Follow me on Twitter

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Garden...step one...

I hinted a bit in a earlier post about my journey into planting my own garden this year.  A couple days ago I actually bought seeds.  I literally worried over what to plant in my garden for a couple of long excruciating months.  I dreamt about it.  I drew layout after layout of what plants and what type of container would go where into my imaginary garden, and how I could rotate them year after year.  I read everything I could get my hands on, from every topic you could think of; from soil conditions to homemade fertilizer to seed saving techniques, to preservation techniques, to studies done on what varieties to plant in the arctic.  I guess I am a bit of control freak when I enter into any new area of experience.  I go from teenage first-kiss-giddiness to an absolute certainty that I will totally and utterly fail at anything having to do with plants.  I haven't been this excited about anything since I bought my first supplies for my perfume line. 

I recommend that everyone go through this type of experience at least once a year!

 So what did I choose to plant?  I plan on growing oats in much of my available space.  I jokingly tell family and friends that I want to eat after the great zombie invasion but really it's just for a couple basic reasons.  One:  I LOVE Oats.  I love oatmeal, and oatmeal muffins, and oatmeal cookies.  Oats are such a versatile and healthy yummy thing.  I bought hulless oats in hopes that it will be easier to process them.  Two: The grass from the oats will go to reducing the cost of the winter straw we buy for the dogs every year.  Along with the grass we will collect wild in the fall time.

Of course potatoes are on my list. Alaskan potatoes.  I have talked with people and read about using wild rhubarb type plants to feed the potatoes and that this really works well.  It will work well for me also because I will already be collecting and processing sourdock for a food supplement.  I also will try a squash that supposedly does well in central Alaska and stores well, another versatile crop.  Peas are next on the list, though I have nightmares about the canned peas that were endlessly fed to me as a child I absolutely adore fresh peas.    The rest of the plants I chose based on what they will be used for.  Chives for cooking, lettuce for eating, calendula for it's healing properties, and stevia just to see if I could get it to grow and then use for sweet. 

I don't have a huge amount of room in the back, and I will have to share that room with a drying rack and the various things my husband adores to stash, but it will work to get me started on getting familiar with how to use a space for gardening.  My husband has agreed to build me above ground boxes in various sizes, being the saint he is he is willing to hand over a sizable amount of his wood stash for this project, and I plan to use modified buckets for the container friendly plants. 

Today the sun officially crested the towering mountains and I opened the window curtains to let it in.  The weather has stopped being ridiculous for the moment and today it was a 'balmy' 10 degrees.  I spent most of it attacking the outside yard with a shovel.  The husband got x-rays and though the collarbone is healing as planned he is still doomed to another month without using a snowmachine or lifting anything more than 5 pounds.  So I do my best to clear the snow from stove exhaust and shovel out most of the snow in the dog pen so that they don't figure out that they could just jump out if they are inclined. 

The world seems to want winter to end......

Stay warm and cozy everyone.

My husband found a few tufts of muskox hair caught in the willows.  I finally found a use for it and made a embroidered mini-muskox. 

1 comment:

  1. When I first read this post I was startled about trying oats and then I found this :

    Thank you for sharing the beginnings of your garden project! This will be fun to watch unfold.