Maggies Mentions


2 Comments

Attract Beneficial Bugs to Your Garden by Mother Earth Living

ID-100185568In my previous gardening article Green Thumb Gardening – Discover Permaculture I talk about companion planting, growing an organic garden and creating the environment nature intended for my garden. This article from Mother Earth Living on how to attract beneficial bugs to your garden, plays right into what I want to accomplish with all-natural pest control and the plants I need for these benefits.  Get this helpful info Here!
Happy Gardening!

Photo Courtesy Gualberto107 via FreeDigitalPhotos.net


2 Comments

My Garden – Preparing the Garden Bed

ID-10062334Last weekend we came into the month of March, which means that Spring is here and time to plant seeds in my garden. I am preparing the garden using the Permaculture method. (See Green Thumb Gardening – Discover Permaculture for more information on that.)
My son has been a great inspiration for this and helping me along the way. I have purchased my seeds and will be doing companion planting, plants that go well together and compliment the nutrients each offers to the garden. My daughter who does not really like gardening, came over to help out and did a great job :}

This type raised garden bed is considered a lasagna, layered, no-dig, no-till, square foot, type of gardening, mainly because you are not digging or tilling the soil, you are layering it like you would lasagna.

 

 

 

firstlayercardboard copyMy first layer my son tells me, is to lay down cardboard. I was concerned about the writing on some of the pieces, so I tore that off. The cardboard will offer carbon to the garden and as it deteriorates. Laying out the cardboard also gave me an idea of how big I wanted this garden bed to be and it is 5″ x 10″.

 

 

 

 

 

Secondlayersoil copyThe second layer is good natural black dirt mixed with mushroom compost 50/50. I do not want any pesticides or non organic fertilizes, I want the plants to grow as nature intends. That will be a journey of research in itself, but I am off to a good start.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Fourthlayerclippings copyThe third layer should be natural mulch from your yard, dried leaves, grass clippings, scraps of vegetables, fruits that you would put in the garbage anyway. I did not have much around the yard, but I gathered what I could and took a bit from my other garden, a tropical guild I started last year.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Fourthlayermulch copyThe fourth layer is 1″ high of all natural Cypress mulch. I put this on to make up for the lack of clippings.

 

 

 

 

 

Fifthlayersoil copyThe Fifth layer is adding the natural black dirt mixed with the mushroom compost again, adding a thick layer this time of 3″ high.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sixthlayermulch copyThe final layer is adding the cypress wood mulch to top off the garden. This is also put on thick to about 3″ high.

Starting with the cardboard, each layer was watered down before the next layer was added, ending with watering the top layer.

 

 

 

Now that the garden bed is ready, this will be where I am going to plant my peas, green beans and flowers to start and then the Rainbow carrots, that I am really looking forward to growing.

Next post – Seeds Are Sprouting in the Raised Garden Bed

If you would like to take the journey with me, like this post and follow my blog.

Happy Gardening :}

 

Top Photo courtesy of podpad at FreeDigitalPhotos.net


4 Comments

Green Thumb Gardening – Discover Permaculture

ID-100196322Spring is on its way here in Florida and I am waiting impatiently to plant my seeds and get my garden started.

My son loves gardening as well and has been teaching me how to prepare my garden using the Permaculture method. (He actually had a small food forest he built up in a couple of years in his backyard while going to college).

So you ask, what is Permaculture? It originally was referred to as permanent agriculture or permanent culture and was developed in 1978 by Bill Mollison and David Holmgren of Australia. It is a method of planting, using natural resources and plants that are native to your area, and growing a garden that works with nature rather then against it.  See More from Organic Gardening.com

With so much controversy over GMO’s (Genetically Modified Foods), Pesticides and other forms of growing food these days, I want to grow my garden as healthy as possible, so I am going to take the journey this year with Permaculture.

Last spring, I planted a banana tree and also added sweet potatoes. This was fine, but I did not really understand companion planting  and added kale and tomatoes. Kale and tomatoes do not like each other and the banana tree was not having it with the kale in the garden either. So success was just ok. I still have a Rosemary bush that did not care who was around and has done very well. I got a bunch of sweet potatoes, some orange peppers I planted, but the results could have been better.  That is when I called my son and said teach me what you did for your food forest. I am not building a food forest, but still want the benefits of a great garden. See SmartGardener.com for what plants are best for your area.

Over the winter I have been getting my soil ready for planting, adding natural mulch, compost and will be planting seeds in the next couple of weeks. I will be planting to start with, sweet potatoes ( they regenerate on their own from the ones left in the ground) Peas, Green Beans, Tomatoes, and Rainbow Carrots. For herbs I will be planting Cilantro, Sage, Basil and Parsley. I also have flowers to aid in the process, Marigolds, Four O’Clocks and a Bee Rescue Wildflower Mix. My goal will be two gardens, a tropical guild and one for the carrots.

If you would like to take the journey with me, like this post or follow my blog.

I will be referencing different websites along the way with the first being DeepGreenPermaculture and of course get help and advice from my favorite source, my son.

See the next article – Preparing The Garden Bed

Happy Gardening :}

Photo Courtesy of by hin255  at FreeDigitalPhotos.net