Garden Projects and Progress

We first set up our garden with 8 beds about 6ft by 3ft and 14 inches tall. We used lumber my father-in-law had cut for the beds, and added a couple tomato trellises using leftover 4×4 fencing and scrap wood and secured those to the ends of two of the beds.

We do a combination of methods for our garden, mainly lasagna gardening and back to eden gardening styles are used.

Lasagna gardening is using multiple layers of multiple things that gradually breakdown to make your soil. For example, layering cardboard at the bottom of your garden bed, add some manure, newspaper, compost, woodchips, and do in layers.

Back to Eden gardening involves covering the ground in woodchips to create a protective layer for the earth, which gradually breaks down and brings nutrients back to the soil.

We have hard clay soil in the garden. Nothing grows but weeds in the hard ground.

We have goats, so we get fresh manure from our goats every time we clean out the barn. LOTS of manure. We use sawdust or wood shavings from a local carpenter for bedding in the barn for the animals, cleans up great, and breaks down with the manure and urine to make a lovely soil/fertilizer!

So, what we do is work in layers. For some areas or boxes we lay down cardboard, for other areas we don’t. Next we do a layer of woodchips or shavings or sawdust (whatever is locally available for cheap or free) about 4 to 6 inches thick. On top of that a good thick layer of our goat manure compost. Then more woodchips, maybe 2-3 inches, and a layer of goat manure compost, and then a thin layer of woodchips or sawdust as the last layer.

When we go to plant, we pull the sawdust or woodchips to the side and plant in the manure, then bring just a small bit of the chips or sawdust back to the base of the plant osr sprinkle lightly over where we plant the seeds.

Then we water, generously at first. If we did seeds we may water 1x daily for a few days. But, because the woodchips help to regulate and lock in moisture, we really don’t need to water everyday.

I’ll water every 2 to 3 days of we’re having consistent high Temps. Less if it’s cooler, and if it’s rains, we’ll, I just don’t bother watering.

the woodchips and sawdust DO break down over time. But, layering with help prevent nitrogen being evaporated into the air from our manure/compost, and it locks in moisture (as mentioned earlier) and slowly releases that moisture over time. Ultimately this method allows us to use less water and still grow big, beautiful plants!

This year we are working on adding a hoop-house green house (which I’m SUPER excited about), and we’re moving our muscovy ducks to the garden.

My hubby built 1 of 2 duck houses he designed already, and we got a temporary chicken coop set up around it with extra garden netting along the bottom of it. Why? Ducklings! We’ve currently got 3 mama ducks and 28 ducklings into his enclosure. Newly hatched ducklings are so tiny and so determined they will squeeze out of the tiny holes in the door of a dog crate to find freedom. So they need a secure enclosure. We let the ducks out of their coop to browse and forage the back garden while we do work out there.

We’re also setting up a good sized pool we got at True Value and will have it recessed in the ground. That’s still a work in progress though.

this is our 3rd year gardening, and even though we had a late start due to having a new baby added to our lives, the garden is thriving and growing and doing so good!

We’ve got beets, onions, rhubarb, horseradish, carrots, Roma Tom’s, beef steak Tom’s, lettuces, broccoli, potatoes, strawberries, pole beans, pumpkin, acorn squash, eggplant, rosemary, watermelon and cantaloupe all growing! And of course we got a couple zucchini plants from my moms place and transplanted those in our garden, in the pix you can see the old leaves have died down, but now there’s a bunch of new leaves and flowers coming up! While weeding we even found some volunteer parsley, Tom’s, and a strong of beans! Oh, and in our “will be food forest” in ground section, we have thyme, chives, and chamomile growing right now.

We also recently added honeybees to the back garden area!

OK, now I’m gonna dump some photos I got of the garden lastnight after watering. Enjoy, and comment below if you have any questions for us about our set up, or your own experiences with gardening!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Subscribe via Email

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 1,126 other subscribers