Friday, March 28, 2014

Lovely Links: Garden Planning Edition

Spring is finally here and with that comes gardening again! I turned over my garden beds a few days ago and, man, it was nice getting my fingernails all dirty again.

I feel like I'm a little behind schedule in my garden, though, since I'm still in the planning stages. The only things growing in my garden right now are the Swiss chard that overwintered (yay!) and the 30+ heads of garlic I planted last fall (YAY!). Next week, I'll post about my garden planning process here, but I thought it would fun to give you some inspiration for your weekend.  Whether you're growing a windowsill herb garden, a few containers on a patio, a garden in a corner of your yard, or a full-fledged homestead, here are a few links I've come across to help you plan your best garden yet!

1 Really Great Reason to Grow Food this Year :: Gardening Jones
On the fence about even bothering with a garden this year? Planning to grow a garden but need a little more motivation to dive in? The one reason described in this post is motivation enough.

Organic Vegetable Gardening 101 :: My Humble Kitchen
Great, basic info with links to posts about ordering seeds, the different types of seeds, succession planting, and more -- though I prefer the milk-jug seed starting method to starting them indoors. I'm also in love with the vertical planter boxes in this post.

Our DIY Raised Garden Beds - Chris Loves Julia
$10 Cedar Raised Garden Beds - Ana White
I love my raised garden beds!  If you don't have them yet, here are a couple great tutorials for getting yours started -- or, if you're like me, to rebuild yours because the wood frames of your existing garden beds are rotting away.

The Living Jigsaw: Planning for Crop Rotation in Your Garden :: Designing Edible Gardens
I've known for a while that it's not a good idea to grow the same crops in the same spots every year, but until last spring, I had no idea that you should rotate what type of vegetables you grow in each area of your garden in a particular order. Now that I understand the concept, it actually makes planning my garden easier.  Leaves - Fruits - Roots - Rebuild -- this post explains it all.

How much you need to plant to feed your family :: New Life on a Homestead
This post has a list of how much you would need to grow to feed yourself and your family for a year.  It's interesting , but it's also a bit overwhelming. While I would LOVE to be that self-sufficient, I don't have enough room in my garden beds to grow all that. Instead of feeling overwhelmed and bummed, I look at this list as a good guide to how much to plan on growing in the space I do have.

Lawns into Gardens :: New York Times
Speaking of garden space, my latest fascination: turning lawns and front yards into gardens. I mean, my lawn gives me grief every year (dandelions everywhere and it won't stay green); why not grow food instead? My husband isn't on board with this idea and I guess my boys need some grass to play on, but a girl can still dream.

Front Yard Vegetable Garden :: The Art of Doing Stuff
Now, this is something I could do...

One last thing: as you're deciding what to grow, consider growing some of the bees' favorite fruits, veggies, herbs and flowers.

Hope your weekend is lovely!


Green Bean said...

I'm with you on the lawn thing. We only have one - in the front yard - but my boys play catch, football, baseball, and so on on it all the time. Because it is not happening yet and because California is in extreme drought, we decided to just leave the grass really long and oversees with clover. It requires a lot less water and is good for pollinators. Of course, I still wish it was a cornfield! ;-)

I also like the idea of edibles tucked in front yard flower beds. I did that at our last house. Swiss chard looks totally gorgeous in a front flower bed. I also saw the idea of grouping garlic or onions to look like drifts of grass. I did that last year. It looked great and produced a ton.

Lisa Hatton said...

We converted our front yard to a garden two years ago...everyone loves it..even the doubtful male in the house. He built me 4 foot wide raised beds around the perimeter of the yard ,which was approximately 25 feet by 20 feet. The center we covered with crushed stone(traffic bond) and planted a Spartan apple tree off to one side. Looks like a courtyard surrounded by black-eyed susans, tomatoes, herbs, cosmos flowers and squash..which happily sprawl over the warm stones. Strangers stop in the street to tell us how nice it looks!!

Heather said...

That sounds dreamy!!!

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