About a month ago, I wrote about our plans for a backyard garden. H and I have gotten a few garden installations going for this summer, and I wanted to lay out how much we’ve spent so far.
The first garden area we’ve got is approximately 6′ by 8′, and is east facing in the backyard. This area was previously lightly covered in river rock, and was something that we were not really impressed with. It is bordered on one side by a 8″ square post, and the other by a fence. H and I moved all of the rock out of the garden area, then dug some trenches that the sides of the garden box would go in. Then we went to go get some 10″x8′ boards, which cost about 8 bucks a piece and we put them in as our side and back walls. We used a few brackets to hold everything together, and the total cost for this was approximately 27 dollars.
Our next installation is more for year round gardening, and it is a cold frame. For those unfamiliar, a cold frame is simply a box with a piece of glass or plastic on top that will let light through and keep heat in. When we were gutting the bathroom, I had one of these on my mind, so I saved both pieces of the double hung window to use. One is covered in paint (yes, even the glass) and I’m not sure it is worth the trouble, but the other will suit me just fine. I’ve already picked a south facing area and dug the hole, now I just need to build the box, fill the hole with compost, and attach the windows. Even though I’m building this now, I dont think I’m going to really plant anything until early august, when it starts to get cold. I’m not quite sure what I’ll put in there either, but im thinking about planting spinach. H and I eat it quite a bit, and I guess it’s pretty difficult to kill, so it would make a good first trial.
Now that the garden is all built, it was time to get some plants. Luckily a co-worker of mine has a greenhouse, and runs a pretty big (~6k/season) plant sale every year. She gave me some recommendations on the types of plants to plant that would grow well where we live and are rather hearty. I selected 2 varieties of heirloom tomates that she grows (carbon & brandywine), 1 eggplant (lavender blush) 3 varieties of hot peppers (serrano, taki’s ace, and el jefe). In addition to these, I’ll probably try my hand at some herbs that are popular in our house, like mint and basil. If there’s room, I’ll do a little bit of spinach as well. The plants I purchased from my co-worker cost $41, and I got a package of spinach seeds for a dollar on sale at the store.
Right now, I’m around $60 dollars into the project, and I’ll see what sort of yields that I get out of the garden. I’m not planning on keeping track of time spent on the garden this year, as I view it as more of a hobby and something to do than a way to generate income. To me, it’s something that I can do that will reduce expenses in the future, more than as an income generator.
Readers: Do you have a garden planted this year? If so, what did you plant?