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Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Kitchen Gardens-A-la-France.





Here is the plan: gravel or grass paths; neat rows of vegetables and espaliered fruit trees and berry bushes; lots of herbs, vegetables spanning a couple of seasons; lots of flowers to attract beneficial insects and provide the biodiversity for eco-balance.
How does that sound? Perfect. Formidable. Hard-breaking work. Expensive.
First the plan. The neat rows are easier to cultivate and to irrigate with drip tubing. Because we are not building up the rows yet-it takes a lot of soil amendments-we are planting right on the ground with wider plots because that's how wide the expensive poly cover is. Our poly cover will suppress everything except the seedling positioned in a small hole. We do have a miniature version already which has worked well for the last two years; we are expending in the same way.
Second. As far as what grows in this cool zone I have to make some changes, but not much. The most interesting thing are the seeds I can get from Territorial. I can plant varieties of cool crops such as peas, favas, chards, lettuces, spinach, broccoli, beans, cucumbers....................................
Third. My husband's job, besides supervising the assistants when they dig, till, remove debris, use heavy machinery, is to design and build a grid of drip tubing. He has had good results from past experiences too. This job is a bit more complex, but within our reach.
Lastly. When my spring-summer crop begins to grow, I will utilize all that spinach-there will be gobbling up of that stuff, and lots of presents for the neighbors-and freezing the abundance- and freeze the rest for those grey winters. I'll be busy with the fall-winter plot as well, all through November when the fall rains will have chased me back inside.
Stay tuned. I know some of you will enjoy watching me sweat.

43 comments:

Reya Mellicker said...

Sweating over a garden is the best kind of sweat. And the cool shower that follows a bout of sweaty gardening is the best shower in the world.

Love these pictures. In the first one, the gold light is clearly visible. I can smell that light, I can feel it on my skin. Very cool.

May the force be with you in the garden Rosaria. Maybe it would be a good idea to book a massage appointment for the day after planting. Eh?

sallymandy said...

Oh, my. Good thing I'm sitting down or I might swoon and fall over. Want, want, want that garden. Never gonna happen for me, though. I tried a tiny cutting garden once that my hubby dubbed the Bonsai Cutting Garden because of its failure to thrive. Such a wit.

So, I don't know if I'm going to enjoy watching you sweat, but I'm might impressed with your project and will absolutely love to see you reap its benefits. You go, girl! Love, SM

Carol @ TheWritersPorch said...

Rosaria....how wonderful! You will be the envy of everyone if you pull this off and I hope you do and share pics and pics!

jinksy said...

I'm intrigued by the blue-purple bushes...What are they? And is it flowers or fruit that gives that colour? I have no hope of anything much in my concrete jungle of a patio - mostly because nobody thought to have a handy tap put out there, and my kitchen is on the opposite side of the house. A recent change of sink taps, now means a hose won't fit! Any 'fix-it-' I could think of would involve far too much money!

Helen said...

Oh, the lucky recipients of your growing talents ~ I could eat spinach every day. This looks like lots of work for both of you, but so worth the effort. Let us know how your garden grows, Ms. Rosaria.

Shadow said...

good grief that's big. yours gonna be this big too? is this yours???

Suldog said...

It must smell heavenly there! I wish I were there now...

JC said...

