Monday, April 28, 2014

Garden Work is Progressing!

About a month ago I tore up my oldest strawberry bed. It was four years old and needed to go. In it's place, I put a new bed of asparagus. We love asparagus! Because it is so expensive, we don't eat it very often. I really am not sure why it took me so long to do something about this problem! I should have installed an asparagus bed long ago.

Problem solved now! Here is a picture of the asparagus bed when I installed it last month.

Notice the bed hasn't had all the dirt added yet? The rest of the dirt isn't added until the asparagus starts to grow. Just recently, the spears started peaking their heads up. (Not all of them have made an appearance yet - they may need to be replaced if they don't show up soon.) 

Asparagus is easy to grow. It is a low maintenance plant. Since it is a perennial, it will stay in the same spot and produce for up to 20 years! The key to good production is bed preparation up front. Don't scrimp here! Do it right the first time and you will get years of food with very little extra work! 

Asparagus needs lots of compost in a well draining soil. They don't like to stay wet, and can rot if the water doesn't drain quickly from the soil. I look forward to many years of harvesting yummy asparagus spears from this spot. I may even can some!

The bees have been enjoying themselves in my blueberry bushes! Lots of bees now means lots of blueberries in a few months. Blueberries are another low maintenance food. Easy to grow, one they are established, they take very little care. All I do to them now, is feed them once a year.

The apple trees are in bloom as well. However, I don't see much bee activity around the apple trees (not sure why). To ensure that I get some apples this year, I hand pollinated the flowers myself. I did this last year as well and posted a 'how to' you can see here. Hand pollinating is easy and really doesn't take more then a few minutes of time.

Since I have been sick this month, the rest of the garden is behind schedule. Here is what the other bed looks like right now.

My seeds are coming along nicely.The tobacco and woad died while I was sick because I forgot to water them. I started new ones and they are up. I still have a few more herbs I need to start but here is a picture of everything else. They currently are in the process of hardening off so they can go in the garden soon.

Other than that, I have been dividing up some of my bulbs and replanting them elsewhere. Just like hostas (you can see how to divide and replant hostas here) , they can be divided and replanted in the spring. This year, I divided daffodils and hyacinths. Here is a picture of some of the newly planted hyacinths. I placed them in front of the irises right outside the front door.

The key is to divide them up after they flower but before the leaves die back. Plant at the same depth they had in the original bed. It is just that easy!

I expect to be out in the yard most of the rest of this week finishing the raised bed so I can get the new strawberries and grapes planted!

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