We have a house in the historical district of Covington, GA. Our lot is approximately 75 by 150. So far we have concentrated on growing some food and lots of flowers. We are converting to some flowers and lots of food. I have gathered discarded leaves and grass clippings from my neighbors for years in order to enrich my soil. We now have lovely soil in all the beds. Although, I never turn down an opportunity to scarf up some free mulch. That brings us to the story of the orange bags.
Very near our house is the city cemetery. It is maintained mostly by a local jail detail and as a consequence the bags that they use to gather up leaves and such are bright orange. A few weeks ago our dog disappeared in the back yard. We did eventually find him in a hidden corner behind the shed but in the course of looking for him I drove around in the cemetery and noticed that there were many many of these orange bags full of pine straw and leaves. We went back and gathered them up. Now I need to spread them around in all the beds. But if you open your eyes and look around there is free mulch everywhere.
Now, with the help of all that organic humusy mulch to enrich the beds, how much do we grow in our yard? We have three raised beds that measure 3 by 12 feet; one that measures 4 by 12 feet. That is what we started with. We managed to grow plenty of tomatoes in the summer and greens and lettuce in the winter. But now we want to do more than that. We are trying to provide a large percentage of what we eat from locally grown food. And I figure that growing it myself is a local as it gets. This past summer we converted two flower beds into growing vegetables. We also have fig trees, pear trees, blueberry bushes, and blackberry canes. I also took out a row of shrubbery and have put in a row of asparagus and a row of garlic there. I’ll add another row of asparagus next year when we take the garlic out. That will be a perennial food bed. I’m looking for a source of artichoke plants to go there. I may have to start with seeds to get that.
I’ve added links to the blog and if you look under the “growing your own” category, you will find sources of organic seeds and plants, as well as some regular seeds and plants and information about how to grow food in your yard. Even a small space like ours will give you a good amount of food. We certainly don’t have enough to feed us all our food now, so we seek out the local producers. But our portion is growing and we are glad about that.