Farmstead Space Savers
July 4, 2012, 5:43 pm
Filed under: July 2012

Raised bed full of produce

                                                     July 4, 2012

      Today is Independence Day. Nothing says independence like being self-sufficient. I am thankful to be living in the Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave. My hat is off to the men and women who died that I might live free.

      On a farmstead, space should be used wisely. Your land is only so big, one acre or one thousand, use it all. The photo shows my first attempt at using raised beds to garden. I am pleased with my efforts and have declared them a success.

      You will notice mostly green beans, but look close and you may see, onions, spinach, potatoes, beets, celery and swiss chard too. The bed measures 24 feet x 4 feet and I have used it all up, even a little room for a couple of flowers to make me smile 😮

      I wanted the green beans in the raised bed to help my aging, aching back. Harvest will be a breeze and so has been tending to the weeds. I can see this style of gardening being very productive, not to mention the ease in which to take care of it.

      I situated my raised beds close to the house and pond water supply. They are positioned at the end of our small orchard. They also set on the path to the new hen-house. As we walk , we pluck the weeds we see, or hoe in-between the rows almost without thinking. The little garden is darn near weed free and I don’t remember doing much weeding, it just happens.

      Laying out an old-fashioned farmstead, no matter if you are located in an urban setting or a place more rural, requires much of the same thought. Add fruit trees and bushes to the landscape. Grow rhubarb in a small bed near the chicken coop or along the edge of the garden. Horseradish can be planted the same way.

      If your garden and landscape only provides a few meals, it is still successful. Those meals will fuel a fire inside of you to grow more the next year. Eating a meal, seated with friends or family, that was produced by a little work and your own hand, is very rewarding.

      One last thought about the raised beds. We just got a nice rain (1.6 inches). It is the first rain in over a month. Our main garden was very dry and looking rough before the rain. The raised beds, however, can be manipulated easily with water. I have bows made from conduit to extend the season later into autumn. I can see the merit of the small space and even a fair amount of success, no matter the weather or the season…. Now that is ….  INDEPENDENCE!


3 Comments so far
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I have been reading your material for nye on 3 years now. I really enjoy it. You remind me of me !! I am 52-have a farm with many different animals too. Some of your stories remind me of my childhood around our farm. I don’t have a team yet BUT I was raised with horses and am activly looking for a team, I am even in your weight catagory !! I think like you as well and I love to write too. I live in Canada in Ontario. I have a wonderful wife with kids and step kids too. Reading your stuff is like a cup of tea after a good meal. Sitting in my coveralls reading how your day went too…..Thanks for all your talk. You are so right on everything you say…….Greg

Comment by Greg Wright

Greg, Thank you for your nice comments. I am very glad to have you along as fellow farmer and fan of my writing. Thank you for taking the time to let me know that you are enjoying it. Your description of “a cup of tea after a good meal” was spot on for me … I really enjoy a cup of tea after supper! Thanks again!

Comment by ricelandmeadows

No problem ! Your just so right about so many things. How we should feel when we are farming. About our pasts and our presents and our future. The kids that are coming up behind us and how we leave the farm or show them too, how we can live sustainably. Your older posts about the big farmer and the you the little farmer…feeling the same pressures about planting or haying. Whatever it may be. Your wifes name is Connie…mine is Colleen and then our kids, Emily,Liam,Brandon,Skylar. No grandkids though……lol. Pretty young to be a grampa aren’t you ?
You should write a story about coveralls…I wore mine to the place where I work and they thought I was Amish or something !! They couldn’t believe how weird it was that someone would wear coveralls to work on the factory floor. Really coveralls are so functional. I try to wear things made in Canada ….hence the coveralls,my work books are made out in western Canada,etc. Anyway got to go to work….I’ll read your “today’s blog” tonight with my tea.
Have a great day lad !!

Comment by Greg Wright

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