Strawberry Patch History

Berry Patch History

strawberry 01aGrowing strawberries for the family took us a little while to get right. Pete and I started seriously growing them in 2015 at our place in Elk, WA. Beginning with seed, because of budget restrictions gave me very little success, but I didn’t give up and kept planting for 3 years. Looking at this picture they look pretty scraggly. Finally we determined that the location they were put in the garden was not good for them.

Moving

strawberry 02aWhen we expanded our garden in 2018, I decided to move the strawberry patch to the other side. First, building a 8″ raised bed approx 16 ft long x 2.5 ft wide using old concrete blocks and then transplanting the plants. We were blessed with a gift of more starts from my friend’s beautiful patch, and she also showed me how to pull the runners as I picked. Even though this was a new patch, because of the move, these 2 suggestions really made a noticeable improvement to the strawberry harvest and fruit size.

Bigger

strawberry 12In the spring of 2019 my strawberries were overcrowded and desperately needing thinning. I removed the concrete blocks (CMU) surrounding the raised bed. Then we tilled the area around the original raised patch, and lowered the soil level to be equal with the surrounding garden. We could disc the soil with our tractor then.

strawberry 19Thinning the overgrown area, I transplanted them to the newly tilled area in rows about 4-6 inches apart. The strawberry area became a 20 ft x 8 ft patch.

strawberry 42This is what it looks like this year and now this old gardening girl is beginning to wonder, “What was I thinking?” We are already harvesting a lot of berries this summer. Sometimes my body talks to me about it and I am making friends with Tylenol and Aspirin in the evenings.

Garden Seeds Arrived

garden seed identificationInto Garden Mode

This morning I had a rather fun chore of preparing garden seeds for planting this spring. Our order of seeds arrived in the mail from Seeds ‘n Such and I noticed that the envelopes did not have any pictures on them.  Arrrgh!

When it comes time to plant in the garden the words don’t really help me remember which-seeds-are-what. The names don’t always describe the plant. Collage, glueing and scrap-booking fun was in order! There is real truth behind the old saying, “A picture is worth a thousand words!”

garden seed 2Last fall I saved what seeds I could, drying them and putting them in plain brown and white little envelopes. See the tomato and spaghetti squash envelopes in this picture. Notice that these saved seeds were also “picture-less”.

garden seed 3Since I still had the catalog that I ordered the seeds from, I was able to look through and cut-out pictures for almost all of our seeds.

garden seed 4After glueing them onto the envelopes we have a much cooler set of identifiable seeds for this spring’s planting.

Ready to Plant

fence Gates 10
drive in gate

Gardening is a large part of our lives here in Inland Northwest. Here is a view of the garden after Pete disc’d it with the tractor last spring. It was ready to plant the next day. As soon as ski season is over, we are looking forward to working in our garden this summer again.