Monday, May 2, 2011

Preparing our own little garden

Preparing the garden is one of my favorite things to do during the year. I only spent a few hours working in our yard, but it looks completely different and will provide many vegetables for us until winter.

I hadn't touched the yard since last November, so it was almost like starting a brand new garden. Here is how I did it.
First, cut the grass.

Then, rake up all the cut grass.

Next, turn the soil using a "double dig" method. This makes nice fluffy soil that is easy for young roots to grow in.

Use a hoe to break up the big chunks of dirt. 

Use a gardening rake to pull out grass that is near the top.

Use a leaf rake to gather smaller plants that the bigger rake missed.

These are all the tools I used, not including the weed wacker.

Three hours later, it is ready for a little fertilizer and some seedlings!
I think gardening is one of the best ways to meet people in Shimane. Farmers and old grandpas like to tell us how to do it better or compliment us on something that is growing well. Gardening is a topic of conversation many people share in Shimane.

If you don't have a garden, I hope you find space to make your own garden. It really isn't that hard. Feel free to ask questions if you have any. Plus, if you have extra vegetables, you can give them away. It makes people happy.

What is your favorite spring/summer vegetable?


  1. I can't believe that I just watched a five minute video on double digging...
    The garden looks nice. I am jealous.

  2. What is behind your apartment?

    When we lived in a similar apartment, our neighbors dug up the space behind it. When they harvested sweet potatoes in the fall, they invited everyone out for a BBQ in the parking lot. It was nice.

  3. Thats a great looking garden plot! What are you going to grow? I should send you some Brandywine tomato seeds. Those are my favorite tomatos of all time!

  4. We've purchased, but not planted, a variety of summer vegetables, such as mini tomatoes, cucumbers, egg plant, green beans, green peppers, and a few zucchinis.

    The last two summers, there were more mini tomatoes than we could pick. The seeds, from fallen tomatoes, are all over the yard. We will probably have lots of them again.

    I'm not familiar with Brandywine tomatoes. I'll try some of yours when we visit this summer.