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Hi from Massachusetts with pics (don't judge! lol)

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Hi from Massachusetts with pics (don't judge! lol)

Post  ColleenW on 8/10/2017, 9:21 pm

Hey everybody. I'm so happy to have found this space. What did we do before the internet? 

I put in my first raised-bed garden this summer and after wondering how to increase my yield (what am I working so hard for anyways?), I discovered square-foot gardening. I've been a gardener since I was a kid helping my mom with her garden, but it took until I was in my 40s to have a bit of space to put more than just flowers so here I go!

Here's pics: before set-up, during set-up, and last week. All before learning about square-foot gardening. But I guess you have to start somewhere. You pros may be able to tell that although I didn't start off purposely wanting to square-foot-garden, I still packed my plants in. I've always been that way...with my perennials, too.





I've since trimmed back big-time to help be able to water the base of the plants. And I cleared the third of the near side of the garden to actually start my SFG. I did 2 squares of each: lettuce, spinach, carrots, kale. Excited to see what the fall brings.

I've already learned so much this summer and am itching for next summer to begin so I can set things up better...but live and learn. 

My next project is adding nitrogen to my compost bin there. Been adding carbon and garden clippings but nothing is happening, and as much as my husband is afraid of the smell, I think I just have to start throwing in green stuff and have faith.

If you made it this far, thanks for reading! See you out there on the forums.
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Re: Hi from Massachusetts with pics (don't judge! lol)

Post  trolleydriver on 8/10/2017, 9:33 pm

Welcome Colleen from Ottawa, Canada. You will not get judged only encouraged by the great folks on this forum. It looks like you have a SoilSaver compost bin. I have one of those and it works well for me. I put our kitchen scraps in it along with garden greens, fall leaves, grass clippings, etc. I wish you every success with your SFG and other gardening activities.

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Re: Hi from Massachusetts with pics (don't judge! lol)

Post  countrynaturals on 8/10/2017, 9:48 pm

happy hi and  glad you\'re here from Redding, CA. Lots of friendly folks here, and loads of helpful info. We're glad to have you with us.
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Re: Hi from Massachusetts with pics (don't judge! lol)

Post  No_Such_Reality on 8/11/2017, 12:18 am

Welcome, it all looks good.

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Re: Hi from Massachusetts with pics (don't judge! lol)

Post  sanderson on 8/11/2017, 12:50 am

Colleen,  Welcome to the Forum from California!  glad you\'re here  You did a great job on the bed.  Is it 4' x 8'?  All you need are grids so you can space your plants according to ANSFG.  Have you had a chance to read All New Square Foot Gardening by creator Mel Bartholomew? As far as the compost bin, there are a couple of threads on bins under the search word Compost. Again, welcome!

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Re: Hi from Massachusetts with pics (don't judge! lol)

Post  AtlantaMarie on 8/11/2017, 7:50 am

Hi Colleen. Welcome from Atlanta, GA!

What a NICE space you have! And I like the fact that you have a sitting area to enjoy it...
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Re: Hi from Massachusetts with pics (don't judge! lol)

Post  CapeCoddess on 8/11/2017, 11:02 am

Wow!  Very nice 1st posting, neighbor!  glad you\'re here  So glad you jumped right in with photos and all!

Your planting medium looks like I want to stick my hands in it it's so beautiful.  What is it made of?

Where in MA are you? Pop on over to the New England thread anytime to see what we're all up to during this chilly summer.  

CC
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Re: Hi from Massachusetts with pics (don't judge! lol)

Post  ColleenW on 8/11/2017, 1:41 pm

Thank you, all, for your encouraging words! I do need to get a copy of All New Square Foot Gardening by creator Mel Bartholomew. The soil I have in those boxes (4' x 8') is garden soil by the bag from my local garden center. I bought it by the bagful, so of course = $$$. Hence the need to get on the compost train! The forums have been helpful already. 

Heading to the New England thread now. I didn't really understand variables--all the variables!!--that contribute to a harvest. Already see a difference between how my mom tended her garden on Long Island and how I have to tend my garden here.

Happy gardening!
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Re: Hi from Massachusetts with pics (don't judge! lol)

Post  Scorpio Rising on 8/11/2017, 6:45 pm

Hey Colleen! Ohio here. glad you\'re here   Welcome to SFGing!  So glad you found us, and love your pictures.  

I love your set-up, and you are going to have a great garden!  Can't wait to see what happens!  

