Full Swing

Gardening season is back in full swing. Here in Maine we have what’s called “Black Fly Season”, which typically goes from Mother’s Day to Father’s Day, but it can start earlier and drag on longer depending on the weather. The result is that there’s this short, sweet season in between spring thaw and the time the blood sucking jerks come out. During those few weeks it’s all hands on deck and all hours in the garden.

Cutting back the ‘Annabelle’ Hydrangeas, this year I cut them a little lower than normal hoping they’ll be a little more contained.
The first weeding of the year has begun, I like to go through all the beds and dig up any perennial weeds that germinated and overwintered. Mostly they’re dandelions and a few other wildflower type plants.

We’ve been busy finally installing the hardscaping in the main vegetable garden. For the past 8 years I’ve been working on expanding the space and getting rid of noxious weeds (quack grass mostly). Now that the garden is almost to it’s full size, we are adding paver walkways to help eliminate weeding/maintenance of these areas. We are also installing raised beds, larger 25′ x 25′ beds, not super tall, mostly to contain the soil. In the middle of each of these beds is a 5′ x 5′ bed that will have a fruit tree (two pears have been planted and one apricot). These trees will be pruned to keep them small, probably about 6 feet tall and 5 feet wide.

Cedar from our local mill, it’s nice to have a local source right up the road for such things.
One of the four 5′ x 5′ beds, there will be a small fruit tree in the middle of each. I haven’t decided what to surround the tree with yet, possibly lettuce and greens, but I’m also considering strawberries as well.

We could only source enough cedar for one of the large beds and all four of the small ones. We have our local cedar sawyer working on getting us the rest of the lumber needed to finish this up. I haven’t ordered the pavers yet, that’ll likely happen here soon.

Two side built for one of the large 25′ x 25′ beds. There will be four of these in all.

This is an ambitious project for sure, I’m hoping to get it all finished up this summer, but that may be overly optimistic. Even if I don’t finish this year, it’s nice to finally be implementing the plan that’s been in my mind for so many years.

I transplanted onion seedlings on Sunday, these little seedlings are hardy and can take cold. They thrive when planted early.

I’ve already started filling up the beds, all the alliums went in this weekend. This year I’m growing 7 different varieties of onions: Redwing, Patterson, Red of Florence, Cabernet, Sweet Onions, Purplette, and Conserver Shallots. We should not be in need of any onions for the coming year.

What are you doing in the garden this month? Any new plans?

1 thought on “Full Swing

  1. We have a lot of lettuce that we are harvesting, along with chives in Central Illinois. It’s been a nice long cool Spring, and now we’ve been having a heat wave. Just keeping the plants watered and pulling weeds. 🙂

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