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I need another vacation ...

My garden is laid out with nine long raised beds running north-south at either end of the 80-by-35-foot space. In the center the beds run east-west, and I haven't finished that part yet so I don't know how many I'll end up with.

The first nine beds, at the north end, have been done for a while, and I see little specks of growth when I look very closely. The spinach is up, as is some lettuce, a couple beets and a lot of radishes. Where are the carrots? Turnips? I hope I don't have to reseed.

The southern nine beds are six right now. I should be able to get the other three done this morning. Most of these beds will be further divided into hills for squash, melons and cucumbers.

This is a lot of work, but I hope I don't have to do it again, ever. Not that I'll never have a garden again, but once the raised beds are done, I shouldn't have to redo them every year.

My plan comes from a book I bought many years ago called The Cook's Garden. (The website has NO information about how to create a garden space; looks like they've morphed into a seed catalog.) I've grown vegetables in raised beds previously, but they were railroad-tie beds filled with dirt. Still a lot of work, but not as much shoveling, hoeing, raking or sweating.

Perhaps I should have gone the no-till route. Ah, well, too late for that. I will, however, be mulching the footpaths between the beds with cardboard and newspaper. And the compost is cooking, to enrich the soil for future use.

I have to redraw my garden map; if Blogger cooperates, I'll try to post it here in the next day or two. Then you can all be impressed with how much work I'm doing. Be sure to invite me along on your next vacation – I need it!


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