Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Incredible Hulk

This garden here is all about experimentation.  Trial and Error.  Forgive me for lack of beautiful pictures.  I need to show the reality of the matter here.  And that reality is 2 of my 4 gardens are biting the bullet as I type.  We decided to experiment on two different soils this year (actually, if I'd been patient and waited for the correct soil I wouldn't be in this predicament).  The soil on the left is called Sugar Soil, which is a mixture of shrimp heads, rice hulls, and bagasse.  You can plainly see the wonderful results of it.  My plants are growing like the Incredible Hulk.  On the right we used a local soil called Pooyie, which is advertised as compost, but come to find out (after a little too late research) it's just top soil with hay whereby a tractor rolls over it to speed up the composting process.  Huh?  Yeah, doesn't make much sense.  All of my little fellas on the right two gardens are leached of nutrients in this clay soil.  My husband doesn't recommend adding anything.  He likens it to a person on their death bed receiving cough syrup.  So I will proceed to dig up all of the soil and patiently wait for more sugar soil.  Another flop on our part was putting freshly cut bamboo poles for stakes in the garden.  We noticed our trellis looked a little dilapidated.  On closer inspection it was turning a dark brown and becoming soft.  The poles were soaking up the water from the garden!  Upon this discovery my husband states "Oh!  That's why everyone always said to dry out bamboo before using it."  Thanks honey.  But I'm not discouraged.  I've been an organic gardener for years and anyone whose gardened this way before knows the pangs of defeat in the garden, as well as the glory of victory.

On a much happier note...I succeeded in getting 3 of my children to weed around our 12 blueberry bushes.  We have clay soil so we tilled and added peat moss before planting them and then added pine mulch.  Anyway, I noticed they were crying out to be weeded and I really want the kids to help happily in the yard.  So I told them they are in charge of 2 blueberry plants each.  To include, weeding, watering, pruning and harvesting.  But they have to share the berries with the family.  I gave them the example of having a baby.  I feed it, change it's diaper, rock it to sleep, but everyone gets to play with it.  My son had tons of different color yarn out for some braiding project he made up, so I had them each grab a color and mark their plant.  They loved it!  I even had my son draw up a map of everyone's plants.  Oh, the creativity we mothers must have, huh?

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