Grant went with his 4-H photography group last year to a nearby garden center for some unique photo opportunities. The garden owner gave each one of the kids a strawberry plant to take home. It was a big, beautiful plant and I recall thinking, "Oh what a waste of good plants, it will just die here!" We had no place to put a strawberry plant, and everyone knows that only a few berries are put out by each plant. He was so thrilled about that plant. I found a pot for him and helped him to pot it. We set it on the front deck and I waited for it to meet its demise as soon as we forgot to water it. G was pretty intent on taking care of it though, and did well to water it. He actually harvested a few berries off of it, which were "the best strawberries he had ever eaten!" Since then, he has talked multiple times about planting a strawberry bed. A few weeks ago, we rummaged around the yard and found some OLD railroad ties and some leftover bricks. He and D put them together into a rectangular planting bed. J hauled them in some soil, and they carried buckets of compost to the top of it. According to the farmer's almanac (in which I am a FIRM believer when it comes to gardening), Sunday and Monday were THE days to set strawberry plants.
Sunday after nap time, we loaded up trowels and a box and headed for great-grandma's house. She is quite the gardener, and has a wonderful established strawberry bed, from which she graciously allowed us to steal plants. She showed Grant how to dig the berry plants out, and how to plant them back again. He dug most of the plants. When we had enough, we toured the rest of her garden and helped her remove a grape vine and some boysenberry bushes that had escaped from their places.
After a short visit, we drove back home to get them into the ground to minimize their stress. All of the boys helped to plant a few plants--Grant, of course stuck it out till the end, and Cami? She just walked around on the perimeter of the raised bed. She pulled up two freshly planted berries, and fell off the bed backwards once, but other than that, she was great help!
Grandma just has her plants in the garden, but we knew that ours wouldn't survive the kids or the weeds if they didn't have a specific place outlined as their own. The east garden fence seemed like the place to put them, I hope it works out ok there. I think this bed will be easier for us to keep mulched and weeded.
There's the finished product. Grandma thinks that they might produce some berries this summer too, so everyone was excited about that!
We also accumulated that grape vine and the 3 boysenberry bushes that we moved for her. Apparently boysenberries taste much like blackberries, which I don't care for when eating plain, but I like them in jam. So I think that I hope they live!
We also swiped some garlic plants from her to try as well. I found a small spot at the front of the garden that has been used for nothing since the herbs died out 12 years ago. It should be the ideal spot for them, out of the main garden area, but still right there to get water and harvested. I redid the herb garden a few years ago, and it is now right outside my back steps and has worked out great there.
It will soon be time to plant the rest of the garden. We are also planning that rock haulin' trip this coming weekend! So there will be gardening and landscaping project posts to come soon, and probably some pictures of those crazy kids--after all, that seems to be my life!
Don't forget your sunscreen this week!