January 21, 2011

Fridays in the Garden: Jan 21 2011

This year, I started using the Google Tasks feature and linked it to my Google Calendar (thanks Hans!) My father-in-law was showing me how he organizes his working life (how he keeps up with multiple time zones is beyond me), and I thought it would be a nice tool to start organizing a gardening schedule.  

The winter months can prove to be long and boring to a gardener, but I recently found a local seed supplier, De Nieuwe Tuin, that specializes in carrying seeds of plants that will grow during a short summer growing season (and probably are adapted to growing at northern latitudes). I took an inventory of the seeds I had from last year, pooled my notes on what grew well and what didn’t, and came up with a schedule of setting things out this year. Yes, I made a spreadsheet! (viewable here)

Fridays are my new garden work days and since it’s Belgium, Tuesday and Wednesday will be back-up rain days.  The plan so far is to have containers and try out a lasagna-layering garden approach.  There is a 3 ft x 3 ft square and a much longer border (1 ft wide x 7 ft long) along the fence.  Today, I cleaned out pots and dumped out the soil, scrubbed and stored the pots, cleaned up the garden, came up with a plan to cover the beds for the next 2 months, and made a list of things to buy or borrow (e.g a shovel).

Any input, advice, or thoughts on what to do is more than welcome.
Are ashes from a fire pit good for the soil? 
Can I mix in last year's soil with brown and green compost materials to get the beds ready?
What is the best kind of light bulb for starting seedlings?

Here’s how the garden has looked:

After a bit of work:

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