SPRING! Spring has arrived in the mountains and it did not come one single moment too soon. I don’t know if I remember a winter that went on as long as this one – it just seemed like I would never feel warmth or see grass ever again. As a kid, I spent my summers entirely outdoors – from swimming in the pool and making forts in the woods to reading books in the hammock and eating dinner every night outside on the patio. I didn’t realize how much I missed all the outdoor time until A and I got our house. Apartment living is never conducive to outdoor activities – my last apartment had a tiny frontyard that was close to a very busy street. But now, I have this whole fenced in backyard at my disposal! From the moment the warm weather hit, I’ve been toiling in the yard laying mulch, planting dahlias, creating a brick lined pathway, setting up our patio! And my pride and joy of all of this?
My vegetable garden.
Last year I had a…uhh, rather unsuccessful tomato garden. First year in our house, I was still trying to figure out how we were going to turn our field of grass into a YARD. This year I knew I wanted to do it right and supplement my CSA (Community Shared Agriculture) share I am splitting with a co-worker. (VEGGIES FOR DAYS!) When I saw that newest edition of The Postage Stamp Garden was up for you review, I snatched it.
The Postage Stamp Vegetable Garden was first published in the 70s (how appropriate for me) – it’s all about growing as much as you can in a small space so you always have an abundance of food from your garden. The typical size of a postage stamp garden is only 4’x4′ – my garden is smaller than that, so I had to scale back a bit. The Postage Stamp Vegetable Garden is such a great guide for both beginning gardeners and old pros – it can act both as a complete teaching guide and a useful reference. I have mine tabbed and marked up already! My favorite highlights include:
- illustrations of different ways to plant your postage stamp garden
- how to prepare your soil mix
- a complete index of veggies – how/when/where to plant them, potential problems, and even what to choose as companion plants!
This year I planted seedlings early inside with a seed kit – bush beans, basil, cucumbers, zucchini, and lettuce. I used my handy (and ever growing) collection of washi tape to label them in their little greenhouse:
I was a bit nervous that nothing was going to happen – and sure enough out of 18 beans I only had three sprout and it took them over three weeks. My zucchini and cucumber were also late bloomers – but they’re now all happily planted in my garden and doing well. I sowed kale and carrot seeds directly into the garden bed and the kale shot up in less than a week. I credit this to the huge bucket of compost I got for free from a local goat and chicken farm. This is also what I call adulting.
I’ll round out my vegetable garden this weekend when I pick up my heirloom tomato plants from my CSA farm – so excited for tomatoes! And in other exciting news: Blogging for Books was kind enough to give me an extra copy of The Postage Stamp Vegetable Garden to giveaway to my readers! And it’s the perfect time of year to get your garden in shape so…
The giveaway ends of June 2nd. Open to USA only. Good luck and happy gardening!