Our local meteorologist, Andrew Freiden, has declared May 1st as safe for planting your gardens. I took this to heart, and I worked over the weekend to start my garden. What resumed last year as a cure for pandemic boredom has become a seasonal ritual once more. I’m also lucky that our wild pink lady’s slippers survived the final late frost!
My first step? I had to clear my decaying raised beds of the winter weed cover. I also pulled down the remaining plastic net fencing from last year. That took all of Friday, it felt. I also took a trip to our local lawn and garden store for more soil and compost as well as fertilizer for these beds, and I bought some plants for a butterfly garden.
Last year I had also put in deer netting to protect our plants, but don’t plan to do that again this year. I rescued 3 birds and a black snake from the snares of the netting, even after placing ribbons on the nets to make them more visible. I took it down as soon as the growing season was over.
We had already planned a trip to our local Ashland Farmers Market and to Lavender Fields Farm for some plants on Saturday. I picked up some tomatoes, herbs, and milkweed (for the butterfly garden, of course!). If you’re looking for something unusual, either of these are great sources for unique plants, but especially Lavender Fields. I planted all the herbs and veggies between Saturday and Sunday. I meant to get some pepper plants too, and I totally forgot! I picked up a few today along with some marigolds. These are already in the ground, as it was in the upper 60’s today and sunny. Perfect planting weather in the RVA!
Now, I need to figure out some deer defense that won’t cost a million dollars. I still have the fence stakes in the ground, so I could do something different with those. I’m open for suggestions. Rope fencing? Milorganite? Scarecrows? Some other type of fencing? I need help!
Are you putting in a garden this year? I’d love to hear about it! As always, I hope you all are safe and healthy.