2017 marks our third year trying to grow vegetables in the woods! Our first year, I remember harvesting a lot of cabbage and kale and not much else. Our second year, Darin expanded our forest garden by a lot and we had fun starting our own seeds from Seed Savers Exchange. This year, I started some of our leftover seeds in the greenhouse Darin built last fall and the rest began their lives out in the garden beds.
Gardening is a lot of trial and error. Mostly it’s us not knowing wtf we are doing but having fun anyway. All of our garden beds are in partial shade because of the trees in our yard. We’ve already cut back what our landlords were comfortable with, so we force our veggies to soldier on in competition with established hemlocks and giant oaks (i’m sorry, plants!). There’s lots of joy that this crazy garden brings, which makes all the weeding and watering and troubleshooting worth it:
- I harvested our first garlic plants ever yesterday! they’re so cute (not bad for having grown under a tree).
- Last week I attempted some creative/foraged mulch techniques to keep the weeds down in certain areas. I found some some decomposing hay from the woods that we tossed out ages ago, and collected bark and wood chips from everywhere.
- Trillium pop up every spring on the edges of the yard and I love them.
- I switched up the location of a bunch of plants, but the beans and squash, are probably the happiest about the move. They finally have sun and room to grow in their new home, so I’m crossing my fingers for a bountiful harvest.
- Tomatillos. Always and forever. We had a couple that did well in the garden last year, so we went with them again, PLUS a few spontaneously grew from our compost. Mmmm… I can already taste the enchiladas suizas.