Garden is in

We finished planting the last things we wanted to grow this summer in the garden. There were some odd seed failures (sunflowers, celeriac, beans, beets, etc), but on the whole everything is looking good.

Garden 2014

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8 Responses to Garden is in

  1. Snowbrush says:

    Whoopee! Is that a picture of what you plow with?

    • lee says:

      It’s a wheel hoe, and it can mount various implements depending on what task I want to do. In the picture, I’ve got an 8″ scuffle hoe on it and I’m killing off the weeds in an area just before we planted corn. I planted the corn using a seeder which attaches to the same tool. It was the least back-breaking planting I’ve ever done.

      I have a plow attachment and can make furrows, but it’s not designed to break new soil. The ground has to already have appropriate tilth established by other means (such as rototilling or rotary plowing). I use the wheel hoe plow heads (they are separate) mostly for hilling and cutting the initial trench for potatoes.

  2. kev alviti says:

    Wow that looks good! How do you keep it so weed free?

    • lee says:

      We were just talking about this recently, as the garden this year is finally as weed free as all the gardening books would have you think happens naturally. Usually weeding just feels like an endless chore.

      There are a lot of factors which combine to control the weeds. Oregon has very dry summers, so anywhere you don’t water you don’t get weeds. The potatoes in the foreground are dry gardened, so they are almost weed free. We use drip irrigation for most of the other rows to limit water. I cringe whenever it rains because it means the weeds will explode.

      When it comes to weeding, Robin and I share the job and never spend much time on it. Robin hand weeds using a short-handled Japanese weeding sickle which I keep very sharp. You really just scrape it around the plants and it kills everything. This year I’ve started using a wheel hoe for bulk weeding. I have sweeps that can kill young weeds in a 14″ swath and can cut near the plants, but the real powerhouse is an 8″ scuffle hoe that cuts everything down almost as fast as you can walk down the rows. Most of our walk paths are less than 2 feet wide, so two passes and they are weed free. I also occasionally run a tiller around the garden perimeter to keep the established sod from creeping in.

      • kev alviti says:

        It’s always a bit wetter here. So we have the problem that anywhere there is bare soil there is weeds and they grow like mad! It’s a constant battle and I’m always looking for new ways to combat it! If we have a dry spell it means the soil goes rock hard and the weeds are even harder to pull out!
        It looks like you put a lot of work into your garden you guys should feel proud of it!

      • lee says:

        I would definitely recommend some kind of cutting tool for weeding. It’s much easier to stand and slice off the weeds than bend over and pull them, and in hot weather the plants die just as quickly. I think a lot of people dislike hoes because the hardware store ones are so dull and ineffective. You can sometimes find well made traditional hoes at estate sales. Among modern designs, a sharp scuffle hoe is hard to beat.

  3. ShimFarm says:

    Seriously. That is a garden you can be proud of.

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