Gardening 101

Man oh man, do we have tons of updates for you!  We had a busy busy busy weekend over here, as Daddy & Mommy planted the seeds for the vegetable garden on Saturday.  It took them hours to get all of those little seeds into the plant cells, as they were surprised at actually how “small” some of the seeds were.  We thought that we would have to get a magnifying glass out to see some of them! LOL  Anyhow, they filled up 144 cells with their vegetable seeds, and 72 cells for the flowers, but we still have to plant one more tray of seeds!  We got the best soil from Burpee, so we are hoping it does well to get these little guys growing.  After they got all the seeds planted, every cell got watered, covered and the grow light was turned on to keep them warm.  Also, once each cell was planted, they stuck a sticky note on top of the lid so they would know what kind of plant it was.  Now we wait…

Sunday, we had another task to take care of – building the raised garden bed.  At first, we were going to buy a raised garden bed kit, but we figured we could make our own a lot cheaper (and we were right) as we took the great advice from our friends at Home Depot.  Our raised garden bed is 6′ x 16′ and that is one nice size of a garden, ready for tons of plants!  Anyhow, Daddy & Mommy worked outside on Sunday in the air that turned quite cold, but they were determined to finish the frame for the raised garden bed.  It even rained on them a little, but they still did not stop, they just kept on going. 

They had to first build the first level of the frame and get all the sides connected with the metal anchors, then they worked on the second level.  Once both levels of the frame were complete, they set the second level on top of the first level and adhered them together with more metal brackets.  The tough part was picking up entire frame that was on the driveway and walking it over to the back yard where they wanted the garden.  Man, you just never know how heavy something gets when everything is put together, but somehow, they got it to the grass where it will now stay.  The next thing we have to do is lay down the black liner to cover the grass in the garden & to keep out the weeds.  We will roll it out and staple it to the sides of the raised bed frame to hold in the dirt.  The dirt delivery will be this weekend and we will fill up the garden and get it ready for planting.  We will have a very busy weekend the end of May as this is when we are planning to plant all of the vegetable plants in our garden as this is the perfect time to do so for our planting zone, which is zone 5.

So, that was our weekend – – Saturday: Planted Seeds, Sunday: Put together the raised garden bed.  On Monday: Guess what we saw?  We just noticed that we have a little cucumber sprout starting to emerge from the soil!   We can’t believe it, as we just planted these on Saturday!  WOW, is all we have to say!  In just two days, we got our first sprout! 

Ya know what, until we made the decision to have a vegetable garden this year, we never thought of saving the seeds from the vegetables we purchased from the grocery store before, but now….  we are cleaning and saving all the seeds from these vegetables so that we won’t have to buy seeds for next year!  If you never thought of this before, you should start thinking about doing this as it will save you a lot of money on vegetable purchases.  You don’t even need to make a huge garden like we are, as you can plant your seeds in containers and have a nice harvest of fresh vegetables right on your patio!  We can’t believe we never thought of this before, because last year we had three cherry tomato plants in containers just sitting on our driveway and they produced enough cherry tomatoes for us to enjoy the whole summer! 

So, what do you think of our new raised garden bed?  Do you think we did a good job?  It took us many hours to get all of this done, but we are anticipating reaping what we sow and look forward to a very delicious garden this year!

What is going to be interesting for us to find out is “exactly” how many vegetables we will produce from our garden.  Since Mommy loves graphs, she will count each vegetable that is harvested from our garden, and make a graph so we can see how well our plants did in producing veggies!  It will be interesting to see the outcome!

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15 thoughts on “Gardening 101

    • We did not use cedar. There are many pros and cons of really what to use, but we just chose the nicest and straightest 8 foot long wood planks and had Home Depot cut to size for us. Then we bought a huge box of wood screws and lots of metal braces to hold the sides all together.

      • Sweet! You are the second person to use braces. You didn’t use the 4×4 posts then? Sounds like the way to go with the braces!

