Thursday, February 02, 2012

This Year's Garden.

I know I know. I have said before (and I'm sure I'll say again) that this place is a farm.

Well. Almost. I figure in the sense that we've got a lot of things growing, we are. But that's close to about it.

My manfriend and I had talked long and hard about tilling and planting the 'upper' (or big) meadow this year, and putting the garden there, with a more permanent irrigation system. Keeping last year's beds, mind you, as the herb/seed garden. He tentatively tilled a swath just to see what we've got to work with.

(gasp! You haven't done soil tests? What?!?!?! No. No I have not. Grasses grow very lushly on that meadow, and little baby volunteer trees are springing up from deer poo, so no. I didn't test anything. It's viable.)
About a third of the upper meadow, complete with volunteer cedar.
Pickup sticks. Wait. Is that not how it's played?
What we've got is great topsoil in an area where most of the soil is hard (and in our case yellow) clay. Better than the blue clay I had in Japan, but still a pain in the butt. But the meadow had been used oh so many years ago to grow hay for the neighbor's cows, and has been mostly left alone since, with a bush hog coming through and cutting down the grass and shrubs (or in last year's case, me on a riding mower) annually, and a cover crop (read: the neighbor's leftover clover seeds) thrown on it every now and again.

But alas no, we will not be planting the upper meadow this year. It is too high a rise from any water source, and it would mean a substantial pump and crazy water system to make it happen. It doesn't mean it won't ever, but not in the near future.

So instead we will be clearing out some more trees (if we go a year without cutting down trees out here it means I'm incapacitated and most likely in a ditch somewhere), and expanding the current garden. Which means more raised bed building for me! But only about 2 or 3. We are also tinkering with putting a rainwater irrigation system in - the rise from where our buildings are to the garden is only a couple of feet, and we can manage to procure a good pump capable of handling that much.

And that also means that the nice topsoil gets another year (or 5 or 10) to rest and enjoy being a lovely green place. Before I come up with some crazy scheme for orchards and goats.....

Future farmhand, off to gather leaves for the chicken coop. (the future is now!)

I was informed that this is the only way you can make sure that no more will fit in the wheelbarrow. I trust his overly-wise-for-seven-years-old judgment.


quilt happy said...

love your blog , have been reading it for a while and miss it when u don't post

caitlinvb said...

Thank you! Life has been crazy here these past few weeks/months, but I'm working on posting more regularly! Thanks for hanging in there with me!