Friday, February 05, 2010

Lessons from Venus and Mars

Did you ever stop to think that men are from Mars and women are from Venus starts before marriage? I didn't. Not sure why but I just didn't. Today was proof that my theory is waaaay off base. Earlier both kids ended up in trouble and had to apologize to each other for what they did. Afterwards Judah decided to go to his man cave for a "private moment". Rebekah decided she wanted to go in after him and fix things. Judah told her to get out and leave him alone he needed some "time alone". Her response was to curl up on the couch, bury her head under the pillow and start crying b/c Judah was shutting her out when all she wanted to do was be with him. After I got done laughing I left them alone for a few minutes.

Later I talked with Rebekah about what was wrong. She was crying b/c Judah was taking to long in his "private moment" and she wanted to talk and play. I then went to Judah who was ready to come out of his cave. I explained how hurt Rebekah was b/c he'd stayed to long in his private time. His respons was "I know mom I could hear her crying through the wall. I found a card she wrote me saying we are best friends forever." Me: "Yes son, that's right she is your sister and will be the best friend you have outside of your wife. Maybe you should be easy on her when she's hurting so much. She only wants to be with you b/c she loves you." I convince him to come back out only to see Rebekah's response. Judah comes out and she turns AWAY from him refusing to speak when he speaks. Rebekah is not willing to let it go until she tells Judah how she was feeling. Man I thought only WOMEN did that not my 4yr old girl. She seriously has it out with him complete with explaining what he did and how it made her feel. After he acknowledged her feelings she immediately (and I mean immediately) brightened up and said "Okay let's play". Below is a card that Judah made for her to "make her feel better, mommy" and a picture showing him reading a book to her. All is well for Mars and Venus. Hopefully their future spouses will thank me for teaching them how to make ammends and how to work their Mars and Venus problems out. LOL

Letter says "I love you Rebekah you are my best friend. You will be my sister forever. I love you. The best person in the hole world."

Isn't that so sweet?

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Planting schedule for 2010 Garden

So many have asked what my planting schedule will be. Below is what I'm planting and when. Hudson's Hardware in Clayton puts out an annual planting schedule for free. I've used that as a guide and just gage the weather from there.
Box 1
2/1 Carrots (seeds) = Matures 4/16
2/1 Spinach (seeds or plants) = Matures 3/17
2/15 Lettuce (plants) = Matures 4/1
Summer crop in this box is/are
5/1 Okra (plants) = Matures 6/19 grows through mid Oct
May add cucumbers or more bell peppers here

Box 2 (box on the LEFT)
2/1 Spinach (seeds or plants) = Mature 3/17
2/1 Sugar Snap Peas (seeds) = Matures 4/6 grows through June
2/15 Lettuce (plants) = Matures 4/1
Summer crop in this box is/are
5/1 Red/Yellow/Green Bell Peppers (plants) = Matures 7/14 grows through November.

Box 3
Summer crop only
4/10 Tomatoes (plants) = Matures 6/24 grows through November
2 plants of cherry
2 plants of grape/roma
2 plants of big boy
***Note - tomatoes cannot grow in the same place twice. You'll need to rotate every 3rd year. Also tomatoes in manure need 8ft stakes.

Front Flowerbed
4/15 Squash (plants) = Matures 6/15 grows through August
4/15 Squash (plants) = Matures 6/15 grows through August
Fall crop will be
7/1 Cauliflower (plants) = Matures 8/24
7/15 Broccoli (plants) = Matures 9/23

Side Flowerbed
2/15 Broccoli (plants) = Matures 4/26
3/1 Cauliflower (plants) = Matures 4/26
Summer crops are
5/1 Jalapenos (plants) = Matures 7/14 grows November
5/1 Eggplant (plants) = Matures 7/19

We are planning to build 1 or 2 4x4 boxes which will hold the following:
4/20 Cucumbers (plants) = Matures 6/14 grows through at least July
4/20 Pickling Cucumbers (plants) = Matures 6/14 grows through at least July
*** Cucumbers require a tall trellis to grow on.

How to start a box garden in Johnston Co

I've had several questions on how we got started in our gardening and what steps to take. I'll try to answer all the questions so ask away.

Why a raised bed? According to local farmers Jo Co soil is NOT the best quality for producing high quality crops. So we were told to build a raised bed and truck in our soil.

How do you make a raised bed? The dimensions for the bed are 8 long X 4 wide. We bought our wood at Lowes which costs about $50 per box (you'll use less wood if you are not on a slope). You need to be able to move around all sides of the bed and reach into the center of it. Making it too WIDE means you can't prune in the center, which is really important.
In designing the garden we staked out the bigger picture of the whole garden then each year we add 1 or 2 boxes to increase it in size. In constructing the box use wood and rope to make the box square. Then put the posts in the ground first. We add 1 post at a time and regularly check it with the wood to make sure it never loses it's shape. Hint: buying a post level really helps this process.

How deep/tall is the bed? I don't like to bend over too much so we made our beds a little taller in height than most people. Our land slopes so Paul had to take that into consideration as well. In most of our beds 1 side is a lot taller than the other. That's fine with me, the height is perfect for me to sit on a bucket and prune. The only down side is you'll pay more in dirt to fill it up. Still it's worked out great. You need to determine how much/little you want to bend over and then start with that as the tallest piece of wood.

Where do you get the dirt and how much is it? We ONLY use full compost or turkey manure. Paul has a truck which we take to Triangle Landscape Supply and fill it up for about $25 which is 1/2 ton load. It takes 2 1/2 truck loads for a boxe b/c we are on a slope and I prefer taller beds. That may not be the case for your yard.

We are planning to add 1 to 2 more boxes this month and I'll try to remember to take pictures for the blog. The new boxes will be 4X4 to connect the 2 previous rows together. Box 1 will be connected to Box 2 and 3. BTW if you are looking for a spring crop then you need to start making boxes in February as planting for crops starts February 1.