Mark and I both grew up with our parents creating incredible vegetable gardens. Our experiences were quite different--Mark's small town garden being the size of a small house and mine a bit more urban with beans growing up the back of the garage, and nice garden boxes strategically placed to maximize space. Living in apartments produced a deep sense of nostalgic longing for the work and product associated with a garden.
We were super fortunate to find a little house to rent with a yard out back! This immediately conjured up dreams of lush tomato plants and zucchini. We were also fortunate to have someone in our ward (our church congregation) who initiated a gardening co-op, where we paid 5 bucks, and he would start all the seedlings. WOA. Score.
Our co-op email in April mentioned the onion and peas being ready which kind of took us for surprise, but we got to work and started clearing the land.
Since the dirt was really clay, we decided to start small, and haul in some top notch soil--going square foot garden style. We planted our onions and peas and went out pretty much everyday to check on them. We felt like doting parents as we tracked the progress of our little plants.
We had intended to just use this as our garden, but when my mom came out to help after Jackson was born, she convinced me that 3 tomato plants were not going fit in a 4x4 garden--let alone a zucchini and cucumber plant. So, she did some more excavation and expanded a bit. We also had a friend who moved and gave us a bunch of herbs and pots--which added some nice aesthetic levels.
By the beginning of June, we had a solid amount of peas, and everything seemed to be growing well. The tomatoes, eggplant, jalapenos, cucumbers and zucchini's came on in July. The onions never really made it. They're all still out there, and we'll have to figure out how to better help them grow this fall when we try again. This picture is from early July when Peter Rabbit (and his wife and baby) decided to eat our first 5 tomatoes. RAAWWW. I never knew I had so much of Mr. McGregor in me.
Here we are at the end of July. You can see the cucumber plant that has pretty much taken over. It's very abundant. We've harvested 30 cucumbers in the past week and a half. Good thing we like them!
Here are a few of the first crops that didn't get eaten by Peter.
Since Jackson still doesn't like lettuce, the overabundant cucumber plant has come in very handy. I did not take this picture (found here), but we have managed to eat a TON of these delicious tomato and cucumber salads.
Now all we need is some chickens and cows, and we're on our way to sustainable living! ;)