Monday, April 9, 2012

Garden Journal

I've been on Spring Break this week and accomplishing a lot in the yard. 

I started seeds for the first time. I've experimented around with where to keep them and have settled on our covered back porch. 

I marked off what I call my "covered wagon" bed for square foot gardening.  I haven't ever gardened this way and am anxious to learn from it.  I anticipate adapting it to my preferences over the years, but thought it would be a good idea to to begin by spacing the bed out to be most effective. I can change as I go along. When the weather warms, I can remove the piping for taller crops.  We had a good frost last night, so I'm glad I have prepared to cover what is growing.  So far I think it is much easier that the large row garden I kept up the past few years.

  I was careful to document what I planted in each square.
This bed has lettuce, spinach, kale, collards, carrots, and radishes.

I built two of these raised beds and have plans to build more throughout the year.  I will have to get at least one more built before I can plant all the seedlings.

I am still utilizing old parts of my garden for larger crops.  I planted a row of sugar snap peas.  I've never grown peas before and am anxious to see how it goes. 

In the immediate future is the clearing out of this bed....

Hidden under all these weeds are two peonies, spearmint (which is taking over), an heirloom rosebush that is completely out of control, and a grape vine that is in the wrong place in our big plan.  This year, I'll clean it up. 
 Eventually, this is where I want to place an elevated rain barrel system to catch the water off the garage roof to take it straight to the garden. We had lots of rain the past few years, but drought years aren't uncommon and this system would keep me from dragging a hose over a hundred feet during those times. I don't have any thoughts of getting to that project until next year, but it's good to have a plan.

I worked on our overall backyard homestead plans this week and feel good about them. With all the tree removal we've had to do this year, we want a solid plan in place before we start replanting.  Trees are not something that can be easily relocated.  I'll finish up the plans and post those next week.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

40 Bags in 40 Days

Lord Jesus, You are calling me to strip myself of all my self-seeking ways, and my inordinate attachment to wealth, fame and name.  Lord, make me understand that what really matters is not the possessions and positions I hold, but a life centered on You.

                                                                                                      taken from the Tenth Station....

Tuesday I finished filling my forty bags.  For the past forty days as I've spent precious time cleaning our home of unnecessary clutter, I've had a lot of mental time to reflect on how "things" have come to dominate our lives so much. 
I've been working on simplifying my life for several years, so as I filled that last bag, the sense of completion was lacking.  The fortieth bag wasn't the end. There are still large areas of our home that have gone untouched.  The difference between these forty bags and the previous simplifying I've done is the complete emptying of that which is not important. 

 Some bags were so easy to fill......others were hard. 
Letting go is matter what you are letting go. 
 This emptying opens up space for important things.

It has been a very good thing.