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A new garden

We’ve been busy with house projects as usual. The bathroom tub finally got fresh caulk and, despite the fact that there is still marbled banana yellow tile everywhere, the tub at least feels new(ish) and clean(er). The huge tree limb that fell down a week after we bought the house and has been in an unruly heap of cut logs in the backyard has now been neatly stacked on either side of the shed. The master bedroom is finally trimmed – all the way around – top and bottom. And the surface of the kitchen table, which hadn’t been visible since YC’s family came over at Christmas-time, is now remarkably free of all saws, drill bits, drills, levels, screws, and bright yellow Stanley tape measures. It’s been a busy month at the Project House.

After a winter break, the hens are a-laying
After a winter break, the hens are a-laying

All of this activity hasn’t left much time for spring gardening. We’re lucky these days if we remember to collect the eggs from the bushes that the hens lay in. A few weeks ago, we managed to squeeze out a few hours on a Sunday afternoon to put together some new garden boxes.

New Boxes
New boxes with the garden guard dog

We lost some motivation after we built the boxes, worried that it would be too late in the season to plant from all the seeds I ordered, and also unsure how to prevent our roaming chickens from eating our plants. But it was Farmer Dad to the rescue this spring’s garden. My parents came for a visit last weekend – their first time to see the house (hence the fresh caulk and clean table). And they brought plants.

Plants from Farmer Dad
Plants from Farmer Dad

My dad is a big time gardener (maybe it’s hereditary?). All organics, mulch tea, citrus orchard, pecan trees, chickens, his own special variety of basil honed over the past few years, and a grapefruit tree that supplies a formidable amount of fruit. He brought us some of the prized basil, spaghetti squash, several varieties of tomato, zucchini, cucumber, and pumpkin seedlings.

Prized basil seedlings
Prized basil seedlings

Last Sunday dawned rainy, cool, and grey, but by the time I got out of bed on Sunday morning, YC and my dad had gone to Home Depot, lined the bottom of the boxes with cardboard to keep the weeds from coming up, filled the boxes with a mix of topsoil, compost, and mulch, and constructed hen fences around each box out of chicken wire and rebar posts. (I’m getting spoiled with the gardening this spring.)

New boxes with hen barriers constructed out of chicken wire and rebar.
New boxes with hen barriers constructed out of chicken wire and rebar.

The only thing left for me to do was pop the seedlings and a few seeds into the ground.

Seedlings in the ground
Seedlings in the ground

The seeds I put in the ground are already starting to come up and the rest are all growing strong. The hens have so far stayed out of the garden (knock on wood).

Chicken-free garden
Chicken-free garden

Happy planting to all!

One thought on “A new garden

  1. Came across your post here. I just recently got some chicks and was wondering how to protect the raised bed next year from them. Is it hard to lean over the hen fence or do you remove it when you are working in the garden?

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