Food not lawns...Are you planting a garden this year?
There is nothing better than a freshly picked vegetable from your own yard. lanting and growing your own food is the easiest, healthiest thing to do. Anybody here into seed saving? (The whole history of that and how Corporations tried to suppress it is a thread unto itself.)
We created two new beds in our front yard solely for the sake of veggies, herbs and edible flowers. We will install two decorative trellises for tomatoes and pole beans. In front of this will be our herb bushes, lavender, rosemary, dill, and cilantro. At the base we will lay out a pattern of kale, spinach, mustard greens, beets. For spots of color we're got edible flowers, and Marigold (to keep the bugs out)
Quite a few of our neighbors were surprised to find out it wouldn't be some silly bed of decorative annuals.
I the backyard, we have our older raised bed in the very back but we opened up two other spots in the yard this year. Basically any place we have sun we will be growing food.
There also a certain satisfaction in the fact that your saving $$$$ and getting a load of carrots, tomatoes, lettuce, etc all from a few cents worth of seeds.
I can't afford a fence. There are rabbits, groundhogs, foxes, possums, raccoons, deer and hungry birds out here. I have the misfortune of being located in an area that has become a summer home for the mega wealthy, so everything costs 5x what it costs elsewhere. I have serious neck and back injuries from my career as a nurse and can't afford to buy a fence and hire someone to put it up. If I could, I would grow vegetables. As it is, I sprinkle sunflower and cosmos seeds around and can use a riding mower to keep the grass cut.
And I hate tomatoes, so I won't be growing them on my back porch In a container.
Enjoy your garden, OP.
I'm not a fellow vegetable grower, however. For me, it's too much a bother to fuss over vegetables when there are other people who will supply them when and in the quantities I need. I don't suffer the notion that the fruits of my labor taste sweeter: well selected, other people's vegetables taste every bit as good as mine. More importantly, they leave my garden for the less labor-intensive cultivation of green lawns and trees and boxwood and shrubs and ferns and a few areas of perennials. As close as I come to vegetable gardening is keeping a few herbs: rosemary, basil, thyme.
You can container grow many things now - there are many recently developed varieties available. Off the top of my head I remember seeing cucumbers, carrots, and beets for containers in my seed catalogs this spring. Peppers and radishes play well with containers, too.
Lettuce and spinach are also easily container grown, you don't harvest the whole plants, just pull off leaves as needed for a nice salad.
You can also grow many herbs deer will not eat. I have tons of deer, rabbits, woodchucks, and assorted other critters, and nothing has ever munched on my massive mint patch.
Raccoons can climb steps and demolish a container garden.
Yesterday I found raccoon poop on my pool cover. My pool is surrounded by a fenced deck that is a few feet off the ground.
I have to remember to buy some blood meal this weekend to protect my emerging dwarf lilies before the rabbits get them.
I'm surrounded by organic farms. They just planted potatoes across the street.
Mint is about the only thing deer won't eat.
Garden in the front yard?
I'd grow a garden, simply because I like fresh veggies not covered in pesticides. Fresh home grown tomatoes are divine.
R6, mint and ROSEMARY. Everything else seems to be fair game to deer.
I grow herbs and some vegetables (mainly tomatoes, cucumbers and lettuce) in containers because having a ground garden is a losing battle with the critters. The final straw was after I put up labor intensive and expensive deer fencing a squirrel hung himself in it.
There are tons of farmers markets, farms and farm stands. I am also thinking of joining a co-op this year and have vegetables, meat and dairy delivered.
r3: I want to start a band called "My Massive Mint Patch" now.
I have decided this year to only grow herbs. Last year I tried potatoes, onions, garlic, green beans and lettuce. No luck at all. I was attempting to grown them in containers on my westward facing deck.
I've always grown herbs and know how to grow them and what to expect.
I will toss out some poppy seeds and sunflower seeds out back somewhere.
I do love to plant tulips though and Jon helps me plant them every year. He hates doing any other sort of gardening or yard work.
The front yard has two big maple trees that I think need to come down, if they do I want to do some sort of xeriscape so there is no mowing to be done. My mom said I should resod the front yard. We hae a lawn service that mows for us, so that may be an option.
