Growing up my mom pretty much had to drag me kicking and screaming into the flower or veggie garden if she wanted help. Usually Mothers day was the only time of year she could count on getting me to help weed without to much protest and now I cant get enough of it. Honestly it may be my type A personality coming out but I LOVE pulling weeds and making the rows look happy and healthy 🙂 Continually getting rid of the weeds is one of the best ways to ensure your plants have access and no competition to all the nutrients and water in the soil.
I am so blessed that my in laws are not only extremely nice people, who except and help support my need for animals of all shapes and sizes. But they also both have incredible green thumbs and are taking the time to turn me into a gardener! Every spring after we get our crops in the ground we plant our farm garden, and around here we don’t do anything on a small scale. We turn out a lot of produce by the end of the year and anything we cant or wont use, we give away or sell to cover our seed costs or put into our girls post secondary education savings account. This year my oldest T got to help drive the tractor for seeding potatoes and my youngest little R rode around in her ErgoBaby carrier. Mommas with babies, if you do not already babywear you need to give it a try! I cant say enough about how amazing it is. I seriously would be a LOT less productive without my ErgoBaby!
Every year we make changes as to what we are going to grow based on what we want, fun seeds we have found and new things we would like to try. I was shocked last winter at the price of broccoli and cauliflower, so this summer they can both be found in the garden. Hopefully they do well and I will be able to blanch and freeze enough to last us through the winter. We have a deep freeze in our shop that is devoted just to produce!! I do not think it is possible to explain the feeling of pride that comes from sitting down to a meal and knowing that everything on your plate you either grew or raised, especially in the dead of winter. This summer our garden is decorated with onions, beans, beats, peas, carrots, strawberries, asparagus (that does not yet produce) zucchini, jalapenos, pickling cucumbers, corn, lettuce, spinach, cauliflower, broccoli, brussel sprouts, potatoes, garlic, rhubarb, dill, cabbage, raspberries, pumpkins and two apple trees. We also grow multiple verities of tomatoes, burpless (yes that’s a thing) cucumbers and peppers in our green house. It gets to the point where each adult is responsible for eating at least one cucumber per person per day to keep up with supply 😛
One of the many things I respect and love about homesteading is how things come full circle and benefit each other. The garden does not only feed us, we feed the weeds and scraps to the pigs and the chickens and when we have turkeys they roam around looking for bugs. In turn when we clean the pig pen out the manure is used to fertilize our garden soil to help grow the next years crop. It makes me so happy to have my girls growing up in this environment, by the time they are 10 they will be fluent in skills I myself am just building now.