Just get out and do it.

Welcome to my blog, Garden for Your Life! This site will be mostly about my garden, but you can build one just like it in your back yard too. It can be bigger or smaller, just get out and do it. You can do it for fun. Your can do it for your health. You can do it for fresh food in these troubled times. The point is to get out and do it for whatever reason that you need.

Over time I will cover topics like canning and preserving your harvest, soil and beds, bugs, what to plant and when, and much more.

I've been working on this garden on mine and improving on it for over five years now. I will continue doing that for many more. You can too, just get out and do it.

Ken

Saturday, January 14, 2017

Baby its cold outside.

It's freezing outside!  OK, this is why I live in SE Texas.  It's only freezing here for a couple of days, then our bi-polar weather is back to warm.  But I grow all year around here.  Some things like broccoli and cauliflower handle small freezes without any problems.  Others like my herbs and lettuces not so well.

This was my Passion Fruit. Not much passion left.

Most would have been killed off with these two days of below freezing temperatures.  So out come the cold frames.  What is a cold frame?  Think mini green house.
Whats left of a sage that I no longer need.



All my delicates under plastic



My cold frames are 3' wide and as long as six to eight feet depending on the bed that they are protecting.  They are made of plywood on the ends, 2" by 2" cross supports.  I then cover them with Plastic sheeting and that's held in place with 1" by 2" boards.  All I have to do is place them on top of my beds.  I start by cutting a 4' by 4' piece of plywood diagonally, which gives me four pieces.  That is enough for two frames. My beds are three feet across, so I cut 6" off of each side to fit.
Next is the 2 by 2s for support adjusted to the length of the bed.  On goes the sheeting with the 1 by 2's to hold it and I'm done.  


So the freezing temps ended and we are heading back to the normal 60-70 degree days for a bit.  Off go the frames and set aside.  Nice to see how well they did.  These were under a table covered in plastic.


These are my large potted herbs.  They all did well.  Note the large sage plant just like the one above that I left out.  

This is my carrot (far)  and my mixed parsley and cilantro bed.

























 
My small potted herb bed. All did well except the tall plant on the bottom right.
The tall part, against the plastic, died but the leaves down low survived and it will regrow.
The empty pot was a globe basil that had died before the frost.

Here's my crinkly kale.  I heard my rabbits yell GREENS! when I took the cold frame off.


My Chinese Cabbages

And lastly my lettuces ready to pick and eat.

A bunch of happy three month old American Chinchillas.  All munching away.

Aloha,  Ken

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Updated winter garden


 Howdy Ya'll'

The election is done and so is my winter garden, as far as the plantings.  I still have a few beds to clean out and sow clover in them.

Here's how it looks.  My herbs will get a cold frame when needed.  The New Farmers Almanac is saying a mild winter for us this year.  They're more right than our 'mainstream' weather people.

Here are my large pots to place at the ends of my garden.  i still have to plant two Ginger and two Turmeric when they get here from Hawaii.

Two large pots of Purple Sage in the back and two Oregano in the front

Two large pots of rosemary and a Stevia plant getting ready to flower


My Lemon Grass in a large 3' pot.
Then there is my small pots all in one bed. the little plants sprouting up are clover.
two types of balm, onion chives, garlic chives thyme, marjoram, chamomile, and basil

















lastly my pineapple sage in bloom.  soon yo be trimmed and carrots added

Now for the main beds for the winter.

a nice bed of broccoli. My rabbits just love those big leaves

L to R.  brussel sprouts, cauliflower, and collards

Curley leaf kale sprouting up

nasturtiums just for the bunnies.  flowers go to new moms.
a bed of Chinese cabbage in the front and lettuce in the back
new cabbage and lettuce popping up in the middle of each bed.

have a nice winter!  Ken


Oops, i forgot to add the latest batch of rabbits from last week.  5 American Chinchillas


Sunday, October 23, 2016

spring crop winding down and in with the fall/winter

Howdy y'all,

Its been a while since I posted here.  I didn't even post a summer blog, but still a lot of folks from all over the world are looking at my past blogs.  Thank you.  This years summer crop was a mixed bag.  It got hot early and stayed hot.  My tomatoes did poorly.  My Peppers, peanuts, and egg plants did great.  All my squash got killed by the squash bugs.

So I replanted the squash in late summer and they are doing great!

Here's my pickles in the front and spaghetti squash in the back.  Both have a lot of fruit growing on them.


one of the cute little cuc's

and a spaghetti looking good

it's not summer, but the summer squash is doing good!

stir fry tonight!
here's the butternut doing just fine.


 Now for the winter crops
two varieties of Chinese cabbages. I'll add some from seed soon.

Front to back, 2 Brussel sprouts, 2 cauliflower, 8 collards.

a full bed of broccoli!

Meet Smokie!  He's a new American Chinchilla rabbit.  Ge's in quarantine for a couple more weeks. then i'll introduce him to the ladies.
I also have a bed of lettuces to be put under cold frames as well as the chinese cabbages for when the frost gets here.  It should be a good winter here.  The Farmers Almanac predicts a mild winter here.  When the cold does hit i'll let the squash beds be empty till spring.  
 Ken

Monday, September 21, 2015

Fall Update!

Howdy!

It's been a while since I've updated my blog.  It's also been a very hot summer with little rain, after the May gully washers, so this years summer garden as a wash.  The best was the potatoes and the tomatoes.  My hot peppers did ok, but the sweet ones did poorly.  Being exhausted making repairs and working in such heat didn't help. The rains have returned, but not near as bad as last May and it's time for the fall planting.

First up replanting some tomatoes!  Sept 2 planting, then came a Beautiful rain!  Several times over the last three weeks!
 The yellow cages are 6 Roma's
Then 2 Brandywine's in the red cages.
The blue cages have sweet millions cherry tomatoes

Lastly the green cages are tomatillos.










                                                                                       

This is todays picture! 21 Sept!

 So the squash bugs got more squash than me.  These are Pumpkins to the left and watermelon to the right.  These were seeded the same time as the tomatoes   Below is today!

The next on the list was the Blackberries.  Our one bright spot as we got over 6 gallons of berries now in the freezer!  They were in need of clearing out the dead canes and the bamboo supports of three years were showing lots of wear.  Out they came and were replaced with steel fence post and coated wire rope.  DW intertwined them and fresh rains from God's heavens did the rest! This was done over the weekend of September 5-6 



Today!  They are filling in nicely on the bottoms with new shoots.
Next on the list for winter work is to fully enclose them in a wood frame with bird netting.  I'll have large doors so I can get in, but not those mocking birds that love them as much as we do.  They'll just have to wait their turn.

Now the other crops,  2 kinds of kale, collards, beets and turnips!  All are up but they're gonna need some thinning as DW sows heavy.  




These two beds are set aside for broccoli in a bed and a half with cauliflower for DW in the back half of the second one.  

These beds, after a little more soil and amendments, are going to be turned into permanent herb beds.  Two kinds of herbs per bed, yet to be determined.  

Lastly on the project is getting my new Slovenian Bee hive ready to migrate my bees in the spring.  I really like this hive, so does Roxy.  
 Two entrances in the front. I'll just use the middle one to help keep the honey in the top part of the hive with the queen excluded in the lower part.
 The back opens up for access to the frames.  Time for a colorful paint job and stand.

Poor Sallie Mae and Roxy is so tired from all these inspection duties.