Last summer here in Kansas City was BRUTAL on anything that was planted in the ground I lost several azaleas.
Right now I have Rosemary, thymne, and sage that I bought during a fundraiser to help a dog rescue group. I will get basil, chives, etc. when the threat of frost is finally out of the forecast.
FYI: Don't use garden soil in your container garden, use potting mix. I made this mistake last year and used garden soil because I thought "dirt is dirt" - it isn't.
I have grand designs in my head about doing some beautiful native garden way out in the back yard...the same plan I've had for six years. I don't know if this will be the year I finally do it or not.
If you are in the Kansas City area this Saturday the Wornall House is having their annual herb and wild flower sale.
I usually have an herb garden and tomatoes at a minimum. I have a huge backyard with a large area for a vegetable garden.
This year my allergies have knocked me on my ass and I haven't been able to even start with cleaning up the yard.
I like the idea in theory, but having gardens is A LOT of work. Not only that, you have an abundance of veggies all at once. I only eat one head of lettuce a week. I don't need fifty of them.
OP, do you can and freeze? Certain vegs are better for preserving than others. If you are able to enjoy the fruits of your labor all year then I guess it could be worth it.
I tend to agree with R2, though. There are farmer's markets all around me, so I let the experts do what they do best and I pay them for what I need, in exactly the quantity I want, and only when I need it.
I feel the same way about landscaping, housekeeping, cooking and baking. I'm happy to pay someone else to do all those things. They do it better than me anyway and I have more time to hang out here and gossip.
For 2 weeks been picking fistfulls of asparagus (Jersey Knight, Mary Washington & Purple passion, bed planted about 10 years ago). Broccoli just starting to come in. Spring onions and lettuce completes the Spring garden, planted around March 15. Under lights, 15 kinds peppers, "Sweet aroma" tomato (a winner last year) Dill, Parsley, Basil, Chives and catnip. (They say you can smoke it, we'll see). Tons of annuals and perennials under lights as well. Canned tomatoes and froze squash and snap peas last year. The squash last month tasted like fresh-picked. Unrelated, also a freezer full of crab meat from last year's crabbing, crab cakes every week during Winter.
I only have a postage-stamp yard, and mostly shady at that, but I plant a mini-jungle's worth of vegetables in one little corner. We still have to go to the farmer's market every week, but it's just so satisfying also growing what you can. I wish I had more space. No community gardens around here, and the nature-hating HOA won't allow front-yard vegetable gardens.
I'm tempted to put a vegetable patch in my front yard, simply because my back yard is in perpetual shade. It seems odd, but I've seen a few front yard vegetable gardens that are designed to be visually attractive.
[quote] and the nature-hating HOA won't allow front-yard vegetable gardens.
On the contrary, they are aesthetes. Front yard vegetable gardens only lead to sofas on front porches and upholstered furniture littering what should be lawns.
Corn, onions, potatoes, and okra.
Have never had much luck with tomatoes, peas, or beans so I won't devote garden space to these this year.
No chili peppers -- too many peppers last year! Dried most in a food dehydrator, made sauce with the others. Plenty of both left.
Tilled and amended my dirt on Tuesday.
Ready to plant!
"Anybody here into seed saving?"
I've posted this on craigslist several times, but I don't get the responses I'm looking for.
onions, peppers of three types, tomatoes, cucumbers, three types of squash.
and roses and marigolds.
I had fresh kale from my garden for lunch today. I don't like it but am going to eat it.
My chard is large enough to pick a few leaves for salad. Chard is my main summer crop, always tasty, easy to grow and maintain. Lasts all growing season, can even winter over.
I put out 6 tomato plants. Golden cherry,two beefsteak and several bush tomatoes . I have two types of cucumbers, one is the heirloom lemon cucumbers. I grow various kinds of green or snap beans. My favorites are the purple ones that turn green when cooked. I may plant some corn mostly for fun and grow beets for the greens. Beet greens are the best.
That is all I am growing this year. Trying to limit the work. I hate to let food go to waste so when I have more than I can eat, my neighbors get some, people I don't even know get some. I take up to the senior center for their use or the visitors there can take home.
I've hired "Scott" is my redhaired garden boy.
