Sunday, October 03, 2010

Hope for next year's garden

This year I grew a lot of weeds.

Two years ago I made the dumb mistake of mulching my vegetable garden with straw. Clearly it was very seedy straw because this year the grass growing in my raised beds was out of control--it smothered pretty much everything but the peas, garlic and two very determined turnips. Everything else was swallowed by the aggressive grass. I'd weed it all out, go away for a week, and come back to see a luxurious green carpet again.

Eventually I gave up. I was getting plenty of good produce from the farm share and I just didn't have the energy to deal with the mess I had created.

However, I do have hope for next year.

Today I took this,
 dug up the worst of the weeds,
 covered the bed with two layers of newspaper,
and dumped on about 2 inches of compost ($2.25 per big trash can behind the recycling shed at the dump).

I read about the newspaper/compost weed-blocker plan in this article in the NY Times. I did two of the three beds today (I only have 2 trash cans and each bed took one trash can full of compost so I'll have to head back for one more fill up). And now I'm looking forward to planting some things that I can't get enough of: one bed will get strawberry plants, one bed will get tomatillos (I want to can some green salsa next year) and the third will get a lot of sugar snap peas, garlic, and maybe a few plants that I've failed at in the past (cucumbers are on the list) and still want to try again. Even if I get the weirdly warped and stunted cukes that I seem to specialize in, they'll have to be better than all the grass.


TeacherPatti said...

I had a fabulous summer, but a shitty garden. I guess it's better than the other way around! Nevertheless, I feel your pain....

Emily said...

Glad you are back Katy! I think the 5 am thing fits you, gives you dedicated "you" time. Miss you.