Sunday, May 11, 2008

The Novice Gardener

I am trying to grow a garden. I would say "we" but in reality it has been mostly me. So, step 1 was starting the seeds indoors in the winter. I got a nice seed tray and carefully and excitedly started the seeds. That will be a different post. But step 2 was getting a garden patch started.

Well, behold the jungle that was to be the garden. It was quite scary:

We had avoided this part of the yard for months, scared of the snakes, etc, we would find beneath these brambles. And they were thorny. But it was time to clear it, so I got to clearing. As you can see, i did have some small assistance from the mister on this part.

Once this part was cleared, what was left was a nicely cleared- a big- 11x16 patch of earth growing every sort of unidentifiable green thing. So, there was nothing for it except to dig it up. Yes, dig it up. With a shovel. I wanted to dig up all the roots of all living things, so that when I planted my garden, only things things I had planted would grow there. This was my novice idea. (A bit of foreshadowing, hmm? Seemed intuitive at the time.)

The digging part was so, so, so hard. I'm talking back spasms. It produced a "mountain of dirt" which grew next to the "mountain of brambles."

Slowly but surely, I personally dug up, down to six inches, the turf. To prepare a garden bed in your yard, you must dig up the yard, then remove all rocks you find. You must then rototill the soil and mix in a good topsoil. You must decide whether you want to do a raised garden bed or ensure that you have an area with good drainage, such as on a slope. All of this I learned in various gardening books and on the internet. Well, I put a lot of blood, sweat, and tears into this digging. The Mr. helped for small spurts when I was so weary I was basically weeping, and bit by bit, it almost got finished.

The resulting mountain of dirt- this would be fun for kids if i had some: (see the brambles in the background?)

Since this is how the garden stayed for about three weeks after that, I'll make that the end of this post!! We have no wheelbarrow to move the mountain of dirt and I could not force myself to finish the strip to the right after the sheer amount of willpower and effort it took to beat my body into submission for the part you see completed. It just sat, and sat . . . . . while the seeds inside grew . . . :)

No comments: