>Thinking ahead for this year’s garden

>Thinking ahead – gardeners do this a lot. I’m stuck inside with a major headache, but I can look out the windows and see sunshine in a late-winter thaw. Sunshine lifts my spirits and raises thoughts and plans for spring’s eventual arrival. I don’t have a drawing yet; yes, I often sketch the garden plan so I buy the right number of plants and seeds. Most of the winter I’m in brainstorming and dreaming mode.

Random gardening thoughts:
  • I’d like to incorporate shallots and leeks. They can go in the smallest corner of the triangular garden.
  • We’ll have the fence up this year with a supporting border of marigolds, so I’ll put in broccoli. Maybe our own bunnies will actually get to eat it! Last year only the wild backyard cottontails had the joy of fresh broccoli.
  • I’m letting the raspberries expand. I moved the chives and asparagus out of the general area of the raspberries, so nothing is in the way of their spreading. Not that anything stops raspberry plants!
  • Peas will go in front of the beans on a new trellis. They didn’t get enough sun last year, so the move will help. Peas mature before beans, so they’ll be harvested and gone before the beans need the bulk of the sunshine.
  • Squash! Where should the squash go? I’m putting in butternut squash and my usual zucchini. If I plant the seeds near the beans or peas, they’ll grow toward the sun. They also mature later. This should work.
  • Bunny food! The usual lettuces and spinach and parsley will have a space. They might go in the area that will be taken over later by squash.
  • Tomatoes; oh, I love my tomatoes. I had success canning stewed tomatoes and salsa, so I’m going to put in more heirloom pulp tomato varieties. I’ll still put in the standard eating tomatoes and the cherries; they’re delicious and they freeze well.
  • Freezing: now that’s another post.
You can get a sense of my garden plans for the coming season. I’m planning on using the space well, using the sunshine efficiently, and preserving more of the harvest. Oh, winter sunshine, you taunt me! I want to get started now.

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