This summer has been going by so quickly. We have had a beautiful mix of sun and rain. I have hardly had to water my vegetable garden and my green house is flourishing. As I watch my garden grow and the tender care it takes, I think of my children and the tender care they need to grow. I recently read a post about how Kindergarten means “garden of children” and how flowers are much like young children. Watching flowers grow, “they grow at different rates, have their own agenda, fight for the sun, take a backseat to other flowers..some are strong, some are weak” they are all unique in their own way. Flowers are definitely like young children and watching both flowers and veggies grow in my garden is such a perfect metaphor to how children grow. As I garden and think about all the care and attention it needs, it reminds me of how our children also need that care and attention DAILY! (but that could be another post all in of itself)
My journey to vegetable gardening started from the joy of visiting farmers markets when I lived in BC. I always knew I wanted a garden of my own to grow my own fresh produce. Then when I moved up north, I had the chance to do gardening with my mother-in-law. For my first few northern summers she showed me the ins and outs of gardening. Her garden was very successful and it was such a treasure learn this skill from her. My grandma also had vegetable gardens in the north since the 1960’s, so YES northern gardening is possible and I couldn’t wait to start one of my own!
I started my own garden when we bought our home in 2012. Before we even moved in, I planted flowers right away. I was so excited to have my own flower beds and to make this house our home!
I didn’t start veggie gardening until 2014 when we did some backyard construction and removed an old tarp shed.
Once we removed the shed, the soil was so rich underneath so that is where we decided to build our raised garden beds.
Building Raised Garden Beds
Here is our first vegetable garden, and I was so pleased with the results. Especially since I actually got zucchini to grow up here. These plants were not started from seed, I cheated and got them as a set from the local garden center.
Planting Our First Garden
Watching it Grow..
By 2017 I had my little garden helper! We continued to used the raised beds and we made a structure with pipes to go over one of the beds to create a greenhouse effect. It was such a joy to slowly grow and adapt our garden to this space. I love being able to share this joy with my kids and teach them to grow their own food.
The next year we got a full greenhouse, I wanted to extend the growing season up here. It seems over time with the weather changing, it has gotten harder and harder to grow veggies. I also tried my hand at square foot gardening, I separated the 6×6 beds into sections with twine and planted accordingly. (print out link) I researched companion plants and started most of my plants from seed, specifically zucchini, cucumbers and squash.
Despite the extra work, it was so rewarding to be able to grow these plants from seed in preparation for the green house. Best of all was being able to harvest the veggies together! My little loves were getting bigger and when it came to gardening, watering and picking the veggies, they were such great little helpers! Overall, 2018 was a fun year of trying new things.
The rest of the veggies were pretty tiny that year, but I was so excited the greenhouse worked out and I got some nice sized zucchinis and cucumbers too!
At the end of the season in 2018, we decided to remove the raised garden beds. The wood was breaking down on the raised beds and the soil was ready to be replenished so we just went for it and started with a clean slate. It was fun using our UTV for the work.
I decided not to plant in 2019, so I couldn’t wait to plant this year and get my garden going again. Gardening is such a joy for me! There is so much more to share about my journey gardening this year. We have continued to make more improvements and I am always learning new things. Stay tuned for that post, more to come!
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