Who lived here
He must have been a gardener that cared a lot
Who weeded out the tears and grew a good crop
And now it all looks strange -
Elton John / Empty Garden
(I always liked that song.)
So here's the follow up from yesterday's post. Yes, we did indeed "empty that garden".
I was up and out first thing, pulling up the raised beds. I would alternate between the beds and the weedy walkways, letting my back dictate when I should take a break.
I sat down on the back porch swing at lunch, soaking up the sunshine. I'd started off the morning in jeans and a long sleeve shirt. Now it was time for shorts and T-shirts. (I just love the South!)
Yuck...The garden was wetter than I thought it'd be by now. After lunch, SM came out and helped. I could tell that he wasn't into it at first. After helping me spread the cardboard onto the walkways, I told him he could quit. He asked what else needed doing.
"Rake the leaves and put them in the beds. Mow the lawn."
"Can't it wait a week?" SM asked.
"One good wind and all those leaves are gone. I'd rather strike while the iron is hot. Don't worry, I'll get it." (I've had low motivation days myself. I know how it feels.)
"No. I'll help." (Bless him)
There is something about power tools that kick start something in a man. Did you ever notice that? SM started off uninspired to do much, but once he turned on the leaf blower to "blow" the leaves out of the front landscaped beds, it was like a hired hand came to work. Suddenly, SM was all sparky and having at it.
While he was blowing the front yard I thought I'd start mowing the back. I headed out and noticed my next door neighbor (Hey, Heath!) had one of those pine needle guys laying a bed of needles around his front landscaped beds. The guy had blown some of Heath's red maple leaves into a pile.
"Hey Heath! Can I steal your leaves for my garden?" So I got off the mower and headed over to Heaths to gather his leaves.
While I was doing that, I hear my neighbor across the street (Hey, Deb!) shout my name.
"Tami! Do you want some leaves? I've got 5 sacks in the back!" (Her daughter Katie had just raked them up the other day.) "Sure! I'll take them."
So with a little help from my friends, I've got lots of leaves to decompose into the garden. I concentrated on the double dig beds for now. I'll have more leaves yet to fall and I'll add those to the raised beds.
My plan for the "double dig" area is to toss in some manure on top of the leaves and cover it all with cardboard. Turn it into a "no till" area. Those beds won't be planted until next May, so that gives me plenty of time to let things decompose. I'll use the raised beds for the Spring garden I'll plant in March.
I'll need to hit Craigslist this week and see who's advertising free manure. Last year lots of horse farms had ads and I think I also saw one for rabbit poo too.
But that's a project for next weekend. Today? Chocolate Chip cookies. I need to thank my hired hand @;)