I promised in this post on starting our box garden that I'd update you all about what we're learning as rookie box gardeners. I'm happy to report that: so far, so good. And we're learning stuff, which is never a bad thing.
View of the garden from the play area of our backyard:
Our vision was for morning glories to quickly climb the trellis along the edge of the lawn (front in the photo above), creating a sort of living, flowery wall. While the morning glories are, indeed, beginning to climb (and bloom, even), it's not nearly fast enough for our liking. The trellis is still pretty bare. Maybe next year we'll try clematis or something similar. Fast-growing, sun-loving, and flowering - those are the main criteria.
We've been seriously enjoying the bounty of this vegetable garden already. Fresh strawberries for breakfast,
lettuce and spinach all day every day,
and peas for anytime snacking. Bliss delish.
Can I just say how much I love having a garden with kids? They get so excited to eat the stuff, it's awesome and rewarding and all that.
We learned that our variety of spinach (correnta, I think) tastes delicious but is super prone to mildew, so we'll probably go with something different next year. Radishes (not shown in these photos because they've come and gone) can actually be harvested not that long after planting (we waited a bit too long and had radishes that were shaped more like carrots; still tasty). And I've seen magpies perched on our homemade PVC-and-bird-netting strawberry cover, unsuccessfully trying to get to the red deliciousnesses. Success in the preliminary berry protection department!
We think we planted waaaay too many potatoes, and they've grown far taller than we ever anticipated. We're a bit concerned they might squeeze out the pole beans (trying to grow up the trellis along the left-hand side in the photo above), and they're definitely blocking sunlight from the cilantro. We've tried to rein them in with nylon rope, but they're pretty wild. Not sure what we'll change for next year to make the crazy potato situation more manageable.
Also, as far as the box garden structure itself is concerned: we couldn't be happier with this setup. I think we've pulled three random weeds out of the garden this year. (That's my kind of weeding!) The produce is easily accessible for harvesting, and the formal structure of the box garden itself makes it super easy for us to modify things as needed (for example, tying back the potato leaves, adjusting the watering, etc.).
Plus, I just think box gardens look so organized and awesome. Oh, wait. That's because they are.
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