So, as I am bringing in the last of my winter crop, it's time to review what I learned in my first foray into food growing:
1. If your soil is good, your plants practically raise themselves. Seriously. Just stay on aphid patrol, and your winter veg will flourish.
2. In the winter garden, some things go dormant, (my beets, spinach) showing no growth during the dark months. Don't panic; you'll harvest in spring.
3. One flat of veggies, grown out well, provides a LOT of produce.
4. In the cool damp of a bay area winter, additional irrigation is not necessary.
5. And, finally, if you fall in love with how beautiful your garden looks, you won't harvest your crops at their peak. Remember that the beauty of a veggie garden is transitory, and don't be precious about it...GET YOUR CROPS IN AND HARVESTED.
So, winter over, it's time for the spring season. I'm trying to be reasonable about spring and not bite off more than I can chew. Hmmmm....So far, the whole reasonable thing? Epic Fail.
Operation "More than You can Chew" is already well underway. Seedlings? I have three flats currently sprouting like gangbusters. I have a further 20 packets of seeds or so that are direct sow. Obviously, if I filled my winter garden with 3 direct sows and 1 flat of seedlings, then this quantity of plant matter exceeds the capacity of my current garden space.
So this weekend, I began to prepare more space by digging up more ornamentals. Funny how much less I care about my flowers now than I did in Fall. I'm quickly coming to the opinion that if it doesn't feed me, or feed my animals, or do something beneficial for my garden, then it's a freeloader, and must be removed. Okay, not entirely. I'm still keeping the Irises that remind me of Mom. But everything else? It's either gone, or going, if not this season then next. A well tended veggie garden is easily as beautiful as a perennial flower bed.
I'm also converting Kalin's old sandbox into my lettuce/greens garden. Oh, and then I'm planting raspberries and blueberries in the backyard. And a loquat tree...But really, I'm being reasonable. Sort of...