A couple of days ago in the glorious 85-degree heat, I planted the seeds in my garden. Carefully following the plan I’d drawn up with Leigh, one of the farm’s owners, I systematically made my way around the little square of chunky red dirt that’s “mine” for the next few months. I wasn’t especially scientific in measuring the seed depth, even though I had been advised to use a ruler and I even had one with me. I don’t like measuring with rulers. Let’s hope this wasn’t a fatal mistake.
I planted cucumbers, lettuce, radishes, arugula, beets and parsley from seed. I also planted four heirloom beefsteak tomato plants and two bell pepper plants. In the center of the garden I planted buckwheat seeds, and in each of the four corners I planted cosmos seeds. The buckwheat and cosmos are intended to draw “beneficials” to the garden—bees and butterflies, and other insects—that will help, rather than harm, the growing process. I’d still like to add some other herbs, likely basil and maybe sage, as well as some marigolds, to help with balancing this little ecosystem and protecting the tomatoes from ravenous aphids.
After poking all the seeds in and tucking the tomato and bell pepper plants in, I made two trips with my big blue watering can to and from the big rainwater barrels. I gently sprinkled everything with water and headed home, tired, sore, and dirty but relieved and hopeful. I’m hoping to see little green things peering out in the next few days. Planning, discipline, managing frustration—already I’m experiencing many lessons from this outdoor adventure. All being well, in a month or so I’ll be sharing my bounty with friends and family!