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cover and garlic

So, I didn’t kill those cucumber seedlings. One of them had kind of a bent stem, but I piled soil around it and it seems to be doing ok. I was nervous about them! But, they totally proved me wrong and started growing new leaves right after being transplanted. Turns out they’re quite resilient. They’ve even sprouted new leaves.



The pumpkins have come up quickly and started to do the same.

The peppers finally came up.


I was worried that the one Pinterest garden thing I did wasn’t going to pan out. I mean, I didn’t have high hopes for planting in toilet paper tubes, but I figured I’d give it a shot. I liked the idea of planting the whole thing, instead of fighting to get a plant out of a container.

I haven’t done much research on how big any of the seedlings have to be before they’re planted, but the magic “garden-planting time” of May Long Weekend is this weekend, and temperatures look like they’re staying above freezing now, so maybe some things can make their way outside next Monday, and some seeds can be planted as well.


This was my garden on April 24. It still had snow on it, and it still had some weeds/plants in the back from last year because the snow came so early AND DID NOT LEAVE and therefore I did not have a chance to clear it out. I spent quite a few hours clearing it out on the third, when the snow was finally gone.

many hours later, the garden is ready for tilling

Our landlord tilled it for me on Saturday, and yesterday and today I put the cover back on. The grass and leaves and such. According to Back to Eden method, the cover is supposed to stay on and never be removed and the ground is never to be tilled, but since the soil got all hilly and uneven from last year, I wanted it evened out. I know I’ll keep learning year after year, and I’m hoping that this fall I’ll get things cleared out on time, and plan not to till next spring.

I only had enough cover left for about a quarter of the garden (I got rid of the back half because of the weeds, and when I raked what remained back on it only went so far), so I used the leaves and grass Noah had raked up from the back yard the other day, then went and raked the front yard till I had enough to cover half the garden. I put the older cover (that has been broken down) on the part of the garden where smaller plants will be (carrots, lettuce, onions) and the newer cover (that has larger pieces) where the larger plants will be (potatoes, corn, pumpkins).

green lines

I’ve mentioned before that I’m using both the Back to Eden method and the Square-Foot method, since they did so well for me last year. We don’t own our property, so I can’t go all the way with the square-foot stuff, so I jimmy-rig it a bit. Instead of building raised beds, I just measure out the four-foot squares, and the foot-width paths between them, with green garden twine. It works just fine.

I only measured off the front half of the garden, as I want to get cover down before I measure out the back half.

Kaylie has been begging to plant something, so we planted some garlic today. It probably should have been planted a bit ago, but since the snow lasted for eight hundred years, it hasn’t really been possible. The stuff we planted was spring-specific, so hopefully it’ll be ok.

garlic covering

garlic nines

garlic instruction

Garlic has a nine-per-square-foot spacing. We measured out two square feet (we had 18 seeds) and Kaylie planted the seeds.

water girl

We spent a lot of time outside today, and my fairest child got a bit of a burn on her neck. I’m obviously not used to this summer thing yet, but I blame that on the fact that it was winter two weeks ago and somehow we completely skipped spring.

It was so warm today that all four kids were in the (teeny tiny) pool and were running through the sprinkler while I spread cover on the garden. I could do days like this every day. Lots of outdoor time, and no driving.

It was fun, too, to teach Kaylie a bit about planting. I hope she develops a love of gardening that seems to run in my family. I’m already looking forward to the weekend, and all the planting that will (hopefully) happen.

Two square feet down, 284 to go.

Categories: the garden project

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • pappa Tuesday, May 14, 2013, 10:49 pm

    Pretty cool!

  • Kristin Wednesday, May 15, 2013, 5:25 am

    I enjoyed watching your garden grow last year, I hope this year is a success for you again!

  • Angella Wednesday, May 15, 2013, 8:09 am

    Hooray! Matthew planted our garden last weekend and I can’t wait for everything to GROW.

  • Sarah Thursday, May 23, 2013, 3:05 am

    In my experience pumpkins and cucumbers are so much fun to grow, because they just take off – and then take over the world!

    • jen Thursday, May 23, 2013, 8:51 am

      OH MY WORD. My pumpkins took over my whole garden last year!!!