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For as long as Joe and I have been looking for a place like Rafter4C, we knew we would have a garden. Once we bought this place, we dug right in. (dug…tee-hee)  The farm had established raised bed garden with 18 plots inside a picket fence.  So cute, but in need of some TLC.

Here is the before shot…looking a little sad.  but hey, it was February!

Here is the before shot…looking a little sad. but hey, it was February!

It has an arbor entry with bench seats and cute little gates hung askew to add a bit of whimsy.  I thought it was the ideal size…just enough.  On the other hand, Joe had imagined a garden of a grander scale.  He is a “go big!” kind of guy and I love that about him.  He suggested a hundred row garden was more like it.  That would allow us to feed ourselves and offer produce to the community.  “What!?” I thought.  I have never had a garden before and don’t know that he has either.  I can’t keep a houseplant alive, so the idea of 100 rows was daunting.  I mean, is it possible for a family of 4 plus parents to maintain and harvest that much produce?  Joe met me in the middle and we added a 2500 sqft. row garden plot.  Still it seemed like a lot of ground to cover.  But we had help.

Boom in garden

It was a bit difficult keeping the beds groomed with this one around!

My mom jumped right in.  I think the garden excites her as much as me.  We got busy with soil prep and plantings while Joe and my dad worked on the fence.  Thanks to them for adding the deer netting.  We didn’t have a single break in!

Mom and I should have compared notes because we both bought all we could find!  3 types of peas, 3 types of beans, cucumber, squash, zucchini, okra, 3 types of carrots, spinach, lettuces, 3 types of corn, 8 types of peppers, beets, asparagus, eggplant, collard greens, broccoli, cabbage, onions, potatoes, russels sprouts, tomatillos, cantaloupe, blackberries, blueberries, strawberries, rhubarb, and of course tomatoes and more tomatoes!  (My boys made the little garden signs. Aren’t they adorable?)

And by the way, to all you first-timers: 30 zucchini and squash plants is waaaaaaayyyy too much.  I mean, our friends stopped coming around.  “No more zucchini, please, I beg you!”

It wasn’t long ‘til we ran out of ground.  I couldn’t believe it!  Maybe Joe was right about the 100 rows.  If we have a fruitful season and I can get the hang of this gardening thing, maybe next year we will go bigger.

Garden after

Garden after. I think it turned out beautifully!

What do ya think?