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Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Garden Thoughts

Well, the days are getting slightly longer now and this is normally the time that I start getting the gardening bug. I’ve recently started to flip through the seed catalogs and plan what veggies will be going in my garden this year. I normally plant the same vegetables every year, just different varieties. Its also a good time to sketch out where to plant what. I do this each year so I don’t plant the same type of vegetable in the same spot as I did last year. As most gardeners are aware, rotating your crops each year is important.
Rotating your crops helps in the prevention of pathogen build up in the soil. Keep in mind family relationships; like peppers, potatoes and tomatoes are all in the same family so don’t replace one with another. Instead plant sweet corn where you had tomatoes, beans where you had squash, tomatoes where the beans were, etc.
… and speaking of tomatoes, I especially enjoy growing the roma varieties. One particular variety that I tried and really liked last year was the ‘Golden Rave Hybrid’. They are golden in color when ripe and very sweet. They are also very disease-resistant. I recommend them to anyone looking for a good roma (paste) type tomato to plant. I will be growing it again this year!

Here are a couple of pics from my ’07 garden:





2 comments:

Julie Zickefoose said...

That is a garden to drool over, Alan! Have you got that awful red Richmond clay to deal with? Composting?
(I cut my gardening teeth on that stuff and used oak leaf compost to cut it).
Just visited our old house (virtually, that is), at Zillow.com. Try it: punch in an address and you can see aerial photos of your neighborhood. Was devastated to find the newer owners of 8508 Academy Road have paved the entire grounds. Paved it. And the forest where I learned to watch birds was flattened by the most recent hurricane. It's all simply...gone.

Alan said...

Hey Julie, thanks for stopping by!

I don’t have much red clay here. Further North (towards Richmond) is where it really gets bad – as you know. The land I live on now was once farm land, back about 5 years ago, so the soil is mostly made up of top soil and sand. The sandy soil makes for great drainage but does dry out quick. I’m slowly adding compost to it each year. I keep a small compost pile in one corner of the garden; but usually I just throw the leaves and debris right on top of the garden and till it in from time to time. Also, my parents have chickens so I spread a little manure on it a couple of months before planting time.

I liked that site (zillow.com). Did you grow up in the Richmond are?