Monday, February 2, 2015

The 2015 Plan is done

Well here's to another season. I know, its Groundhog Day (yes, Phil saw his shadow) and this is traditionally when the wife starts looking at beach houses and I start planning out the garden. Like last season, I am only going to fertilize when I plant, and the rest will be compost, weeding, and leaves. Also not sure if I want to get manure this season, there are a lot of weeds in that poop. But I will be using the water from my fish-tank which I clean weekly, and there is a lot of nitrogen in that. (Its a really dirty goldfish). I'm not sure if I am going to till again this season or just make really good use of my stored leaves for mulch. It really did help with the weeds. I am planting the corn where the beans were last year and see if it really fixed into the soil. Hopefully it will.

Without further ado, here is the layout.

Wish me luck!

What happended with last season?

So I realized that I did not do a post-mortem on the last season. I was very remiss and I apologize. There were some interesting results. I will enumerate as follows:

My bean trellis. Yeah bad idea with strings. After a certain point, the entire thing collapsed because the beans were just too heavy. They were crazy wild growing though. It was really cool to see. But once the strings snapped and it collapsed, none of the vines actually grew any pods. I hope they put some nitrogen in the soil though. The lonely patch of beans in the Driveway Bed actually produced just enough that I was able to get enough beans to replant this season. I have been growing these guys since 2009(?) and have yet to have enough to eat.

There were a decent amount of potatoes. A lot from the bags in the front, but not a whole lot from the patch in the back. I think I might have already posted it, but here are some of the spuds. Red potatoes from Whole Foods, do well in my yard. Works for me

A smattering of spuds

The volunteer tomatoes did incredibly well on their own. All I did was add some compost and they kept on giving. Right up until the frost (which was about November 10th). They did great, proving that you don't need a heck of a lot of fertilizer if you compost and weed properly.

A bowlful of goodness.

Lastly, and probably the biggest success story in a season with a lot of failures were my pumpkins. Some were the "Daughters of Bertha" from a few seasons ago, others were volunteers from pie pumpkin cast off's from last Halloween. We had so many pumpkins that we were able to make pumpkin pie (which was good)! The biggest one was just barely big enough to carve, so I chose to keep her for seed for this season coming up. We carved one of the medium sized ones. I don't know what I will get this year since the two varieties will be mixed, but at least they will be big enough for pies. :)

Some of the pumpkins growing out of the Main Bed.

The whole family together. The big one I saved. Its still fresh.
So what didn't work? The corn. Man that stuff needs a lot of water. I realized it to late and the crop withered. I am going to try one last time this season in the area where I had beans last season. There should be enough nitrogen. As long as I water a lot, hopefully I will get some. If not, that's it for me, too much effort. The sunflowers did ok, and I saved a head for seed, so lets see how that does this season. Most of what I have been replanting seems to do well. The store bought seeds did not. Good, the more that I get that is successful, I will be saving those for next season.

I need to start a seed bank in the house. Just so I can categorize and save in case of a catastrophe. I don't want to have to re-do natural selection again. 

Its strange. With the climate shifting to cooler summers on the East Coast, everything I learned the previous seasons is on its head. I had pumpkins by May one year, and now last year everything that was in the ground before May died. Unpredictable growing seasons are a result of climate change, and I am starting to see the data add up.