My Growing Garden – Part 2

‘Resting’ is difficult for me. Something always gets my attention, usually something small that will ‘only take a moment’ to fix. Next thing I know, it’s several hours later and there’s usually a mess of some sort in the yard. However, on this occasion, I almost achieved a restful day, coming out in the morning to water, and again early evening to move some of the plants from their ‘holding’ area, to the newly opened area in the cinder bed. This mostly consisted of a few runners and some herbs that were not doing especially well in their holding area.

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Much better, but still not finished

A few days later, the wife ran off to another state and I seemed rested enough, actually feeling like getting up and doing something. So, I got out in the yard and piddled my way to making the ‘gazebo’ sturdier and more like a greenhouse. Several of the upright poles had to be reconstructed and moved, other peices needed to be re-fit, fittings swapped out and string rerun. When all was said and done, I only had to cut a single piece of pipe! All of the other pieces were precut from a different project, and simply utilized in the construction of this frame. The lattice is repurposed, left over from several years ago when we added a porch to the house. By dropping down para-cord, I can train the indeterminate tomatoes and squash to grow vertically. The lattice across the top provides nice dappled shade to the squash, and it is once again thriving in its environment, putting off 2 baby squash, and a flower for a 3rd. (Several more have blossomed since).

Still moving forward, I decided to put the 2nd grow bed in front of the 1st, and parallel with the length of the cinder garden. I did this for a couple of reasons. 1st off, this was the highest and the flattest ground, and 2nd, it was in a great location to hook up to the existing system. Sadly, the ground was rock hard, bouncing my shovel back up at me when I tested for dig-ability. Remarkably, it rained that night, allowing me to easily scratch up the top soil the following morning, leveling everything out. Finally, putting the bed here also fits into a grander design, (in my mind) once I get everything functioning properly, (i.e., I quit killing the fish), and am truly ready to expand.

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Dig down to level

With the ground flattened and the few cinder blocks I have remaining leveled, I run up to Lowes for additional cinder blocks. At $1.37 ea, I get (30), well more than the (8) I need for this project, but they always come in handy so I like to have a few lying around. An hour later, the bricks are unloaded and stacked, and the needed (8) are in place. I like to reinforce my grow bed (water is quite heavy @ 8 lbs/gal) with 2″x10″s, and I quickly cut (2) boards down to size. (These were from some damaged boards I had picked up along the way.)

With some assistance from the wife, my eldest child (home from college) and her school chum, we quickly move the grow bed into place. A few moments and well coordinated moves later, the bed cover is in place, using 4 pieces of 2″ PVC that ‘looked’ about the right size to lift up the bed to the desired height. A final wipe down and rinse out, and I am ready to reload the bed with the C.L.A.E. pebbles.

I still have more work to do to ‘finish’ this off, but for now It is quite functional, and is presentable to boot!

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