Monday, January 13, 2014

2014 garden planning - part 1


I am still a bit in shock that it is January.  It seems like last year was a complete blur to me.  A good blur, but still a blur!  Now, typically January is such a long and cold month for me.  This year hasn’t disappointed where the cold is concerned.  Of course, the start of the new year means the start of garden planning!

I typically get one seed catalog right before Christmas, and it always makes me excited to start planning my garden.   This year I received three seed catalogs before Christmas.  I try to hold off until after the holiday madness to look at the catalogs though.  I’m sure some people can’t wait, and honestly, I have a hard time waiting.  But, I know that if I start when the catalogs come in, I will get lost in them, and won’t accomplish all I need to for the holidays.

This week will be the time that I get to sit down and start planning out our garden for the summer.  Last year I let Emma help me pick out some seeds that she wanted to try.  I think it is a great thing for kids to be involved in gardening.  And this year Jack will be more involved as well.  I like for them to see the complete life cycle of the garden, from starting the seeds to planting and eventually eating.

One of my homesteading goals for the year is to grow as much of our spring/summer/fall produce as possible.  In order to do that I really need to plan better.  I like to think that I have more garden space than I do, and because of that I tend to plan for more plants than I have space for.  This year I want to expand the garden some more (although, I think every year I end up expanding!). 

I would like to make sure that I have a constant stream of lettuce being planted.  Last year was the first time we grew lettuce, and my kids loved being able to just go out to the garden and literally pick their salad.  I also would like to try potatoes again.  We did try them a few years ago, just a few pounds planted, but it produced a solid amount, and they were DELICIOUS!  I would also love to set up a three sisters garden (corn/pole beans/squash) for the kids.  I thought it would be something they would enjoy. 

My first step for planning my garden this year should be looking back at what did really well for me last year.  I think I am going to start with the seed catalog, dream about what could be, and then come back down to reality to see what did well last year, and what I want to change. 


Have you started planning your garden yet?  Do you start seeds in the winter, or do you wait until the green house has all of their seedlings out?  Or is it a combination?  Have you been anxiously awaiting seed catalogs?

Linking up at Homestead Barn Hop

8 comments:

  1. We are so excited for our garden this year too! I can't wait to get my seed catalogs - ordered them last week and then ill need to hustle! It's great to look forward to a rich and plentiful garden!

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  2. Garden planning is always fun this time of year!! I think a three sisters garden for the kids is a GREAT idea. Love that you are getting them involved already.

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    1. The kids really love it. I think they mainly like playing in dirt - but that is ok with me :-)

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  3. Hi Heather. Thanks for stopping by and commenting at my blog. I linked from your name to yours. This year we're in a new house with gardening challenges galore! We're not sure what we're going to do for a garden. (In fact the garden challenges almost kept us from buying the house, but sincere prayer urged us forward.) We do know we'll finally put our potted blueberry bushes into the ground, and we're going to tear out the wretched bushes in the front yard to make room for tomatoes and herbs, but that might be all we can do this year. Much terracing and hardscaping will have to take place before we do any large scale growing. Happy planning to you!

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    1. I would definitely recommend using self watering containers if you can't plant in the ground yet at your new home! I have several of the earth boxes, and they are awesome. I continue to use them every year even though I am also planting in the ground - I find my peppers seem to thrive in these more so than in the ground. Thanks for visiting!

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  4. I am lucky down here in Arizona that I can grow pretty much year round. I have winter produce sprouting in the garden now! :)

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  5. So fun to hear your plans! The planning is definitely the hardest AND most fun part for me, it's so fun to think of all that will grow this year. Seed-starting has been a disaster every time I've tried, so I'm going to have to do something differently this year to hope it actually works. We're going to grow less food and lots more flowers this year and I'm super excited to see how it goes:)

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    1. I'm not so good at flowers...not entirely sure why! I tried planting marigolds near my tomatoes a couple years ago. My tomatoes thrived, my marigolds died - how do you kill a marigold?! I do much better with the flowers that come back year after year at my house - day lilies, irises, and peonies...I don't do anything, and they look beautiful every year!

      As far as seed starting goes...I try it every year...some work some don't, and I still end up buying a ton of seedlings at the green house :-)

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