The weather in Portland this weekend promises to be in the 70s. While I’m not sure we got there today, I clearly am not complaining as I’m outside working in shorts and a t-shirt.
Knowing we would have a dry weekend, only the second in the last two months, I decided I needed to plant the garden. I’m about two weeks late of the first frost-free day for this area. I can’t contemplate planting until I put more dirt into the raised bed in the backyard. Having two labs has reduced the amount of dirt in those beds. They like to dig – and if there is nothing preventing them from jumping in the beds, they dig the dirt out of the beds too.
We had three different kinds of dirt delivered. Black soil, compost and mushroom compost. I like variety, what can I say. Actually I know the value of mixing it up in the veggie beds. And in my beds its a foursome, I guess. Sorry, felt I just needed to run with the innuendos. Anyway, certain types of plants like more decaying material (compost) than others. You won’t find me getting out the soil testing kit to determine alkaline levels, etc. I don’t got that far. I just know that you have to have a good blend. I should mention that I have sandy loam in the boxes as well….I used it as fill dirt to make sure the drainage was good. I mixed it all of it up to make sure I had a good balance. And thru out the spring and summer, I’ll be mixing in the used coffee grounds in with tomato plants. They like coffee (it is also good for the soil.)
Probably the funniest exchange I had with the dirt guy was over the compost. He dumped it, and then apologized for the smell promising it would get better in a day or so. I told him if the compost didn’t smell, I would question what he brought me. I mean, it’s decaying…it is going to smell. A look of relief washed over his face. Apparently this is a point many of his customers miss when ordering compost.
I have a little over half of this pile distributed into flower beds and raised beds. The rest is for the new raised bed we are going to build tomorrow. We now have light in the back corner of our yard, so I’m going to take advantage of it. We tried to grow pumpkins last year, but missed our window thus resulting in no pumpkins. I figure that space will be perfect for the pumpkins I will be planting on time this year.
When I got done moving dirt – or when I decided I was done moving dirt, I moved onto mowing the lawn. Each year at this time, we are faced with the lawn issue. Rain plus the warmer weather means our grass (and weeds) grow extremely fast. Problem is – the rain. Mowing wet grass is a mess. But, then the grass gets too tall and the continual days of sun are so few that it won’t dry until mowed. I have about 90% of the lawn mowed.
Why so slow? Besides the height of the grass, I have the fun surprises hidden in it thanks to having two dogs. It is a stop and go process…..more stop than go unfortunately.
Oh, and another fun fact I got from my youngest brother today. If you hear “playing in the dirt” in a rap song, they are referring to anal sex. He let me know this fun fact when he replied to my Facebook status. Nice, huh? Gotta love family!