My Edible Garden

I've been gardening for most of my life and have been a devoted fan of organic gardening the whole time. It just makes so much more sense to work in harmony with Mother Nature than to fight her. Besides which it is better for the planet and better for our bodies. Here you can see what I'm planting and harvesting, with gardening hints and resources thrown in for good measure.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

No Monocrops Here! May 8, 2009

No Monocrops Here!

A mono-crop is what you have when you have a solid stand of just one thing. This is how commercial farming works, just one thing in each field. But nature doesn’t do things like that and neither should gardeners! You get much more production from a given space by planting intensively.
gardenapril09 025A case in point, this is my strawberry bed. It was planted with strawberries last fall, the plants are in staggered rows, each plant with 12 inches between it and any other strawberry plant. Then I planted bits of different crops to try out over the winter, chervil, carrots, spinach, cilantro, mache, claytonia.  That big bushy clump in the back is the cilantro going to seed. The dainty white flowers are pretty and supply necter to many beneficial insects. And the seeds are the spice you know as coriander.
gardenapril09 028This is the chervil, also going to seed now. Chervil tastes like a very mild black licorice. I haven’t decided if I like it or not, sort of like cilantro, it grows on you over time.
gardenapril09 027Here’s a bush bean seedling. After eating up a lot of the greens in the bed, when it got hot I started the beans in soil blocks and put them out in the bed about 6 inches in all directions, more or less, where ever the bed was pretty empty. Strawberries and bush beans grow well together.
gardenapril09 026and just look what I found hiding out here. This year the few strawberry plants in this bed will barely give us a taste. But this fall the large plants will make runners and by spring the bed should be full of fruit producing plants.

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