Kris and I aren’t repeating our annual garden project this year. We’re too swamped to take the time to track our expenses and harvests. In fact, our garden will probably be a bit smaller than usual this summer because we just won’t have the time to care for it.
Still, the yard is an important part of our daily lives. Plus, there’s a certain segment of the GRS community — the die-hard gardeners, I guess — who keep asking us to post an update. To keep these folks happy, here’s a run-down of the food-producing plants at Rosings Park (which is what we call our three-fifths of an acre).
- The peas are poking up. We love snow peas, so we plant a lot of them. Over the years, however, we’ve learned that if we plant them all at the same time, we’re smothered with peas come June. Instead, we stagger our crops. This year, we planted two short rows around Valentine’s Day, two rows at the first of March, and two rows around St. Patrick’s Day. This should keep us in peas for weeks!
- We planted asparagus in 2006. The plants take a couple of years to mature, but then produce tasty stalks thereafter. Somehow, though, we messed up our first harvest attempts in 2008 and 2009. This is the first year we’ve been able to pick our own asparagus, and Kris reports it’s delicious. (I haven’t tried it yet.)
- Our onion sets are planted.
- The herb bed is weeded and pruned, and we’ve planted new varieties of oregano and mint, as well as an artichoke. These are all from this year’s neighborhood plant swap.
- Kris also picked up some healthy tomato starts at plant swap, and she plans to buy some more at next weekend’s Master Gardener sale. She’ll also pick up some pepper and squash seedlings. She’s not starting any of these from seed this year.
- However, she is growing several other plants from seed, including basil, cucumbers, and flowers. She’ll plant beans, beets, and cilantro seeds into the garden in early May, once the danger of frost has passed.
- The fruit trees have blossomed. We have two apples, one pear, a plum, two Asian pears, and a cherry tree. The older trees should bear lots of fruit this year. The younger trees will give us a taste of what lies in store for the future.
- Last fall, we ripped out the 30-year-old blueberry plants and put in new ones. These are blossoming well, but they’ve been invaded by weeds. I’ll be spending time in my berry patch next week, clearing out the riff-raff. The blueberries, strawberries, and currants are blooming, and the caneberries (blackberries and raspberries) have exploded.
In short: Although we’re not tracking our progress in 2010, we still plan to use home-grown food as a way to trim our grocery budget. At some point, we may even add chickens and/or dairy goats to the mix. Some of our friends have done this, but we haven’t been bold enough to try. For now, we’re sticking to plants!
We’ve actually been trying to decide whether we should expand our vegetable patch. We have a lot of lawn (too much lawn, to be honest), and the idea of devoting more of it to food crops is appealing. We won’t do it this year, though. If we’re too busy to track our harvest and spending, then we’re certainly too busy to expand the garden.
So, that’s where things are in our neck of the woods. How are things where you are? Have you started seeds indoors? Already planted out? Are you, too, eager for the coming of spring?
Note: For a run-down of our garden project and some quick tips on gardening, check out my recent guest post at Deal-Seeking Mom.