Her Green Figs

The fig tree putteth forth her green figs, and the vines with the tender grape give a good smell.

06 January 2007

Green figs, indeed!

I haven't gardened in ages. My brother and I made a Mother's Day bed for our mom a couple of years ago, but it was 6 months before that when I last had my own garden to work. Today, I got my hands dirty again.

It was 75 degrees and sunny here, and Mother Nature DEMANDED that I go outside. I've spent the last week ordering seeds (mosty veg) and plants (mosty small fruit) and planning my new garden. Today, I raked out the paths I think I'll do in the back kitchen garden, and planted two blueberries I got for 75% off several weeks ago. That was so rewarding that I decided to tackle bigger projects.

I dug up 3 dozen border bricks from around a lame bed that I'm extending by 700% and moved them over to outline a new path.

I dug up 6 azaleas that have no place in my kitchen garden and moved them to the front of the house to fill up the lawn and screen the road.

I extended the shrub border at the front corner (it's a corner lot) with more 75% off shrubs: 1 viburnum, 3 spirea, 2 berberis, 3 buddleia, 2 weigela, 2 cotoneaster, plus 1 tree (Japanese maple) and 1 grass (penisetum) and those azaleas, of course. I cannot WAIT until July to see how much they've filled in. Once I cut in the new driveway, I think I can fill in the rest of that wedge with transplants from friends/relatives (nandina, hydrangea, other?) and perennials. That's a lot of lawn I won't have to mow!

The soil in the front yard is gorgeously textured and rich! It was a cinch to dig and seems to require no amendment. I'm THRILLED. The kitchen garden area was much harder to dig (in part due to the 3-4 remaining stumps and associated roots, one of which I chose to plant the blueberries near).

I wish I knew which box (still umoved and unpacked) contained my seeds and related gear. I've got tons. Somewhere.

Soon I will be planting 11 new blackberry bushes and some scuppernongs (if I can find some I like) along the back fences (6' wood picket--VERY private), then filling in the front of those with squash and beans and cukes, and tomatoes, and peppers, and eggplant, and herbs, and carrots, and spinach, and cabbage, and Burssel's Sprouts, and collards, and shallots, and garlic, and horseradish, and peas, and beans, and leeks, and fennel, and okra, oh my. There's an old clothesline I haven't bothered to take down, and now I think I'll use it to trellis watermelon or pumpkins (or both). Great solution! Oh, and I'll probably scatter zinnias in there with the food. And nasturtiums and marigolds?

With the state of my seed order and the state of my brand new kitchen and the size of my new dining room, I can't wait for people to hang out at my house all summer eating really well.

I want a few more things for the kitchen garden. 1. I want to fill in the paths with rock or something similarly permanent (outlined by the brick I'm tearing up from the old, ugly path). 2. I want more blueberries. 3. I want a banana tree or three. 4. I want 3 fig trees (green-ripe figs, of course!). 5. I want to trellis kiwi over/around the ugly ugly shed. 6. I want to build a new arch over the back gate (wider, taller) and plant it with the jessamine I got for 70% off (which is blooming today!!!) and a hops vine. 7. I want to dig up the liriope along the old path and use it to replace the lawn in the front. It's not so very much to do, all things considered. Course, this presupposes that I do a good job starting my seeds (ordered new Park's "Bio-Domes"!) and get everything in the ground properly and the weather cooperates and a few other things.