Every time I go to plan my garden, I realize how little about gardening I really know. I mean, sure, I know the basics. But I've so far to go. Like learning how to do anything properly in a Zone 9. Yes, you heard me correctly. See that teeny teeny tip of Alabama at the very bottom? That's me.
All of the planting dates are different down here. So is the soil and the humidity and the bugs. I feel like I'm constantly perplexed, slowly spinning around in circles with a dazed look on my face.'Whaaaaaat? What's a se…? I'm so confu….whhaaaaat?'
Every seen the Bryan Regan skit about Pluto not being a planet anymore? Well in this case, I'm Pluto.
You may be asking yourself ‘Self, I thought Shaye didn't have a garden down in Alabama? Hasn't she been complaining about that for months now? I mean, really, when is she going to get over it? It's like, blah, blah blah, ya Shaye, we get it, you can't garden. Get over yourself.'
Well luckily my friends, I don't have to whine anymore. So lucky you.
A few days ago, a reader named Becky contacted me. She lives only 10 miles away from my house and even though we'd never met before, she volunteer a space on her 10 acres for me to put my garden. The cost? Fresh bread.
Done and done.
Becky and I were both relieved, after we met in person last week, to find out that neither of us were ax-murderers. So there's something positive to be said about meeting other like-minded-folks on the internet. Unless, of course, you're an ax-murderer.
While at Becky's, we chose a spot for the garden. The eastern side yard, right next her pet turtle (or is it a tourtis?) pen. It's flat, well-drained, and perfectly sunny. A wonderful spot, indeed.
The plan is to set the garden up this weekend. We will begin with a layer of cardboard to block out the grass and weeds that linger beneath. We will then build layers of compost, manure (we'll be using rabbit and horse), mulch (mostly likely leaves from the yard), and peat moss. A lasagna garden of sorts.
My friend Courtney did a great post on lasagna gardening, if you're interested. You can find it here. And here's her super cool illustration of how to build one:
I've always used raised beds in the past, so this will be a first. Lucky for me, I've got a super hot husband with a shovel who's willing to work for food and beer. I think we can make this happen. Especially if I actually do bring him beer. I bet I can keep him around for a good long while.
I've already told him that Saturday is date day. And by date day, I mean we're going to spend the entire day of Saturday building a garden bed together covered in manure.
Ya. He's pretty lucky.
It's already time to be planting kale, collards, onions, potatoes, beets, carrots, spinach, lettuce, mustard, and herbs. Hopefully these will all go into the ground this weekend after the garden bed is built.
I was able to buy bulk seed from a feed store here last week. The cost? 1/8th cup scoop for .50 cents.
Yes. You heard me. FIFTY CENTS.
That'll keep Dang Dave happy.
You know will will keep me happy?
Getting to grow fresh produce for my family and my friends. I'm already praying that this garden is fruitful – it's my hope to share the love.
Alongside the beets.