garden start

We got the garden ready for planting. What a job. For many years George and Barbara had a pigeon coop. They gave up raising pigeons a few years back and after a storm knocked a pine tree onto it, we decided that it would be a good place for a garden – all those years of pigeons fertilizing it. It’s an area of approximately 20′ x 40′ which included the area previously holding the coop and a 4′ walkway all around the perimeter. The walkway was 4” of gravel over top of nursery cloth and had been packed down for years. We needed to get all the gravel up, the cloth up, and then roto tiller the whole area. What a job that turned out to be. There were 3 of us working and it took maybe 6 hours each day for 3 days. What a crew. George has a bad heart, Rick has MS, and I have prostate cancer. I’m sure Nancy and Barbara had the phones ready for a 911 call when one or all of us collapsed. But we got it and the planting will start tomorrow. Going to plant all the standard stuff including: tomatoes; string beans; crooked neck squash; yellow zuchinni; green zuchinni; green peppers; jalapeno peppers; egg plant; cucumbers; and 3 varieties of corn. Also going to do some brocolli but I really think it’s too late for that – just an experiment. We have a combination of plants and seeds so the crop should be stretched out over an extended time and not all come on simultaneously. So now I’ll have something else to watch in addition to the fish.

Another interesting development. About a week ago George put up a 20′ T pole with 4 gourds hanging from the T. If you look carefully at the picture, you can see them. The gourds have a 3” hole for entry, the hope being that maybe in a season or two, it would attract Purple Martins. They’re a great bird to have around because they feed primarily on mosquitoes and other flying insects. Tonight as we were finishing up the last of the tilling, a Martin landed on the pole. We were blown away with how quickly the Martin house was found and also that it didn’t seemed bothered by us or the noisy tiller. It sat on the T for about 5 minutes and then went into one of the guords. He flew out after checking the interior and within 5 minutes he was back with a buddy. The buddy checked out the interior of a different one then they both flew off. It was getting dark but I have no doubt that within just a few days, we’ll be hanging out the no vacancy sign.

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