Tuesday, May 6, 2014

The Worlds Most Expensive Vegetables - Part 6

The good news is that I only spent two bucks this week. How could I resist those perky li'l broccoli plants, especially since the ones I started from seed are still only a single scraggly stalk? I added some stakes (not steaks... can't grow those in the ground, unfortunately) to prevent the hose from running over them and need to add another set on the far end. Maybe next year these will be in a raised bed as well but for now this will have to do. I just noticed that the picture is a bit deceiving. No, we don't live on a hill, I just take horribly slanted pictures.

Oh yeah, I spent $6 buying three heirloom tomato plants on Friday, two cherry and one paste. I plunked these deep down on the other half of the carrot bed with the intent of building up the dirt around them by a few inches when (if?) my dad delivers a load of dirt. And yes, at that time I'll smother the grass but I promise to be gentle.

Add in another buck for the organic sweet potato. While I ordered a bunch of slips of white sweet taters I've yet to see orange sweet tater slips for sale in any store so I reckoned I'd start my own. Yes, it's another experiment. Next to the spuds is the seed tray which contains another surprising experiment. About two months ago my wifey had purchased a cantaloupe and a honeydew. I took some of the seeds from these, washed 'em and let 'em dry and then recently put them into starting soil. I really didn't expect they'd do anything except rot but so far 90% have germinated and it's only been a week. I doubt honeydew will grow well way up north here but I'm willing to invest some space to give it a try!

Four more dollars for two organic herbs (seen here repotted and yes, that's duct tape on one of the pots... I'm frugal, not cheap, or so I tell myself) and that's it. I'm done. They were in the produce area and are meant to sit by your window where you can snip a few leaves for your latest culinary creation. But they were also on sale for $2 and are much cheaper than what the garden center wanted for non-organic herbs so into my cart they went! I'm putting all the herbs into pots in the hopes that I'll have a greenhouse built by winter and can then move them in for wintery herbal eatery. So I spent a total of $13, making the total so far $374. But that's it. I'm done. Really!

In the first photo you may have noticed a structure in the background. Yes, it's my strawberry pyramid, seen here under construction. And yes, that's a bunch of scrap 2X4s and empty Vitamin water bottles under some of that dirt. Am I crazy? Crazy like a rabid fox! I figured that the dirt under the second and third levels would just be wasted and eventually compacted so why not just fill it up with, well, pretty much whatever I had on hand that wouldn't poison the soil? I figured I saved at least five American fiat dollars with these shenanigans.
Here is the completed, filled, and planted pyramid. I tried to explain to my teen daughters my practical use of math in determining how much dirt to buy and how many strawberry plants to plant on each level but I guess I should have used a chalk board for illustrations because they got lost. Yeah, it's a little bit lopsided and the circles aren't perfect but it was very windy when I put the thing together and I did the best I could. I'm sure the strawberries won't complain. I'd like to point out that the roots on each and every strawberry plant I received from Indiana Berry (plug) was strong and healthy. I was one impressed goober! I would have taken a picture of said roots but my hands were quite dirty and though I care about you, dear reader, I don't care enough to wash my hands.

And speaking of berries, I also put in three types of raspberry and one type of blackberry, some of which may even produce fruit this fall. Here's to hope!

$361 + $2 broc + 6 +4 + 1 = 374 Romaine and spinach is sprouting like crazy. If I had a little toy bowl, like for a Barbie, I cold have a teeny tiny salad.

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