Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Planting our Garden 2008

Yay, we finally planted a little garden! Inspired by our work with community gardening in Detroit for many summers, I planted a small vegetable garden (2 feet x 8 feet) in our backyard for several seasons. But I would spend about an hour a day in the backyard. It just got so hard to keep up for me with my busy life, so I eventually stopped gardening, always intending to come back to it.

By composting and burying my kitchen scraps, I was able to make my hard-packed soil nice enough to even grow things I hadn't planted, like wild cantaloupe, onions, etc. In those summers I grew gorgeous tomatoes, foot-long zucchinis (at right circa 2003), cucumbers, nasubi, peppers, lettuce, etc.

Our beautifully hand-tilled soil had turned back into hard rock dirt over the years and I haven't gardened since. But, this year Tony picked up some organic tomato and zucchini plants at the Farmer's Market, and we picked up a free shiso plant at the Venice Carnival, so I thought I would try container gardening this year. I thought that might make it fun for Maiya too. Some of our rose bushes died over the last few years, so I thought I would move the garden to a sunnier place in the yard.

I know it's a little late in the year to start, but we will see what happens. I don't know how stuff grows in containers, but we will see. We had been throwing our kitchen scraps in these containers, so it was amazing to turn over the dirt and find nice compost at the bottom.
And finally, here is Maiya with our first strawberries of the year. I had planted some annual strawberry plants about 6-7 years ago under our Sago Palm, and surprisingly, with a little water, they still come back each year. Maiya has fun looking for them and sharing them with friends.

If you have any tips for container gardening, let me know. I'll need all the help I can get.

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