Monday, May 5, 2008

How Does My Garden Grow Week 6

This weekend was all about food and friends. We had a good friend over for dinner on Saturday, and the again some friends to Brunch on Sunday. Which worked out well, because the weather was cold, rainy, and in no way conducive to digging up garden beds to prepare them for planting.

I did, however, put a lot of seedlings out for a couple hours to start hardening them off. I'll slowly increase their outdoor time over the next couple of weeks so that by Memorial Day they are ready to go in the ground. I'd hoped to do it earlier, but we're still getting frost warnings here, so I've decided to just go with the flow.

Sometimes you just have to let Mother Nature drive the agenda. We worked inside this weekend, which included more transplanting, and starting some more herbs. I want to make pickles and dilly beans this summer, so I need a big batch of dill.

The downside of the cool, wet weekend was that our fruit trees, seedling sweet potatoes, blackberry bushes and strawberry plants arrived, so we'll be out in the yard some evening this week getting everything in the ground. They say they are wrapped to last 3 weeks, but last year we lost our strawberry plants by waiting, so I don't want to risk it. I'm nervous about frost, but more nervous they won't survive if we wait.

The next 4 weekends will be driven entirely by Nature's schedule. We need to prep our garden beds by moving any plants that we want to keep, clearing weeds, turning the soil, and adding compost. Then we plant - and everything we've currently got growing needs to be in the ground by the first week of June. This time of year, Nature is in a hurry, and so we are too. In June and early July, we'll be able to rest a bit and work on other things, occasionally adding a vegetable or herb to the mix, before we will again hurry through August and September to preserve the harvest.

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