Tuesday, September 9, 2008

It's Time to Start the Homesteading Project!

Well, the weather has finally gotten a little cooler, and it's now our gardening season in Florida, so I've officially started making a little progress toward starting the vegetable garden.

I bought plants, but ran into a little trouble with the spot I had picked for the garden. Now there is even more trouble. Nothing can be easy, can it?

In fact, my attempt at starting a vegetable garden this year is getting more like a nightmare every day. First, I had to put chemicals down to kill ants and roaches in what I hoped would be an organic garden. Now I have found that I can't dig down past 6-8 inches without hitting tree roots, probably from the huge oak trees in my back yard.

I don't feel like tackling oak tree roots, really I don't. Lasagna gardening is sounding very good to me right now. What is lasagna gardening? It would take me too long to explain, so I'll just direct you to a site that tells you what lasagna gardening is and how to do it.

I have several bags of manure I was going to use in my garden. I'm thinking if I use the cardboard boxes I was going to use for mulching around things for the base, and layer soil, manure, grass clippings, and leaves, I might just be able to do this.

In the meantime, everything will have to stay in pots, so I'm going out now to start mixing up some soil and manure to plant them in.

I got seeds for squash and cucumbers from friends, so I'll have to get a small section of the lasagna garden going quickly so I can plant those, and work on the rest later.

The derelict house next door to me is finally getting torn down, probably in a couple of weeks, and I will have sun outside my back porch when they take the dying tree down. That means moving some shade loving plants, but it also means that I can perhaps plant a few veggies out there, right outside the back door. I'll have to see what kind of sun it gets, since it's on the dead eastern side of the house, but some things might be o.k. back there. If not sun plants, then maybe malanga (eddoe) or edible ginger. We'll see.

This is going to be fun, I think....I hope. More later on the progress.


chaz said...

i just stumbled onto your blog and your situation sounds dire, brother. i, too, am fed up with the rat race and have been planning for a move toward homesteading. i'm also heavily interested in moving off the grid and living a much simpler life. i have done some gardening in the past and have had some success. so much so, that i've started taking a master gardener class under orange county extension services. another 10 weeks, and that will be done. is there some way that i can get touch with you? i didn't see an email link on the site. anyway, good luck.

Patrice Farmer said...

Wow, so ya'll start gardening in the fall...wow. I have a fall/winter garden this year for the first time but that's something...I know in Tennessee from when we used to live there, they would start gardening in Feb. and then in June they would plant the second garden.

Patrice Farmer said...

You can still use the area. I had a problem similiar to yours. I dug up my garden to find it was basically an ant colony. The entire yard in the back is. So, I built a raised garden completely off the ground. And you can do the same, you don't have to spend alot of money either, mine is made from the stuff i had laying around, like flat pieces of wood, a chalkboard and tarps etc. and we put railroad ties around it and filled it in and put a little white gate around it...wha-lah, a raised garden. And being that its shaded its perfect for the cool veggies like lettuce, cabbage, various greens that don't need constant sun.

Florida Homesteader said...

Chaz, I know that feeling. I didn't realize I hadn't put a contact link on the blog. I'll do that today.

Patrice, I have a huge stack of paving bricks that I'm planning on using to make the raised bed. It's still pretty hot and humid here, so I can only work a couple of hours a day. I'll get it done eventually.

Ivory Soap said...

I'm so glad you stopped by. I love your blog. I added it to our blog roll.


Florida Homesteader said...

Thank you! I've added you to ours as well, along with a welcome note on the blog.