So, I know that I still owe you a post about moving away from Joplin and moving to Kansas City.
And also, another post about moving from Kansas City to our new/current house (I’m not sharing our new town- but we’re still in the KC metro)
But, before I do that. Let’s talk about what is possibly the world’s largest beginner’s garden.
Last summer, (in our KC house), we (Jim) built and planted 3 raised beds. Surprisingly, we harvested a few million jalapeños, some bell peppers, a carrot, and some bitter lettuce.
One of the biggest motivations for moving out to land was the ability to 1) eliminate debt/reduce monthly expenses and 2) become more self sustaining
So, step one was to start growing some food!
While raised beds would have been ideal, ultimately they’re $$. So we planted in the ground we already had.
Turns out, our soil and drainage system in the backyard was terrible- so we’ve had to fight that, remediate it, and it took us (Jim) longer to get things planted than we wanted (hello, bitter summer lettuce again lol).
But, we also knew we wanted to attempt all of the things and learn and grow and fail as much as we could in year one, so that we can learn and grow and fail even more next year.
Some of the things we have planted:
Berries: raspberry, blueberry, strawberry
Fruit trees (that have all been drowned from the soil/drainage issue…womp womp)
We also planted a perimeter of marigolds and lavender to try and keep things away from our plants- so far we’ve only had to deal with a few hornworms….which hopefully by next year I’ll have some chickens to manage those!
That’s Midnight- one of the four cats we’ve had this year. The girls got cats last fall- Midnight & Prower. Unfortunately, Prower got hit on the road right by our house back in May. So we have since added two more kittens to the crew- Juniper & Basil.
So far, no mice problems. They’re doing their jobs!
Anyway, so as I was saying- we dug up the world’s largest garden, planted a ton of different plants. Some from seed, some seedlings, all at various stages.
We have battled a broken septic system and torrential spring rains that flooded the yard perpetually and bogged down the plants + make our soil super chalky and hard to work with.
Nevertheless, we have been able to harvest lots of green beans, bitter lettuce (as previously mentioned), jalapeños, a few peppers, a few radishes, and soon- tons of tomatoes!
The berry crop is a dud this year but they’re all still alive, so hopefully with some TLC they’ll be much more fruitful (heh) next year!
It turns out having a baby makes you a little distracted and you forget to water/weed your garden for a few days too and that doesn’t help little baby plants….but I digress
In addition to being more self sustaining, one of the biggest things we want for our kids is to get them outside as much as we possibly can.
Watching them water the plants, eat what we’ve grown, and play in the yard brings us so much joy!
There was no filter on this picture of the backyard!
Working in the yard, the day before Lochlan was born 🙂
And here is our garden as of a few nights ago!
I have nothing to really share as far as tips or things to know yet, as we have no idea what we’re doing and are learning as we go. But once I know a bit more, I’d love to share what we have done, what worked and what didn’t, and help you get going with a garden of your own at some point!
Do you have a garden this year? What have you planted? What is your favorite thing to grow? I’d love to hear in the comments!
We’re learning and succeeding and failing as well. Lettuce was a huge success and ours was Ah maze ing! Radishes did well, turnips did get very big same with our carrots. I read over fertilizing can cause the foliage to grow and not the actual produce 🤷🏼♀️. Jalapeño and green peppers are finally beginning to show, we’ve got cantaloupe that is hopeful and we had great success with our parsley, dill and basil. Complete failures with lavender, cilantro, thyme and scallions. Our beans did okay but will put in the ground next year rather than the tower. Getting ready to harvest and cure potatoes. 🤞🏻🤞🏻Excited to maybe try to tower and hydroponic inside over the winter and expand our outdoor one next spring! Gonna try to sprout seedling next year as this year everything was done from seed. My biggest suggestion would be use heirloom seeds and a great soil mix. But that from a novice beginner so 🤷🏼♀️