January 2, 2014

The Late Winter Garden

Horseradish. The roots were tiny!

We just built a bunch of new beds and with the three we have left to build it will about triple the garden size - back to pre-baby square footage. YAY! I'm very excited about this year. Now that my son is older and we've made the section of the yard that contains the garden safe (as safe as anything can be for a toddler who has more ability to lift and climb than he has sense) I think I'll be able to garden regularly. 

Happy sigh.

Gardening makes me feel very much like me. It's who I am. I am a grower of plants. 

I transplanted a bunch of runners from last year's strawberries into a new bed. I think we'll have around 30 plants this year without having to buy more. We'll see how it goes. A few of them are already blooming (silly strawberries) and it's going to freeze tonight. Everything got heavily watered today to help prevent frost damage (except the strawberries. whoops.).

Tiny wheelbarrow
On an adorable note: To my son, all red berries are strawberries but blueberries are "blue strawberries". Also, he started digging holes and "planting" sticks and acorns and leaves. Upon observing this, my
husband gave him some old stunted lettuce plants (you know, the last few in a 6 pack you never get around to planting because you ran out of space in the bed you planned for them?) and he put them right in the hole and filled in with dirt. I'm so proud! His manual dexterity is limited so the planting job isn't amazing but he's only 2! A boy after my own heart <3 p="">
We passed the solstice so the days are getting longer (although not warmer... January and February are our coldest months). We had a nice relaxed Solstice day. We each opened a present (I got a sunny yellow, German made, kerosene lantern!), made Solstice crackers (instead of cookies), took our walk, and lit candles (some simple beeswax ones I made in jelly sized mason jars).

Back to the garden...

This year we're going to have 2 very large trellises. They span the walkway between 2 beds so I can pick my beans, cucumbers, etc. from underneath. I just placed my seed orders for the spring and summer. I'll need a few more things for fall but that can wait. I'm trying to keep a Pinterest board of the garden... kind of a visual garden journal. That way you can get more info on the varieties I'm growing if any of them strike your fancy. 

This is the first year I've grown celery.
Next week I have a meeting with a group (that a friend works for) who runs a coop and micro farm. I'm going to help them plan their succession plantings and talk with them about making a small farm profitable/small farm marketing. I'm  excited to use all these small farm skills I have. I use them for myself, of course, but it's nice to apply my brain to the challenge of someone else's agricultural business.

Coming up I have some cooking posts and garden-planning posts. Check out this one on seed starting I did a few years ago for a spring refresher.  

And because I'm hungry and I saw this post while looking for my seed starting post: I recommend making a jalapeno jelly monte cristo as soon as possible.

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