If you're stumbling across this you should know that this is the wrong place for photo spreads that look like they came from Better Homes and Gardens. This is not your destination for PhD level advice from a renown botanist. If you're looking for a regular dude with a regular house in a small town in the south you've hit the jackpot. This blog is the Florida man of gardening sites. You've been warned!
This time around I've got about 150 square feet of raised beds. No photos of the ones these replaced but they were bad. You ever run into an ex girlfriend you haven't seen in a decade and she's since discovered meth? Just picture that, but garden beds. I made these with plain ole fence pickets and grade stakes from HD and sprayed them with barn paint to give em some pizazz and hopefully add a couple years to their life. To those of you that want to rant about pressure treated wood and so on just don't. Every time you take your little sissy dog for a walk around the block you're inhaling carbon monoxide, brake dust, and a laundry list of particles that would make your yoga instructor scream.
When you're gardening in Florida there are two very important things to focus on. Unlike some places with naturally rich and fertile soil, Florida is a sand pit. It's like Mad Max only without the cool fire shooting guitars. Amending soil is necessary to have a kickass mechanical arm Charlise Theron type garden and not a spindly weed patch. I filled my beds with a mix of topsoil and mushroom compost. There is no better way to add organic material to your soil than with compost. Just make sure you don't add too much! As with anything, too much of a good thing does more harm than good. So next time you're downing your 4th tequila shot of the night, remember that compost is another thing you should take it easy with.
|Mushroom compost smells like your mom.|
The second thing gardens around here need LOTS of is water! Florida summers are miserable, sweaty, hot messes. You can't walk outside any time between June and September without complaining. It's impossible. If Michael Moore was a state he'd be Florida. And so without daily watering your garden will die quickly. This is where I got crafty this time around.
After successfully installing drip irrigation in my front yard landscaping last year I learned that it's the way to go for any garden, veggie or otherwise. A few trips to the hardware store, a little planning, and a few hours of work nets you a garden that waters itself. That comes in quite handy when you like to travel or if you're just a lazy sumbitch like me.
Here's some completely random shots of the irrigation being installed in no particular order. Things need to be adjusted a bit to increase coverage but it's well on its way. Little tip - before you go loading up on micro irrigation supplies from HD or Lowes, check Ebay and Amazon. The little sprinkler stakes that run $5.60 per 4 pack at HD I found on Amazon at the price of $5.99 for 100 with prime shipping.
The garden is ready for planting for the first time in years. I am like a kid waiting for Christmas. What does it mean when you get more excited for this that you do actual Christmas? It means that you're old af. Oh well. There might be new beds and new excitement in this garden but there's still a familiar face prowling around. I'll leave you with some glamour shots of my garden helper aka a pug named Buck. He is as ugly as ever, but we still love him.