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Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Rounding into Shape

Oh me! Oh my!

Why hasn't gardening ever been mentioned in a weight loss or weight management campaign? The work you put into it has got to burn some real calories and then the food you harvest from it, is some of the healthiest food you can eat.

After our sons' soccer games, we spent the remainder of the afternoon working on the garden. This weekend we were clearing bed 3, 6, 9, and 12 of the fall planted brassicas (and weeds). We then prepared those same beds for planting our curcubits. These beds already had amended soil from our fall planting; so they aren't rock hard clay. We just added some alfalfa pellets, cleared the bed of all weeds and roots, and raked the soil smooth. This is what Bed 11 looked like after clearing; it will be the sweet potato bed this spring (Those are bags of leaves stacked behind it):

This year I am trying a new tactic. I am leaving the soil bare for the first two weeks. This will allow me to pull any newly emerged weeds just as they pop out of the ground. Hopefully that will help me win the long term fight against the weeds. After two weeks (or so), I mulch the soil with leaves. Mulch makes a huge difference in keeping the ground nice and moist. The uncovered ground develops a hard crust even though the soil is still moist about 1/2" down.

I also planted Bed 3 with summer squash. I planted them in peat moss filled toilet tissue rolls cut in half. This helps me know exactly where I planted the seed so that I won't pull it up when I weed.

I am not sure that I should have planted anymore yellow squash, because we still have a few frozen bags from last year. But I guess I could always give it away if I want and I only planted two this year instead of six. I did plant 3 zucchini seeds - which is much more versatile than yellow squash and 3 patty pan - which I have never actually eaten, so we'll see.

I hope to have the garden ready for a full tour by the end of the week; so stay tuned.

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