Episode-102- Make Gardens With Flowers, Fruit, Vegetables And Honey Bees

Tour our gardens with today’s video and see for yourself what is possible with planning, hard work, hugelkultur, seeds from SouthernExposure.com and plants from NourseFarms.com. Of course special credit goes to

the gardens hardest workers. The Russian honey bees from Kellysbees.com. enjoy and come back for more.

The video for today is one I took of the 18 plus gardens that I have created around my 1/3 acre property in northern Virginia. Some gardens date back to 2009 and I have added new ones with new techniques over the past 4 seasons. This year welcomes the introduction of hugelkultur and the gardens I built on top of soil covered wood. The biggest hugelkultur garden is 1 meter high, 2 meters wide and 3 meters long. Previously the space taken up by this monster hugelkultur was only 9 square meters of flat growing space. Now it is a four dimensional growing space of 25 square meters. It’s really amazing and although the slugs did their damndest to challenge my efforts. The powers of the plants exceeded their ability to maul them. Slug problems have occurred in all my gardens but that’s par for the course with the wet springs we have. It’s part of the reason I plant so much because there is always more available than can be destroyed. Now that summer is in full swing the gardens have truly come alive and are thriving pretty much on their own now.

Both honey bee colonies are doing well and I have let some plants like radish grow flowers instead of harvesting them because the honey bees really love them. You’ll see some of these near the end of the video. We have had a wonderful strawberry harvest and now we are coming the near the end of the raspberry season. We have been eating them and giving them away as quick as they have been ripening on the many brambles we have around the yard. We even have enough stored in the freezer to make jam. I’m looking forward to the raspberry episode which will be produced once we make some of that jam. Blackberry season is next and they are just starting to come out.  Beans are also almost ready to be picked now too.

The Swiss chard, endive, radish, and spinach have all done well so far and there’s still more endive and chard to harvest at least for the next couple of weeks. We harvesting enough to get at least 2-3 family sized salads per week. It’s never enough but it’s so much more than nothing.

We have also been harvesting a lot of herbs and one of the upcoming episodes will be solely dedicated to herbs and how we are harvesting and storing them. Italian parsley, curly parsley, basil, cilantro, chives, rosemary, oregano, sage  and thyme are all over producing and that has required some new activity for us to store them without going to waste.

Having all these fruit and herb plants is a wonderful way to anticipate the promising tomato season we will have. Tomatoes, squash, beans and cucumbers have all done amazingly well in the hugelkultur beds and it looks like we will be making and storing a lot of tomato sauce this year. One surprise I have to note is the two awesome pumpkin vines that are producing in the back yard. They are not big pumpkins but they are pumpkins none the less which must have grown from seed tossed in the compost bin last fall.

The brand new blueberry, elderberry, raspberry, blackberry and asparagus plants have come alive as well and seem like they will survive this first crucial season to become mainstays of http://ToDoListHome.com

2011 Video – Garden Tour At ToDoListHome.com Gardens What a difference a year makes!

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