If you follow me on instagram (@lifewithelizabethwitt_), you know I talked basically nonstop about our garden. I had never curated or tended to a garden in my life, so with little experience me and my husband decided to learn as we go. Or better yet, learn as we grow *cheesy laughter*.
I would say overall, we had a very successful garden with a bountiful harvest. However there are a few things we want to change for next year’s garden.
So, first let’s talk about what we did this year.
What We Did
- A simple rectangle layout with railroad ties as a border
- soil from our property absent of fertilizer at first
- a lot of discing and a lot of sifting for rocks
- Marigolds to ward off insects
- 6 zucchini and 6 squash plants
- 6 tomatoes plants
- 1 cherry tomato plant
- 1 bell pepper plant
- 1 jalapeño plant
- 4 cucumber plants
- 5 broccoli plants
- 4 green leaf lettuce plants
- 2 red leaf lettuce plants
- 4 okra plants
What We Would Change
- The shape
- While the rectangle shape is fitting for a smaller garden, we want a “U” shape with rocks filling the center. This will make access to each plant easier reducing the need to dig around..meaning less change of being bit by a snake.
- The size
- While this year’s size was manageable, I don’t think we need 6 of each plant. Which brings me to my next point.
- The amount of plants
- WE PLANTED WAY TOO MANY ZUCCHINI AND SQUASH PLANTS. Those types of plants are the gift that keeps on giving and I was desperate to get them off my hands. Next year, we will only plant 2 of each and call it good. However, the amount of tomato plants was perfect. We harvested just enough to be able to make spaghetti sauce and salsa to keep for winter.
- More insect repellents
- We used marigolds but next year we will double the amount and maybe add some ladybugs.
- Take more time to prepare the soil before hand
- Soooo, we kinda rushed through this step. While we took the time to plow twice an throw out rocks as we went, the weeds got away from us one too many times. Next year we plan to prep the soil for 1-2 weeks prior to planting
- Add a small herb garden to the back porch
- Move the cherry tomato plant to the back porch.
- We love cherry tomatoes on salad and breakfast plates so I want to be able to just pop outside and grab some.
What We Will Keep the Same
- The types of plants
- The only thing I think we will add to our garden next year is little red potatoes. My dad shares stories of his grandmother keeping potatoes on a wire rack all winter. I would imagine this will benefit us greatly as we love oven-roasted potatoes.
All in all, we loved the experience of fresh food and growing our own garden. There were many days I looked forward to getting home and spending time in the tranquility of nature while preparing nutrients for our bodies. There is nothing like the taste of fresh veggies free of any preservative washes or sprays. This was a great and free way to spend quality time with my husband. We found ourselves deep in conversation many times whilst de-weeding and pickin’ veggies.