this year's plan

Well, the seed catalogs are coming! It's hard to envision being outside and puttering around in the garden when it's so cold, but with the catalogs comes this year's plan. What's everyone doing?
We're going to go with tire gardening this year. This should help with some of the issues we had last year (cool yucky wet soggy soggy weather). Plus, I'm looking forward to easier weeding plans. :D
I'm planning on 20 tires worth of plants. One tire will hold one tomato plant so 3 better boy tomato plants, 1 cherry tomato plant, 2 bell pepper plants, 3 jalapeno plants (1 tire) for the first row. Probably 2 summer squash plants and 2 zucchini plants and a tire full of onions. One tire of carrots. One tire of fingerling potatoes. One tire of red potatoes. One tire of spinach, one tire of curly leaf lettuce, one tire of garlic. That's our plan. :D Plus, if the in-laws are going to do a garden we'd probably do corn and green beans over there, plus anything else Linda is willing to take care of. The strawberry patch is over there as well. Also, I told my husband that all those holly berries were getting ripped out of the yard (we have a little one who loves to be outside) and I was going to start putting productive plants along the fences. I'm thinking mint in one area and then raspberries along the back. :D
Heather H.
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We've got the 6 raised beds, as usual.
One is already full of garlic, 6 or 8 varieties, including Elephant, Siberian Red, Chesnok, and others. I plan to intercrop some greens in that bed.
We'll have a bed full o' herbs; another with a mix of eggplant, pole beans, greens...I will plant what I hope will be a bumper crop of leeks (I have several friends who are already chomping at the bit for 'em)
We'll probably pass on growing corn this year; it always ends up with us buying our ears at the farmers' market.
The usual carrots, but a few varied types. Sugar snap peas. Roma tomatoes. A few types of bell peppers...a few types of warm to hot peppers...
My lovely wife would like to see some broccoli this year, so that's in the works. I might try to grow some onions, too.
Almost most-anticipated: my 4 artichoke plants which have been wintering over under a thick layer of straw mulch. The lowest the temps have gotten this winter (so far) has been ~15 (F). With the brevity of the low temps and the mulch, I hope they'll take off this spring and end up giving us a nice crop by late summer.
The MOST anticipated addition to the garden this year is the ducks. The kids and I are looking forward to getting 4 ducklings this spring to help keep the bug'n'slug population to a minimum. The wife? -- She's hoping my neighborhood reputation as "that odd guy" won't be carried over to her by me having a flock of fowl in the middle of our city. The way I figure it, if they have names, they're not livestock, right? They're pets.
I'm hoping to hone my skills so that when the end of the world comes, I'll be able to provide for me 'n' mine...I've been following other threads on this N.G....
Mark
P.S. This marks year #2 for my hearty kiwi vines growing along the back fence (no flowers or fruit yet). Mrs. W. gave me the green light to plant them there as long as she is allowed to harvest what falls on her side of the fence...a tradeoff I'm more than willing to accept.
P.P.S. The garden shed is done, but I still have to complete the gutter system so I can water only with collected rainwater. And I still want to construct a little lean-to greenhouse on the side...not there yet.
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On 21 Jan 2004 17:34:48 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@bellsouth.net (Mark) wrote:

I was thinking that if I ever wanted "normal" corn again, I'd have to start raising it because the only thing I've found at markets is the nasty "sweet" stuff that doesn't even taste like corn anymore. I threw away the last I bought it was so nasty tasting to me! I'd rather eat field corn than that stuff!

is that ~15 mean -15 f?

They legal there? I got muscovy "ducks" when I was keeping such before the city said nope gotta go. They don't "quack" so much as make something between a hissing and a hoarse whisper sound, and they do some silly things. They can't fly, so they kind of walk in V formations hissing and bobbing. They're so ugly they're cute. They have raised warty red "combs" around their eyes, and a little crest. The females are great mothers, and brood up to 20 eggs at a whack. I had to pull one off a nest she was hiding out in the snow in November one year. If you're of a mind to do such, they're good meat birds too, flavor and texture is similar to beef.
Muscovys are not true ducks though, they can and will drown if they get into a pond or wading pool and can't get out, they are waterfowl, but they must be able to get out and dry out, so any water you give them, give them rocks up the side to get out.
ALL ducks are .. umm.... how to put it.. "squirty" and as such are messy. But they'll chase and catch mosquitoes. They'll trample stuff with their big ol' feet. Regular ducks are pretty noisy at times, so if you're trying to hide 'em, keep that in mind. That's one of the reasons I got muscovys.
One thing to keep in mind, they do need some green area as all will get sores on their feet if they don't have considerable non-hard dry areas to walk. .

