Saturday, July 23, 2016
Living the Pantry Lifestyle - Lawn and Garden Projects
The heat index today is to be over 100 so I was out early watering the garden and picking the first green beans of the season. That is always a red letter day here as they are the favorite food we grow. I gave up on most tomatoes, unless we chop a tree down near the garden there won't be enough direct sunshine. However, cherry tomatoes grow fine and I'm just waiting for some to ripen next week... maybe.
I'm so very thankful I was able to stock the freezer some a few weeks ago. Meals have been creative but chicken makes everything easier. I thought it amusing that while watching The Last Alaskans, they continuously talk about the need for meat to survive in Alaska. There was not one vegetarian among them (on purpose at least).
The reason for us being so tight right now is the huge sodding project Hubby is currently working on. He was given the wrong estimate and when he went to pay for the order, found out it was nearly $400 instead of $150 as he had been told. The young woman who gave him the estimate had not included other charges. He was given the option to back out of the order but the project was too important.
It has been a huge project but everything looks so much better and... even more important for him... it will make maintenance easier. The forest has been trying to take back the area next to one side of the house and it was winning each year. The only way to give it a permanent fix was to take every good plant, bush, unwelcome seedling, and equally unwelcome weed and dig them all out... replacing with thick sod over all.
He used the extra sod from the project to place around trees that had bare spots from not getting enough sunlight. Over the past few years, he has been cutting lower branches to get more sunlight on the ground.
The Spring project this year was the rebuilding of half the raised beds and laying garden fabric between the raised bed rows before layering pea gravel on top of it. Last year it was putting a new chicken wire fence around the garden. Last Fall he built a double composting unit. We are hoping next Spring to be able to add more raised beds to grow more of our own food.
Each season we have planned and budgeted for the most important project at that time. Sometimes it made for planting late and it would have been nice to have the compost unit a couple months earlier... but one does what they can, with what they have, and when energy permits. There is no option of not doing anything at all.
I already have a list of garden items I need to look for if they go on clearance in August to be ready for next Spring and this month's Amazon credit was partially used for garden supplies (for which I thank everyone who enters their Amazon shopping or purchases Amazon Gift Cards through the widgets and links!).
The garden is an important part of our pantry for in season it provides organic veggies... and talk about local, you don't get more local than your back yard (unless it is walking out to the deck for what is growing there). ;)
Not to mention that my doctor says it is great exercise and working outside provides a natural source of Vitamin D as well as healthy food!