After a cold start to march–more snow–it looks like we can finally get our hands into the soil. I had already got out in February and planted some onion sets in my home garden but my garden at the commons was still covered then in snow. So last weekend, being dryish, I was able to plant onion sets down there. I was glad I had managed to prepare the onion bed when I was planting garlic in the fall as the heavy rainfall before winter set in, prevented me from getting back down there to clean up and the soil right now is way too wet to work. I am embarrassed to show you the plot but here it is.

Commons garden plot

My plot is dry compared to many others but still way to wet to work in.

The plots in this section of the commons are about 200 square feet so not large, but still large enough to haul out an amazing amount of produce. I plant the bulk of my tomatoes for canning here and mostly veggies that can handle a bit of neglect. The plot is very close to my home and it’s easy to run up and harvest items when wanted.

Looking at the plot on the weekend I wondered how I would plant it this year. I really like changing a garden around which is a bit difficult to do when you have permanent raised beds. At home I satisfy this need for change by moving perennial plants around ie. in the fall I moved a dwarf apple tree from the back of the garden to the front. I plant herbs in the borders, then I move them all out a couple of years later. Flowers in, then flowers out. I double up raised beds and then I might tier a couple. I take out some wood beds and replace them with stones. And I use pots. So, it’s subtle, but it’s always changing a bit.

garden planThe commons garden isn’t big enough for real design but it is still possible to have a bit of fun with it.In the fall I decided that I would remove half of my permanent beds but, before I could finish, the rains set in and put an end to my efforts. What I will do now is just use boards and rebar and fashion the beds as I need them. It’s a bit more work but not big space.  So here is my plan for this year.  Maybe not so much a plan as a guide. My gardens always have a main path that allows for a wheelbarrow and then the feeder paths might be narrower but not so narrow that I have to balance on one foot and a hand while trying to weed.

And finally, back to my home garden where I have been able to move a few things from the sometimes heated greenhouse to the totally unheated greenhouse which means I can utilize my propagating stand for its intended purpose. Flats with peppers, more onions, leeks, and then tomatoes have all been seeded. In the garden, buds are starting to swell on the dwarf fruit trees, rhubarb is poking above the soil and the strawberries plants are looking a little denuded without their dead leaves but perky after their cleanup. Now we move forward into my favourite time of the year.


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