I took myself off to the Northey Street City Farm a short while back and raided their Organic Nursery for seedlings for my Vegetable Garden.
- 2 types of lettuce (don’t ask which – just know they are sweet!)
- baby spinach
- spring onions
- pak choy
- lemon balm
I looooooooove Northey Street – but I’ll tell you about my adventures there at another time. Back to my own backyard…
My old veg garden had died a sad and horrible death – due to a neglectful Mum (me) and a heavy work schedule that kept me from it. So I spent about half an hour digging the soil to loosen it up. Then I raided my compost bin, which yielded the most beautiful soil, added a bag of purchased organic compost and mixed both through the current soil in the garden patch.
I then joyously added my collection of veg seedlings.
Then came the mulch – organic of course!
After I finished and retired to shadier conditions (ie. indoors) I kept a lookout through a window on our mobile compost bin – our pet duck, Cuddles, in case he felt the need to trash the new garden bed.
Fortunately, he was on his best behaviour… unfortunately, the wild doves that call our backyard home, weren’t!
I witnessed them in the garden patch busy at work inspecting the new additions to their environment. After a while I became curious and went out to inspect it all myself, and what did I find? The little monsters had pulled all of the seedlings out. They didn’t eat them, they simply plucked them from the ground and left them there.
So I muttered some delightful dove phrases, and re-planted the seedlings. Then I found some old window screens in our garage and placed them over the baby plants to keep them ‘dove safe’.
As the seedlings began growing I discovered other plants bursting through the soil and mulch.
- Tomato plants
Seeds from my previous veg garden had sprouted up and were sharing the ‘new’ premises. At first I didn’t mind… until 12 zuchini plants made themselves known. So I lovingly relocated the little guys into a nearby plot. (Two more have since sprouted up in the original plot).
The plants are doing great and I have taken produce from it for 3 weeks now. I fill a large container each time and it lasts LTSH (Long Term Suffering Husband) and I for the week. Eco Chook – who is currently visiting – even gets her fill of baby spinach and lettuce daily. And my worm farm residents enjoy a leaf or two.
I’m not a huge lover of mustard, but I added it to the plot because I’d read that it is great for soil improvement. What I have found most helpful about it is all those nasty little aphids that would have attacked my spinach and Tatsoi have ended up on the mustard. And of course, where you find aphids and no pesticide, you will also find Lady Beetles – the Warrior Princess’ of pest eradication!
So the mustard may not be filling our tummies, but it is fulfilling a purpose. Try companion planting when planning your veg garden. Mother Nature already has a plan – all you need is a little thought to take advantage of it.