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.


Friday, August 19, 2011

The Disappearing Bumblebee

There are a whole host of bee and fly pollinators out there. Here at my homestead I turn to the mason bee. I have a couple of homes built for to encourage it to hand around.

The Disappearing Bumblebee

Monday, August 1, 2011

Last harvest, and new garden

Howdy all,

It's been a little bit since my last blog.  I've been busy with my last harvesting, ripping out the first garden of the season, and planting a fresh one in.  I then took a vacation to see the folks up in northern Idaho. 

Lets start with the first gardens final harvest.  Our blackberries, four plants in a single bed produced over 10 quarts of berries which we ate 2 quarts whole or in smoothies and made 10 pints of jam in half pint jars.

Our Bell Peppers in three beds produced over 10 quarts cut and frozen.  About 10 quarts went into the stewed tomatoes and the salsa.  Maybe 5 quarts or more was given away to my friends at work or the neighbors.

Nice, ahh, Peppers!

Washed and ready to process.

The sweet yellow banana peppers produced a huge amount and was a big hit at work.  we made 20 pints of pickled peppers and slice about 3 quarts and froze them.  The rest I gave away, which everybody loved.  All of my chili peppers went into the salsa, which was about 6 quarts with some given away.

Sallie Mae just refuses to eat her veggies.

One pretty basket of peppers!

We also harvested about 20 pounds of Red Pontiac and Yellow Kenebec potatoes.  Over 35 quarts of stewed tomatoes, 14 pints of tomato sauce and 28 pints of salsa.  We got about 6 quarts of strawberries which we ate fresh.  We got about 5 pounds each of red and black beans.  Not bad from a suburban back yard.

Now for the second garden of the season.  I know that the tomatoes and peppers will continue to grow but they were getting lanky and we have enough to last quite a while, so out with the old and in with the new. The first thing that you will notice about the garden is the new fence.  While we were on vacation a four legged critter got in and dug a bunch of holes.  I'm not saying who, but Roxy got a big pedicure as soon as we got home.  To be fair, HA!, the fence was thick plastic that had been in the hot Texas sun for several years now and had got brittle.

The new fence, 2"x4"x 48" horse fence from Home Depot.
What?  Who Me?

 Five potato beds three red, two yellow.  The blackberries are growing for another season.

Red and black beans.  I have a bed ofCow peas too.
Zucchini, pumpkins in the front and spaghetti and butternut in the back.

 Two sweet potato's and one volunteer potato.  I'll find out what on a couple of months.

Still a few small strawberries in the patch.

 Last but not least the quail.  I harvested 18 of them before I left for northern Idaho and all national parks in between. Now that I'm back it's time to set up the incubator.

As you can see a small suburban back yard can produce a good harvest.  I have a corner lot.  Even my neighbor has room for 6 of these beds and still have some room for his rat, oops, small dog.  I wish now that I had chosen the middle of the cul-de-sac.  Those back yards are huge compared to one in the middle of a block and twice as big as mine. 

You too can do this.  Now get with it!