This year is my first ‘official’ garden of my own – ever…Already I’ve learned a few hard lessons and I feel that there might be another one or two in the works. I’ve already figured out that I planted my English peas 3-5 weeks too late. Right now they’re flourishing because it’s been so cool during the night and day, but I fear this weekend of upper 90 degree weather may greatly shock them into an Oklahoma spring. So what’s a Groovy 1st time Gardner Girl to do?? Plan, Plan & Plan…sprinkled with some advice from mom and numerous garden planning websites!!
My amended plan – hold off from doing anything other than preparing a few more beds for at least a couple more weeks. The average last day of frost for our area is sometime around April 15. Now if you’ve lived in this area long enough, you realize that in actuality, that means nothing really…just look, we’ve had 80-90 degree days around St. Patty’s day and at the end of March saw frost again! All part of the gardening game, right?!?!
I have garden journal I’ve been keeping. I’ve always loved writing in my diary, so this is just a quick jump away. I write down my list of varieties planted, when and where. Each time I’ve added compost/mulch, when and how much fertilizer I add and to what (some things like more of something else than others). I fully accept that this first year is a good ‘starting experiment point’ in which to improve upon next year. Calendar’s already marked for pea planting mid to late February next year!2011 Garden Journal
I’ve been mulling over tomato (can’t believe I’m willing to go back there) plants to plant, along with maybe a pepper plant for nostalgia’s sake; then I also have on my groovy list cucumbers (which was another lesson that I planted too early when it was nice those few weeks), squash (although what I have planted is still doing well), zucchini, more green beans, cantaloupe and I’m even considering eggplant (we grilled some last year and really enjoyed it). That’s a mighty lofty list! I figured I’d get all my experimenting done this first year before refining my list for fall or next year’s garden. As you know, I’m not one for waiting….
So how to bide my time on pleasant days – prepare some more garden space. It looks like I’m going to need it! I think this weekend I’ll rent a mac-daddy roto-tiller and till and condition some soil on the edges of my raised beds. I think I’ll also try to turn my unsightly dog pen into a beautiful trellis of summer veggies, who knows, our dog BJ might actually become a dog-aterian! ha!! Plus if done properly, it’ll give him some great shade from über hot summer days that are sure to be around the corner.
I’m also going to visit a couple of expert gardening places over the weekend – mom and I have planned an awesome, no kids or hubbys invited – 24 hours together starting tomorrow afternoon! Lots of gardens, nurseries and landscape places are on our list to visit. (Mom is threatening taking a stock trailer along with us – think the valet at Nona’s will be willing to park that??) Watch for us over the weekend to post more images!!!!