This is a journal of my vegetable gardens. Skippy was my first dog and he always thought the garden was his. Even though I do all the work, he always stood by me. I'm located near Boston (in USDA zone 6A). I have a community plot and a backyard vegetable garden. I use sustainable organic methods and try to grow all of my family's vegetables.

Monday, June 09, 2008

my dad's garden

dad's garden 7
dad's garden 6 dad's garden 9
dad's garden 5 dad's garden 4
dad's garden 2 dad's garden 3
After giving my gardens some water early this morning, I went up to visit my Dad's garden. It looks awesome. Beautiful vegetables in nice straight rows. I gave my Dad several types of seedlings this spring and its fun to see how they have done under his care.

And I would say he has done better than me with them. Without a doubt his broccoli is better. His kale is nice too and his tomatoes are big and healthy looking. His lettuce is great. But them who's comparing anyway. (I think I'll add some fertilizer to my gardens tomorrow.)

This year I gave away maybe a hundred total seedlings to several gardeners: Dad, Elaine, Dave, Amelia and Chris. Giving away seedlings is another way of increasing the number of gardeners out there growing their own food. Whether you garden to save the earth, to save money, for super fresh food, or just for the fun of it, its nice to share some plants.

my dad's garden



Blogger moaltd said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

June 10, 2008 1:51 AM

Anonymous TopVeg said...

Great to see rows of healthy veg - a wonderful sight!

It is hot here.too!

June 10, 2008 1:52 AM

Anonymous Ted said...

So what kind of garden beds do you think are more efficient (able to produce more per sqft)? Raised beds or what your father has? I currently have a bunch of raised beds but I am not sure if they give me enough space because I am finding that I want to keep adding beds. I currently have 8 raised beds, 2 3x6, 2 3x5, 3 3x8 and 1 misshaped. The sizes of my beds are based on the wood that is available (lowes had 12' cedar boards on sale this winter while last year all I could get was 10'). What are the dimensions of your fathers garden? It looks pretty big!

June 10, 2008 8:32 AM

Anonymous Amelia said...

Those two tomatoe plants have more than doubled in size since you gave them to me - I totally love them! I'm moving down to DC at the end of this week (got a job!) and I'm bringing the tomatoes with me. I think they'll love the DC heat.

How's that cayenne doing? I thought I recognized it in that picture of all the pepper plants in your pots. The cayennes I kept have started to bloom - I can't believe my little babies are going to start bearing fruit so soon.

Thanks once again for the lovely day of gardening and for the tomato seedlings! I'm excited to keep following your gardening exploits from afar.

June 10, 2008 9:57 AM

Blogger kathy said...

Glad to hear your tomatoes are doing good!

I almost took photos of the cayenne plant today, because it has lots of buds. They aren't quite open yet though, so I'll wait until they do. Maybe tomorrow. The plant has probably doubled in size and is blooming ahead of mine. It has a front row seat in my pepper barrels. It will be nice to have early chiles.

June 10, 2008 10:36 AM

Blogger kathy said...

Hi Ted,

I think there are two different types of gardens: ones with extra space and ones with limited space.

I'd like to do a post soon on your question. A good one. Which is more efficient - beds or rows. Both methods have advantages. I'll give it some more thought and a bit of googling. But you only need to worry about efficiency if you have limited space.

My Dad's garden is about 15 feet wide by at least 30 or 40 feet long. Yes its big. He has lots of space and has been gradually cutting back on his garden size. When I was in high school and helping him a bit I think the garden was twice the size.

I am also trying to add space to my community garden. I thought it was enormous when I first got it, but now I would like a bit more space. I originally made fairly wide paths, but am now planting in these. I think I will eventually see what is the minimum path size I can make do with and the rest will be permanent beds. I may or may not make a low edge of wood around the beds later.

3-4 foot wide beds are good so you can reach into the entire bed. I need to rethink my bed that is lengthwise along the side of my garden because I can't reach the backside.

My thought is a bed format is a more efficient use of space, while wide spaced rows (like my Dad's and professional farms) are easier to maintain. My dad can use a hoe to weed and I've never been able to do this with my beds.

Of course there are many books on this topic. I love to look at the pictures in "Great Garden Companions" by Sally Cunningham. It looks like she has lots of space and just keeps on adding beds and also planting outside of the beds. Sort of a mixture.

I will get a sense of the comparison in productivity between my dad's garden and mine. He has the same number of tomatoes as me. I'll compare the space and yields someday.

June 10, 2008 11:17 PM


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