Fall temperatures are finally upon us. Gone are the 90 degree days with a welcome 50 degree temperatures at night. Airconditioners are off and windows are open to the refreshing night air. Gardens are winding down and the trees are heaving a big sigh of relief as they prepare for fall color and winter slumber. Over all it's been a great year of gardening and summer projects. Much more has been accomplished than I expected. I'm already looking forward to the next year of gardening. Next year should be much more gardening and less weed control and fence building.
My daughter works for Walgreens and on occasion has opportunity to some great bargains. She has given Terra Nova Gardens the latest contribution. At the end of the garden season, the shelves were being cleared of all garden seeds. Since they can't just give away product and these seeds were destined for the dumpster, my daughter convinced her manager to sell them to her for a penny a piece. Two hundred and fifty two seed packets were purchased and given to Terra Nova Garden project.
All kinds of herbs and vegetables were among the packs. I will only have to purchase sweet corn and popcorn for next year's seeds. Now I'm definitely going to have to use the seed starting station big time, don't you think?
I've had my eye on these two bales of hay for some time. I thought it would make perfect mulch for Terra Nova Gardens to improve the texture of the soil and to keep the weeds under control. It impossible to track down anyone to receive permission to haul it away. It was a part of a private investment group that bought properties for future sale with the intention to make a profit. The address attached to the group turned out to be a house for sale. I just happened to run upon the farmer's hired hand mowing down weeds by the road one day and finally got permission to haul it away. I deep into the process of hauling the hay to Terra Nova Gardens and have maybe a fourth of the garden covered. The hay has been sitting by the road for over four years and has no value for live stock feed. A great discovery for me was that the bottom layer of about a foot to eighteen inches of the bales has nearly turned to compost. I will have at least three to four loads of the bottom layer from each bale. Oh, be still my heart.
The neighbor across the street runs a yard service and claims this fall to have a costumer that will have a huge grass/leaf mixture cleanup that can be dumped on my garden. Can there be such a thing as too much compost? I don't think so. I know it's not exactly organic in nature but close enough for me. My fenced in garden area will be as much organic as I can get. Outside the fence is probably going to be critter food anyway.
Here's the beginning of the mulching. This is about three loads of mulch on the ground. If I have enough, I'll just keep going past my property until it runs out. This is to the south of my fenced in garden. Next year it will the site of pumpkins, watermelons, and potatoes. So far this year only one watermelon was stolen. Since the neighbors thought they would all be stolen, I am claiming it's a successful harvest. We have two left and have harvest three. The neighbor from where I live is in charge of that part of the garden.
I've pressed into the hauling of the hay so the spring development has not really progressed much. I've decided that I'll just dig out the spring as much as I can and let it fill up and become a pond.
After the pond has been dug, the plan is to put a six in plastic PVC stand pipe with holes drilled into to allow the water to flow into the pipe. Crushed rock and concrete blocks would hold up the pipe until a platform can be built over that part of the pond. Barrels which I can acquire for free will be the storage for watering the garden. I have built the platform for the barrels up on the hill about 20 feet up the hill. To pump the water out of the pond this little baby here will do the work. It costs about $200.00 but is really a great investment. It can pump water up to twenty feet high and draw water up 20 feet out of the pond. Since the pond will only be about six feet at the stand pipe everything should work great. Supposedly the machine will pump 150 gallons a minute. So in one minute three 55 gallon barrels can be filled. Awesome!!
In the mean time the neglected backyard once again is out of control. The Sequoia weeds as I have named them require some attention. As you can see the only thing that grew in the backyard this summer was the weeds and crab grass. Now that we have received some rain (1.44 inches) the grass that hasn't died is starting to grow. I really must spend a couple days cleaning up the front and back yard. I believe that the back yard will have to be replanted with grass seed this fall. The front yard looks fairly good except for a couple bare spots. I don't know what the real name for these weeds are but they grew quite well in subsoil clay dirt with any water all summer. Too bad we couldn't figure out some way to use them. Yes I really did need an axe to cut them down but I must say it was easier than cutting down a tree.
I hope everyone is having a great fall. Leave a comment and tell me all about it.