Getting Ready for Spring – GardenUpdate (MAR2015)

(Nutritional With lessons learned from the first year of gardening, and a decently producing winter garden, Aaron explains how things fared, and what is in the works for the coming Spring season.

From Napa (Chinese) Cabbage, to Daikon Radish, broccoli, “Romanesco” broccoli, kale, Mesclun salad, Collard greens, dandelions and more, the fall/winter garden did well enough to produce a constant source of leafy greens for juicing and salads.

Meanwhile, Aaron is constructing raised Garden bed to make the spring crop even better – taking a lesson from the fact that the rabbits that daily invade the yard seemed much more willing to munch on the ground-level cabbage than the ones raised up only 6 inches or so. Growing potatoes over the mostly mild Texas winter almost worked, but ultimately failed. To improve that, Aaron has constructed a vertical potato box to facilitate the upward growth of the potatoes, as well as several 4×2 frames just for cucumbers, which will be trained to grow up a trellis.

Seed starters for transplant are being raised in an LED-lit “AeroGarden” where plants grow in a water & air nutrient medium, as well as under a T5 grow light in starter boxes — many things, including cucumbers, celery, amaranth, heirloom tomatoes, strawberry spinach, bell pepper, Red Romaine lettuce, mesclun salad, basil, cilantro, Swiss chard and dandelions are being prepared. Meanwhile, Aaron is trying to sprout Moringa seeds (the so-called miracle tree) and cuttings from a tree collard, which will produce near-constant edible leaves year round if it takes.

The garden is a more exciting place that it may seem at first glance. There’s lots of hard work, things to learn, successes and failures, trial & error and, of course, room to grow (sorry, sorry for the pun).

For those wanting to know how – the Internet is full of advice waiting to be searched and found. But better yet, just get started – the best learning comes from experience, observation and perseverance (much like other things in life).

Watching nature nurture is wondrous to witness and see it unfold. Let’s see how things take off.

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Aaron Dykes

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