I think I jinxed myself. Remember my post about expanding the garden, because obviously we needed another 150 square feet of raised beds? And how at the end, I foolishly stated that we were done expanding the garden?
Obviously, I spoke too soon.
Recently, we added a blackberry bed and an asparagus bed to the garden.
The reason we had to add an extra bed just for the asparagus, for anyone who’s wondering, is that asparagus are actually perennials that, if properly tended, will yield tasty asparagus spears for years, if not decades. Meaning that there will be no crop rotation through the beds. Meaning that we weren’t willing to give up any of our precious little garden space (said in most sarcastic voice ever) to dedicate an area to asparagus. Meaning that we had to build another bed.
However, since there is no way on God’s green earth that we could either afford to buy enough asparagus crowns to fill a 10×10 bed nor could we possibly consume that much asparagus if we could afford it, we only had to build a 4×10 bed. And because the DreadBrewer had gotten a ridiculously good deal on bags of garden soil, we didn’t have to make our soil for the bed from scratch.
Here’s a little tidbit that you may not have known: asparagus crowns (as they’re called) take 2 years to mature and start producing edible stalks. Most centers sell 1 year crowns, which translates to a 1 year wait. DB managed to find a place that sells 2 year crowns, so hopefully we’ll get some asparagus this year!
Knowing me as well as you all must by now, who can guess what bothers me to no end about the following picture?
If you guessed the fact that the garden is now no longer symmetrical, you’re correct! Alas, there is no space on the other end of of the garden to add another 4×10 bed to make it even. But, it will assuage my OCD tendencies to no end if we at least make a little 4×5 bed in front of the asparagus bed to make it closer to symmetrical. And extend the walkways to the edges of the new beds. DB is not averse to this plan, as it nets him yet another 20 square feet of garden space. So another new bed is in our future…
We also added a bed of 6 blackberry bushes to the side of the yard near the raspberry bushes. ((At this point, I looked at the DreadBrewer and said, “You do realize we are making it so no one will ever want to buy this house, right?” And he said, “Yes. Do you mind?” And I honestly said that no, I didn’t. I love our yard that is mostly garden…)) We had originally purchased just 5 blackberries, as I was slightly resistant to the idea of another berry bed, but again those damn anal-retentive tendencies meant we had to buy another one to make it even. For your personal edification, we ended up with 3 bushes of Apache blackberries and 3 bushes of Ouachita blackberries.
Blackberry and raspberry bushes, even when marketed as being “upright” or needing no support, benefit from having some sort of fencing around them. Last year, we struggled to find the best way to support the raspberries while still allowing plenty of space for harvesting. My sister and her husband told us what they used (electric fence wire) – we gave it a shot and it’s perfect! A huge spool of it was pretty cheap and it’s very easy to string and twist by hand. We use 6 of those steel fence posts to support the wire; when the bushes are huge, we may need to add more posts but 6 are plenty for now.
Doesn’t the bed look almost professional? Obviously it won’t look this nice and neat when the bushes start expanding and growing all over the place, but it’s very orderly and pretty right now.
At this point, I would like to say that we are done adding to the garden. (With the exception of the 4×5 bed to come.)
But there’s always the possibility that I may have spoken too soon.
Fruit trees, anyone?