Friday, December 21, 2007

What to plant

The general idea is to plant the lowest growing variety at the bottom and the highest at the top of the mound. The outer circle of a mound might very well consist of a vining variety like cucumber or cantaloupe, followed by a low growing kind of marigolds in the next circle. The following circle could be a medium hight vegetable like peppers or eggplant, with the top of the mound being reserved for pole beans or tomatoes, for example. Make sure to use a companion planting chart to decide which vegetable should go where, so that your plants don't stunt each other's growth, and so that you can fight bugs and critters best.

Make sure to leave enough space between your plants, like you would in any other garden bed, so that your plants have enough room to grow and bear fruit. If you plant early varieties like spinach, leave enough seed for a second crop after the first is harvested. This way, your edible landscape will be provide you with fresh produce for a long time.

Simple Living at Joshuah's House

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Thursday, December 13, 2007

Soil Quality

If you are unsure about the quality of your soil, use a soil tester kit to test the pH level and take proper steps if your soil is too acidic or too alcaline. Once you have done that and deep spaded one more time, make sure that you do not step on the soil anymore, or, if you have dug a big mound, that you only step on the stepping stones or areas. Compacted soil stunts growth and is easy to avoid.

If you want to keep your soil nourishing to your plants, add organic material to your mound as you go just like you would do to any other vegetable bed. Grass clippings, for example, keep the soil from drying out and prevent excessive weed growth.

It is also a good idea to pull weeds as they appear, as they compete with your vegetable for the nutrients in the soil. A good rule of the thumb is to pull weeds after every rain, as they are easy to pull from the wet soil and won't take the fresh nourishment from your vegetables.

Simple Living at Joshuah's House

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Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Mound Size

When you start digging your mounds, keep in mind that you need to be able to reach the middle conveniently and from all sides. If you want to build large mounds, plan in space to walk on, probably even place a few stepping stones. Otherwise, restrict the size of your mound to a radius of 2 feet.

After deep spading the soil, pile it up in the middle and create small terrasses of soil to indicate where you will plant your seed or seedlings. If you feel the need to stabelize your terrasses, rows of stones will do the job nicely.

Simple Living at Joshuah's House

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