I have been compiling a list of goals for my garden this year for the past few months. When I came up with my list, I considered what I want as my end result, and what I feel I can actually accomplish if I really work hard. When I first started to garden it was just on a whim. I had two tomato plants, a zucchini plant, and an eggplant plant. I probably didn’t give these veggies the love and attention they needed to be their best, but it gave me some pride when eating something I grew out of my garden. The next year I added more veggies to the mix and I discovered Baker’s Acres Greenhouse. Baker’s Acres opened my eyes to varieties of vegetables I had never seen or heard of before. Last year I studied their catalog and ended up with 11 different verities of tomatoes, added 32 square feet of fertile soil by building a square foot garden, and started this blog. I already can tell from the expectations that I have set for myself in this list, that this gardening season is going to be awesome.
1. Keep a gardening planner- I have created a gardening planner and have included my 2013 goals, a list of seeds I will plant, a section for transplants I will buy at local greenhouses, and a calender. My calender will be used to record what I plant and harvest each day, and to hold me accountable for when seeds need to get sown in the ground based on the last frost date. To take this even further, I have done a little research about gardening by the moon and plan to plant seeds, transplant, harvest, and weed based on my findings. To learn more about gardening by the moon, check out these web pages: Farmers’ Almanac Gardening Calendar, The Gardeners Calendar, and Organic Garden Info.
2. More documentation- This includes taking a picture of my square foot garden EVERY day, taking one picture of every plant and vegetable variety grown, making these cute plant markers to identify veggies in my garden, write blog posts at least twice a week, post what vegetables are in season every month, and share more recipes on how to use them.
3. Succession pant and pant care- This gardening season I want to make sure I do what is best for my plants to give me the best harvest. Succession planting means to follow one plant with another. This includes crop rotation and sowing seeds every few weeks so that you will always have fresh veggies like carrots, beets and radishes. I will do my best to weed and pinch suckers from my tomato plants. When you see a tomato plant sprawling it seems like the plant is doing great, but in reality, by pinching off suckers, it enables the plant to give more nutrients to the already growing fruits.
4. Share- I love growing what you can’t find at the grocery store, but sometimes it gets to be too much. I did learn last year how to can salsa and blanch tomatoes to freeze for tomato sauce, but I still had vegetables that would go to waste. There is only so much I can eat. Now that I work with a nice group of coworkers, I will be able to share my bounty with them and introduce them to varieties of vegetables they have never seen before.
5. Compost- I already wrote a post about building a compost bin for my friend Caryn’s garden, but I am ready to make one for myself. I have purchased a trash can and have bricks to set it on, and I have started to collect green material. Now I just need to drill the holes and it will be set. I’m glad the weather should be nice this weekend so I can get my compost started for next year’s garden!
What are your gardening goals for the 2013 gardening season?