Every year in the Spring time, I enjoy sketching out my plans for my organic garden areas. I wake up early in the morning, grab a cup of coffee, pull out my Prismacolors and sit at the dining room table to sketch out my garden plans.
Doing this allows me to visually see the space that I have in order to start thinking about crop rotation, sowing, planting and successive planting to maximize my production.
Here’s what I’ve come up with for the 2011 gardening season. Of course, things are bound to change along the way.
As I seem to do every year, I expand a little more. This year I’m focusing on my edible landscape at home. It’s easier for me to tend to while the kids are napping or playing in the yard.
With lack of space, I’m growing my beans vertically by the side of my large picture window and also, growing up my wooden fence to the side of my house. This year, I also plan to grow swiss chard and bok choi below my picture window and I’m adding a window box where I’ll grow marjoram and thyme.
This year, I’ve rotated my tomatoes to the front of my yard. I need to figure out some cute sort of tomato cages that won’t look crazy as I’m growing 14 plants out front. Any suggestions?
My heart is also set on a wooden arbor out front and adding a small picket fence to start growing grapevines. However, since we’ll be adding a second coop out in the back, that might have to wait until next year. Wouldn’t that look fabulous though?! I was thinking there could be a limestone pathway leading to the front porch. Maybe next year
My raised beds are pretty self explanatory. I did forget to add in my radishes right next to the beets.
I’m going to be writing a post on best vegetables to grow in the shade. Or better said, less hours of sun. Since my beds at my parents home does not have full sun all day long, I have decided to dedicate those plots to Spring and Fall planting. Pretty much greens and root vegetables that don’t require full sun.
My hot summer vegetables I am growing at my community garden. However, since there are so many plots there, which means increased pests and disease, I always make sure to plant my tomatoes and cukes at home.
What I do not have sketched are my containers. This year I will be planting all of my peppers and cucumbers in my growboxes. I’m not messing around this year! I haven’t had a decent pepper harvest in 3 years so although I’m continuing to pray for a drier Spring, I’ve decided to keep my peppers safe and sound in my containers.
My strawberry patch is already growing beautifully and I already have containers of tarragon and chamomile that have sprung up from last year. I love perennials! I’ll also be planting my sorrel, rosemary, mint, parsley and cilantro in more containers on my front patio.
I feel great! I just need to remember to take things one step at a time.
I already have spinach, mesclun mix, fava beans and peas sowed and growing. This weekend, I’ll be sowing carrots, beets, radishes, sorrel, swiss chard, bak choi and kale. It’s in the Spring time that gardening can seem overwhelming. By writing things down and sketching out plans you can see that they are doable.
As far as my seedlings, Nehemiah and I have transplanted all of our seedlings to bigger pots. It’s amazing how quickly they grow as soon as they’re transplanted. My big boy is my garden marker. He writes down all of the names of the plants on our popsicle stick markers. My joy.
I did use a new mixture this year for my transplants. I used a 2 to 1 ratio of worm castings to my seed starting organic mix. (2 cups seed starting mix, 1 cup worm castings.) The plants are eating it up and thriving! That will be a post coming up soon as well
Ezekiel sitting next to the plants. He’s my heart.
What are your gardening plans looking like this year?
Do you normally sketch them out or use an online garden planner? I’d love to hear from you.