What do you have in there?  I might be into the compost box dealie....my old pile is just, ummm, sitting there.  Where do you get one of those?  I will search in the search box.......might need some compost structure.  study
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Re: Hi from Massachusetts with pics (don't judge! lol)

Post  ColleenW on 8/12/2017, 10:25 am

@trolleydriver and @Scorpio Rising -- yes, that's the Algreen Products Soil Saver Classic Compost bin. I ordered it off of Amazon. I went with a box because my garden is against the side of the house that is our back neighbor's part of the condo and was concerned about smell. Thought the box could contain it, if any occurs before I can fix it. Otherwise, I was running across the busy street we live on to toss away bins of garden cuttings. It's such a luxury to pitch it into my own yard lol. The box is really sturdy, seems like a good investment.
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Re: Hi from Massachusetts with pics (don't judge! lol)

Post  ColleenW on 8/12/2017, 10:27 am

@AtlantaMarie re: the sitting area ... I saw someone on YouTube suggest that because how often do we toil away in our gardens but never really sit back at bit and enjoy the sights and smells and sounds of our garden areas? I have since gotten a (plastic) Adirondack chair and footrest and placed it in a sunnier part of the garden. I've found I like to sit out there in the morning and also when I come home from work ... I don't even go in the front door, I just go around to the side and plop my purse down and relax. Gonna miss that come winter!
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Re: Hi from Massachusetts with pics (don't judge! lol)

Post  AtlantaMarie on 8/12/2017, 3:22 pm

ColleenW wrote:@AtlantaMarie re: the sitting area ... I saw someone on YouTube suggest that because how often do we toil away in our gardens but never really sit back at bit and enjoy the sights and smells and sounds of our garden areas? I have since gotten a (plastic) Adirondack chair and footrest and placed it in a sunnier part of the garden. I've found I like to sit out there in the morning and also when I come home from work ... I don't even go in the front door, I just go around to the side and plop my purse down and relax. Gonna miss that come winter!

Good for you! I don't have a sitting area, but I have been known to pull out my wagon (with removable sides) & sit on it while just admiring my view.
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Re: Hi from Massachusetts with pics (don't judge! lol)

Post  trolleydriver on 8/12/2017, 3:33 pm

We have a patio with table and chairs in one corner of our SFG. We have another patio with table and chairs next to our goldfish pond and flower gardens. Sadly we spend very little time just sitting and enjoying the gardens. Need to change that.  Very Happy

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Re: Hi from Massachusetts with pics (don't judge! lol)

Post  Scorpio Rising on 8/12/2017, 4:15 pm

ColleenW wrote:@trolleydriver and @Scorpio Rising -- yes, that's the Algreen Products Soil Saver Classic Compost bin. I ordered it off of Amazon. I went with a box because my garden is against the side of the house that is our back neighbor's part of the condo and was concerned about smell. Thought the box could contain it, if any occurs before I can fix it. Otherwise, I was running across the busy street we live on to toss away bins of garden cuttings. It's such a luxury to pitch it into my own yard lol. The box is really sturdy, seems like a good investment.
Thanks!
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Re: Hi from Massachusetts with pics (don't judge! lol)

Post  trolleydriver on 8/12/2017, 5:22 pm

Scorpio Rising wrote:
ColleenW wrote:@trolleydriver and @Scorpio Rising -- yes, that's the Algreen Products Soil Saver Classic Compost bin. I ordered it off of Amazon. I went with a box because my garden is against the side of the house that is our back neighbor's part of the condo and was concerned about smell. Thought the box could contain it, if any occurs before I can fix it. Otherwise, I was running across the busy street we live on to toss away bins of garden cuttings. It's such a luxury to pitch it into my own yard lol. The box is really sturdy, seems like a good investment.
Thanks!
I've had my SoilSaver bin for years. The city was providing them for little or no money. The thing has survived 90+ summers and -30F winters as well as my attacks on the compost. It's still in great shape. The only downside is that it is not easy to turn the contents if hot composting. But for feed it and leave it composting it works well.

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Re: Hi from Massachusetts with pics (don't judge! lol)

Post  stealthmayhem on 8/13/2017, 2:56 pm

Welcome to the forum!  I am in Delaware, and this is my first year doing SFG as well.  Actually, my first time doing ANY gardening at all.  At least I do not have to unlearn any bad habits that way.   Like everyone else said, we don't judge, only encourage.  And, if you have any questions, those much more knowledgeable than I would be more than willing to help you find the answers.
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Re: Hi from Massachusetts with pics (don't judge! lol)

Post  hammock gal on 8/14/2017, 3:43 pm

Hey there from slightly south of you, in CT. wave smile What a great job you did for your first year! Having a garden is so gratifying. I love being able to grab a couple of tomatoes and a cucumber to make a salad with every day. I added a screened porch to the back of my house a couple of years ago, and I strung up a hammock there. I placed my SFG just outside it, so I can lie in the hammock and gaze at my tomatoes. I think that sounds dorky when I say it, but I know everyone here can understand. You'll find a lot of accumulated knowledge here to help you along the way. Best of luck with your garden!
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Re: Hi from Massachusetts with pics (don't judge! lol)

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