Friday, April 25, 2008

My First Garden...I Hope!

A new blog for a new adventure!

I've been writing the entries for this new adventure for quite some time, but somehow it didn't seem right to add them to a blog used for ranting about things like politics or the news. Like so many, I like to have my gardening read in a vacuum. A joy for it's own sake, so to speak.

Not that I know much about gardening, but I do like to read about it.

Why in the world would a 41 year old city dweller usually more concerned about working longer and a perfect Starbucks mocha suddenly decide to garden for food? Good question. The answer is that I've always wanted to. I'm a competitive city dweller under protest, though I admit to being a devout follower of Starbucks coffee. I love the stuff...but on to other things.

I do the work I do because my plan, from childhood, was to live out in the middle of nowhere and do almost everything I can do by myself. My lifestyle and work have citified me quite a bit and I've lost some of my edge and bravado, but I've never given up the dream.

In just a few years I should be retiring, though that is a relative term since I'll still need to earn a supplemental income, but I'll be dropping out of the rat race for sure. During the years I've learned lots of the handy skills I should have, but gardening wasn't possible except for a few pathetic container plants I always wound up killing.

So now is the time. The rapid increases in prices for fresh fruits and vegetables did play a role in this decision since that makes up the bulk of my diet. On top of that, I make 50% of the food my dogs eat out of chicken and fresh veggies (the kids love it..we call it Beagle stew) and that was costing me a fortune.

And here is a nice pic of Boscoe, my cauliflower eating Beagle of Love.

So, experiment time! I spent my time from November to early February just reading book after book to find out the best way for me, on my property, to garden. I finally settled on Square Foot Gardening as the potentially perfect system for me. My home sits near the river and drains poorly in some areas and is plagued with invasive plants so this raised bed system was just the ticket.

I'll post all the things I've written up since then, with all the pictures of us building, moving dirt and planting and even the plants that are now coming up in short order and then you can all get caught up.

At this point, I'm still really encouraged. There have been casualties, yes. At times, I feel like a serial plant murderer. There are also some really cool successes and a great many positive side effects of having this first garden. I hope you enjoy the trip with me.....Christy

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