What have you done today to lower your impact?

We are washing away the foundations of our existence on every front. It is high time we move from crashing about on the planet like a bull in china shop and find a way to go forward with intent. We must find systems of living based on sustainability. The systems and tools exist, it is up to each of us to adopt them.

Blog Archive

Monday, 29 June 2009

Bermuda garden #1

This is the first garden, organic of course, I helped establish in Bermuda. On the right, behind the bench is the first bed, it was already full of soil and ornamentals. We planted lemon balm, parsley, bell peppers, marigolds, mesclun mix, jalapenos, kale, and red lettuce and are still harvesting from it.

The bed farthest from the camera was next. Built from recycled Bermuda limestone, we lined it with cardboard and imported lots of compost from the local horticultural waste dump site. We planted romaine lettuce, swiss chard, arugula, marigolds, mesclun mix and onions. We are still harvesting the lettuce, mesclun and swiss chard but the onions didn't do so good. I think we should have sourced some soil to mix with the compost.

The third bed, built in the same manner got some composted horse manure added to some sections. The onions appear to be doing better here. We've also planted eggplant, cayenne pepper, bell pepper, musk melon and tomatoe. It's a bit early to tell but it seems to be doing OK.

In the distance on the left is the solar hot water heater. We've also planted up some wooden wine boxes with basil and parsley, partially shaded, which have continued to produce. A large pot has yielded kale and chives. 4 garlic bulbs mysteriously disappeared thought they were doing well. Elswhere in the yard are 5 banana plants, some lemon grass, a few more tomatoes and the composting and leaf mould bins built earlier on and covered in an previous post.

I reckon this garden has produced 3 to 5 large salads per week since we started harvesting in May. I've especially enjoyed adding the jalapenos to anything and everything.

Here are some basic gardening tips I found posted over on Climate Progress. You can read more details about them there.

"Plant only what you can maintain. Overplanting will give you a headache and squander water, money, and other resources.

Compost your waste. Composting prevents yard trimmings, food scraps, and other household waste from entering landfills and reduces the need for watering by improving your soil’s water retention.

Ditch the pesticides and chemical fertilizers. Pesticides and fertilizers can pollute ground water and turn your fruits and vegetables toxic.

Water smarter. Water in the mornings or at night and not during the day because the afternoon’s intense sunlight will cause water to evaporate.

Avoid annuals. Most annual flowers, such as petunias or impatiens, have shallower root systems than perennials. Deep root systems allow plants to tap into water deep within the soil and survive with infrequent watering after they are established.

Stick with native and indigenous plants. Exotic plants typically need more water than native varieties.

Start an herb garden. Planting herbs can be the most economical decision you make with your garden, and they can save you trips to the grocery store. "

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