Today was bright and sunny after several cold, raw, rainy days. I couldn’t help going outside to capture a few images of my garden. Everything is suddenly so alive and exuberant. Thanks for coming with me on my garden tour.
Our Rhododendrons are in full bloom; here is my favorite:
This springs chicks were loving the warm weather and the opportunity to be outside:
A littler later than usual, our garden has really taken off with the energy of spring. We are enjoying harvests of lettuce, spinach, Good King Henry, Sea Kale, broccoli raab, strawberries, scallions and cilantro.
Our best early harvesting has been in the areas that I allowed to reseed naturally. The plants are growing so densely, I can harvest micro-greens daily and, by the next day, I cannot even see where the plants I removed had been growing. Here is our biggest patch of lettuce, all from last year’s plants that I allowed to go to bloom and then I used the plants as mulch to protect the soil from the harsh winter weather.
Here is a small corner of the garden that I planted this spring. It is a polyculture, or a combination of plants that I believe will compliment each other and form a diverse, healthy little ecosystem. I am growing Salad Burnet, Pak Choi, lettuce, beets, garlic, Nasturtium, Rosemary and Oregano. Around it is Comfrey, Fennel, a Goumi berry bush, an apricot tree and lots of strawberry plants. I am planning to harvest our first Pak Choi this week….
On this hugel kultur raised mound, I have a polyculture of strawberries, peas, cucumber plants and buckwheat. It was my experiment last year, using up lots of rotting branches that we had to trim after the two hurricane/tropical storms (Irene and Sandy). The strawberry plants look pretty happy. I am looking forward to seeing how it develops over time.
My no-till corn patch. I just dug holes in the thick mulch, added compost and transplanted the Blue Hopi dent corn that I started indoors. If all goes well, I will be grinding my own corn meal this fall. I plan to save some seed so that I can have a bigger planting next year. Last year, this was my sons’ potato patch and you can see some volunteer potatoes emerging where my sons missed some of the potatoes during their harvesting….
Although I took many more photos, here is a final one to end the tour. Here is our no-till potato garden this year. This is where the chicken coop was kept last fall. Chickens and thick mulch gradually covered and killed the grass. We allowed it to rest all winter and this spring we made two trenches in the mulch, planted potatoes and we have been slowly filling the trenches with compost as the potatoes have grown.
Although I don’t have any photos of them, we have seen six garter snakes and several salamanders in our garden, signs that tell me that my gardens are healthy and prospering.
-- "To forget how to dig the earth and to tend the soil is to forget ourselves." M. Gandhi