Frost Free and Done With Dirt

We are finally finished dumping dirt into our raised beds!

This is the last quadrant, and we wasted no time getting seeds into those beds once we were done filling them. This weekend marks our frost-free date, so it was time to get cracking on our planting and sowing. In the center "C" you can see our bamboo tepees (made by pulling apart an extra section of bamboo fencing we used for privacy at the Red House — glad to put them to good use!). Around each tepee are planted Cherokee Trail of Tears, an heirloom black bean that will climb those poles. In the squared off ends of the "C" are zucchini and nasturtium seeds as well. In the foreground of this bed are also mustard seedlings (too tiny to see, but they are in the rectangular section that is dark from having been watered). Our tomatillos are just off frame.

Other seeds that went into the ground this weekend, now that we're pretty sure nothing will freeze: sunflowers, chamomile, and borage, plus a succession planting round of green beans, cilantro, basil, Brussels sprouts, dill, fennel, and our cool season rows of lettuces, carrots, and other salad greens. This is a good bulk of our garden space, and we should have much less to do each weekend now that all the dirt is in and most of out planting is done.

Well, maybe not less to do so much as different things to do. Like weeding. And fertilizing. And more weeding.

And moving dirt. Did I say we were totally done?

It would be more accurate to say only that we are done with the raised beds in the vegetable garden. When we ordered this last giant pile of dirt, our calculation was based on the volume to fill empty beds in that last quadrant. Turns out they weren't exactly empty — a fact we forgot because they were covered with plastic all fall and winter to keep out the weeds.


So now there's still a few hundred dollars' worth of loam/compost mix in our driveway. 

Looks like I'm going to get to design those cutting beds after all — and sooner rather than later! Now that there's some pressure to get it done (as in, "Gee, wouldn't it be nice to park my car in the garage sometime this decade?"), I'm drawing a blank on design. We are thinking that we've played out the rectilinear raised beds, but then what? It's certainly faster to build and install them that way over top of  the grass, instead of carving out the turf for some curvy, naturalistic thing. 

But since when do we go for the easiest thing, right?


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