Saturday, April 7, 2012

Sunny Saturday!

It couldn't be more beautiful out this morning. The sun is so bright, it was piercing my eyes as I fumbled to make the coffee. I had to shade my eyes in the kitchen in order to see where to pour the water into the coffeemaker.

This morning, I'm off to Behnkes to pick up some fertilizers, non-chemical of course, to feed my soils to the letter of their needs. The soil tests came back this week and I am armed with the specific requirements to make my garden produce. I spent the whole week studying the reports and planning what fertilizers I'll use and how to make them work for me. I'll be planting four new rose bushes, a hydrangea and a native kalmia all along the fence. Last weekend, I had the boys help me dig out the holes. The soil was tough and difficult. So, I'll also amend with compost. The kalmia needs a particularly acidic soil and a place on a shady slope. Its root ball needs to be planted a bit above the ground, so I've selected the perfect home for it just beside the gate. The roses that I picked out thrive in sun, but tolerate shade. They are perfect for the range of shade and sun that play along the fence throughout the day. I'll start off the morning by putting the dry roots into buckets of water and leaving them to soak all of today and tonight and I'll plant them tomorrow for Easter Sunday. Over at the Community Garden, the water is turned on and so I can commence to begin. The soil there was higher in pH, than I expected, a 7.3, which is at the highest range for vegetables. Word up is that our compost was heated improperly, elevating the pH. I'm going to add Espoma sulfer in to help acidify.  The soil test recommended that I add straight up nitrogen in the form of urea or bone meal to start the season. I've evidently added too much compost because my potassium, magnesium and calcium levels were in the excessive range, while my phosphorus was at optimum levels and my organic matter was admirable, at 12 percent. It's going to be a perfect day. The Putterer

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