Monday, 24 June 2013

The Mermaid Garden 2013

This update has been a long time coming. I've had a busy year, with new meetup groups and new volunteer work and interests. So when I go into the garden, I just want to garden, not take pictures and blog after.

Plus, it's been raining. And raining. And raining. So a lot of my garden time has been doing quick weeding in between the rain. I'm happy to say that I wasn't personally affected by Calgary's sudden floods this month.

Now, my efforts are bearing fruit (literally), and now is the time to start blogging!

The 2013 garden started indoors, with a heated mini-greenhouse and grow lights.
The beginning

Not all of the seedlings survived - starting them in the basement wasn't the best idea, when they grew too tall for the greenhouse and I had to take the lid off. These are part of the survivors, outside to start hardening off.
The transplants

I found pansies in the remnants of last year's vegetable bed - spawned by last year's Johnny Jump-Ups. Neat!
The surprise

Last year, my vegetable bed was more of a breeding ground for weeds and grass. In my haste, I didn't put enough time into killing the undergrowth. So this year, I laid down cardboard and garbage bag to prepare the site for an idea from Pinterest.
The preparation

Inspired by this pin, I laid down a pallet to use as a garden bed. Then I decided to bracket it with trellises for more vertical space. I knew I'd be planting lots of climbing plants.
The set up

Like these snow peas.
Snow peas

I love how they reach out and grab onto the sticks I've placed.
Nature at work

The remainder is dedicated to peppers I started inside, and sweet peas and poppies.
Pallet garden bed

One thing I learned from last year is to keep these pots as level as possible. When tilted, they tend to lose water and dry out fast.
Trellis gardening

A lot of my gardening is done by the seat of my pants. When this plant appeared and shot straight up, I decided to keep it. Even though I don't know what plant this is. I suspect it's some kind of weed - can anyone identify it?
What is this plant?

My garlic chives from last year grew again and bloomed!
Garlic chives

Inspired by the same pin I used for the pallet garden bed, I decided to try planting herbs vertically. So I got this pallet.
Pallet before

I borrowed a staple gun from a coworker and stapled mesh to it. Had I done any kind of research or thinking through, I would've stapled it halfway up and then filled it with dirt. But I didn't, so I have to fill it with soil one spadeful at a time.
Pallet after

Which is partly why I've only filled one corner. Also, it would be pricey to fill it out with bedding plants. In 2014, I'll start more herbs from seed.

I wanted to try growing fruit bushes in containers this year. I'm not sure that the raspberry bushes are going to thrive, because their container isn't draining well despite my efforts, and all of the rain is drowning them. I've started draping plastic bags over them everytime it rains.

These blueberry bushes are thriving.
Blueberry bushes

I may have squeed when I saw these berries today. :-)


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