I love spring and summer, did I tell you that?
Spring because it is the end of winter. Winter in Canada can be, and usually is, long and cold. So when spring gets here it is like coming out of hibernation for me. I am looking forward to being out side, walking, riding the bike or just sitting around the fire pit looking at the flames, listening to the birds and smelling the smells. If I am lucky this time gets shared with one or more of the kids, the husband and one or more of the dogs.
Spring also is the time when mosquitoes, flies and other insects are not too much of a bother yet which makes being outside that much more enjoyable.
With summer everything is beautifully green, flowers are blooming and new life can be spotted everywhere. It can be very hot and humid, like this year, and the bugs can sure be annoying, but the prospect of fresh garden produce makes it all worthwhile.
This year we are trying a new garden spot. I used to have my garden just behind the house, then one year it was so wet that nothing wanted to grow and it took forever to dry up. I kinda miss that garden. Hours and hours of weeding were spend and tending to my crops. The kids, when they were small would be parked in the playpen, in a shaded area, so I could keep an eye out for them while they slept. When they were older, they would play alongside me in the dirt with their toy trucks and tractors and later still, ride their bikes. At times they also would help with the weeding and harvesting and cleaning up.
Then I had my garden a few years about half a mile down the road, we planted trees around it and tilled and weeded the soil continuously as it was a much neglected spot for many, many years. However drainage was still an issue, even with adding lots of manure it would be rock hard most of the time, and very wet in the spring. It would produce some crops better than others. Then last year I was unable to keep up with it and it turned into a disaster.
Therefor this year another spot, just on top of the hill in sandier soil. Last fall the husband and the middle son added lots of manure and tilled it all in the soil. And this year I don’t have half the drainage issues. My garden does actually look good if I say so myself. And today I was able to pick the first peas!
Even the potatoes are doing well despite the potato bugs. I read somewhere (probably on Pinterest), that straw was supposed to keep them away, so I covered the potatoes with straw, and then the rest of the garden. The rational they gave, was that their skin (when not full grown) was too soft for the straw and so this was to keep them away. Well I still have lots of potato bugs, but the plants are looking a lot healthier.
Probably the straw helps with keeping the roots shaded and retain the moisture. Usually I pick the bugs by hand as I really don’t like to use the dusting powder. Besides that, we have loads of potato farmers around who spray their crops on a regular basis. I don’t think the dusting powder is doing much good anymore. This year I just have been knocking them off the plants, thinking that the straw will at least slow them down if not kill them. I can’t wait until we can start sampling the new potatoes, which should be soon!
If you have any comments or suggestions, please leave them below!