      • Nope, we did not use any posts. We just stood up the boards on our drive to get the shape setup, then we screwed the braces in place and worked our way around. There are two layers to our raised garden, so when we made the first layer, we put together the second layer and laid it on top of the first one. Then, we used different metal braces all around and connected the two layers together. When you use a power drill to tighten the screws, it all pulls together nicely.

      • You will find that the method we used for our raised beds will hold up good for you! I hope you found the posts that I did where I showed how I put ours together on the driveway!

      • I hear ya on that one Roni! All I see all over is snow mountains and more snow. Our garden area is completely covered. I can just dream about walking out to the garden and pick some nice veggies right now, but we are starting our seeds inside so we are on our way! We would rather start our own seeds under the grow lights and “baby them”, rather than just heading out and purchasing the plants. It’s a lot of work, but we love doing it this way!

        By the way, we are also going to try growing our cabbage this year out of the raised garden and grow each cabbage plant in their own huge pot. The reason behind this is because they shadowed all of our onions and some of the pepper plants with the cabbage huge leaves. We just want to make sure that everything we plant, grows this year! This is the trial and error part I was telling you about and what makes gardening so much F-U-N!

      • OMG thats just what I am trying to figure now – what needs to go where to not shade one another. I am doing Dill, Parsley, Oregano, Basil, Lemon Balm, Carrots, Onions, Yellow Peppers, Pepperoncinis, Salad Lettuce, Garlic & French Beans. I started the herbs inside so I can use them ASAP!

      • One thing that you will LOVE LOVE LOVE is Romaine Lettuce. We used to do leaf lettuce and the Romaine is so much better. If you plant Romaine, I can tell you how you can save it in bags for weeks in your fridge too! If I were you, I would head on over to Pinterest and do a lookup on “companion plants” so you can read up on what NOT to plant next to each other. Certain plants are a no no next to each other. As for all of your herb plants, you could do them in containers!

  1. I suggest using a several inches/thick layer of cardboard and newspapers instead of black plastic. That will decompose over time and plants that grow deep root systems (tomatoes) will be able to penetrate the decomposable matter. I may have mentioned that my favorite book is “Lasagna Gardening” by Patricia Lanza.

    It’s admirable that you are saving the seeds from store-bought vegetables, but I suggest buying seeds too. Seeds are not that expensive. I had “volunteer” tomato plants that came up last year so I didn’t buy plants because there were so many of them. The tomatoes were not very large and by the time I realized that, it was late summer – too late to get plants. I will share gardening tips and experience on my blog http://janetchung.wordpress.com.

    You may have to also put up chicken wire for Nikita, I couldn’t keep Radcliff or Ina out of my garden. Love your photos, Nikita looks so much like Ina.

    • Hi Janet! Thanks so much for the great advice! I have heard about the cardboard idea before, as we have done a lot of research on plantings, lighting, and such while we were planning our garden. Keep your ideas coming, as we are newbies to vegetable gardening. We appreciate all the help! You will have to keep watching our blog, as we will be adding a fence to block off the garden, not only to keep Nikita out, but all the deer we have in the neighborhood. I am even making a neat door with hinges too so we can easily gain access to the garden.

      Our soil is coming this weekend, so we are right in line with getting the garden ready. As you can see from our photo’s, our little sprouts are coming up nicely with our grow light. Yes, we did purchase all of our seeds already, but we are saving seeds too from what we purchased in the grocery store. For example, last year we grew only one pumpkin and bought one, and cleaned and saved their seeds to grow this year. (got over 1,000 seeds – WOW!)

      Keep your tips coming, we appreciate them a great deal!

    • Yeah, I thought Daddy & Mommy were making me something, then I found out it was for veggies, rats! I was starting to wonder though where they were going to get a dog mattress THAT BIG! LOL Glad you liked their garden frame, they are really proud of it! They just can’t wait to get the plants in there! We are sooooo surprised to have one of our plants sprout in just two days! Now that is amazing!

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