Frustrated Spring Gardeners - Seize the Moment! Try Patch Gardening!comments (0) August 31st, 2011
This innovative gardening style - I occasionally come up with a good idea - is perfect for someone like me with limited energy and heat sensitivity. I call it "Patch Gardening," and you can start right now! Clear away the old, dead, wilted and mildew-covered cuke and zucchini vines and get going! Reach back for all the excitement and sense of wonder you felt in March and get down to your local garden center. Grab yourselves a couple of bags of composted manure (preferably organic - although I don't know how they can really call old horse dung organic) and throw it right down where you just pulled all that dead plant material. Don't compost really bug-riddled mildew-covered vines - send them on down to wherever your town crew takes them.
Spread the compost around - don't get fancy! No measuring or staking. One large bag will make a nice patch about 3 x 4 feet. Simply open your packet of greens seeds - lettuce, mixed fancy greens, spinach, rainbow chard, whatever. Fling them around or make a nice row - it doesn't matter much - and cover them with about 1/4 " of compost and water lightly. Keep this all nice and moist by watering a bit every day and you'll soon have seedlings jumping right up out of your little fall garden patch. I also planted some seedlings; I started under lights to see if I could grow brussels sprouts and kohlrabi but you don't need to go to that extreme. Here in Connecticut, since the hurricane passed, we've been having temps in the 80s during the day and down to the high 50s at night to about 60. I planted my greens in the shade of my fence and they popped up in only a few days. They're going to get a little sprinkle of bone meal and eventually some fish emulsion... but not much - they're only tiny at the moment and don't need much from me. Have fun while there's still time.
posted in: compost, fall, patch gardening