Saturday, June 13, 2009

Weekend Goals

Beautiful day today! Now that the vegetables are planted and the trellis structures are up, I am thinking over some improvements to the garden spot.

- I really need to do something with the grass paths. It is getting to be a pain having to weed whack the grass with a string trimmer every week. Plus I expect the veggies to overfill their boxes and I would be afraid to damage them with the string trimmer. So I think I will trim the grass down to the ground, lay some cardboard, and cover with pine straw or cedar mulch.

- I want to add two more soaker hoses to the garden spot. Last Sunday I was surprised how dry the SFG was even though I was hand watering the transplants each day. I carefully wound a soaker hose around the plants and gave all three SFGs a really good soaking. The plants responded quickly and looked much healthier the following day.

I only have one soaker hose right now, and I had to move it from the SFGs to the right bed of the traditional garden to give the peppers, tomatoes, and bush beans a drink. I wound it carefully along the rows and wove it into the cage supports. This soaker hose will remain here for the rest of the season.

I will pick up two more soaker hoses this weekend, one for the left bed of the traditional garden where the pole beans, summer squash, cucumbers, and melons are growing; and for the three SFGs.

- I also want to pick up some more compost both to add to one of the SFGs that seems to have settled a bit, and to use to mulch around the plants in the traditional garden. Right now I have mulched with cedar mulch, but have learned that wood mulch can be good hiding places for pests and rob the soil of the nutrients the plants need. This is one of the many sources I have read this this information: Gardens Alive: Is Your Mulch Magnificent? Or Miserable? Here is a quote from the above link:
Wood mulches can also slow the growth of established plants—and yes, just plain starve new ones to death—by ‘tying up’ the available food in your soil, a process known as “Nitrogen immobilization”. Wood is carbon; carbon always looks for nitrogen to bond with so it can break down into new soil—that’s the principle behind composting. Wood mulches take that nitrogen right out of the soil, out-competing your nitrogen-needy plants.


Time to get to work.

4 comments:

  1. Hope your Saturday is going well with lots of things happening as you planned!

    I love Maine! My grandmother lives in Bangor. My Dad grew up in Woodland. I have such fond memories of traveling to Woodland during the summer and for Thanksgiving... from Massachusetts.

    5 years ago, I made the big move to Wyoming with my husband and 2 children.

    What zone are you in?

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  2. Hey Toni! I am in zone 5ish.

    Yeah, that must have been quite the road trip from Woodland to MA! LOL!

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  3. I just completed the irrigation system on my garden expansion. I have auto timers on both zones and auto fertilizer injection on one and preparing to add an injector on the second. I keep the soaker hose just below the mulch about 3” down to reduce the evaporation. I think it is the best move I made when converting to RB/SFG.

    John

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  4. John, definitely something I will think about for next year. I mistakenly thought I would be able to hand water my SFG...it's not even hot here yet and it is drying out.

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