Fall preparation for a better garden

The fall is now in full force and the garden is a thing of the past. The only vegetable that produced any amount were the tomatoes. However, the yield was considerably smaller than previous years. The backyard mammals enjoyed the carrots and I actually only got one bunch, barely enough for a meal. The raised garden boxes remained free of unwanted weeds, but my other garden patch produced more weeds than produce. I am going to try to solve this problem by preparing the soil this fall. I will remove all the weeds before putting down some newspapers and cardboard to kill all the roots of the weeds over the long, cold winter. Hopefully, in the spring when it is time to start the garden it will be weed free and I won’t have to deal with as many annoying weeds. I am also preparing a new raised garden for tomatoes by covering the ground with newspaper, cardboard and garden fabric.

My kitten is suddenly consuming all of my time. He is very cute, but also very needy. He is growing and becoming naughtier every day and this has forced me to establish some house rules. He is not allowed on the living room furniture, but he is allowed to sit and relax on an antique chair that I got at a few years ago at a yard sale.

For now he has a section of our office for his house and toys. When he is not driving me insane, he likes to relax behind my laptop on the table (used as a desk).

As soon as he gets a bit bigger, he will move to the basement. He did not catch the unwanted guest, but I caught the two mice. Eventually, I am sure he will take care of any mice attempting to sneak into the basement.

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Gardening 2017

After last year’s dismal garden I was hoping for an improved version this summer. I prepared some seedlings in early spring in my indoor greenhouse. Although the greenhouse was in front of a window on the south side of the house the plants struggled to absorb the sunshine and flourish. In the beginning they looked pretty good, but as spring lingered for weeks they looked withered by the time I was ready to place them in the garden. In the end, I trashed them and bought tomato seedlings from the garden center. This was my last attempt at starting seedlings indoors. The hassle and disappointment are not worth saving a few dollars. From now on I am going straight to the local garden center to pick up seedlings.  I converted the mini-greenhouse into a shoe closet in the basement. 

In addition, to my garden boxes I made a small cucumber patch by using some decorative fences that my neighbour was throwing out.

I also made a garden for beets, onions and string beans. This garden is proving very popular with my yard visitors – rabbits and groundhogs. These guys are feasting on the beets and beans.

I guess they don’t like onions.  I took preventive measures to keep them out of the raised garden. I used chicken coup and bamboo stakes to make a barrier. This is a temporary fix for now. I plan on making a fence around the raised boxes, but this may not happen this summer.

My herb garden is doing great. All of the herbs resurfaced in late spring with the exception of the rosemary plant. Of course, this is my favorite, but it is not hardy enough to survive an eastern Canadian winter. It acts as an annual in our area, so I got some at the garden center.