Garden planning

My last big event for the academic year was yesterday, one week after my biggest project of the year, which came a week after grant proposals for AmeriCorps members were due (I’m applying for 4!).  Finally, I can catch up on e-mail, budget reports, and just picking up the debris from an insanely busy semester and preparing for the end of said semester a month from now, oh yeah, and that big conference in June. Wow.

All this craziness means I am behind at home, too.  When there’s a mountain of laundry on the dining room table, you can be pretty sure it’s April at Henbogle.  I’m just now finalizing the garden plan for the year.  The weirdly warm spring is adding some pressure as we appear to be about 2 weeks ahead of our usual temperatures — have I missed the pea planting window?  Anyway, with constructing the hoop house, and the changeover in garden layout in 2007, and adding some raised beds in 2008, my planning has been… a bit lacking, although it looks good on paper.  With the challenges of the design and the fence, I struggled a bit especially when it came to planting in families to make crop rotation easier.

I am getting closer to my goal of being able to plant all the same families together.  Over the last few weeks I’ve made lists of plant families and also reviewed the intensive planting strategies outlined by Mel Bartholomew in Square Foot Gardening and other reading.  I’m new enough to the square foot concept that I need help planning, so I even made myself a nice new cheat sheet to help.

The hoophouse will get a plant or two each of the heat loving tomatoes, peppers, cukes and melons, and space will be reserved for summer seeding of fall and crops.  I just need to fit the rest of my vegetables in the space I have left: Asian Greens, Beet, Carrot, Celery, Chard, Cress, Endive, Kale, Leek, Lettuce, Mache, Minutina, Onion, Orach, Pac Choi, Parsley, Parsnip, Peppers, Radicchio, Radish, Rutabaga, Squash, Tsai Tai, Turnip.  Hmmm.  Think it will all fit in those 4 empty squares?



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6 Responses to “Garden planning”

  1. Tessa @ Blunders with Shoots, Blossoms 'n Roots Says:

    It looks like a great work of art! I’m in the planning stage for our new yard as well. I’ve recently discovered Permaculture and have collected quite a few books on the subject- discovering it was perfect timing as we were just about to leave our home of 8 years. Our garden in the old home was nice, but could have been more planned better…enter Permaculture, and now I have new eyes on the subject of planning!

    Happy Gardening and planning to you :)

  2. Robin Says:

    You can still plant peas. I’ll plant after the rain drains and continue to the middle of July so that I have pea pods for schools in September and October.

  3. Daphne Says:

    Those would have to be really big squares to fit all of that. Good luck with the planning.

    As to peas you just never know. Remember last year and the freezing cold June? With weather like that you could have planted in early May and still gotten peas. I’ll plant them as late as the end of April. They grow a lot faster than the earlier planted ones anyway.

  4. jeannie Says:

    It looks great Ali. and don’t worry, you will find the right spot for your peas. I have confidence in you.

  5. Kate Says:

    I’m active in the AmeriCorps Alum chapter in Portland and we’re compiling a list of organizations that host AmeriCorps members. We’ll be using the list to promote AmeriCorps during AC Week (May 9th-15th). If you feel comfortable doing so, will you email me and let me know where you work? We can include it in the list and maybe some potential members will apply to work at your site! Thanks so much!

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