Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Dirt Under My Nails ~ Garden Time

As I have told you before, I grew up a city girl, as much city as you can have in Mississippi. My grandparents had a garden and we had fresh vegetables all Summer, but I did not help much. It could be my black thumb or that I was way too busy at cheerleading, gymnastics, social club, oh, you get the point. Plus, debutantes don't get dirt under their nails, major no-no.

So, in my quest for more sustainable and healthy living, my gardening skills have improved~ only way to go was up. Since I am helping to start a farmers' market in our little town, I thought it would be good to actually have some produce to sell. However, my time is limited and I can not stand to weed the garden. Last year I tried covering the garden around the plants with straw. It worked alright, but those pesky weeds got through. Plus, when you bring straw bales in, you are also bringing some seeds for a grass that would love to invade your garden.

Then one day I was reading an article and it talked about using cardboard in your garden around your plants. Hmmmm, sounds interesting. Less weeds, the cardboard breaks down, earthworms love to live under it, soil moisture is retained better than bare soil would, and, because the soil is not exposed to the sun, aids in keeping that soil cooler.

I thought it was worth a shot and I am so glad I tried it!

I am sure that one of those gardening magazines with the beautiful pictures is not going to come and do a two-page spread on my garden, but I am not going for beauty here, just wonderful vegetables and less weeding!
These are my various herbs (stevia, oregano, mint, cilantro, and rosemary).

Oh look, a small green tomato, I can taste the salsa now.

And to spice up my salsa, I already have these beautiful jalapenos, now, that's HOT.

Squash is coming along just fine.

Potatoes and onions, check.
And, I just planted some sweet potatoes, a little late I know, but we will see!

Hello cucumbers, ready to become pickles, oh not yet. I can wait.

Look at this, I even have enough room for a small plot of pumpkins. They have to be in the ground by June 15 for Fall decorating.

I bet you wondered where the Buckaroo's were while I was working in the garden....

getting VERY dirty of course. Yep, more clothes to wash. I think I will just let them stand in the sprinkler in the garden a while to get off some of the dirt.
I am enjoying my garden and hope to have a lot of wonderful vegetables this Summer. Come on over to our Farmers' Market, you could get "The Park Wife discount".
Happy growin',
The Park Wife


Leanna said...

What a lovely garden you have! That is proof of a lot of hard work! :) Our garden is coming along very well, too, though not as large as yours. I'll have to post pictures of ours soon.

Mom2Toribug said...

The doctor that I work for kept taking bags of shredded paper home. I finally asked what she was doing with all that shredded paper and she told me that her mom was using it as mulch in her garden. She said it works really well. Guess cardboard boxes do too. The garden is coming along nicely. Keep up the good work.

OKGardners said...

I'm so proud of all your efforts. You are becoming a Farm Girl and leaving city life behind. I hope your garden produces many pounds of produce.

I don't have one thing planted yet, so I will have to depend on our local Farmers Market here. Best wishes on all your garden.

Little boys and dirt - what a combination and they LOVE it!

Betty in Oklahoma