I've been gardening for little over a decade and every year I learn something new and I come across something (often some things) that I would do differently.
This year, I am gardening in a new place. While I watched the sun over the 9 months we were here before I started planting, and while I thought through the irrigation layout, there is still a lot I'd like to do over.
1) The Peas. It is time for me to finally work out my peas situation. The cool, wrought iron "vanity cages" just are not cutting it. Exhibit A - the teetering trellis full of peas at the end of pea season. Next year, I will invest in a trellis more worthy of my exploding and delicious peas.
You can just barely see the top of the tipping trellis (in front of red coop).
2) The Tomatoes. Speaking of cages, these pretty vanity cages cannot begin to contain my bursting tomato plants. And neither can the sassy colored tomato cages the sell at the garden stores these days. You cannot even see the nice orange colored ones in there. Frankly, even the old school tomato cages are outdone. I'm thinking one of those heavy duty cages for next year but I've also seen people trellis and the like. How do you contain your tomato plants? Do you ever trim them?
Yes, those are tomatoes leaning out of the beds and touching the ground.
3) Lettuce. Let us think of a better way to grow my lettuce. This year, I tucked it in between the three cages of peas. It looked great and the peas gave the lettuce plenty of shade to prevent it from bolting. Too much shade as it turned out because the peas soon overwhelmed the lettuce such that I couldn't reach the leaves to harvest and the sun couldn't reach the leaves to keep them a healthy green. The lettuce died an untimely death after that.
4) The Pumpkins. What pumpkins? That is my point. I'd once read of a citrus guild that contained pumpkins. It seemed a brilliant idea. Plus, I'd envisioned a swelling pumpkin patch at the front of my garden ever since we bought the house. Never mind that the area didn't get quite enough shade. Never mind that I decided to plant a whole meadow of ginormous wildflowers and sunflowers at the front of the bed, thereby exterminating whatever sunlight there might otherwise have sifted through. Next year, my pumpkins will be strewn in truly sunny patches throughout the yard - or, at the very least in the front of the bed.
The tiny, non-blooming pumpkin plants are in the back. You know, behind all the cosmos and sunflowers!
5) The Irrigation. It is always a good idea to water what you are trying to grow. Gardening 101. This year, after going around and around with the guy who put in my irrigation, I let myself be talked out of micro-sprinklers that are close to the ground and can be moved, turned on and off as needed. Oh no, I let myself be convinced that sprinklers on the outer edges of the beds were the way to go. That way, when plants grew in front of them, the plants could block all the water and prevent it from getting to the pesky competitors behind them.
Ah well, fool me once shame on me. But, mother nature, there is no fooling me twice! (Well, there might be but we won't talk about that). Anyway, I'll be getting a do-over on this garden . . . next year.
*I'm linking to the Tuesday Garden Party, Garden Tuesday and Harvest Monday.
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