Spring Garden Ventures in California

Nothing beats gardening in the spring in California. There is something absolutely therapeutic about tilling the ground and watching things grow. Nothing compares to the feeling of watching plants sprout from the ground and then blooming later on. Then of course there is the pruning to assure better blooms. California’s weather of course is suited to this activity. Don’t get me wrong gardening is hard work. However there is nothing that compares to the feeling of harvesting flowers or fruit from my garden. Then to add to that all my produce is organic.

This year though I will go on a different tack. Instead of just planting and growing flowers to supplement my fruit trees I will endeavor to plant my own vegetable garden. I have seen examples of people raising crops in their backyards and lowering their food cost significantly. I have had very good success with tomatoes which I grew in hanging planters.

Growing up I gardened with my father and my siblings by planting in rows. My experience later taught me to plant using garden beds that are small enough to weed without disturbing the soil by stepping on it. One lesson I learned is to keep the beds at least 8 inches high but no higher than 12 inches. This helps the soil drain better and will keep the plots warmer for the cold temperatures of early spring. Soil preparation is also very important. Breaking up the soil is critical to proper drainage. Also weed the beds as by pulling the weeds from the roots even at the preparation stage. This will prevent the weeds from haunting you and your plants later. Any additional fertilizing should also ideally be done at this time.

I have watered plants with everything from a tin can to a gardening hose. However since gardening organically is a green themed activity I have switched to a soaker hose. While I want to maximize my gardening yield I do not want to waste any resources. A soaker hose when laid out properly is the most efficient way of watering effort wise. All you have to do is remember when to turn the soaker hose off and on. It also saves water because you do not wet the leaves and gets the water directly to the plant roots.

I cannot wait to eat my own produce. There is just such satisfaction to eating things you have grown yourself.

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