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Garden Blog - Visual Garden Planning

Planning a garden when the landscape is covered in snow is not something I have done before. My typical garden “plan” happens in the aisles of River Street Flowerland as I fill my cart with “this should work” vegetables, herbs, and seed packets. This year, I’m doing the necessary research and planning with the idea that an organized and informed gardener should have more success than the “winging it” gardener.

I have planned the garden and shared a photo. After reading about companion planting, I am quite excited to try it! The garden plan is to scale and I have left ample room for maneuvering about the garden. My reasoning for the plan is as follows:

  • Pumpkins are at the north end to have some control over the vines.

  • Watermelon will be just one mound. I actually forgot about it until my son asked why I didn’t include it.

  • Herbs will go where there is afternoon shade from a tall pine tree. I have had success in the past there with herbs.

  • Bottleneck gourds will grow around a trellis.

  • Beets, onions, carrots and catnip will intermingle in a short row

  • Cut flowers including celosia, zinnia, cosmos, short sunflowers, gomphrena, rudbeckia, cornflower, snapdragon, and strawflowers will grow in three separate areas.

  • Peas will grow on fencing with lettuce and parsley below.

  • Tomatoes and sunflowers in cages will be planted with sweet Annie and basil in two separate rows.

  • Sweet peppers will be planted with fennel, basil, and marigolds in between.

  • Cucumbers and nasturtiums will grow together on trellises with marigolds and radishes below.

  • Six neighborhoods of the three sisters – corn, pole beans, squash, will fill the garden at the south end.

To accomplish this rather ambitious plan, I still need to understand what the soil requires after I receive the test results, I will research how to sow seeds indoors, and learning how to tackle weeding is one of my greatest concerns. Keeping animals out of the garden should work with a motion detection water blasting system.

I’ll be back next week with information on sowing seeds indoors. In the meantime, check out my pollinator lawns article in Michigan HOME and Lifestyle magazine.

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