February 6, 2013

Spring Garden Planning

The Spring Plan, as of today.
I can't believe it's time to start thinking about our spring garden! We still have broccoli and cabbage growing in the beds, but for the most part the winter garden is kaput. Our one hard freeze for the year wreaked havoc and blew in with a vengeance, taking the carefully staked trellises down.

Happily, we're going to incorporate a lot of what we learned last spring and summer into this year's plans. We are also talking about making some more visual changes to the garden. Of course it needs to be cleaned up, but what if we added a paving stone border around the entire thing? And hardy-har-har, our grass is not that green. But a gal can dream, right?

Here's the spring garden breakdown:

Gone from the plan above? Tomatillos. We love them, but they only gave us one big crop—which meant I made a huge batch of salsa, and that's it. It's better for us to grow plants that repopulate as they grows, instead of the dreaded one-and-dones.

New this year, we'll try eggplant (the purple dots), okra, corn, and strawberries. Cucumbers and pole beans happen to be complimentary plants—one needing nitrogen from the soil, the other adding it back in. They should do well when trellised together.

And this year, instead of planting a wide variety of tomatoes, I'm planning on purchasing two reliable varieties from Johnson Backyard Gardens: the Celebrity, which grows large fruit, and the Sun Gold Cherry tomato. He likes big tomatoes, I like the small. And I didn't like finding that some of our plants were so unreliable last year.

What about zucchini and squash? The thinking is, after last year's battle with the Squash Vine Borer, we'll plant squash and zukes across the yard in our smaller bed. That bed can easily be fitted with a PVC-pipe system to add a row cover. And if the SVBs attack, they will likely stay in that small area of the yard—rather than migrating over to the less-sucseptible, smaller-vined cucumber plants.

That's what we're thinking. Any advice, thoughts, suggestions, or questions?

Oh, and by the by—the Sustainable Diet garden was recently featured over on the Farm-City, State Blog. Check it out!


Claire Jain said...

Oh gosh, I can't believe it's time for this either. Our best tomato plant last year was a volunteer. Maybe I'll just throw out seeds and see what takes.