I Love Lavender !!!

~~~ I'm having a Pay It Forward on my blog. Come over if you're interested ~~~

Sniffles and Smiles said...

Oh, this is so much fun...We are working the same kind of garden...but decided to sculpt it in a spoke wheel shaped pattern...with gravel serving to outline the paths/spokes...Fun to see how you are doing on the opposite coast!!!! Love the pictures!!! Simply inspiring! ~Janine XO

Ribbon said...

I envy your future garden.

It will take work... but very rewarding.

best wishes
Ribbon

Susan said...

What a wonderful, awesome project!

Mairi said...

In my dreams. But a man is coming with a back hoe and a dump truck to clear 50 years of brush and junk out of a back corner this autumn so I can start to lay out the plan. In the meantime I'm off to dig up an eight by ten patch to put some seeds in for cutting flowers and a few herbs. They'll tide me over. Keep us posted. You're an inspiration.

Reasons to be Cheerful 1,2,3 said...

My my what a hard-working, talented and well nourised couple you must be! I am very envious!

willow said...

So beautiful, clean and organized. Is this going to be your template? I can't wait! Is this your finger in the top of the pics? :^)

Abe Lincoln said...

This is a nice set of photos. Makes my few flowers look rather pitiful if compared.

Voices from the past > http://bing-it.blogspot.com/

Renee said...

How you know so much about everything. You are a muse.

The pages are from a workbook that Angelique bought me in 2006 and I used them then to figure out what I needed to do and what I was getting into.

I state them now so that I can revisit so that when my current treatmnet no longer works I can remember what the heck I needed to do. And to see what helped me at the time.

It is really for myself and my children again. May be of no interest to others.

Love Renee xoxoxo

Lola said...

I can just smell the lavender in those photos...



You have just described my dream garden.

Know that envy is not a feeling I am usually associted with. But today, after reading this...

Kidding of course. Your triumphs are our victories too, dear dear Rosaria.

Brava!

La Belette Rouge said...

Thanks for breaking it down. The gardens are absolutely lovely. Fantastic plan and I would love such a garden if it required no weeding, tending or manual labor.

Delwyn said...

Happy gardening Days

Saretta said...

That looks like a great project!

Amy said...

Ahhhh...I miss gardening. When I was young, I was the keeper of our garden. I loved everything about it except those beastly tomato worms.

It looks like a ton of work, but with a great reward at the end. (Life's like that, eh?!)

Natalie said...

It will certainly keep you out of mischief, Rosaria. I love a French garden I must admit.....heavenly.xx♥

karen said...

What a fantastic project! Looking forward to the updates..

♥ Braja said...

i LOVE those garden photos...so beautiful...i'm a lavender lovin' girl :)

Sarah Laurence said...

Gorgeous first photo. I look forward to seeing the results. Especially since I don’t have to sweat!

Lori ann said...

What wonderful plans, I'm sure you'll get it all done. I'm in agreement with Reya,a massage would be the perfect post gardening activity.

jinksy said...

(Lavender? Is that all the purple is?)
Just popped back to say thanks for your comment on my blog - you were the only person to realise I was writing about the blogland 'chat' in that poem, not my own experiences. Glad you got the message... x

Sniffles and Smiles said...

I'm always glad to see you~no matter when you have time to stop by!!! ~Janine XO

Gran said...

what a great plan! I envy your plan! And I'll envy your fresh spinach also.

The colors are amazing.

Man of Roma said...

I cannot miss gardening because I never took care of a garden. Sometimes I wonder if gardening and working in the fields wouldn't be better than just scribbling and musing all the time, as I tend to do since I retired.

From your previous post I learn you got this idea on a trip to France. I really admire you. You both did a great job.

Polly said...

If you manage to create a garden like the one in the photo you'll have a mini heaven at your doorstep. I can imagine the smell of lavender drifting into the house... beautiful. Good luck!

Rob-bear said...

Wow Rosaria! What an enormous undertaking. I'm sure you'll have great vegetables and herbs, and berries -- but at what expense? Will it really be cost-effective in the end, or is this purely a labour of love?

lakeviewer said...

Hello everyone. I'm pleased to see you all.

Having a garden plan/vision helps to keep me going. Yesterday, we spent the morning laying down the grid for the drip system in one part of the yard. Hubby worked at this diligently for hours, asking me questions.

Regardless of my answers, how I wanted things to look, we ended up with a geometric shape, rows of drip lining up and down a big rectangle. In between the rows is the poly-cover, to keep the weeds down and to warm up the area a bit.

We were both quite sore and the job is only 25% completed. It will take us a couple more days to rev up and attach everything. In the meantime, we are anticipating thunderstorms, a good way for us to rest in between tasks.

Answering Rob's question: this is not economically sound at all. Gardening is an addiction; eating your results makes the addiction more palatable.

Stay tuned for updates.

Rob-bear said...

"Gardening is an addiction; eating your results makes the addiction more palatable."

Great reply, Rosaria. Touché.

Kat said...

It looks like heaven. Just gorgeous!!!

Woman in a Window said...

It'll be a worthy sweat. Can you imagine? Well, apparently you can otherwise why would you do all the work.

To reap that will be glorious!

The Things We Carried said...

Oh how I wish my guy loved to garden as I do! I can hardly wait to see what you two create! How beautiful your French inspiration is.

Siobhán said...

Wow!
Enjoy the sweat Rosaria. Sounds like you already do.

Great pictures. Looking forward to more from Oregon.

Hit 40 said...

I had to click over from Michel's. You seem to have a peaceful happy site. I can see why you attracted braja.... but Michel??? REALLY?

Beautiful plant photos!! Game on!! I am a competitive flower and week grower.

Pyzahn said...

Yes, maybe, but what I will really like is watching you enjoy the "fruits" of your labor. Can't wait until harvest....

Sarah Lulu said...

Ohhhhhhhh aren't those photos just amazing!

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