Here's my preliminary plan for the plot. Certainly to be adjusted through trial and error I'm sure!
I've been reading about companion planning for a long time now, so I've been using that philosophy to guide my planting. Louise Riotte's book Tomatoes Love Carrots is excellent. I even wrote a children's book using her principles for a class project last semester where the main character, a little boy named Max Marigold, learns to like vegetables as he learns how they help each other grow strong and tasty. I'll try to upload it soon.
This week my big project is expanding the garden such that the 3 sisters - corn, beans and squash, will have the required 10 x 10 foot space to grow. I'll need to amend the soil with compost and manure because corn is such a heavy feeder and the newly dug soil won't have benefited from my winter cover crop. The three sisters technique was developed by the native Americans and is founded in the principles of companion planting. Basically, the corn acts as a post for the beans to grow on, and both provide the shade that is preferred by squash. Additionally, beans, as a legume, replenish the soil through nitrogen fixation. Here's a diagram of how I'll do it.
For now, things are growing growing growing so I want to share a few pictures of my pride and joy to hopefully inspire you to start growing at home.
|Charlie loves the catnip. He rugs it down and covers it in cat hair, and it always grows back!|
|Had to offer these wee basil plants a little help - it's been so windy|
|Some spearmint with the biggest leaves I've seen. Perfect for mojitos|
|These bloomed against all odds - biggest odd being that I planted the bulbs 4 months late|
|Potatoes in a tire Part 1|
|Tomatoes in the Tire Part 2 - These sprouted from organic store bought Yukon Golds and Russet potatoes|
|Nasturtiums, a tasty edible flower, peaking out to help the radishes grow in between|
|100% of the cucumbers germinated! Ready to go into their tire container soon|
|Red onion starters|
|Mesclun, basil, lettuce and spinach popping up|
|Globe artichoke plant with chives starting to come up around it|
|Oregano, Cilantro, and Sage|
|My herb and tree oasis. Redbud and Oak saplings thriving|