Striving Towards Hour-Per-Day Gardening

The hour-per-day gardening project continues. It has been two months since my last update to this project. Unfortunately, I haven’t been as diligent as I’d like to have been, as the Sustainability Skill Share was coming up on June 1 and 2. Since then, it has been a busy time, getting starts transplanted in the garden and direct sewing other seeds. The weeds have enjoyed the moisture and growing heat of the year. They’ve gotten a strong start while I’ve been otherwise busy.

The Neighbor’s Plot

At the last update, I had just put in the Austrian winter peas, but afterwards, I sewed oats (1 lb for 500 ft², at 12 seeds/ft in 8-in rows) and flax (1/2 lb for 500 ft², at 24 seeds/ft in 7-in rows) (18 Apr.) as well as sunflowers (14 g for 500 ft², 1 seed/ft in 12-in rows) and corn (2 lb over 1000 ft², 2 seeds/ft in 12-in rows) (5 May). Then just last week, I sewed amaranth (8 g for 500 ft², approximately 2-3 g per strip over three, 12-in-wide strips) and black bush beans (ca. 1 lb over 500 ft², 4 seeds/ft in 12-in rows) (6 Jun.).

Fields

I also had a dozen or so tomato and pepper plants that volunteered in my compost, but I don’t know what variety they are, so I am planting them in this field to isolate them from my own segregated known varieties.

Throughout this time, I’ve had to try and at least keep the weeds at bay. I’ve been doing this through solarization (putting a large plastic sheet over a field to raise the temperature high enough to kill the weedy vegetation). I’ve also used my scythe to mow down and compost as many weeds as I can. Before planting, I use a small cultivator to churn just the top inch or so of soil to disrupt the weed roots.

Institute Plot

I’ve been trying to catch up on the weeds. They’ve mostly been kept at bay by a layer of cardboard and straw, but not totally.

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I’ve been busy planting out the starts made this spring: kohl rabi, cabbage, lettuce, tomatoes, basil, cilantro, parsley, and celery. Other crops were directly seeded: potatoes, kale, corn, beans, squash, peas, spinach, radish, and more.

The Data

Since the last post, I’ve worked 43 minutes per day, but since the Skill Share finished, I’ve been putting in 1:48 hours per day to try and bring the overall seasonal average up from its current 34 minutes.

 


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