Green Thumb 2012-Year 2

Caroline, my dear friend and gardening partner, and I are embarking on our second year of “farming”.  The plot is the same 20 ft by 50 ft garden we rented from the city last gardening season. 

During our first year, 2011, we decided not to invest too heavily in inputs (ah, the farming language is wonderful) in case we decided not to garden beyond year one.  After last year, a year of mixed success, we decided to invest in more inputs or soil amendments as Caroline calls them.  Late last fall that took the shape of 10 cubic yards of mushroom compost delivered by a dual axle dump truck that beeped when it backed up and then spewed out a great mass of steaming smelly compost onto our plot.  I was speaking with Bonnie (from Bonnie’s Lavender Farm) about gardening this coming season.  When I told her we’d purchased mushroom compost, she said “that’s just horse shit”.  I thought at first she was dissing our investment but then realized she was calling a spade a spade or in this case, calling mushroom compost horse….well you get it.

No matter what we call the inputs, we are hoping it will turn our 2012 farming season into a smashing success.  We feel very good about trying to grow our own food.  We are hoping this year our bounty will increase and that the compost will make a world of difference.  

Some things that would make us very happy this year:

  • to have more than one resident, migrant earthworm in the whole plot
  • to produce carrots that don’t look as if they were grown in a nuclear waste site
  • to have fewer than 4, 427 potato bugs to squash throughout the season
  • to really sit down, once in a while, in the lawn chairs we take out and store in the little shed

 We do get teased about how you can buy 20 lb bags of carrots in the fall for $3.50 a bag.  No matter, those are not our carrots, that were started by our hands and our attention to water and our monitoring and our great discussions about thinning the plants and on and on.    In a way we may be living the old joke about the farmer who won a million dollars and was asked about his plans. “Oh, I dunno”, he said, “probably keep farming till it’s all gone”. 

Do you have some gardening experience to send our way?  All guidance and advice is most welcome.

4 thoughts on “Green Thumb 2012-Year 2

  1. Hi Barbie,
    I have comments!!!! If it is about dollars and cents, stop right now. But you already knew that. It
    is about growing something that you can eat and can have pride in and can enjoy growing then go for it. Garth

    1. Hi Garth,
      We went to see the comedian Sandra Shamus this week. She lives on a farm in Ontario and grows organic vegetables. She said farming is about buying retail and selling wholesale. That’s right in line with your advice. For us it is about the very things you mention and so indeed-we will go for it! Thanks for the comment-always great to hear from you.

  2. Tanya has spent most of her gardening time in her flower gardens but she and Lina have put in some (maybe 1/3) of our 25 meter X 25 meter kitchen garden. Two truckloads of well rotted horse manure were incorporated into it last fall but it needs about 20 more to make that heavy clay soil into something friable. The tomatoes will go in mid May and the vine veggies about then too I think. Our peas are already 2″ high.

    1. It seems your growing season is quite a bit ahead of ours. Is Ukraine and southern Ontario about the same latitude? Flat maps never give you the right perspective. Yes, while we’ve started with the mushroom compost, it’s likely only the beginning of our “amendments” over time. Sounds like something that previously I associated only with Roberts Rules of Order at a meeting. Thanks for the comment.

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