Garden Clearing

Friday, June 14, 2019

When we moved into the house in July, this was the (very lovely) view from the dining room:

Backyard
Notice the giant, ~640 sq ft patch of tall goldenrod, formerly the garden where the original owner of the house grew asparagus and squash, and other vegetables. The plot gets full sun [nearly] all day, and while near the bottom of a hill it is not the bottom of the hill, so there is somewhere for the water to drain off. At exactly 100' from the house, a hose can be used for all the watering needs. It is a pretty good spot for growing vegetables. Which is why I spent the past several months since April turning the above goldenrod pile into the below garden:
Garden Time Lapse - 6/12

I started clearing brush around our last snowfall the first week of April. Piles and piles of dead and decaying goldenrod. 640 square feet, neglected for 10 years. Hard, hard labor during a very stressful work period. My back and arms ached, I was covered in scratches, but the debris was removed and carted to a corner of the yard.
Still more brush to clear
...only to be carted back to the yard and broken into little pieces by hand, to serve as walkway ground cover, or filler in the bottom of raised beds:
Making Terraced, Mounded Rows in the Garden

I uncovered 4 boards with spikes buried under the goldenrods, and set them up to support the mounded terrace rows.
Trees Need to be Removed

J transplanted two small trees from the garden elsewhere, and removed two thorn bushes in late April, just after I planted a mix of daffodils in the front, raised row. Then I dug out the top 3" of the back 3/4 of the row garden, removing all the goldenrod rootballs and exiling them to a special pile in the corner of the yard. The daffodil row did not get this treatment. Maybe in the fall when I transplant the daffodils elsewhere?

The first week of May, J built the raised garden beds from untreated pine, and a week later I was double-digging a space for them, with 2' of space as a walkway.
Double Digging for the Shallow Raised Bed

The dog greatly enjoyed the digging phase:
The Dog Enjoying Her New Mud Pit

At first, I thought I'd have a half deer-protected section, and then a half raised row/terrace section for alliums, onion, garlic, and daffodils. I'm rearranging what goes in the rows a bit, but the same basic structure will be maintained: ~3 mounded rows that aren't deer/critter-protected, and a second half of the garden protected by fencing. We'll see how this works out!

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