it was awesome. yesterday, wednesday, may8, 2013. we gardened naked for the whole day! it was absolutely fantastic!
next up - the always promised sky pic for my mole sister, Helga. look Helga, the green is starting to come back!
and here's out front:
there's lots of green slowly coming back. we had an excellent winter - no staying snow until the end of february and that only lasted for about 2 weeks. for the first 2 weeks in march it was bare ground and we were looking forward to getting into the garden in april. and then we got hit with an unexpected snowstorm. and that snow stayed for 2 weeks and froze the ground so that there was no working on the raised beds or tires...and worse, jambaloney couldn't start work on the greenhouse that he is building for us - he had to wait until the ground was workable.
why? you ask. well, because we will need proper drainage in the greenhouse. meaning trenches needed to be dug as well as the railway ties that he has been gathering for years now needed to be sunk in the ground. here's a sneak peak at my new greenhouse floor:
isn't it awesome?!?!?!?!? when completed it will be 8ft by 20ft, plus 6ft high on the short end and 8ft high on the tall end...our roof will slope and the greenhouse is being built facing south - it's going to be a wicked season extender and early season starter. i can't wait for it to be built! he has been working on it like mad! also, we had our Framboise family's help in getting the railway ties sunk and levelled. our dear friend E's 2 boys, H & N, came over the weekend before last to help dig out trenches for the railway ties to be laid. then they went to the beach with jambaloney and shovelled a truck load of sand onto the truck bed. then they unloaded all of the sand. the following day they shovelled the sand to level the floor and the railway ties. then E's other son, M, came over and needed a ride into a nearby town in order to get a job on the fishing boats. so jambaloney downed tools to give him a life and H & N just kept on working. they knew what they were doing and they did a mighty fine job. i was very proud of them! we will be getting them back to help when jambaloney is putting the roof on the greenhouse. imagine - a greenhouse built out of all thrown away windows! it's going to be sooo awesome. oh, and jambaloney has gone to the beach 3 more times to get truckloads of rocks as you can see in the picture. then he shoveled the rocks off of the truck and onto the sand in order to finish the floor of the greenhouse. the rocks, sand and trenches will provide good drainage as i intend to spray all of my plants using the garden hose....and i intend to have many plants in the greenhouse! jambaloney will do future posts on step by step instructions - i just wanted to give you all a sneak peak.
anyway, the last few weeks have been spent getting the garden ready for planting. some of those days included wearing gloves, boots and scarves which then changed into t-shirts and workpants, which then changed into tank tops and shorts - and finally yesterday it was full-on NAKED GARDENING DAY - woohoo!
well, we had to down tools in late afternoon to go to our Fourchu
family's house, C & B's, in order for jambaloney to try and fix B's
laptop, and to set up a new router for all of their computers. it was
good as gold in regards to the router - not so good for the laptop. the
darn thing wouldn't even start!!! jambaloney had everyone laughing when
he said "ok guys...my job begins after the thing powers up. if there's
no juice, there's nothing i can do!". so they have to send it back to
the manufacturer and get it replaced. after that, it was off to the
Volunteer Fire Department meeting where we all received our Level C
CPR/AED certifications which are valid until 2016 - woohoo!
those of you who don't know, Level C in Canada means that you are
qualified to do single, or two-rescuer cardiopulmonary resuscitation and
choking maneuvers for adult, child and infant casualties. the AED
certification means that you are qualified in the knowledge and skill to
safely use an automated external defibrilator. for this course, i think
we had 16 of our members now qualified at these levels. we also have 3
fully-trained Medical First Responders. being that our VFD only has 28
members - over half of us are trained to help in a variety of
emergencies. and that is a good feeling.
anyway, back to the garden - woohoo! we have amended our soil by adding sawdust and a truckload of year old composted horse manure and hay - the stuff smells delicious, looks delicious and i was very tempted to try eating some. honestly, the guy we got it from has been making organic horse manure/hay compost for 18 years. he filled our truckbed with that gold and we have been adding it to all of our raised beds and tires! to get ready for planting - which i have spent the past 5 days doing - woohoo! have a look:
that's all-season blend broccoli, all-season blend cabbage and french breakfast radishes! next up, have any of you had problems in years past with making plant markers for your beds and having them run in the rain even though you used permanent marker?!?!?!? i sure have! this year, jambaloney made me markers from old siding. i then used a paint marker and some spray adhesive stuff and hopefully these will last for years to come - have a peak - i love them:
back to the garden -
all in all - here is what has been planted so far:
Bush Peas - 4 varieties
Pole Peas - 5 varieties
Carrots - 6 varieties
Beets - 3 varieties
Radishes - 3 varieties
Onion - 3 varieties
Chives - saved seed from last year
Kale - 3 varieties plus saved seed from last year
Swiss Chard - 1 variety
Spinach - 2 varieties
Cauliflower - all season blend
Broccoli - all season blend
Cabbage - all season blend
Brussel Sprouts - 1 variety
Pak Choi - 1 variety
Chinese Cabbage - 1 variety
Daikon Radish - 1 variety
Rutabaga - 1 variety
Garlic - 1 variety
so that's what is in the ground for now. however...in our crappy, little make-shift greenhouse in the kitchen we have:
72 tomatoe plants - 6 each of 7 varieties, and 8 each of 3 varieties. have a peak:
the styrafoam that you see is silver on the front and therefore reflects the light and the heat.
also in the greenhouse is 40 pepper plants - 4 each of 10 varieties - woohoo!
can you say 24 tires of potatoes??? oh yes you can!
this year we are doing irish cobblers, red chieftains and brown russets. oh and the absolutely amazing thing is that we are still eating last year's potatoes that were harvested for the final time in december. those potatoes are still as fresh as the day they were harvested. better yet - we used our harvested potatoes for seed this year - no need to buy seed potatoes when you already have your own!
continuing on, jambaloney had to clear some land to give us extra room this year. in clearing the area he had to cut down a bunch of alders. we felt bad doing it but knew that we would put those alders to good use! in the interest of waste not/want not - we used the alder branches to make teepees for our pole peas. we will do the same for the pole beans. we will use the alder branches as stakes for tomatoes, peppers and anything else. those alder branches will not go to waste!
well, to wrap up this long, drawn-out post, i will leave you with some food pics. you can't do all of that planting and building and seed-starting and whatnot without some good food in your belly. how about some delicious liver, mushrooms and onion with rice, some quinoa salad and grape tomatoes and olives:
certainly not to be outdone by a delicious plate of vietnamese noodles with bok choi, cauliflower, broccoli, carrot and green onion with some mandarines on the side:
mmmmm. and then there's coconut curried chicken with a ton of fresh cilantro, a parlsey, tomatoe, cucmber and sprout salad with some pineapple:
i know that it has been a while since i posted and i hope that i am making up for that with this looooong post. as it is gardening season, i will want to keep an almost daily diary of what's growing and stuff. plus soon we will be swimming in the river. so expect more regular posts coming. good luck to you in all of your gardening endeavours - i promise to hit up all of your blogs this evening and tomorrow!
(p.s. - today we had a few hours of naked gardening but then it got overcast! and it looks like we are in for a week of overcast/grey skies/showers/etc. but i just know that naked gardening season has started and i can't wait to share more naked gardening adventures with you all!)