Monday, March 23, 2009

Let the Gardening Begin!

My last trip into town was actually rather enjoyable. Those of you that know me, know that town is my least favorite destination, however, this trip involved a productive trip to Home Depot for lumber and weed cloth and a few plants.
I've been devouring my New Square Foot Gardening book and I am now ready to impliment all that I have learned. DH offered to cut the lumber for my boxes but after stern warnings to keep my phalanges out of the saw's path, he relented and let me cut them down to size. The circular saw and I quickly became fast friends and I emerged with all fingers intact. DH was in the shop, cutting the tops off of barrels for new trash barrels and I walked up to him with a big grin and all ten fingers splayed out in front of my face. He looked up and chuckled. I love it when he laughs. His laugh reaches his blue eyes and they sparkle. After 22 years of marriage, he still makes me giddy. Stealing a kiss while he wields a cutting torch in his hand and I have sawdust in my hair, is all the romance I need! Dirt road romance beats the store bought kind any day!

My first box will actually be for flowers and herbs. I am building a, what I hope will be a very cool, graduated box in the corner of the yard. Today I put the boxes together with 3" screws after leveling the corner where the box will reside.
Then DD and I hauled dirt to fill it. And we hauled dirt. And more dirt. Goodness, it took a lot of dirt to fill this thing up!
DH brought this huge pile of soil from the seed store. My new best friend, Jesse, let me have it for next to nothing. Gotta remember to take him some cookies!
Now that this first box is built, I am itching to build more! I'm going to start small since I'm still trying to get a handle on just how much I can grow in each box. I want to have enough to share. Yesterday, we went to shoot skeet and one of our friends asked me whether I had a garden. LOL! Wrong question! It opened the door and there we were, discussing the pros and cons of everything garden related between rounds. My mind began to tumble with thoughts of adding another box to my garden just to supply our shotgun buddies with fresh produce this summer. Most of them are retired and I think they would enjoy fresh vegetables straight from the garden. These people have become like a second family to us and thus, after a lengthy discussion with Bill, I will be adding strawberries to my garden and I'll need a whole box just for those! So that makes 8 boxes...so far. The layout I like the most utilizes 11 boxes so we'll see.

I've been stealing graph paper from the kids and sketching out my ideas along with lengthy lists of seeds and computations for how much space I'll need. Does that make me a geeky gardener? Gosh this is fun!

Next up: building the compost bin. I've confiscated 3 pallets and I've got DD and DS on manure patrol! Wish I had the compost pile up and running - last week DD and I helped a friend with a catering breakfast. We fed breakfast to 126 people - biscuits, gravy, scrambled eggs, bacon, sausage, potatoes, and cinnamon rolls. That included 30 dozen scrambled eggs! Needless to say, neither DD nor I wish to see anymore scrambled eggs for a very long time, but those egg shells would have been the perfect addition to my compost pile!

Here is the completed box filled with soil and a few plants. I'm going to grow herbs in the bottom tier.

Oops! Guess I should add the dimensions I used. The top tier is 1x1' - 2x6s. Second tier is 2x2 - 2x8s. Third tier is 3x3 - 2x10s and the bottom layer is 4x4 - 2x12s. They just sit on top of each other. I stuck a board against the inside of the layers to the ground level in order to help with stablization. You could decorate the boxes any way you wanted, but we keep things pretty rustic out here so I just left everything natural although I may slap a weather resisitant coating on there.
So that concludes the first installment of gardening at the end of the dirt road. Y'all have a great week - I'm off to play in the dirt!

12 comments:

Ranch wife said...

Well call me impressed!!!!!!! You go girl....you need a tool belt, maybe pink with rhinestones.

~M~

Bobbie said...

I am sooooooooooooooooooooooo jealous!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Can't wait to start getting ours and the ones for my mom put together. :)

Bobbie

Stacey said...

That is sooo cool! I am totally jealous!

RanchGirl said...

That is awesome! I have been wanting to do something like that- our ground is so hard here, that I thought I might have better luck with raised beds. I'm going to have to show John!

Broken Y said...

Okay -Give me the title of that book!! I'm starting my garden and this might be what I need!

Kaye said...

I love your planter box!! Wow! I can't wait until it gets warm outside here so I can go out and start planting some stuff.

happylittlewonders said...

Very good work! I am so impressed!

Cow Pies & Mud Pies said...

That's AWESOME! LOVE IT! My cousin thinks it's great too, she's planning on building herself one of these as well, she lives in town and doesn't have a huge yard, this is perfect! You've been a busy gal, but what fun! Thanks for sharing!
Les

cottonpicker said...

Woo Hoo, I'm proud of you!! Did you do this before or after your 5 mile walk....yeah I'm keeping up with you - Ha! Looks great!!

Cali said...

I have read a little bit about this but seeing it in action makes me want to jump on board. I think I see a really good way to increase my "flat" garden space. The possibilities are flying around my head about teaching this to my 4-H kids too. Thanks for sharing the pictures. Of course I am totally jealous that you can put flowers out already. We aren't done with frost yet.

Karin said...

M - pink? with rhinestones? I'l wear it, if you will!

P - It's The New Square Foot gardener by Mel Bartholomew! Get it!

Cali - it's perfect for a 4-H project!

And welcome to all of you new gals! can't wait to see what y'all come up with in your gardens! Don't be intimidated by this. Just jump in and don't forget to share!Don't wait on your hubbies to do this for you - YOU can do this!

Y'all have made my day by stopping by!

Amy said...

That is way cool! I think I will have one of my boys build one in woodshop class. THanks! Amy

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