Tuesday, May 1, 2007

Blueberries, Strawberries and Deck Building

I didn’t get enough accomplished this weekend in the garden or with my deck building project, so I took a vacation day today (Monday). It was a great day to work outside. I just have to finish this deck or I won't get to plant all of the vegetables on time! I made great progress today and my wife and I managed to create new blueberry and strawberry beds. See, If I didn't have to go to my job, I could get so much done! Have you ever found yourself saying that? Anyway,this is what my deck project looks like right now:

The idea was to finish it today (yeah right) but our new strawberry and blueberry plants couldn't wait any longer. Part of the day had to be spent creating new beds for them. This was much more fun and I got to garden with my lovely wife too. We both garden a lot, but because of our schedules, we usually work alone. We had to start from scratch with these beds.

We had to till a little and then rake the sod pieces out. Since these patches had never been gardened before, we had to add a lot of compost.

Look at the contrast between that wonderful black compost and the dull brown dirt. After raking in the compost, we added peat moss for the organic matter, to help with water retention and to lower the ph.

Blueberries need an even lower ph than strawberries, as low as 4.5. Peat alone is not enough for this so we added some organic garden sulfur.

We then planted a high bush Jersey blueberry plant and a high bush Eliot Blueberry plant. Our new strawberry variety is Cavendish. We also transplanted some of last year’s plants, but I can't remember what kind they are right now. After much work, here is the finished product:

Here's one of the Blueberry plants, followed by some of the strawberry plants:

Thinking of those sweet delicious berries just makes my mouth water. And how great it will be to enjoy them seated under the umbrella table on our new deck! But as for now, back to my real job. See you tomorrow for Wordless Wednesday!

9 comments:

Carol

I know what you mean about those real jobs, but then I remind myself that because of the real job, I can buy more plants. I planted strawberries and blueberries last year. No blueberries yet, but I should have some strawberries in June!

Crafty Gardener

Yes, real life jobs sure do get in the way of the fun jobs. Thanks for visiting my blog and good luck making the toad homes.

Blackswamp_Girl

Oooh... you're going to be eating well! I love blueberries right off of the bush, warm from the sun... *drool*

Stuart

Who's been a busy boy then, eh? Looks great Marc, and I love the deck you're building. Awesome.

Bek

I am looking forward to some more pictures of the deck in progress.
I like your compost pile. I just started. How long does it take to be able to use some?

Marc

Bek, thanks for the comment. You have given me the idea to write a post about how-to compost. The short answer for now is this:

Compost rots all by itself without our help in about a year. Too slow for most gardeners. If you mix brown and green materials together and keep air and water in the pile, it happens much faster. You can have finished compost in a month.

I'll get right to work on that post! For anyone who's following along, I'm taking another day off today to work on the deck!

Anthony

I always say that a job is something that keeps you from doing the things that you really want to do in your life. :)

The deck is coming out great. What are you going to do with those talls posts? Are you going to hang lattice or do you have something else in mind?

Gotta Garden

You build decks! Wow! I'm impressed with it all! Looks great! I have a tomato question but I'll find a tomato post to ask it on.

Marc

Anthony,
Thanks and yes, the tall posts will support a shade area with lattice (and hanging plants!). I am building that corner almost like the deck I saw on the Cincinnati Cape Cod blog. Lucky for me Kasmira is very generous with sharing pictures of it. I plan to post pictures of mine when its done and send them to Kasmira, thanking her for the idea.

Gotta Garden,
Thanks also for the kind words. I answered your tomato question that you put on my Early Girl post. I hope it works out for you.

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