So I’ve been promising to share my garden plans with you guys and I keep forgetting. So here, I’m finally doing it! I also need to ask some advice from those of you with experience. I plan on saving seeds from this garden, so I want to prevent cross-pollination wherever possible. Here are my questions:
1) Can the nightshade family cross? (tomatoes x peppers? I know tomatoes can cross and peppers can cross, but can they cross with each other?)
2) Can you tell if squash/melons have crossed BEFORE you pick the fruit? (I seem to remember seeing plants cross in my childhood, but I can’t remember if it was the whole plant or just one fruit)
3) How long should I let corn grow before I plant peas/beans in with it?
The Main Garden:
The main garden is a work of simplicity and economy. I played with the idea of raised beds, but I do not have the time or money to do that the first year. I have plenty of extra room as well, so I will probably place a compost pile in the center (or one side) of each garden strip in the fall. This is not the final placing of all the plants. I’m still trying to figure that out (to avoid cross pollination and complicated rotations).
The garden is 600sqft with each strip being 120sqft. There is the possibility of removing one, I have plenty of extra room to do that. Each bed is 4ft wide by 30ft long with a 2ft walking pathing in between the beds. This garden contains all of our food vegetables, it has no soft fruits, herbs, flowers. That may change in future planning, but for the moment, those things are not included.
That’s the initial drawing so you can get an idea. Each square on the grid equals 1sqft. So it’s to scale. I’ll take suggestions.
The Flower Garden:
This will most likely not happen the first year unless I find some free bricks. I plan on building this garden one ring at a time. It’s more of an art project, but it would be a gorgeous flower garden with the possibility of herbs and some veggies making their way into it. I definitely view it as a place to relax and unwind instead of a source of food.
The main circle is composed of 4ft wide beds, 2ft wide walking paths and about 530sqft of growing space. The triangles are roughly 10ft wide and 10ft tall with 2ft walking paths. I’m not sure of their square footage, but it’s obsolete anyway. This is already a much bigger flower garden than I could probably fill. I’m playing with the idea of removing the outer ring (although it completes the design), but I’m not sure yet. There is also the possibility of ringing the entire design with fruit trees and bee boxes. But, like I said, it’s becoming a giant art project, I need to keep in mind that it needs to be functional as well. I may keep the inner two circles as herbs/flowers, the outer ring as veggies, and the triangles as extra whatever I happen to have.
This flower garden will be a free garden. I plan on building it from stone/bricks that are free and found. If it does actually come into existence, it will be an extremely low investment. I’ll be scouring roadsides and craigslist for bricks for quite a while.
Well, those are my plans for the garden. If you have any suggestions, I would love to hear them. Keep in mind that the main garden will happen fast and MUST be for food production. It cannot be an all consuming project either, I have to do other things as well. Thanks for your help!
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