He keeps on saying "Feed it!" and I intend to.
During WW2 many grew victory gardens in their front yard because it was the only place they had room. I lived in Virginia and found vegetable gardens frequently in the front yards.
You can also grow lots of things in pots. I grow beans, tomatoes, cucumbers and squash in containers.
What is the purpose of the raised garden?
[quote]The final straw was after I put up labor intensive and expensive deer fencing a squirrel hung himself in it.
Oh no! Did he leave a note? Did he have a family?
[quote]What is the purpose of the raised garden?
A raised garden solves the problem of lead poisoned ground. Digging in contaminated soil kicks lead back up to the surface.
Also,raised beds are easier to maintain since you don't have to bend to the ground when weeding or planting.
Raised beds also offer plants protection from smaller dogs.
Rabbits, squirrels, possums coons - that IS food. No need to garden!
Yup r7, front yard garden. Thankfully we dont' live in a closed-minded community. several of our neighbors were surprised by the idea but then said they might try it too. Simply because most of us have more sun in the front than back.
It's a real community builder, actually. Neighbors stop to talk to you. You get tips and ideas and they go home and start one of their own.
We will be using the rabbit meal. I hate the idea of scattering ground up dead animals in my yard but it's worked well for warding off all kinds of creatures including cats, rabbits & squirrels. I'm a little worried about the occasional stray dog. I'll have to prepare my partner not to have a melt down when some of the beds get a little dug up.
We're doing a no-till method.
Layering the ground with wet newspapers, cover with dried leaves, then compost and top soil. This smothers the grass and keeps the undersoil intact as well as all the good things in it like earthworms. It also gives us a purpose for the leaves we have piled up.
I've been reading about how big corporations made it much harder to get seeds out of our vegetables. They produce hybrids that don't seed as well- which keeps people going back to the store to buy more for the next season.
Think about it. Food literally grows from the ground, but the majority of us who have the space and physical health to grow out own, still rely on Corporations to feed us. Why?
The loss of gardening and farming knowledge is one of the biggest shams of any civilized country.
[quote] I'm a little worried about the occasional stray dog. I'll have to prepare my partner not to have a melt down when some of the beds get a little dug up
I'd be more upset about my food being pissed on.
The loss of gardening and farming knowledge is one of the biggest shams of any civilized country.
A vital point is made here.
[quote]I'd be more upset about my food being pissed on.
Yeah, we wash our vegetables before we eat them. No matter where it comes from.
A garden in the front yard? I never thought I would say this, but thank fuck for HOAs
I try my laundry from the halyard of the flagpole in my front yard.
Fuck the HOA.
R36 - luckily ours has quite a bit of power and we require all homes to have utilities. No flag pole laundry drying here.
C'mon R36, your trailer park doesn't have an HOA. You have to have "home owners" to have an HOA. Rented tin cans don't count.
FFS. Please. Mary @ r35. A well-tended garden is no less aesthetically pleasing that someone's god awful shrubbery.
HOA are 90% bullshit. I'm glad I dont' live on a street where the only paint colors allowed are are beige, taupe and beige-taupe.
My mother had flower beds all around the house. She grew her vegetables among the flowers. Life should not be so limiting. Pity the fool as Mr. T says.
R39 I agree completely which is why we require brick or stone facia only trim work can be painted
Even the best five season flower gardens look like shit after October (Northern climate).
There's no reason you shouldn't be able to cultivate vegetables in your front yard.
Turf is a complete waste of resources. Someday I hope we all grow marijuana and tomato plants out front - with plenty of irises, peonies, and rhododendrons.
An turf is a waste of water resources as well.
Water Runoff is a huge problem in the cities.
Get a rain barrel. Cut your water bills in half.
Grass is the most prevalent weed in America.
Tear that shit up and plant some butterfly weed and milkweed. Butterflies are free goddamnit!!!
Good suggestion r44. Monarchs NEED milkweed for their migration and now than ever too . There's been a huge decline in their natural resting spots across the country.
[quote]Monarch butterflies feed and lay their eggs exclusively on milkweed plants, and milkweed plants are often destroyed when humans cut down natural areas to build on top of them. Milkweed is especially prevalent in Illinois and the rest of the Midwest.