One of Jennifer and my goals this year is to reduce our food budget. Part of this will be done by maxing out our garden. Previously, we have tried to grow in the spot where the previous owners had their garden, but it didn’t work as well as it could. For one thing, the place is shaded most of the day, and for another, we didn’t really know what we were doing.
But we’ve learned a couple things, and will be making some changes. We’ve decided to move it to another part of the yard, which will help with the sunlight exposure. Another thing we’ll be doing is fencing the garden with fishline. The idea, reported with success by some people, is that deer will try to get the food but get pushed back when they touch the fishline. They won’t see it, so they won’t know how high it is, and won’t try to jump over it. Hopefully this will work, because the alternative is to install a 10 foot fence, which some people say is merely a suggestion to deer around here.
We’re going to start seeds indoors, but instead of the prepackaged peat seed starters we just put some starter soil in an egg carton and planted the seeds in that. The good thing about the egg carton is that since it’s made of recycled newspaper, it will break down if planted in the garden. Whenever we pulled up stuff we started in peat pellets, the little nets were still around the root bundle, which certainly stunted the plant’s growth. We could also just remove the soil pocket from the carton and plant it directly, to avoid taking chances.
Another thing we’ll be trying is a potato box. The idea is to maximize growth space by growing the plant vertically instead of letting it spread out in a row. I built the frame and first layer of board today, and we’ll start some potatoes inside, then move them outside after the last frost, which is probably later this month.
All in all, I’m looking forward to the challenge. Hopefully we’ll get some good stuff out of this, and be able to can some of it.
We’ll certainly need to, because despite what The Bernank says, we aren’t growing our way out of this recession, and inflation is not too low.