Sunday, June 19, 2011

I Really Am My Father's Daughter

In honor of Father's Day, I wanted to show how I have incorporated what my dad has taught me over the years as a Midwestern farmer's daughter. My dad Michael, was a farmer for most of his life. He was born into farming in Indiana and moved to Wisconsin when he was 12 and then took over the family farm when he was in his twenties.  

Dad and his girls 1987 (I'm the older girl on the left)
 I know gardening and full out farming are two different things, but knowing one definitely helps the other. First thing, to do a proper weeding, you need to kill the roots. So when I clipped all the weeds down here, I tried to get the roots with them. Many of the weeds were too deeply rooted for me to pull so I waited until they didn't have a way to get water down to the roots to try again.

This time, many of them came up more easily. I still think some of them had roots all the way to China, but they came up eventually. That pile next to me is just roots. Insane right! Longest one I found was around 16". By the way, that might be one of the most unflattering pictures of me ever so enjoy.

Our irises finally bloomed as well. They were a light purple with yellow tips or bearded iris cultivar called a 'Mary Todd'.

After the soil was all de-weeded and ready, to go I went back to Stein's to get veggies. As you remember from here and here, I tried to do a completely organic garden but ended up cooking my seedlings which was an epic fail on my part. My mom suggested just to try again next year and start with started plants. Since we have been so busy with everything else and I didn't get around to buying plants on time. Sometimes good things come to those who wait. I saw in the weekly flyer that all vegetables were 50% off. So when I headed in I was thinking my local store was going to be really picked over already. Not even close. I got really great mature plants, some who were already about to be ready to start bearing produce!

Turk helped with comedic relief while I worked. He ended up whining like a pansy it was too hot for him, which apparently was 70 degrees and he had shade and water...

Since the garden is also going to be right next to the patio (when we make it that is), I wanted to arrange it in a way that would still look pleasant while being functional. So late in the season I was leery to plant seeds at all but thanks from some encouragement from my mom, I decided to plant them anyways. "What's the worst that could happen, you get corn?" Thanks mom. The back row along the house is sweet corn. The next row in are broccoli plants. In the center of the garden is a strawberry plant. I have alternating white and red onions in front of that. To line the sidewalk, I planted seeds of spinach and added red and green leaf lettuce. Not too shabby for urban gardening huh? I would like to thank Better Homes and Gardens for giving me the idea to make it look nice. They have different garden plans for anything for any type of area.

On the alternate side of the back walk, I ended up adding the caged tomato, pepper and pea plants. I added a few more herb varieties next to the already sprouting chives and added a mint Mojito plant for our roomie Scott and cabin friends and relatives.

As you can see, the hot pepper plant is almost ready to start producing and the bell pepper and tomato plants are already flowering which mean they will be starting to creating fruit. So excited! Maybe I'll need to learn to start canning at the end of summer to have veggies all winter... I did see all the stuff I would need at our local Menards.

Last thing on "the list" complete!

Happy Father's Day to all the dads out there!


  1. I am more Daddy's girl than you... and I am cuter than you in that pic :P

    Bri and I went and saw mom and Daddoo yesterday :)

  2. thanks for the link to bhg plant site! i totally want to plant a small produce garden next spring here and it'll be my first stab at it lol. totally was going to do the seed-thing first. maybe that is not such a smart idea after all! GREAT JOB :)

  3. I am totally going to try seedlings again this coming year, I just am going to start them a lot earlier (Februaryish) and make sure they are big enough to go in the ground before I wing it. I started them in May which was not enough time for them to mature.

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