We have started a garden, and I am going to be posting some about it on here to help me remember what did and did not work, so next year I can compare and improve! I am VERY much a beginner on this- but I am hoping to be successful and at least learn how to get better at it!
We purchased a raised garden kit at Home Depot. We decided where we wanted it in our yard- the back yard, because we get a lot of sun back there. On March 16, we outlined where it would go, and tilled up all of the grass in that area. We found the soil to be very rich with LOTS of worms. We dug about 10 inches down into the ground and removed some old bricks and rocks from the soil. Then we added some organic garden soil, and some leaf mulch. Occasionally before we planted, we would till and break up the land. On March 30, I planted 12 onions- white, yellow, red- in two rows in the raised garden bed. I bought the bulbs at a local seed store, and I planted them just deep enough so the stem would show on the top of the soil. I also planted one red potato (3 eyes) in a container, using the same soil mixture in our garden. I filled the container half way up with soil, put the potatoes in, then covered them with soil. I was told potatoes and onions do well in cold weather, so that is why I went ahead and planted them. It has been raining a lot here, so I have not needed to water yet. I am planning on planting some tomatoes and peppers, but waiting until around April 15, after the last frost.
Here is the raised garden bed. The back side is where I planted the two rows of onions. I am planning on putting two tomato plants in the front. I am in the process of surrounding the garden bed with merigolds. I have been told that merigold flowers help to keep the bugs away.
This is the container with the potatoes.
The herbs I planted have been a different story. The same night we purchased the garden bed at Home Depot, I also bought a rosemary plant, a parsley plant, and a cilantro plant. I also bought a basil plant at Publix. I used the organic garden soil, and potted the basil, parsley, and cilantro in a container together. I planted the rosemary in a separate container. I put the containers outside on our back porch. The first few days they seemed to be fine. After that I had to bring them inside because it got cold. I watered them a lot. Turns out, I watered them too much. The container with the basil, parsley, and cilantro all of a sudden had TONS of the gnat-looking insects. After some research online, I learned these were called Fungus Gnats. Apparently, if you over-water the soil, and never give the soil a chance to dry out, your soil can form these fungus gnats. The eggs may have already been in there from the store, but I certainly enhanced growth by over-watering. Unfortunately, the infestation was too much, and I threw all of those herbs away and decided to start over. The rosemary was in a container by itself, and the fungus gnats had not infested it yet. I decided to try to transplant the rosemary. Since I saw some of the fungus gnats on it, I took the plant and washed away all of that soil and replanted it in some soil from our garden. We will see how it does, and if it even survives. In the meantime, I have purchased more herb plants from Publix, and I am in the process of researching the best way to grow them.
The transplanted rosemary plant.