About Me

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My tremendously supportive husband & I have 3 wonderful children, 1 dog, 12 laying hens, 2 dairy goats, 3 bee hives, and a 2000 sq foot vegetable garden on a small 1/4 acre lot in the city. In the center of it all is our small 1,000 sq foot house purchased in 2008 as a foreclosure that we fully renovated to host our growing family, home school adventures, and small home business (CozyLeaf.com). We have a desire to learn a path to self sufficiency finding ways to be good stewards of the resources God has given us. We want to learn to live with less as we laydown roots to our little homestead.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

First Planting

My seedlings tables are overflowing with plants and I love it!! However, it is time for those seedlings to be planted. We started on Saturday by doing the final preparations on the beds and aerating (digging up to loosen) the soil one last time. On Saturday, We were able to plant 1 bed of tomatoes and planted 46 tomato plants. Then last night (Monday) we were able to plant our second bed of tomatoes and planted another 45 tomato plants! We still have a lot to plant, but I am moving quite slow...seeing as I'm over 8 months pregnant now.

I plant my tomatoes 2 feet apart on the drip of the dripper line...so they get water placed right at the roots. Some people say that this is too close to plant heirloom tomatoes, but this is the way I did it last year and they were extremely productive all the way to the last frost of the season!

We are also going to do the "wall of tomatoes" like we did last year instead of using tomato cages. (more info and pictures once we get our "wall" up). 

I have a tendency to obsess over the layout of the garden and waste a lot of time trying to decide exactly how and where to plant everything so it will be "perfect"...but the fact of the matter is that it always changes and it will never be "perfect". I was focused on the tomatoes on Saturday and wanted to get as many in the ground as I could.  I have 13 tomato varieties and well over 100 seedlings. I wasn't planning on using all these tomato plants but will sell the extras that we don't have space for in the garden. The varieties I planted are: Orange Kentucky Beefsteak, Red Beefsteak, Orange Fleshed Purple Smudge, Red Zebra, Big Zebra, Gold Medal, Mini Orange, Black Cherry, Violet Jasper, Red Fig, Egg Yolk, Besser, and Porter. All these will present a wide variety of colors and sizes! 

I couldn't decide which order to plant them in or which bed to put each variety. After Bryan and I sat laughing at how ridiculously obsessive I was being (I wasted well over an hour just staring at the plants)...we decided to have a "random wall of tomatoes". So we rotated the entire bed and didn't plant any varieties together! It will still be easy to identify which plant is which (based on the size and color of the fruit and it will be fun to pick  from all the random color and variety along the wall! This will help with disease prevention as well. 

Having drip irrigation really saves on time as well as water consumption. It places a drip of water at an exact root system for a designated amount of time. Bryan even installed shut off valves on each dripper line so we can only use water on the beds that are planted as well as regulate the amount of water that each bed receives.

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