sylke: (doodlesquirrel)
[personal profile] sylke
I'm gonna be rather less ambitious than last year, largely because this summer is going to be so full of travel, I'm concerned I won't be around to do enough maintenance. What I may do is plant fewer species but do more of each kind that I like.

Strawberries, blackberries, and asparagus are already in place and do their thing year after year.

Cucamelons and purple pole beans are definites. I'm going to try corn-and-soybeans again, this time covering the soil with bird netting. (I suppose I could germinate indoors too, but I forget to water them.) I also read some reviews of people saying that even germinating indoors, some people ended up with a completely dud packet of seeds from that company, so maybe it wasn't all birds. Not sure what squash to try and put under them. The cantaloupe was a failure last year, didn't even get one usable out of it. Maybe a winter squash instead. Acorn or butternut.

For future reference, the following plants can be grown within range of the black walnut: lima bean; snap bean; beet; carrot; corn; melon; onion; parsnip; squash.

I solicited "what would you like me to grow" feedback from the other adults in the house, and have votes for cauliflower, broccoli, broccolini, carrots, pearl onions, potatoes, green bell peppers, scapes/garlic, lettuce, and zucchini. Also a variety of herbs. None of those are winter squashes, but I do want to try building a potato box this year. Zucchini will be easy and prolific. I have yet to have any luck with bell peppers, but maybe if I plant in better sunlight. I have a note to plant them where the carrots were last year. I can put carrots, beets (for me) and/or onions under the black walnut. I have 2 year old carrot seed left over.

When I started gardening something like 10 years ago, I started out with a few tomato plants. I've planted tomatoes every year since. They take a lot of maintenance, though, especially when they start getting some blight. I think ... I think I'm going to skip tomatoes this year. It's really hard to skip because they're always eaten, the big heirloom varieties are absolutely delicious and hard to find sometimes in the grocery store, plus, nothing like a fresh-from-the-vine tomato. But they can be lost to blight so quickly, they need to be sprayed and snipped carefully, I just don't think I'm going to be around enough this summer to tend them. And a year off will give some time for the blight already in the soil to die out.

Maybe I'll do herbs in pots. Though they'd be good to have in the ground for the sake of crop rotation.

I should do something leafy, too. We only have a vote for lettuce, but I'll put in some kale as well because fresh leafy kale in smoothies is delicious.

[tl;dr]So, to-be-planted crops for this year so far:
corn, edamame, acorn squash (?)
bell pepper
purple pole beans

Yeeaaah, that's enough. Now, for placement...
Purple beans will be planted where the greens were last year, that's easy enough. 2 teepees should be good.
Greens where the tomatoes were. Half lettuce, half kale.
Peppers where the carrots were, if there's enough space next to the strawberry boxes, should be lots of sun at least.
Cucamelons would normally get planted over root veggies as well, but I didn't do many roots last year, so put them where the purple pole beans were.
I can do a lot of root veggies since I did a lot of legumes last year, plus root veg under the walnut. Rows of carrots where the peas were, onions under the walnut tree.
Take out the bitter cherry, put the potato box there.
And the corn/squash/edamame trio in the same strip as last year.
The asparagus, strawberries, and blackberries will stay where they are.
Herbs can go in a selection of Pinterest/Martha Stewart-worthy pots that live on the back patio.

Hey, that ... that might actually work.
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