No, those are not lovely little garden seedlings already in the bed. They are nasty weeds! The second reason I hadn't planted my garden are the bags full of dirt sitting in front on the raised bed. That's right friends, 20 bags of top soil and compost manure. Mmmmmm, yum. Unfortunately, I severely underestimated my dirt/manure needs because halfway into my planting day I was back at Menard's buying 20 more bags. I can assure you that I looked like a complete FOOL trying to haul and load 20 bags of dirt. One gentlemanly sir even tried yelling out his car window at me, to which I responded with a dignified glare, until I realized that he was telling me that one of the wheels on my cart was completely broken. Oops, my apologies to the sir who wasn't in fact making a cat-call.
So after a long day of digging, weeding, dumping and planting, I ended up with a nice little raised bed that looked like this.......
Ok. Not the dramatic "after" impact I was hoping for. But I can promise you, that this stinking raised bed was a full day's work. The lifting and dumping of 40 bags of dirt is no small feat for me. After last year's calamity (AKA worst tomatoes ever), I decided to get serious with my dirt. Which is why this year's dirt features the following: top soil, manure, bone meal, feather meal, peat moss, and coffee grounds. Can you mix all those goodies and still get good soil? Here's hoping. My plan of action was basically this, what do the people on the gardening blogs do, and then combine it. Did you catch that? Combine it......here's hoping that coffee grounds and feather meal combined don't end up giving me cancer or something. Oh, and to top it all off, I watered my lovely little raised bed with water mixed with emulsified fish. If I don't get decent tomatoes this year, gardening blog over....forever.
So there you have it, my raised bed garden! It may not seem like much, but I'm hoping it produces tons of goodies. I planted 5 different types of tomatoes (Pink girl, Fourth of July, Early Girl, Belgium Giant, and Orange Stripey), 2 different types of eggplant (Black Beauty and and something else...), and two types of peppers. All that work for just that?? You betcha!