Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Today, I went to the Microfarm to start my beds. There is a lot of loose turf in my area, but it proved to be fairly easy to pull up, especially in the area just south of the raspberries. I cleared a good 3’ by 5’ area, amended it with compost, and planted lettuce starts and a lemon cucumber start that I got from SU Grounds, and a bunch of seeds that will grow lettuce, radishes, spinach (it’s a little late, but I’m willing to give it a try), chard, carrots, beets, and squash. My education at Tilth tells me I should get a soil test to know what kinds of fertilizing I should do, but Eric and Alice assured me that the soil was great, and I don’t want to sneak around and doubt them. So I will wait until Fall, which is the best time to soil test anyway.

Working in the garden felt so good – it’s something I’ve been really wanting to do, ever since I began my food education. Katie, from Tilth, told me that there are bacteria in soil that work similarly to antidepressants, as is addressed in this article from Medical News Today. That might also add to why I am feeling so good after a day of digging in the dirt.

This is the work I did today. You can see that I started a bit of a bed to the right of the cloche, but ended up working mostly in front of the raspberries. The soil was easier to work with, and that was where I planted. I covered the planted-in area with remay, to keep weeds down a little, to make it harder for insects to get in (although the slugs certainly aren't hampered by it), and to keep water from evaporating so quickly. The lump you can see is a plastic bottle with its bottom cut out and its top off. It's acting as a mini-cloche over my lemon cucumber.

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