Thursday 22 October 2020

Planning for 2021

While I was pulling weeds, I was planning seeds.
Like last year I used to plan it out.
Both Plots for the Whole YearFull planting list

I clearly have high hopes but those pics are a bit blurry so here's some zoomed in versions.

1st half Planting List

2nd half Planting List

Plot #4

Plot #5

Even with GrowVeg, I did not have a detailed enough list for me(they separate by month, not by week) so I started building a spreadsheet and I'm glad I did. Some of the DTM showed me I should move some things earlier. I plan to experiment with planting dates and trying to get as much food as possible out of these plots. 

Detailed Planting Spreadsheet

This is the first year I'm going to be keeping detailed notes on yield and such. I know it won't be of use after we move to a different climate, but hopefully this experience will teach me not only how to keep notes efficiently, but also what level of detail I'm interested in keeping. I do know that if going to sell in the future, I'll need to be able to know when things will be ready and about how much per sq.ft. of bedspace.

Some of the "extra" food we don't have space/storage/use for will be going to friends but I plan on taking quite a bit of it to the FoodBank. I know if I went the UrbanFarmer route I could produce a ridiculous amount of salad greens, radishes, and baby turnips to donate(no selling allowed from the community gardens).... but salad greens don't really keep well unrefrigerated and I'm growing first and foremost for my family so I'm growing what we like to eat.

I'll probably fiddle with the layout over winter but this is what I want to grow and I have all the seeds. (I do still need to get potatoes in spring and garlic in fall.)

Are you growing food next year?

Tuesday 20 October 2020

I was done for the season....

But then I talked myself into a lot more work. I had Plot #5 at our garden and after cleaning up I tarped it and thought I was done..... But then I kept looking at Plot #4 right next door to me that had been abandoned mid-summer and dreading poor neighbours next season..... 

SO, now Plot #4 officially belongs to my mrs. 

A large square black tarp anchored to the ground in front of a fenced-in area full of 2ft-4ft tall weeds.
Plot #5 closed, Plot #4 in background

Knowing there wasn't much time before the snow, and knowing I did NOT want to let those weeds overwinter, I got to work. The first day I went out there and pulled up every big weed. Anything I could reach from standing was removed, some cut with pruners at ground level, others hauled out with whatever roots would come. The fencing was removed by me and the rolls were either stolen, or retrieved by the previous owners overnight. I like to think it was the latter.

EOD Plot #4 Oct 11
EOD both Oct 11
EOD pano Oct 11

Next pass and with the help of a garden fork I managed to uproot about a third of the weeds. The pile of refuse on the tarp was growing surprisingly quickly. I had no clue the MASS of bio mass you really can get of such a small area. I was quickly learning however, the muscle mass I really didn't have anymore.

EOD Oct 16

A few days later I managed to get a LOT of the weeding done. At this point I had pulled out about a gazillion lil white rootlets that I knew were gonna cause trouble. There will be more; I don't doubt that... But I've done my best to give us the best start for next season.

Weeds all gone!Leaves down
EOD pano Oct 20

Today I spent all day at the garden and not only did I finish the weeding. I laid out the leaf mulch, I used the finished compost in Plot #4's bin to sprinkle over them so they wouldn't blow away, I moved the now empty bin next to the other one, and I dug under the old bin for the milkweed root that had spawned the plant that managed to grow all the way up through the compost. The knot was about a foot below ground level, it was the size of my fist, and the runners went about 3 feet in each direction!

My feet are sore and my back is aching but so happy that I could get the weeding done before the snow. There's still some weed refuse to get into a compost bin and once the tarp I ordered gets to the store I'll come back out and pin it down...

but for now, I think I'll just enjoy the view. :-)

Both plots as I left them today

Saturday 17 October 2020

6 months gone

 I've been:

  • hiding from COVID
  • seasonal summit with Hugslut
  • housing Wolfie in our spare room
  • learning to program in Ruby
  • went back to work
  • listening to a lot of audiobooks and podcasts
  • gardening
  • learning new plant based meals
  • hiding from COVID again
  • canning
  • writing penpal snail-mail with my niece
  • signing up for a second garden plot
  • thinking toward the future farm plans