Last week we were very busy in our vegetable garden. We built an extra two raised beds, we replanted some seedlings from our seedling trays into the raised beds and we sowed some more seedlings in seedling trays.
Early Tuesday morning, after a whole day of much welcomed light rain on Monday, I replanted our watermelon, squash and butternut seedlings.
This is our 4th raised bed, it is at a separate area, away from the first 3 raised beds. The first three raised beds are under irrigation and since watermelons, squash and butternuts flourish more on surface watering in the early morning to prevent powdery mildew from forming, we separated this bed from the rest. Heidi-Mari had taken responsibility to water the pumpkin and watermelon bed every morning. During this time she also waters our lemon- and fig tree. If you look closely you will see the tiny fruit, full of promise!
CJ worked the whole Monday, in the rain – much cooler and had quite a ball, to prepare the 4th and 5th vegetable beds. There is no way I would ever have been able to start this vegetable garden without CJ’s constant hard work – filling bags and bags of horse manure at the horse farm, looking after my compost heaps, building the raised beds, digging out soil to put in the raised beds and filling new raised beds with the right proportion soil, peanut shells and compost.
Since my compost wasn’t quite matured enough for the watermelons, squash and butternut and they are very ‘nutrient hungry’ plants, I immediately gave them a dose liquid fertilizer (from my Bokashi bin) and gave them another dose over the weekend. We also sprinkle our used, ground, organic coffee beans (rich in nitrogen) around the watermelons, squash and butternuts.
We planted the watermelons, squash and butternuts with the specific hope that they will be able to supplement my diet, with organic vegetables, when baby is born at the end of January. From experience we know newborn babies prefers mommy to follow a very simple diet. My supper usually consists of meat or chicken, rice, pumpkin and carrot salad. Breakfast is eggs and spelt bread with butter only. Lunch will be left-over-protein from supper on spelt bread. These foods don’t cause cramps and a content new born baby is a well deserved reward on the sacrifice of other favorite foods like beans, potatoes, tomatoes, peas, broccoli, wheat, sugar, jam and honey. It also has the beneficial side-effect of me getting back in shape within weeks.
The watermelon was a request from Danika, but I know I’m also going to enjoy watermelons in the heat of February while breastfeeding our newborn baby.
Later the week we also replanted our pea- and bean-seedlings in the 5th raised bed.
The rest of the bed will be planted with our lettuce seedlings, which is almost ready to be replanted.
CJ also needs to build a 6th raised bed in the New Year for our tomato seedlings which is coming along strongly and will be ready to plant in a few weeks time.
On Friday we sowed more lettuce, beans, chives (to plant as companions for our squash and butternut) and carrot seeds.
We found the amount of lettuce and beans we’ve planted, don’t produce nearly enough for this family of nine! We definitely need to think big!
Over the weekend we could pick a few cherry tomatoes, two hands full of beans and lettuce. We are also able to pick thyme, rosemary, parsley and basil on a daily basis to put in our food and salad! Between our six strawberry plants we are able to pick one or two strawberries a day; we definitely need to expand them too!
In the near future there is hope for more tomatoes and our own carrots!
Since the weekend I am experiencing some serious contractions. I’m nearly 34 weeks pregnant, but need to go at least another 3 weeks to have a safe home birth. Christo literally put me under “house arrest”. I’m not the kind that handles bed rest very well - too much of a busy-bee, but I am taking things easier. Thus CJ and Heidi-Mari will have to take care of our vegetable garden and make sure everything receive enough water and liquid fertilizer. No problem for them, they enjoy the garden just as much as I do!
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