i never realized how much work gardening was. when i was younger, and we had a garden plot, mom did most of the work. we lived in illinois, and i’ve romanticized the soil there. black, loamy, full of nitrogen, and nothing like the heavy clay i spent nearly an hour working compost and bone meal into today. i only got half the garden worked, and i am exhausted. 100 pounds of compost later, and there’s still tomorrow. phew. but it’s moving along, unlike the picture of the back garden would imply.
and typical of my idealistic self, i’ve got a massive list of plants to grow.
3 kinds of tomatoes, bush green beans, squash and zucchini, sugar pumpkins, eggplant, hot peppers, bell peppers, banana peppers, leeks, broccoli, spinach, kale and some others that i can’t remember right now. it’s not all going to go in the ground this summer, especially the cool weather plants.
but! i’ve got a lot more planning to do – according to my neighbor, who is here from india studying soil and sustainable farming practices, the garden is no good for tomatoes and squashes. the soil is too nitrogen depleted to really grow good plants. we’ll see – i’ve worked some bone meal into the half i did today, and i’m researching nitrogen fixing plants to see if i can’t try to get the soil up to snuff. as of right now, i’ll probably just grow the tomatoes and squash on the front walkway. it gets good sun, and has railing for the tomatoes.
zoë came out to the plot with me today, and used a small shovel to dig out weeds. she also helped with worm spotting, and counting rocks. we’re enjoying our garden unit so far, and tomorrow, we’re going to hit up the library for more books on seeds. we’re already using A Seed is Sleepy, and we might try to see if there’s any other books. We’re probably going to make tissue paper flowers, to hang next to our contact papered leaves and seeds (currently next to the easter eggs).every night, she asks if she can do more worksheets – which is always good.
in all, i think this will be a really fun, easy way to get her learning all sorts of new things, and it’s good exercise for me. my back is pretty achy though, so we’ll see if my tune changes as this weekend goes on. i’ve got a good bit of preparatory research to do for my chaucer class, and south african lit, as i have 2 major papers due within a month – hopefully the garden won’t become yet another way to procrastinate doing the not-so-fun college stuff. vive le summer!