Fenced Back Yard Garden Plan for February 2013

Last year I signed up for GrowVeg.com Garden Planner (“The smart way to plan your garden.”)  It was $40 for two years and let’s me play “SimGarden” as much as I want, moving my virtual plants around and adding new ones.  I just discovered a feature that publishes one garden plan at a time.  The Fenced Back Yard garden plan (which is my primary garden) is located at http://www.growveg.com/garden-plan.aspx?p=312234 and also appears in the Garden Plan links to the right.  My goal is to republish every month so everyone can see the current state of my gardens (yes, there are more than one).  I will also post plans and pictures each month so each garden’s evolution can be tracked.

As you can see from the pictures below, the fence is laying (or is that lying?) down on the southern side as I’m increasing my garden size from 50’x20′ to 50’x30′ this spring.  I will be tilling the new area in March or April (weather permitting) because it’s currently lawn, but not the rest as I’m going no-till as much as possible.  Also, in the foreground, you can see the mounds of leaves that I piled up during the fall (thanks to my John Deere lawn sweeper).  All these leaves from my lawn (oak and maple mostly) will be used as garden mulch throughout this year.

North Facing View of Back Yard Garden – 2/9/2013
East Facing View of Back Yard Garden – 2/9/2013

The plants you see in the garden plan below are those I wintered over.  The top of the plan is to the north with a big sugar maple tree to the north west.  That means I can’t plant anything that needs full sun in that corner (where the “Vit” corn salad/mache and  “Seven Top” turnip greens are currently).  I found this out the hard way in 2011 when I planted  corn and cucumbers over there and they grew poorly (micro corn anyone?).

Back yard garden plan for February 2013 (North is at the top)
Corn Salad - 1/29/2013
Corn Salad (or Mache) – 1/29/2013

Food Not Lawns Cleveland Seed Swap – 1/26/2013

I spotted a Meetup.com post (in the Beyond Civilization Sustainability Group) for a seed swap Food Not Lawns Cleveland (FNLC) was hosting and couldn’t have been more excited (sad but true).  Pictured below are most of the seeds I received, plus some kale and Jerusalem artichokes.  With this mother load of genetic material, 2013 will be the first year I will do all my own starts instead of buying them (not that there’s anything wrong with that).  FNLC does ask that we produce seeds from these and share them at next year’s swap.  Hopefully I get a bumper crop and am able to give back to the cause.   This time around I was able to give as well as receive (mustard, kale, corn salad) as I tend to order too many seeds at a time from Johnny’s Selected Seeds (a packet is usually $3.45 and an ounce is $5.25 and since I have to pay shipping anyways . . .).

Seeds I received from Food Not Lawns Cleveland 1/26/2013
Seeds I received from Food Not Lawns Cleveland 1/26/2013

If you are interested in joining Food Not Lawns Cleveland, their link is http://tech.groups.yahoo.com/group/foodnotlawnscleveland/

If you are interested in reading the book that inspired the group, check out Food Not Lawns: How to Turn Your Yard into a Garden And Your Neighborhood into a Community

Let's Grow Some Veggies!