Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Wow! I found out how to post photos I think!

In March 2010 I decided I was going to have the gardens of my dreams.  I have wanted my own rose garden for over 35 years, and NOW I wasn't going to let ANYBODY derail my dreams.  So I hired a yard guy to help me, and I removed a railroad tie retaining wall from the bank behind my house. 

Off I went to the nearest Walmart where I bought up pink, rose, yellow, white, and apricot packaged roses for $3 each and I ended up with over fifty of them.  I used the bank as the basis of my rose garden design.  I made planting holes in the sod and planted the roses with garlic around them.  Roses love garlic you know.  Garlic is supposed to repel aphids. 

I am too old to have the energy to use a big tiller, hoe, etc. to fight weeds in the garden so, I called my farmer friend Adrian and got a large round bale of hay.  The hay would smother the grass/weeds, keep the soil moist, and as it decomposes it will enrich my heavy clay and limestone soil.  Thank you Ruth Stout, your books are my inspiration!

I laid cardboard and newspapers thickly around the roses and covered them as thickly as I could with hay.  The hay covered paper began to smother the sod and I had a rose garden! 

Here is a photo of my hay mulched rose garden, taken in July.

During the same time I was working on the roses, I was also trying to start my vegetable garden.  I used the old railroad ties I removed from the bank, and bought lots more at the local farm supply store to create three raised beds directly on the sod.  The raised beds were 8 by 16 feet.  I used my dad's steel fence posts to support the trellis I was installing down the length of each bed.  I found wire cattle panel fencing at the farm supply store for $20 a panel that were about 12 feet long.  Wired to the steel fence posts, the panels became my permanent vegetable trellises.  No rinky dink tomato cages for me!

I used more of the hay from the huge round bale to mulch my first 3 raised beds.  Then, I planted my vegetables through the hay mulch, watered them, and waited.

And here is a photo of my hay mulched vegetable garden taken at the time.  Note the young asparagus plants on the left.

Here is the start of my herb garden.  I planted sage, lovage, basil, sorrel, french tarragon, spearmint, peppermint, chives, oregano, rosemary, salad burnet, thyme, and a few others.

Along with a rose garden, I have always ardently prayed for a water garden.  I never thought I would get one, but my yard guy had a Bobcat!  Suddenly it was possible.  Between the Bobcat, the yard guy, a pond liner, and the multitude of limestone rock in my yard we were able to get a small  water garden going.  The weekly farm auction gave me the "stone" fountain for only $22. And here is my water garden at the base of my rose garden bank.

Isn't it wonderful?  I have photos! 

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