Building a Kitchen Garden- Part Two

After all the building was done to create the new kitchen garden beds, we took a breather to think about what would come next. I knew we had to order soil as soon as possible. Finding good soil is always an issue. There is nothing worse than soil with too many wood chips in it or too much sand.

Building a kitchen garden-part two

I finally made a decision to go with one of the more expensive soil mixes. I knew that getting the first load of soil was pretty important as it would be the base of the garden for years to come. It still had bits of plastic, glass and wood chips in it from the recycling process but we picked out the junk including a large square of landscape fabric. To figure out the quantity of soil needed  I went online to calculate the amount. The beds are 4′ by 8′ and 20″ high. The online calculator said I would need 12 cubic yards of soil. Phew, just thinking about shovelling twelve yards of soil made me tired. I think that’s why we waited for a week.

Building a kitchen garden-part two

It was right. All the soil went into the six beds. Because the weather turned incredibly warm we filled the beds in the evening and early morning. Mid day was way too warm to be working in the garden. If you look closely at the garden beds, you will that my farmer Jim used some cedar he had left over to trim the sides of the bed. Okay, don’t tell Jim I called him a farmer. We just had the discussion on whether we are gardeners or farmers. I was told by a farmer friend that if you grow food you are a farmer. Jim will tell you he doesn’t work in the garden. Not true. He does a lot of the slug work. He also loves the rewards that come from growing our own food.

Building a kitchen garden -part two

The garden bed at the far right has some posts at either end. I had thought about having a bed of strawberries but when we discussed our likes it was decided that we prefer raspberries even more. The post at either end will become the supports for the raspberry canes.

Building a kitchen garden-Part two

For now I have planted red onions at one end of the raspberry bed. The raspberry canes I have propagated from cuttings are still small and we won’t have fruit until next year. The onions will come out in late summer making room for more canes to go in. Jim will be doing some more building on this garden bed. Not sure what he has up his sleeve this time.

Building a kitchen garden-part two

Although the brick work is not quite finished around the outside of the beds I went ahead and planted four types of basil this morning. I planted Red Rubin which can be used for salad dressing or vinegars, cinnamon basil which can be used as a replacement for cinnamon, Sweet Genovese which is the common green basil and Siam Queen Thai basil. I alternated the plantings to have a nice show of alternating colours. After all vegetable gardens can be pretty. There are 72 basil plants. I know, what was I thinking? Pretty soon I will be giving away basil, making pesto and using it on pizza. Pesto is so delicious. Try it as a layer in homemade lasagna. You will love it. For one of my favourite pesto recipes, check out pesto with a twist.

That’s it for this week. I hope to get all the beds planted over the next couple of days and will update you soon. If you missed part one of our kitchen garden project, check it out. kitchen garden-part one. Stay tuned for part three.

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