Sunday, April 26, 2009

More raised beds

Those are grass rhizomes in the picture. The grass will grow vigorously from these. Without extensive mechanical tillage or smothering with black plastic, newspapers or cardboard the grass will grow back fairly quickly.

The last two days I have dug 7 raised beds about 3 ft x 10 ft. The soil consists of sod-bricks and is not very smooth. I plan to construct a 3' x 3' soil sifter of 1/2" hardware cloth to sift enough soil, removing the grass roots and breaking up the clods to get enough fine soil to make seed beds a couple inches deep atop these raised beds. This will do for the small seeds like onions and carrots. The seeds need firm contact with moist soil to get started. I'm afraid that if I just seeded directly into the pile of sod bricks, most of the seed would not germinate. As soon as the seeds are up, I will cover the raised beds with black plastic to keep the grass smothered. I'll let you know tomorrow how that works.

Other beds I will cover with black plastic to start and just cut holes in it so set plants in -- cabbage, broccoli, potatoes, etc. My wife is opposed to black plastic because it is a petroleum product and hence not 'organic.' I say it's OK to use black plastic the first year or two until the garden is established. After than, I'd prefer to use green composts such as grass clippings to control weeds and grass.

We may not be able to farm the entire 1/4 acre this year. Too much work. Some may have to wait until next year.



    OK Mr Dean read that then tell me about being able to farm the entire 1/4 acre this year.

    Go for it you can do it!!



    More options for you to research and apply to get that 1/4 acre planted.