Thursday, September 8, 2011

Down on the farm.....

By hanging a full load of laundry on my clothesline late Monday, I was able to trigger two days of rain that brought 4.5 inches to my yard and gardens!! And the forecast suggests that those clothes will remain wet on the line today too!

As the daylengths shorten my chickens are laying fewer and fewer eggs....time to run a bunch in my blender with a teaspoon of seasalt and freeze in small tubs to enjoy this winter when they cease laying altogether.

I've committed the main bed in the center of my backyard to becoming a food forest....I've rooted two moringa trees at the south end, will today plant a seedling citrus, loquat and neem tree at the north end, and once I pull out the Spanish Needle (bidens) the chickens have not managed to eat for me, I will pepper the entire bed with approximately 1 dozen papaya plants. Once I finish filling the former apple snail pond with soil, log scraps, compost and mulch to make it a bog, I will plant my guava and jobaticaba in there. In summer, sweet potatoes will be the ground cover; in winter, brassicas, nasturtiums and white sweet alyssum will blanket the soil with food, fragrance and color.

Autumn is in the air and today I will do a more vigorous sorting of my vast selection of winter seeds, and once I locate my bulk bag of Dwarf Jewel Mix Nasturtium seeds I buy by the pound at a GREAT price from Applewood Seeds in Golden, Colorado, I will try an early planting in the completed beds out front in hopes of getting their charming colors and scents and tastes sooner in the season. It is always fun to try to push the limits with crops in any climate.

Once I finish burying the roses growing in 5 and 7 gallon bucket Water Wise Container Gardens in the two beds hugging the west side of my driveway and front patio, I can then "finish" the beds by planting more perennials, papayas, annual flowers and some winter veggies. Once the garden paths behind them are mulched, the revamp of the front yard will be about 50% completed as I recreate my roses collection but THIS time based on buried Water Wise Container Gardens to insure wise water use for those lovely, fragrant but THIRSTY shrubs that melted my heart in Denver and Tampa in 1989.

         My east driveway bed a few winters back

A rose Water Wise Container Garden before being buried

Always so much to do...good thing I like to stay busy!   John

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