Friday, October 11, 2013

Garden Update

I finished planting all the cool season crops, but it wasn't without drama! The drama came when I tried to finish up the new raised bed. I had to remove the rest of the grass from the raised bed area before I added the compost. I have Bermuda grass and it will grow up through the soil to reach the top of the raised beds if it isn't removed. Here is what I started with in the morning.

Thinking it would not take long to pull up, I thought I would add the dirt & compost, plant the seeds and be finished by noon. Well, that didn't happen! When I tried to pull up the rest of the grass, I found lots of rocks that needed to be removed. Then I hit upon a big rock. I mean a really big rock. It took a while to uncover it, the more I dug, the bigger it got. It got so big that I had to remove the wooden frame from the raised bed to be able to pry it out. Here it is!

This thing is solid granite (I live in the gold belt in my state.) It was so heavy I couldn't pick it up! My husband wasn't home so I didn't have any help. To remove this thing, I had to think outside the box. My thoughts turned to the ancient Egyptians and how they had to move those enormous boulders to build the pyramids. So I created a 'ramp' by removing additional dirt from the raised bed. I made it a very slow grade, I had to dig out a lot of the dirt. My goal was to roll it up the 'ramp' I just created and out of the way of the new garden. Well, I couldn't push it up the ramp! At least not with my hands - so I sat down and pushed it out with my feet! Our legs can handle more weight than our arms can, so it seemed like a perfect solution. It started to work and then it got stuck. Instead of moving the rock when I pushed, I ended up pushing me across the grass. I had to dig my hands into the ground and push harder!

Molly thought all of this was super fun and that, of course, Mommy was sitting on the ground to play with her. From the time I discovered my problem, to the time I got the thing out, it took almost two hours! This rock has to weigh almost 100 pounds!

With the crisis over, it was time to put the raised bed frame back and get the compost. It was now afternoon and Molly needed a nap. 

I added the few bags of commercial potting soil that I had left over from Spring and the compost. I planted half the bed with onions and the other half with garlic.

In another raised bed, I planted peas and carrots. In the third raised bed, I planted more carrots, peas, broccoli and spinach. It took me all day to get everything done. The rock is still sitting in the middle of my yard. It needs a new home. I have no idea where I am going to put it or what I am going to do with it. I really don't think the garbage collection people will take it.

My husband told me I should have just left it in the ground. As a long time gardener, I couldn't do that. I know that the roots of the plants will have better soil conditions without that rock. The key to a good, healthy garden really is soil preparation. So while I now have excellent garden soil, I also have a 100 lb rock. 

Perhaps I should paint it and make yard art!

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