Jan 21

Small Space Gardening

Gardening Jones looks at taking a large garden down to a more manageable size as she gets older.

As I mentioned in my last post, we are downsizing the gardens this year. Dramatically down. From about 800 sq. ft. plus containers, we're going down to less than 200 plus containers. In the pic above the colored areas were all planted last year. What it doesn't show is on the left, the yellow box labeled Garlic used to sit next to 10 other 4x4 beds that will be taken down.

There's not a lot of room to plant; I need to be sure what I want.

So here's what I expect:

-To go from 70-80 tomato plants to 16. Last year was so bad for tomatoes that our harvest was too little to can, so hopefully these few will produce enough that I won't feel like my efforts were lost.

-No more sprawling squash vines. I'm the only ones that eats the squash anyway, so I am going to limit myself to a few varieties like the AAS winner Winter Honeybaby. I grew this last year and it is delicious! I may try this in a planter.

-The same goes for watermelon. There is nothing that can compare to homegrown, so I will be vertically growing Sugar Baby and Mini Love. These are my favs and take up little space, yet they yield well and taste wonderful.

-Skipping potatoes all together since we rarely eat them. We started growing them because of their high levels of pesticides and other toxins. Over the past few years their place on the Dirty Dozen list has dropped, not necessarily because they contain less toxins, but because other fruits and vegetables are getting worse.

-No more attempts at broccoli and cauliflower. I give up, you won. 😉 I will grow some Napa cabbage for Kimchi, and some wee small Tatsoi for stir fry. Have you noticed a shift to a healthier diet? Yeah, that's part of this too.

-I don't need 6 kale plants and a full bed of chard. Two of each will be plenty for our daily smoothie needs.

-Skip the corn. That's what farmers' markets are for.

-I will grow celery again, but also not as much; I had 8, we really only needed 2.

-No more sweet potatoes, well, maybe. I love them, he doesn't, and they are high in carbs which we are watching. The maybe is because of this:
Gardening Jones is growing her own sweet potato slips.

These sweet potato slips are from the last of our 2017 crop. If they survive until planting time, they are going in. There's only a few, and they are a bush variety so won't take up much room. You have to draw the line somewhere.

Other than that, I will be growing smaller amounts and or more compact varieties of what I grew before. I do suspect I will become the owner of a few more large containers. 😉

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