.

On Saturday, I'd also attended a
conference at work, and prepared handouts and a display on organic gardening methods. Whew! What a whirlwind weekend. Oh, and finally I started some seeds --better late than never I suppose. Leeks, Lipstick Peppers from Johnny's, and Black Krim, Amish Paste, Orange Banana and Rose tomatoes. Still to start are Sungold and Gardeners Delight Cherry tomatoes.

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