Wendy and I took the day off of work yesterday to rest up from hosting our guest over the weekend and to get moving on the small organic vegetable garden we've been planning in our backyard. The north wall of our backyard gets a decent amount of sunlight every day, and Wendy has been itching to plant a small garden for years.
Although neither one of us have a green thumb, we decided to give it a go. We chose to do a relatively small 10' x 2' area that we'll frame with 2x10s to give it the slightly raised border. We know this is a temporary garden until we completely redo the back in several years, so I'm not too concerned with using regular 2x material.
So yesterday I started pulling up bricks and getting the area ready for the garden wall and dirt. And, as usual, I made a mess that looks far worse in the "during" phase of the project. I could sense Wendy's blood pressure rising the messier it looked.
By the end of the day I had the area cleared of bricks, a few major roots out of the way, the borders of the raised bed established, and an audience to witness my efforts.
Hopefully we can get the border completed and painted in the next day or two so we can move ahead with planting by next weekend. We're also working to make the garden organic, so we're researching how and what to use for soil, fertilizer, and pest control. After talking to a co-worker I ordered a book from Amazon about "Square Foot Gardening." And, on the advice of my parents, I ordered some worm castings (poop) that we will use as fertilizer. I'm hopeful that the root structure of the tree doesn't make it impossible to grow things here.
We've picked up a small variety of plants, including broccoli, eggplant, kale, lettuce, spinach, beets and onions. Plus we'll include chives and lavender for a pop of color, and a whole slew of herbs.
Does anyone else have any experience in this department? It seems like our whole backyard is filled with a blanket of roots from this tree. Should we dig them up or just plant on top of them? Does anyone have any backyard projects of their own to share? More details on our progress to come, and in the meantime, happy gardening!