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Do You See the Problem?

It’s all very well to say that you can grow tons of vegetables in a 10 x 10 foot garden. The question is will you be able to harvest those vegetables without wrecking half the garden in the process.
My husband will tell you I like to think big and that this is not always efficient. I agree on both counts so, forced by a wet garden site several years ago and a bad hip that would soon need a replacement, I moved the vegetable garden and made it tiny, about 12 by 15 feet. This year, new hip firmly in place we added a similarly sized extension for beans, squash of the summer and winter varieties. Not a lot of anything. This is the result. Just where do I put my feet?
Here is my warning and a suggestion. Plan 10 x 10 feet of planting beds. By all means. But then add on room for the paths. Allowing room to bring in a wheelbarrow is not a bad idea. Also, remember that as we age we might not be quite so flexible to pirouette and arabesque our way through verdant vines and lettuces. I have found that I need more room to bend and kneel than I used to – and not because I am fatter.
Next year – better paths!

2 comments to Do You See the Problem?

  • Ken

    I did something similar this year and learned the hard way what will have to change for the 2009 garden. I opted for more space than needed, then just didn’t have time to plant the entire thing out when Spring/Summer rolled around, so half of the garden turned into a small forest. The other half I didn’t leave any useful footspace in and picking tomatoes and beans has become a nightmare of tiptoed steps through weeds I really can’t squat down to pull and actual vegetables surrounded by trenches I put in for watering purposes. Live and learn though. I think the biggest challenge is trying to make myself realistic about how much space I can handle/need vs what the plants need. =}

  • Pat Leuchtman

    I completely identify with your summer experience. I am always struggling to balance with what is realistic to manage, with my fantasies of a big productive garden. Live and learn is definitley the gardener’s motto, year after year after year. How many times do I need to learn the same lesson!

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