Gardening... the object of my summer affection. Hard work, yet relaxing at the same time. The satisfaction from working the earth is elemental and delightful. Dining is a pleasure, eating fruit and veggies straight from the garden. The flavor of store bought veggies just cannot compare to what you can do in your own backyard!
I grew all the same veggies as in previous years. Added a new Rose Garden near our pool house, hoping these do better than the roses in the back yard. It's warmer up near our house, I am hoping that's the big difference. Every year I loose roses in the way back, I will not replace them as they die. I bought 22 roses from Home Depot, they were having a big sale of some off brand roses, they were only $2.97 each. Wouldn't that just figure that the cheapie rose thrive, while my Jackson and Perkins roses die off one by one? All the climbing roses I ordered last year from J&H died except for two. Geeesh.
The highlight of 2001 was that I broke down and bought some "real" equipment. I ordered a Rototiller and the Double Barrel Composter from Mantis. Guess what? They REALLY work! Woo Hoo! Every year I get a late start planting my vegetables, waiting for my landscaper, Mike, to show up with his rototiller.
My daughter Stephanie was so entranced with the rototiller that she was cutting S's all over the back yard. <G>
MANTIS.... ORDER YOURS NOW! (and no, I don't get a commission)
Lightweight, but powerful enough to till through sod and compacted soil. Turns soil into a fine texture, ready for planting. At 20 pounds it's easy to carry - to the shed, to the car, or to your neighbor who can't wait to try it! Great for senior gardeners. Fold-down handlebars now make it even easier to transport in your car or store in your shed.
Easy to handle. The convenient 9-inch tine width makes it easy to maneuver among perennials, into corners, between shrubs, and around trees. Perfect for raised beds, and gardens of all sizes.
Fun to use. Weeding is a snap! Just reverse the tilling tines.A 30' x 40' garden can be completely weeded in 20 minutes. Optional attachments & accessories will improve your gardening, lawn, & landscaping. </end commercial>
solved a big problem for me. We have so much garden junk, tree trimming,
leaves, rotted vegetables, clippings from plants, pine needles, shrubs that
get trimmed... I usually pay Mike to haul the crap away twice a summer. A
few times I stuffed the garbage cans full, and then got a call from my trash
company telling me not to do that.
I have just completed putting the whole back yard (1 1/2acres) on a drip
irrigation system. Tonight I ordered from
the auto timer and auto fertilizer mechanism. If all goes as planned, I will
water and fertilize all plants, trees, roses, veggies, berries, perennials
and annuals at 4:00am, while I am sleeping.
What's growing on the veggie garden:
Let's talk about my roses. If we do that then we have to talk about beetles.
Japanese beetles. Chewing, gnawing, obnoxious little maroon colored
I took a an old gatorade bottle and filled it with some water and a quarter cup of bleach. The I went on Beetle Patrol twice a day if I had the time or just once in the afternoon, knocking the little buggers right into the bottle. It was quite disgusting and I was quite pleased with myself.
Do not set out Japanese Beetle traps, (like the kind you buy at a gardening center) unless you want your yard to be the host for the annual beetle convention for your region. Trust me, I learned the hard way.
The beetles were so in love w/ my roses that they didn't even bother my vegetables a mere 50 feet away. The problem in the veggie garden this year was that all of the squash and pumpkins got some kind of weird disease and died, so no more of those types of plants will be planted there.
The raspberries went crazy this year and my kids just stood at the back fence and feasted daily. I plan to plant more, so that I'll be able to make some desserts. The grape I planted in 97' is slow, not sure what the problem is. The Blueberry plant from 97 didn't survive, I will try again in another place.
Also, I installed a drip irrigation system from dripirrigation.com on the web. Since we had two years of drought in Maryland, that's what it had come down to. Great investment!