Monday, November 24, 2008

Winter Garden

We've taken all the plants out of the big garden bed now. We have had some hard freezes that killed our lettuces and chard. We did not cover the broccoli, cabbage, brussel sprouts or any of the greens last week for a few of those freezes and they are damaged. It's hard for these things to grow in all this freezing weather. Some of the greens survived--we'll see how long we can keep them alive.

In preparation for next year's gardening we have collected free manure and leaves. We were able to get a big truck load of composted horse manure from our friends Ben and Kristen at Five Leaves Farm. They have an agreement with some stables who dump manure at their farm on a regular basis. Ben generously loaded and delivered it to our house last week in exchange for dinner and Daniel's help on the farm.

Daniel and the girls went out last night and collected leaves from the neighborhood. The girls had so much fun playing in the leaves. They always talk about how we used to play in huge piles when we lived in Indianapolis but now we only have big piles of pine needles which are not too fun to jump in. Anyway, they took a tarp and raked huge piles of leaves into the back of our car for three loads of good compost material.

Basically we have created a huge compost pile in our garden bed. We are adding our kitchen scraps to the bed also. So, instead of having a separate small compost pile we're just mixing everything right into the bed. We will be mixing it all together either manually or with a tiller. We hope that by next year the sandy soil that we started with will be nice and fertile. At least it will be better than what we started with!

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