In my last project post, I spoke about The Solution to The Problem. In this post, I'll give a few more details on the expansion as well as the timeline. We don't have an able bodied crew at the ready - this will change once the kids are a bit older ;) - so most of the work will be done by me, myself and I with the occasional spousal helping hand. Translation: This will not be a quick project!
After the trees were moved, we were free to start the expansion. A picture is worth a thousand words, even a very bad Google maps image, so here is a rough illustration of the planned vegetable garden expansion:
|House is on the right; the street cuts across the top left corner, neighbours driveway is on the left.|
Red = Current Area #1;
Blue = Expansion to Area #1;
Green = New ornamental border;
Green "flowers" = transplanted spruce trees
Within the blue bordered area there are a couple of trees which will remain, specifically a cherry and a white birch cluster. They won't be a problem in terms of shade, as they are in the north/east corner of the expanded area. I'll also be keeping the beds a good distance away from them to avoid issues with tree roots.
|The cherry tree (right) and birch cluster (left) will be located within the new veg area|
There are two more small evergreens near the shed which will eventually be removed - both of them are rather sad with spindly growth and a lot of dead spots, likely because they were originally planted much too close to the spruce trees which dominated the space.
|Close-up of one of the trees that we will be removing|
The size of this project (and the small work crew!) means that we will be tackling it in stages over the next couple of years. This year, we moved the trees and will be marking off and sheet mulching the expanded veg area. The ornamental border will be edged on the neighbours side while on our side, we will use stones.
|The tree moving equipment did a number on the grass in this area.|
The damage, however, actually works in our favour since this entire area is being sheet mulched.
The next step will be to add the new veg beds and break ground on a second ornamental border which runs along the north side of the veg area (the blue line directly across from the spruce). I'm slotting this in as a "leisurely project" for next summer which means that the veg beds will not be operational until the following year (2019). Only once the veg beds and this last border are in will we "officially" expand Area #1 by relocating the existing fencing.
So where are we at? We've received 2 dump truck loads of wood chips and are currently in the process of sheet mulching.
Progress has been slow going - our weather has been hot, with humidex readings often in the mid-30C's/90F's, which makes working outside challenging and necessitates frequent breaks in the AC.
In addition, other areas of the garden also need attention - weeding, edging, pruning...the list goes on. A couple of weeks ago I took a break from the "project" and finally got started on weeding and de-grassing the rather neglected berry runs.
|Raspberries. Yes, they're in there...somewhere|
|Heritage raspberry run is done;|
I'll be starting on the Fall Gold (to the right) this week
The trick is to "know" that this will be the case and not drive yourself crazy trying to stick to a rigid timeline. For me, that's easier said than done. Now off to move another pile of mulch (in a very relaxed "it will get done when it gets done" sort of way) :)