email: cavebear2118 AT verizon DOT com

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Garden Started Outside 2

I thought I would provide more information about the trellis area of the garden.  While I enjoy growing my tomatoes the most, the trellis is the place I enjoy most.  First, let me describe it.

It is 30' long by 2' wide by 12" tall.  It is that long because that's the total length of the individual adjacent beds when I first constructed the garden.  It is 2' wide because I grow the trellised crops on the front foot and plants that can use some shade on the back foot.  Plus, I built it after the rest of the beds as an afterthought and if it was any wider, my push mower wouldn't fit between it and the fence.

There are 4x4" 8' posts at each end and one in the middle.  The trellis itself is concrete remesh wire with 6"x6" openings.  The remesh is 6" off the ground and 5' high.  Attaching the remesh was quite a project in itself about 15-20 years ago.  My best friend and I decided that remesh was the best tomato cage material (and I still agree, but if I could get vinyl-coated remesh, I would buy it).  We researched sources and costs and the price was dramatically better past a certain length.

Well, that was more than we needed, but I had been thinking of a sturdy trellis.  Serendipitously, that length got us close to the "good price" and we ordered that.  There was 20' extra, but I found a good use for that 2 years ago (more on that in the future).

So, we made our tomato cages and I used most of the rest for the trellis.  It was difficult to attach to the posts.  Well, we were inexperienced at such things.  The vertical wires didn't line up with the posts, so we had to bend the remesh around the outer corners to fit (just try that sometime; the wire is really strong).  And we couldn't get it to pull tight along the length and from top to bottom  (like a bedsheet with wrinkles).

I figured out a way later, but it was too late and that's beside the point.  But I'm keeping it in mind because after all these years, it needs to be replaced soon.  The remesh is still sturdy, but the posts are rotting.

Anyway, I told you all this to talk about what I grow there...

I garden by the Square Foot Method (Mel Bartholomew) as best I can.  I do it for small crops.  I don't agree with it for large crops (can't help it, I just like large cages for big heirloom tomatoes).  But the trellis area is seriously "Square Foot". 

I planted garlic in the front foot last Fall 15' long (2 garlics per square foot).  On the back side, I have alternated individual square feet for carrots, scallions, beets, radish, shallots, spinach, celery,  chinese cabbage, leeks (and I am probably forgetting a couple) in succession planting.  When the first are harvested, I will replant with the same crops but in different squares (Square Foot gardening makes for automatic crop rotation).  I am adding parsnips this weekend.

I harvested my first radishes of the year yesterday.  SPICY!  Not like that bland stuff you get in grocery stores.  And I should start harvesting the garlic next month or early July.

Here's the only picture I have at the moment.
You can see the garlic, the beets and the radishes.  The other stuff is still way too small to see.  Well, the celery is large enough, but its not in that picture.  You can see the remesh wire if you look carefully.

4 comments:

Jacqueline said...

Spicy radishes sound great!...I bet dinner at your house is fantastic with all your fresh vegetables!

Jan's Funny Farm said...

Ah, we envy those with thriving gardens. Our Jan has a black thumb. Don't even let her visit if you value your garden!

The Creek Cats said...

Thanks, Ayla and Iza! Thanks so much for stopping by and celebrating Saylor's birthday! We've entered you in our giveaway!

Samantha, Clementine and Maverick said...

Mom can't plant or raise anything!! She is silly!! Clemmie was laying with the camera strap on Mom's camera!!
Your TX furiends,