I love a pretty garden......Not only has my love for raised bed garden boxes increased as I have discovered how much easier I can tend to the soil but they look nice right? clean lines, natural wood, lush green veggies planted neatly in them, but those weeds.......they can take over in a day it seems! As we prepped our boxes this year we had a dear friend bring us a dump truck load of soil from a cow pasture! I'm talking dark, rich, manure filled soil and our veggies loved it! and SO DID THE WEEDS..........
I waited for the day after a nice rain and easily pulled the tallest weeds and then took the time to layer my beds with a trick that has worked WONDERS year after year.
I gathered as many news papers I could get my hands on and even picked up a huge box of packing papers a friend was tossing and I soaked the papers in a large tub of water. this helps the paper mold around each plant base and also keeps the paper from blowing away, which out on our breezy hill I need all the help I can get! and for those of you who love recycling....I can't think of a better earth friendly way to use up old newspaper!
The next step involves gathering old leaves, mulch or my favorite.....Pine Needles! It's what I think not only keeps the paper down but also keeps moisture in the plants and also looks clean and manageable. YAY for all of that! My parents happen to live right across the street from a pine tree forest (The Deep Dark Spooky Woods) as our kids call it;) and we simply rake up endless pine needles and bag them up.
So there you have it.......
What may take a few hours of prep, weeding and layering will save you countless hours in your garden this summer.
Like I said, I like a pretty garden, one I can sit back and admire, one I can leisurely pick from and I certainly try my hardest to make it a place I don't feel overwhelmed or defeated in. So take the time, I promise you won't regret it!