Garden Update, May 3, 2021

Here is the latest from the garden about what changes I have made for the upcoming growing season and the observations of what nature has done.

Organization

In previous years, there was a gap between each of the raised beds. This year, I decided to change the layout of one of the raised beds. It is now one long bed. The containers that were in place to separate the beds have been moved to the space between another set of beds.

Ant Bed

In part of this new, longer bed, is an ant bed. A bed within a bed. (lol) I was going to put grits on the ant bed in an attempt to get rid of them, but did not since there was forecasted rain and the grits would not have had time enough to do their job. Instead, I dug up about a 1/3 of the ant bed and threw it in a different part of the yard. The ants were big mad of course. Since then I have poked in and around the ant bed and have not seen any activity. I assume that the ants may have migrated or died as a result of their relocation. Will continue to monitor the ant bed as it is in the middle of the growing space.

Side of House

The greens that seeded themselves on the side of the house are doing well. In total, I counted about 14 collard green plants. Of those, about 4 of them have gone to seed. Oddly, these are some of the smaller of the greens. The bigger greens are still growing and have not gone to seed. May actually start harvesting the bigger greens.

Strawberry Patch

I planted a cucumber plant in the strawberry patch. The reason I did this because it already has a trellis in the patch from attempting to grow vertical items in it in previous years. Only concern that I have about this particular patch is that it may not receive enough sunlight for the cucumbers to do well. It receives a decent amount for the strawberries. Now that I have paid more attention, the one strawberry plant that I put in there back in 2019, has now grown and taken over the entire bed.

Container Plants

The oregano in the black container has gotten off to a great start. Even have given some of it away because it was growing super aggressively. The oregano that is in the green container is growing, but definitely has seen better days. I have removed the dead twigs that was on it from last years growth.

Onion plant has been moved from a small container to the green self-watering container. When removing it, I did note that it did have substantial roots. I do not believe that it had become root bound.

In another container, I planted basil and a bell pepper plant. You are probably asking why would I put two plants in the same container. Well the bell pepper will outgrow the basil. It is possible for the basil to have sufficient height in a way that it would interfere with the pepper's growth, but in my experience, bell peppers can get to a height of 3 to 3.5 feet (1.07 meters) at their peek. Add a trellis and they will grow even taller.

Non-Container or Grow Beds

Because the seeds from various mustard and collard greens have blown over the yard, those seeds are showing up in unexpected areas of the yard. One of those areas was where I had a deck that was torn out last year. I think from moving the dead limbs or the wind has contributed to the new plants sprouting up in unexpected locations.

Small Block Bed

I have planted tomatoes in this bed. The store did not have cherry tomatoes unfortunately. I usually get those because they grow fast enough that the squirrels will not eat them before they mature.

Long Trellis Bed

I planted a cucumber and a pepper plant in this bed. This bed had a number of weeds and some yellow tomatoes from the previous season. It is possible that tomato plant could sprout up from this, but highly unlikely.

Not Planted

I have several plants that I have purchased but have not put in the ground yet. These include marigolds, bell peppers, jalapeno peppers, and tomatoes. They will be going in the ground this week as I want to maximize the garden this year.

Weather

There was one rainfall last week. The rest of the week, I used water from the rainwater collection to water the plants with. Each of the plantings got about 1/4 or 1/2 a bucket of water around its base. This morning, it did rain and there is slightly more rain in the forecast for later today and tomorrow (Star Wars Day). Will hold off on using the collected rain water. However, the collected rain water does need to be used to bring the water level down as it has been near or at max capacity since I have installed it.

Keywords: grow your own food, gardening, how to garden, backyard garden, growing food

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