2016 Garden Spectacular!

OK, so the Food It Yourself garden is not looking spectacular yet, but it is getting there.  It all started in April when Mr. Food It Yourself and I got our soil tested and then supplemented it with a precise mix of nutrients. I pulled the bee balm out of the center of the main garden bed, thinned the population, and replanted most of what remained behind the main bed. Much of the extra was given to friends.

Next, I removed all the herbs from the strawberry tower and moved them to the main garden bed. This was not as strait forward a task as I originally thought. I attempted to control the growth of the mint plant I purchased last year by planting it inside a small pot.  The mint, being more clever than I, sent runners through the strawberries and took hold far beyond the 6” plastic cylinder I allowed it. Some of the scions have been adopted by friends and family who were adequately warned about the potential expansion of the cuttings. The main plant was placed in an 18” pot for transference to the main bed. It will be watched. I also divided my oregano and chives prior to transplant and the cuttings of these were shared, also. The strawberry tower refurbishing was finished when I dug up the strawberries which had escaped into the lawn and put them back in the tower.

There were a few herbs I did not have, including dill, basil, parsley, rosemary and spearmint. I bought plants from a local garden center (Check them out on Face Book! https://www.facebook.com/Jungle-Jims-Garden-Center-149732941736707/), and transplanted them, also.  Buying from a local place means that the plants were already acclimated to the nonsensical spring weather we had this year. Finally, I busted out my seeds.  I planted peas, carrots, and string beans in rows and made little hills for my lettuce and arugula. I’ll wait until fall for Swiss chard and rapini.

Usually, I set aside a single day to get the majority of the garden set up, this year it took about a month from start to finish, working a few hours at a time. I’m not sure which method I prefer, honestly. I must say, though, as of today, all the transplants have taken root, the seeds are sprouted and the strawberry tower is producing tasty tasty berries.   Here are some pictures:

That is not an infestation, it is an heirloom leaf lettuce with polka-dots! Can't wait to have the most fashionable salads in the office.

That is not an infestation, it is an heirloom leaf lettuce with polka-dots! Can’t wait to have the most fashionable salads in the office.

Still got chives that won't quit. I'll be dividing them again next spring. These are some hearty herbs!

Still got chives that won’t quit. I’ll be dividing them again next spring. These are some hearty herbs!

Note the mint outside the pot and the strawberry plant outside the tower. Why can't they just behave like the thyme and the lilacs?

Note the mint outside the pot and the strawberry plant outside the tower. Why can’t they just behave like the thyme and the lilacs?

Pea sprouts showed up pretty quickly. I always plant two or three seeds for every single plant I want, in case some critter chooses a salad. That critter might even be me- pea shoots are a tasty vegetable. (Thanks to SyllieBee for informing me of that.)

Pea sprouts showed up pretty quickly. I always plant two or three seeds for every single plant I want, in case some critter chooses a salad. That critter might even be me- pea shoots are a tasty vegetable. (Thanks to SyllieBee for informing me of that.)

This is that akward stage where you can't really weed because you can't really tell what is a weed and what is the thing you planted. There is a 55% chance that at least some of these green things might grow up to be carrots.

This is that awkward stage where you can’t really weed because you can’t really tell what is a weed and what is the thing you planted. There is a 55% chance that at least some of these green things might grow up to be carrots.

There is a reason they are called Ozark Beauties.

There is a reason they are called Ozark Beauties.

There is always more to do and more to look forward to in the garden.   Mr. Food It Yourself and I have some pretty big plans for the future of our back yard nano-farm. We hope to begin enacting The Plan this fall; I’ll keep all of you posted.  What has sprouted where you are? Share in the comments!