Almost Like I Know What I’m Doing

Now that it seems spring is finally here to stay and not just tease, I’m feeling a little more confident about this year’s garden. There have been a few setbacks: the frost that came through after several weeks of warm temperatures not only killed off the hydrangea’s new growth, but it did a number on the seedlings in the greenhouse on the deck as well. I had hoped they’d be well-protected, sitting as they are in a bright and sunny spot, completed covered in clear vinyl. Alas, not so much. So, seedlings take two are currently in their place, and -for the moment – thriving.

Several years worth of gains and losses in the gardening arena have given me a bit more patience and a bit more knowledge to rectify early mistakes.

Currently there are many, many tomato and herb seedlings growing steadily in their pots. They won’t go into the garden until they are quite a bit bigger, and until nighttime temperatures are a bit warmer.

The past two weeks have been spent getting the larger spaces ready for that, among other things.

I planted three blueberry bushes, two elderberry bushes, twenty crowns of asparagus, and three grape vines (the blueberries were exciting simply because I used our kitchen compost for the first time since starting it in the compost tumbler).

I deep-mulched the smaller back garden with waste hay and composted hay, and so far I’ve put cucumbers, zucchini, yellow squash, cantaloupe, and watermelon seeds in.

Out in the way-back, we are using a section of the pasture for corn and winter squash. That part of the field needs a fence overhaul if we are going to keep livestock and dogs in it, but it is just fine for gardening. When I took the tractor in to do some tilling, the soil nearly sang to me in its perfection. Three years of composted manure and hay have resulted in a beautiful, slippery, sweet-smelling, black dirt that I am very happy to have for planting.  Those seeds will go in either today or tomorrow. I’ve got a big bag of diatomaceous earth at the ready to hopefully avoid the squash bugs this year, and I’m hoping we finally have a good harvest year!

 

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In the front garden, I’ve carved out space for the ducks, who have made the transition out of the brooder.

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Eventually they’ll get free-range of the entire garden, but not until the chard and the peas are more than just little shoots that would be easily damaged.

The chicks are still in the brooder for now but are getting big and feathering out nicely. Within the next week or two I will put them out in the chicken tractor until they are old enough to hold their own with the general chicken population here.

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And this sweet guy was dropped off this morning with the vet to have his big boy parts removed.

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