Ma and I have been hard at work around the farm getting things ready for the upcoming growing season. I found an ad from a friend on facebook that had these lick tubs for sale for $5 each. They will serve as a good part of our water catchment until we get something a little more permanent and then we can use them for tree planters and who knows what else. Maybe a water feature in the food forest. Hey, that’s an idea!
I have been so stir crazy with the spring taking its time getting here that just about every waking minute is spent thinking about permaculture, thinking about all the fruit trees and berry bushes and garden veggies that I have to plant that it’s just about to make me go crazy. But today at lunch I remembered a project that we talked about, and actually started, before we were plunged in to the Continue reading
Sorry that it’s been so long since I posted last but this is the busy time of year for being in the garden and making the magic happen. As far as that goes, the sheet mulching that we did is working like a champ the garden is not doing so well and I think it has to to with the soil that I used when I planted. In combination with the soil I mixed up and used we have also had a really sort of wet chilly spring. Now, I’m not griping after the last 3 years we welcomed the cooler temps and moisture. Anyhow this post is going to illustrate how I plan to remedy my soil woes by making the most kick ass 18 day compost in the manner that Geoff Lawton teaches on his Permaculture Soils DVD.
How you gonna plant in amongst all that straw? What’s all that straw for anyway? Kick back a minute and I’ll tell you all about it. Ok, if you have been following our blog so far you’ll know that under all that straw there is a nice thick portion of newspaper and under that is a whole bunch of beneficial soil organisms. If you didn’t know that then you might want to go back and check out our previous post. (Breaking of Tradition – Soil of Life)
Last year we planted our first ever in ground garden. Prior to that, I had only grown “purties”. We were lucky enough to have a friend come over on his big ole tractor and till our garden spot for us in no time flat. We were so proud of the results, while the soil was rocky (a trait common here in northeast Oklahoma) it looked good and was nice and fluffy. We planted our seedlings and seeds in the traditional manner with anticipation of the bountiful crops we were going to reap. Despite our attempts at irrigation (we set up a t-post sprinkler system), the soil became rock hard, and the water seemed to just roll off and right out of the area. The drought and over 40 days of 100+ temperatures did us in. I think we harvested 2 pounds of green beans, 3 peppers and 1 head of broccoli total. In short, the entire thing was a complete failure. We wanted to feel more secure about our future food security and health. We decided it was about time to begin researching alternative gardening methods that required less water, promoted soil building, and would demand less overall maintenance than the traditional gardening methods we had been taught all of our lives. It was time to break the tradition. Time to stop destroying the soil by digging and plowing and turning it over. We discovered Jack Spirko, and The Survival Podcast as well as Geoff Lawton, and his teachings on permaculture. We had found our inspiration, and determined that we will have a sustainable garden in the end. Thus began the months of planning and preparation for our Kitchen Garden.