by Texas Homesteader
A week or so ago I pulled down my indoor greenhouse and planted some of my heirloom seeds. I wrote about my indoor greenhouse system and how easy it was to use and store. It doesn’t take long in that moist environment for them to sprout.
It may be a couple of weeks until I can actually plant them in the garden but I need to start prepping the beds now. They have laid dormant all winter and are pretty messy. No award-winning garden eye-candy here!
These weeds blanket the garden area. They’re called Henbit, but our youngest daughter always called them “Bunny Flowers” because it looked like it had the purple eyes nose and ears of a bunny. Awwww… Sweet memories.
And as I pulled these weeds out of my raised beds and wondered what to do with the mountains of them accumulating beside me, inspiration hit. I hauled armloads of them to the fence and called the cows – they loved it! So I’m moving this stuff out of my garden and the cows get a treat – win/win! (yes, I think I’m clever!)
And although these raised beds originally started out as a patch in a cow pasture, over the last several years I’ve painstakingly amended the soil. I was pleased to see lots of earthworms occupying the beds this year.
And the soil in these beds is now rich, dark and productive.
I still have lots to do, but I have completely cleared out some of the raised beds and they’ll be ready for planting soon. C’mon spring!
My Favorite Garden Hacks
- Easy Garden Planning Spreadsheet
- Getting A Jump: Planting An Indoor Greenhouse
- Repurposed Cardboard Seed-Starting Pots
- 3-Sister’s Garden – The Original Companion Planting
- Low-Cost Vegetable Gardening
- Planting A Large Galvanized Trough
- Using Cheap Biodegradable Weed Block
- Tricking Birds AWAY From Your Strawberry Plants
- Easy Compost For A Healthy Garden
- Propping Tender Seedlings
- Cheap (or FREE) Wood Mulch For The Garden
- Homestead Hack: Remember Where You Planted Seeds
- How Vegetable Gardening Can Change Your Life!
- Easy Deep-Soak Watering
- Planting Potatoes In Galvanized Trough
- Planting A Blueberry Bush In Galvanized Tub
- Stevia – Growing Your Own Sweetener!
- How I Use EcoBricks In The Garden
We get heaps of that stuff and throw it over to the sheep! I wonder if it’s call that because chickens eat it too? Ours always run right over when they see us tossing it. Isn’t it nice to see your soil improving year after year? Growing…everything farming…is such a long term process.
Jamie, you’re ahead of me with throwing this stuff over the fence to the animals. It was a DUH moment for me but they’ll be getting this treat from now on. Not sure where henbit gets it’s name. Hummmm… ~TxH~
I love the bunny flowers! So fun the things kids come up with. Glad you linked up 🙂
I still text her with pics of ‘bunny flowers’ when they start to bloom each year to let her know I’m thinking about her. LOL ~TxH~
It’s so nice to see dirt and a little bit of green. I’m just starting my seeds here!
I know Gretchen. I’m lucky to live in Texas where we can start gardening early – I’m itching to get out there & get it planted soon. I’m still growing my seeds in my “indoor greenhouse” (post is here —> http://bit.ly/Y6kZUb ) and as soon as the danger of last freeze is gone in about a week or so I’ll start hardening off the plants. 🙂 ~TxH~
Dang, I just dropped by your blog from the blog hop, and your header picture made my jaw drop! How gorgeous is that! I secretly wish we lived in a place where we could have cows, but I guess I’ll have to settle for a backyard garden and a rowdy cat. We pulled out our trays to start planting today too. It’s our first garden (always lived in an apt. before)…feeling pretty nervous. How’d you “amend” your soil?
Wow, thanks for such kind words, Beth! Don’t be nervous about starting a new garden, just take it slow. It’s easy to get overwhelmed and burned out if you try to start your first garden with too much to keep up with. To answer your question about soil amendment – COMPOST! It’s black gold. I use manure in mine of course since I’ve always got that within easy reach 😉 but you can use kitchen waste, grass clippings, newspapers, etc. I have a compost tumbler which has been one of the best compost purchases I ever made (see it here –> http://bit.ly/Y6kZUb ) But you don’t need to spend money on a tumbler if you’re just starting out. Check the internet for containment options, or just a corner in the yard will do – just make sure to turn it regularly and keep it slightly moist. Good luck! ~TxH~
I’m so looking forward to working in my garden too! Your soil looks so lovely and rich 🙂 Thanks for sharing this on The HomeAcre Hop! Hope to see you tomorrow night at:
Thanks Lisa. My garden area was previously just cow pasture so it’s amazing what compost can do for your soils. (of course I have plenty of manure to amend my compost with, so that helps!) Love the hop! ~TxH~
Gorgeous site and ideas! I have 5 children and live in the city but we are planting a garden this year so you will be a great resource! Thanks for sharing and for joining my linky party!
Joan, there’s just something magical about sticking your hands in that deep rich soil after a cold winter and dreaming of that summer produce! You’re apparently ahead of me with regard to what to do with the garden weeds. (slaps head) I gave the cows all the green and then the rooty-stuff I pulled with clinging soil will go into the compost. Hoping for more garden time today! ~TxH~
Beautiful soil! I’m looking forward to heading out to my garden this weekend. I planted seeds indoors just last night. My weeds will go to the goat.
Here’s to a bountiful crop this summer!
Wow your soil looks wonderful! Looking forward to seeing posts of lovely full vege beds.
Thank Jane. Dreaming about that bountiful summer produce is what makes the drudgery of bed prep and weed pulling worth it! 🙂 ~TxH~