Thursday, April 28, 2016

Cinderblock Garden

 Our garden this year is off to a great start due to the early spring and my actually getting off my butt this year and starting quite a lot of things from seed, rather than waiting on the local stores to get stuff out.  Seems they are always late.  Plus, they don't have the greatest variety of plants.  This is my first year growing radishes and I am stoked!  They came out so beautiful and SO tasty.  I've been making a radish/ cucumber salad that is to die for.  I mean seriously good.

 Jack wanted to experiment with more raised bed gardening so we are slowly transitioning over to large concrete block beds.  We get the blocks from a local concrete company as seconds (although I can't see much wrong with them) so it's much more affordable than buying new block.  Not the most attractive things in the world but you can make them look okay.  Beautiful plants like thins growing in them makes them much more attractive!

 This is the old strawberry bed that never produced a whole lot and was terrorized by moles and wild violets.  Jack dug the whole thing out, laid mole barrier in the bottom, refilled it with enriched soil and now it's got a bumper crop of broccoli and cauliflower in it.  We have a local farm that sells the best strawberries ever, so I'd just as soon buy from them.  They are reasonable and organic.

 Seems we'll also have a bumper crop of blueberries this year too.  This is especially great because blueberries are very anti-histamine and I've found a recipe for a coconut milk, blueberry, mango smoothie that is wonderful!  I have one several times a week now so I'll be freezing quarts and quarts of these these beauties this year.  Not so much jam but that's okay.

 Jack was attempting to till up the okra space but the girls commandeered it for bathing.  They thought it mighty kind of him to make that bath space just for them.  They have all been through their spring worming and are laying pretty good right now so they deserve a few treats!

 One view of the new raised bed area.  I've planted most everything that you see in those starter pots and it's all well on it's way at this point.  Still have not finished planting the main garden but we are getting close.

We are also experimenting in planting in double size concrete block.  Seems to be going okay at this point.  This is an old photo and these sugar peas are well over the top of the fence now and making little peas!  If we have enough stuff we are also going to try selling at the local farmer's market this spring.  This was another one of Jack's ideas!  I'm all for it though, if we can produce enough stuff!  I think we'll have some different things, more heirloom veggies and stuff but whether that appeals to anyone in this area remains to be seen.  Anyway, we'll have lots of fresh veggies and fruits and it's very gratifying to grow so much tasty food!


JO said...

WOW the radishes look so good. Your garden is really producing some beautiful produce. The raised beds are a lot easier on the back and easier to pull out the bad unwanted weeds. I bet you will be able to sell at the local Famers Market. Good Luck

ErinFromIowa said...

Beautiful radishes! Gosh! Look at all those blueberries! The girls bathing... so endearing and comical. What is shown in the second photo?

Ed said...

I couldn't believe there was a song called Cinderblock Garden. I was wrong. I am interested in seeing how your cinderblock garden goes. I haven't gotten to the point of land improvement yet which includes some sort of raised garden but this has definitely piqued my curiosity. I'm guessing it is much cheaper than using landscaping bricks to do the same.

Texas Ann (Hermit's Baby Sis) said...

Guess we can see now why you've not been posting that much lately! (And I'd rather think of you working in the garden instead of hurting so badly.)
You and Jack are going and growing great funs, aren't you? I'm jealous - I've only gotten a few small peppers this year, but I'm not really trying - did buy my first ever orchid and have 16 gorgeous blooms on it right now, so I'm kinda proud of that.
Good to hear from you, and keep up the good work ~

edifice rex said...

Hey Jo! thanks! yeah, the raised beds are much easier to work in and keep neat. that's one thing I am really looking forward to if we can do the whole garden.

Hey Erin! glad you enjoy it all! the second photo is an heirloom sugar pea called "Dwarf Grey". The old varieties have such colorful blooms usually.

Hey Ed! lol! I couldn't believe it either and when I saw that I just had to use that title. Plus, it's quite appropriate here. Yes, much cheaper. Here we can get the seconds (which look fine) for 50 cents each. Even the double size.

Hey Ann! Yes, we've been very busy this spring! I told a friend recently that it occurred to me the other day that the only time I don't hurt is when I'm gardening or making art. Or I don't notice it anyway. Well, I've raised a few orchids and I've never, ever come close to 16 blooms on one plant so I'd say you are doing pretty darn good!

Anonymous said...

It's all looking gorgeous ER, very envious as I haven't even started my winter crops yet....sigh...

Myamuhnative said...

As usual. everything looks great.
We had cinderbeds at my last So Fla abode and they were awesome.
I guess I need to get moving and build some here.
Can you tell me more about those double wides? do they have a name?
Have never seen them before.
I used to grow herbs inside the regular cells and they did great-didn't seem to need as much water.Bet the double wides would be even better

edifice rex said...

Hey Molly! thank you! hopefully everything will continue to do good.

Hey Mya! thanks! the block are not actually double size but 12"x 8"x 16"; I just always call them doubles. They are referred to as 12" commons; meaning no special edges or interior. We get the 12" commons that are seconds for the same price as 8" commons, which is 50 cents a piece. Mine seem to need watering pretty often; like the raised beds. This is my only complaint with growing in this method.

David Cobb said...

I always enjoy your blog.

edifice rex said...

Hey David! Thank you! I appreciate your comment.