Everything was growing well, although I lost a few of the large bean plants and half of the squash seedlings to cutworms. I protected two of each squash plants with cutworm collars made of toilet tissue rolls, and never saw any more damage. Then, on July 1, we had a couple of very strong wind gusts that split our large maple tree in half, and the entire east garden was crushed under a huge branch.
We had to call a tree removal company to remove the entire maple tree, and they were quite careful when they lifted the branches off the garden. Quite a few of the bean plants were wiped out, and a few stems broke off the zucchini plants, but there wasn’t a lot of damage otherwise. Of course, the fence was crushed, giving our two puppies access to the garden, so they found the bed of lettuce was a lovely, cool place to nap and nibble.
I immediately purchased new fencing (under $100 for materials) and moved it further into the yard to give me space for some raised beds. I had quite a bit of lumber in the garage, saved from several years ago when we removed a deck from the back of our house. It was good redwood, 2x6 lumber, and enough to build four 4’x4’x12” deep beds and one 3‘x4‘x6“-deep bed that I‘ll use for shallow rooted greens. I purchased a yard of top soil for $18 and a yard of “leaf and twig” composted steer manure for $20. That was a good buy, as I had asked for regular compost but they were out, so they gave me the more expensive blend at the same price.
I had planned on leaving the beds empty until next spring, adding lots of chopped up leaves and more compost later this fall. But…I couldn’t resist. So here is a diary of my garden, my very first summer planted garden. I’m hoping I have a harvest before winter.