Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Gardening Season Is Upon Us!

Being in West Virginia, we still aren't past the possibility of frosty mornings, but that time is approaching soon! It has been years since I've had a garden. Why? Because I was not able to properly tend to one and no one else around my home was interested in anything other than eating whatever came from the garden. They couldn't be bothered to pull weeds, water, etc... That was just too much work! And, it wasn't like they were the ones who had to try and make the grocery budget stretch to cover fresh produce! LOL SO, this year I approach gardening season 200 pounds lighter than the last time I had a garden. I am physically able to hoe, rake and tend a garden and I am SO looking forward to all that great fresh produce and the exercise gardening can be. Last year, I was fortunate enough to get some tomatoes and beans from a good friend and some from a family member, but it wasn't nearly what I would have been getting from my own garden. We could eat fresh veggies ALL summer in this house and it is an expensive endeavor to purchase them from the local grocers.

This year, my biggest hurdle in the garden will be keeping the deer out! I've got a great area to use that was part of our horse pasture, so it has already been well fertilized. I have access to my brother-in-law's roto-tiller, so no issues there. All I need to do is start buying seeds and put up the electric fence. What are YOU planting? Here's my shopping list for seeds at this point:

tomatoes (both for slicing as well as cherry or grape varieties)
cucumbers (for salad use as well as for pickling--been 10 years since I made pickles!)
green beans (usually pole)
yellow squash
lettuce (probably romaine)
peppers (bell and hot)
perhaps some cabbage

root veggies--
carrots (my rabbits need them!)
potatoes (probably just some red ones)
onions (green, red and white)

maybe blueberries

I need to determine what I need to make good salsa... Anyone got a recipe? I know tomatoes, onions and peppers, but need to figure out more specifically which varieties of each work best for good salsa. And, I want to make and can my own spaghetti/marinara sauce as well this year... I hope to find some good recipes for both the salsa and the marinara sauce!

We will also be purchasing and planting some fruit trees this year. I have meant to do this every year for the 8+ years we've been here and it just never has happened. This year, things are different. It WILL get done this year even if it is just a couple to get me started!

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