I think what I will try to do this year - now, this is NOT the official Garden Plan for 2011, but I've a rough idea of where I'm going & that is spring/overwinter beds & then summer beds.
So, what am I exploring this year? Well, after such a success in growing my own lettuce last year, I'm going to work on trying staggered plantings with different varieties: purslane & wild arugula with 2 blends (a super gourmet & an oriental saladini blend). I'd really like to learn about harvesting wild greens (you know - WEEDS) to add to the mix -we'll just put that on my to-do list.
I'm also renewing a bunch of my herbs this year - and adding them where ever possible as that might be (according to my first initial flip through my new Deerproofing your Yard & Garden book) a good way to re-direct deer from the other tastey treats in the garden. I'm going big this year with herbs:
- summer savory (my favourite - too bad it's an annual),
- winter savory,
- Italian parsley (actually prefer the taste of that to the curly stuff),
- creeping thyme (strictly ornamental & for ground cover along my hillsides),
- marjoram (another favourite - preferred to oregano),
- chervil (a new one this year mainly for use in salads),
- Siam Queen basil & red rubin basil - staples now that I have figured out how to grow tomatoes!
I'm going to be a bit of a glutton for punishment this year with my tomatoes. I wasn't impressed with last year's variety - very bland - not the tomato flavour I was hoping for (I have many bags of frozen tomatoes in my freezer still & have not bought a store tomato all winter). This year I will try:
- taxi (early yellow bush),
- yellow pear (vine) &
- moneymaker (vine).
I hope I have enough garden space for all my veggies:
- 3 types of peas (mammoth melting sugar, cascadia snap peas, little marvel shelling peas),
- radish (easter egg blend for early spring & black spanish round for fall harvest),
- bush beans (a tricolour blend of green, yellow & purple),
- peppers (a new thing for me for the greenhouse - this variety is Red Bull's Horn - a sweet bell pepper),
- lemon cucumbers,
- yellow zucchini (Soleil variety - love yellow zukers),
- beets (the Detroit Supreme),
- carrots (Little Fingers - hopefully they will be true 'baby' carrots as my last attempt at a 'baby' carrot variety gave me monsters),
- kale (Lacinato - a winter variety),
- parsnips (wanted to try these last year, so we shall see what Gladiator will do for me this year) and finally Buttercup squash (another new one for me).
The other package was a 'freebie' - I love free things! I have no idea what will pop up, but it contains annuals, biennials & perennials that should satisfy all the pollinators in the neighbourhood.
Now to start planning the actual lay-out of the beds....