Friday, April 4, 2008

Family Garden

So the veggie patch in our backyard has grown, not literally yet! But I was talking to my mom about our little veggie patch and she suggested combining forces and having a large garden at my parents house. YES!!! I was so elated that I could hardly contain myself!  This means that we can grow more, grow plants that grow bigger, and include a few things just for fun or that Dave won't eat so I was reluctant to grow(ie. yellow squash). My sister and her family are getting in on this too.
So, we are having a family garden. The plan so far is that we will all work in the garden together one day or evening a week. My parents have about 2 acres  with some nice fertile soil. This doesn't change my idea for posting. The garden will just be bigger which menas that the blogging might be also! Dave and I will still have a little raised garden here at the house, mostly herbs. But now the family has to decide how big to make our garden. I will let you know what we decide. 

Also, some of you have said that garden tips are what you want. So, I will answer a few things really quickly. If you are growing in a small space, try choosing compact plants bred for small spaces and/or growing vertically. I am doing both of these things. I have chosen varieties of plants for their compact habit. My thoughts on this are that the plants take up less room, yay! And most compact plants produce the same crop yield as their larger counterparts. I translate this to mean less energy spent on growing leaves and stems, more energy put into making the fruit or vegetable. I like Park Seeds. They have a great variety of seeds and a beautiful catalog. Try looking up square foot gardening for tips on growing vertical. Plants that love to grow up(with the right choice of variety) are cucumbers, pole beans, tomatoes, and try some melons or squash. Anything vining should be willing to grow up.

On to pest control. An easy option is a tad bit of lemon dish soap mixed with water. Spray it on your plants or pour it on. The soap is a surfactant. Bugs don't like it, and it won't harm your plants. You do have to reapply, but this is cheap and effective.  Remember when our parents poured their dishwater on their flower beds when we were little? It had a purpose. I also like a company called Gardens Alive. They have a lot of natural pest control and fertilizer options. Check them out. I also forgot to mention Planting flowers. Some flowers like marigolds, seem to be natural deterrents. Do some research on the plants that you like to grow. Companion planting is fun too. More on that later.


Jo said...

Yay! Awesome! Thanks, Kara. :)

Jennifer Carr said...

Ethan came home a few days ago with two lima bean plants he started growing at school. They look good and are getting big. Know anything about growing Limas? Do they climb? I know nothing about them and don't even know if they're good for growing in GA.

Kara said...

Jennifer, as far as I know Lima bean plants grow a vine. You might want to put them outside during the day for a few days before putting them in the ground. Sounds silly, but plants have to get used to their new environment. And they will grow here! Hope that helps.

Julie said...

That's exciting! Yours is the perfect family for the project and now, not only will you get more (and different) veggies, but you'll get good family time, too. That's hard to come by sometimes.

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