The last of the snow has passed… hopefully. And we’re starting to get to that time of year when lunch break outings don’t require a jacket. That’s my cue to start ramping up for our back patio garden.
We’re going to change things up a bit this year. Less peppers. More food I can eat (potatoes, lettuce, spinach, garlic, red onion, mmmm). More shade providing foliage. And less pots.
While the garden looked incredible and lush last year, most of what we were growing that I could consume were the herbs. The tomatoes all got bottom blossom rot before they were ripe. The bell peppers got MASSIVE terrifying caterpillars – those things were prehistoric looking. So we only successfully managed to grow hot peppers, but since the Mister is the only one of us that likes spicy food, we found ourselves donating plants to neighbors. Our herbs were so successful that we still have Parsley that survived all Winter and is putting out some new growth.
Also, the self-watering containers, while a genius concept for urban container gardens and newbie gardeners, attracted so many mosquitoes that we hardly every sat outside. Even just going out to take the garbage out required a thorough dousing of bug spray. Oh and the great stump table? It molded. That thing grew so much fungus, it adhered to the concrete floor. Note to self – SEAL THE STUMP.
So here’s what’s new:
- We added some super bright cushions to the adirondack chairs
- We bought a small outdoor side table and a brightly colored lantern to set on it.
- I’m going to construct a very basic raised bed for the side of the garden that will hold all of our herbs and vegetables.
Source: Art & Appetite (please only Pin from original source)
- The tomato plants will stay in big self-watering containers, but I’m going to add a few drops of oil to the basins (this breaks the water tension and keeps mosquitoes from laying eggs in the water – gross).
- We’re moving some of the commonly used kitchen herbs into the kitchen on a yet-to-be hung herb wall rack.
I’ll keep you posted as we make progress!
Also, we’ve just signed up for our first CSA which will start on June 1, so I’m sure we’ll have lots of great healthy recipes for you as we figure out what to cook each week with our loot! If you’re unfamiliar, CSA stands for Community Supported Agriculture. The concept is that you basically purchase a “share” of a farm’s produce, and each week you go to a designated local pickup location to pick up your food. You never know what you’re going to get which is part of the gamble, but you end up with plenty of fresh veggies and fruit for a family of 4. Weekly.
Anyone else in the Baltimore area looking for a great CSA? Check out Breezy Willow Farms. Unlike many CSAs that you find, they provide you with more typically used veggies, some delicious in-season berries, and a dozen eggs weekly. Also, monthly, you get another treat such as fresh fruit jam, yogurt, cheese, honey, etc. on a rotating basis. AND you get to pick your own herbs when you pick up your weekly distribution. Oh and if you’re a tag along friend on one of this pickup trips, you get to go play with the farm animals while you wait. 🙂