Our first direct sown seeds are in!
This morning, I got the peas planted in their new beds.
I also added our first line of defense against birds and deer: flappy, noisy grocery bags.
As soon as we can, those will be replaced with whirligigs, wind chimes, flags, flashy things – whatever we can find that will startle critters, but not act as potential sails and pull the trellises down!
While covering up the seeds, I made a point of pressing down little trenches on either side of the seeds, where water can collect and soak in, rather than flow off the soil. I made slightly deeper trenches on the insides. The more water gets through the soil to the straw and old soil below, the better for the ground to soften up and encourage worm activity. That was one thing I noticed when digging the post holes. I think I saw only one worm, and I’m not even sure if I’m remembered that correctly or not.
Everything else being planted in this area has to wait until after the last frost date, so when I was back from helping my mother with her grocery shopping (I showed her pictures of what we’ve done so far. She had nothing positive to say, of course. 😉 ), then making a dump run, the girls and I moved on to where we will be planting things that can go in before our last frost date.
The two beds now covered in soil had looked like the long bed with the bamboo poles, before. Aside from raking around the edges to clean them up, adding the raked up material onto the beds, all we did was cover them with several inches of new soil.
The straw layered beds were rakes around the edges and evened out to more or less match the first two in size, then got thoroughly soaked. Then the soil beds got soaked, too.
Tomorrow, they will all get another soak, and then the straw will be covered with soil. After that, the two short beds that are off frame will be lengthened to match these ones in size, then they’ll be soaked, topped with soil and soaked again. Meanwhile, our onion seedlings are being hardened off for transplanting. Until they’re ready, we will continue to soak down the beds to get them thoroughly, deeply moist. This area had a summer under mulch and black plastic before we planted in it last year, so the soil is decently soft. We mostly want to encourage the break down of the straw.
Once these beds are ready, plus a couple in other areas we will be planting cold-hardy seeds, we will be able to move back to where the peas are and continue marking off and preparing beds for what will be planted there in June, after the last frost date.
I am so glad we were able to get that soil!! It’s going to make such a difference.