Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Sit-ups are for sissies! Try gardening!

Thank God for Arnica! I’m a little achy in places, but nothing like I would have been without it. That was a good workout yesterday… total core, front and back, total arms (upper and lower), bum, hips, hands, fingers. Sit-ups are for sissies! Try gardening!

Last night I worked on mapping out the garden. When you’re working with a small garden it’s important to fit as many plants in as practically possible. I drew out my garden on graph paper and listed all the various veggies I wanted to include along with their spacing requirements. Then it’s like putting a puzzle together. Some plants don’t like being next to others (companion planting) and some need shade while others provide shade. I was able to fit most of what I wanted in the space. A couple of items will have to go in pots on the porch, but that’s ok too!

I also started some seeds in a growing tray yesterday afternoon. The tray holds 72, but I only planted 54 for now. I’ll start more in a couple of weeks that way I’ll have a continual harvest instead of everything coming to bear at the same time. I’ll put the tray out in the sunroom during the day, but bring it in at night since it’s still getting down close to freezing temps overnight.

Setting the timer for an hour today I cleared the remainder of the plot and turned ½ of the soil in the plot. The hardest part was getting rid of the part of the hill that slid into my garden. The soil from the hill is rocky and dries like hard clay in the hot summer sun, so I didn’t want to just turn it into the good soil that we’ve kept conditioned through the years. So I had to break up the rock-clay and move what looked like a small mound of dirt and rocks out of the plot. OMG! I won’t need to do any weight training on this exercise program. As if the shovel didn’t already weight enough on its own, try adding a pile of dirt and rocks on top of it. My limit is about 1/3 of the shovel.

I also tested the soil pH which was good and dug around looking for worms (a sign of good soil health) for use in starting a compost pile. No worms. Maybe it’s still just too cold.

After that, I made a small container with polyvinyl chicken fence to start a compost pile with the dried grass and small tumbleweeds I chopped down yesterday. Compost piles work really well with some leaves. Fortunately, I found a small pile trapped in stored pots behind the house yesterday. When I went to retrieve them I found WORMS at the bottom of the pile. What are the chances I’d find earthworms under a pot of oak leaves on the concrete behind the house with no dirt in sight?? So now one of the compost piles is started, but there is lots more cuttings to be composted so I’ll need a bigger container. That will be tomorrow’s task. My hour is up and my muscles are in need of a break.

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