I've been wanting to get some hardy kiwis but I have to put up sturdier support than the 4 x 4 posts and wire that I have for the grapes I've been told and read, they need additional posts and wires when they bear because they're heavier than grapes. I wanted the pretty male plants that have green white and pink leaves, but the female vines I heard don't have as much color. I'll check a couple more things before I decide. What varieties do you have?

Sounds like you've been busy!! I haven't been able to do any active gardening or much of anything for years, but I'm hoping that this year I can at least start some tomatoes and get them in the ground because I have some other folks here with me who may be of use come summer.
I can only hope!
Good gardening!
Janice
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I agree. I don't buy "sweet" corn, just regular yellow corn.

It's supposed to mean "about 15 degrees". No sub-zero temps so far this year.

I guess I'll find out. I plan on building a miniature picket fence to keep them in (instead of chicken wire), so that might hide them a little. I asked the neighbors whose yards border mine, and they all said they would have no problem with the ducks.

The ducks' area will be about 1/4 acre, and the garden is inside that. Plenty of lawn for them to roam in.

I don't know the exact name of the variety I have, but they were devised to accomodate New Zealand's climate. The support they have right now is simply the back chainlink fence, but if they get too heavy, I'll be able to prune them back and build a sturdy pergola-thing for them to climb.

I've got a house full of kids who love messing around in the garden. Two of my sons (and their friends) helped me build the shed last summer, and all the neighborhood kids come by frequently to help themselves to the "snack bushes" in the garden -- mainly the sugar snap peas and the grape tomatoes...though there is this one little girl who likes to pick fresh spinach leaves for a snack.
Good luck this summer. I hope you can corral some labor to get your garden going.
Mark
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On 22 Jan 2004 09:33:01 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@bellsouth.net (Mark) wrote:

How miniature of a fence? Non-Muscovys can fly, and even the hens in the muscovys can get a way if they start high. I'm not talking fly up in the air, and take a little trip, but they can get a little loft to get over stuff. The India Runner ducks probably couldn't .. they always look surprised, and remind me of a penguin and a bowling pin having young ;-) Not the right "attitude" to gain much altitude ;-)

well I'm jealous, ducks got more ground than my whole yard has. (Oh, keep in mind... drake ducks.. well. all those shows where they show how the lab that's out swimming and the duck are such good "friends" .. that duck has whole other ideas! Those white ducks..they're the randiest and most aggressive and non-specific in their "desires" that it's disgustin'! That's why you'll find all those poor splotchy mixes of mallard and peking duck offspring in the parks. Splotch of white, splotch of normal mallard color, splotch of white.. and I've rescued poor hens being chased down by 3 or 4 peking drakes. SHOOT 'EM all.. to the Presses with them.. Pressed duck a' la orange!! ;-)

First thing my dad did here when I got this place was cut down a big maple in the back corner of the property after clearing it with the neighbor,it was growing mostly on her side of the fence, and through it into mine, and then he built a shed. He always paid more attention to there being a shed/shop/outbuildings on a place than he did to the house, much to my mother's consternation. He was born in 1904 and his father would take chunks of land on to homestead, prove them up, sell them and go homestead another, and they lived out of horse drawn wagon for quite a few of his early years.. so he had a different kind of viewpoint, but I have a shed, that was a home for chickens for quite some time, and now it's needing a cleaning out!

Me too, but with each passing day, I'm thinkin' my friend's boy isn't going to be much use. :(
Enjoy!
Janice
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In the beginning of Summer in Australia.
Planted the last bed of the 7, with tomato's chillies basic and cucumber. Will start up on the carrots soon, and the turnips. They turnip crop were amazing last year. Try for 'bigger' crop of onions, they were a bit small this year. Lots of lettuce, kale, silverbeet, some brassica's etc. I love autum planting more than spring. Green manure crop the beds that don't get enough sun during winter and start on the front yard. Perrinal vegetabls/fruit trees s/herbs and bee attracting plants. Put a new pond in the front. And if all this gets done Im going to start on the shared land between the neighbour and my property, and maybe even get some more fruit trees for her front yard. She wants me to do her garden.. Most people do want others to do their gardening for them. More fools them...
www.jeack.com.au/~kirsty. The online Blog

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I just moved to a new house so no gardening in the back until the neighbours get together to put up the fences. The front yard has to 'be presentable' so I have to be careful with edibles.
I'm thinking dark basils, mini sunflowers and Red Russian Kales popping up through drifts of nasturiums. I planted Rainbow chards at my last house but it wasn't ornamental enough, some neighbours complained. Hot peppers will flank my front door. Is Japanese variegated corn edible?
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