Spring 2022 starts in a few days. So even though I woke up to a single digit temperature I am making plans. Changes to the hardscape of the garden are a key component. But, I don’t intend to try many new crops this year. There were too many failures last year. Therefore, any additions plant wise will be extensions of successfully grown veggies.
The great wind storm last winter took multiple sections of fence down. Since the cost of wood is sky high, we will try to salvage as much as possible. But we will convert to metal poles to anchor the fence sections. We still need to wait a few weeks for the ground to thaw.
The time to put a more permanent fence around the Big Garden is here. Unfortunately, inflation is rampant. So, I have decided the most economical method will involve T-posts and wind fence. I had thought of landscape pavestones, but the price has tripled since last spring. And I still need to find a suitable gate for the entry point. The wire one I cobbled together is just about worn out. Its current state is more of a danger than just about anything.
New Asparagus Bed
I am very excited about adding a long narrow asparagus bed. Last year, the area for the bed was covered by some black landscape fabric and topped with grass clippings. This should give me a head start on eliminating weeds.
A rototiller will be used and then the bed will be enriched with compost and minerals to give the crowns a good start. I plan to put in two dozen new crowns. So, the bed will need to be thirty-six feet in length to space the plants eighteen inches apart.
My current bed is nearing twenty-five years. Production was off last year, so my actions are proactive. It takes three years at a minimum to establish a good bed of asparagus. This is my main planting task of the Spring 2022 garden.
Spring 2022 Starts
Even though snow covers the ground outside, young starts have sprouted under the grow lights. Pak Choi and a variety of lettuces have a head start on the peanuts which are always slow to germinate. Once again the spinaches are also slow. I may need to change the soil type as the seed is new.
In an attempt to outsmart the flea beetles, I am only planting the larger brassicas in late July for a fall crop. However, potatoes will go in the ground sometime next week. I am going to try to start my own sweet potato slips, but will order a few just as a back-up.
Saving seeds and tubers for the following year works best with heirloom varieties. Other seeds will germinate, but the produce may turn into an interesting shape, if it even germinates and gives output. If any of the garlic planted last fall survived the wind, I will immediately re-plant a few as I know my harvest this spring 2022 will be poor.
My calendar notes from 2021 have aided my planning for 2022. Weather patterns change but other observations can help. For example, last year was an early end frost date. April 13th was the last freeze. So plants went in early, but some still were leggy before planting. So, I am delaying the start of the tomatoes since it would be very unusual not to have a freeze in May two years in a row.
Spring is a season of renewal. I plan to offset the heartbreaking photos of war in Ukraine with flowers as well as veggies. Vibrant blooms always lift my spirit. Intercropping the flowers with the vegetables will attract pollinators. So, my soul will feast on flowers while we grow plenty of food for our summer table. I encourage everyone to plant a garden this year.