I surrender

 

I surrender my vegetable garden to the reality that

  • my yard is not a good place to grow vegetables;
  • I don’t have enough time to keep up with it properly with a full time job; and
  • I have plenty of places to buy good locally grown vegetables in season and don’t need to grow my own vegetables.

 

My yard is very woodsy and is mostly shaded. It also is a major highway for foraging deer. Last year we built a beautiful fence in the sunniest part of the yard and cut down a few extra trees for good measure. The deer of course stay out but the canopy of the remaining trees in our yard has grown to fill in the spaces that were there last year. I can get plants to grow, but few vegetables. Basil grows…some tomatoes and beans…no squash or melons.

 

As I often do, I tried to do too much, tried to grow too many kinds of plants. And the rain has made things a mess this year. My yard is big and needs a lot of work just to maintain what is there. I had planned to try to bring some order to the garden by putting in raised beds and I think I will still build the wooden structures before the end of the summer, but I will be more focused with what I have in it I have started two asparagus beds, which I will keep. I also will keep the black raspberry plants that produced fairly well earlier in the summer. The rest of the beds I will plant with herbs, which seem to go fairly well and some flowers that will tolerate the shade. The rest of my time I will focus on clearing out my yard to make it less high maintenance. Right now that means a lot of weeding in some of the flower beds, cutting out saplings and mulching, mulching, mulching…and clearing out a few foot paths.

 

This morning I took at first step toward this transition. I pulled out all my non-productive plants and cut my raspberries way back. I pulled as many weeds as I could in the time I had. I have some flowers that I hope will bloom – tithonia or Mexican sunflowers.  It looks much better already and though I still have some clean up to go, feels like a lighter load.

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