Thank you, lambert, for the peat moss! I think.
While lambert is spending his Memorial Day weekend planting his garden, I thought I'd brag on my here-in-Florida-where-you-plant-at-Easter garden a bit (hence the cute little bunny rabbit).
You might also have surmised, from the caption, that my first garden this year did not survive. You would be correct.
I decided to try the raised bed thingy. I had some materials lying around that could be made into beds, and the back yard is fenced with a picket fence that could double as a trellis, all I needed was some dirt, easy-peasy, right?
So there I was, standing in the big box garden shop, buying dirt - or rather, trying to decide among the 57849 kinds of dirt you can buy in the big box garden shop. Fortunately we have cell phones for this.
me: (walking up and down the aisles of dirt) Dad, when we used to plant gardens as kids, your dirt recipe was 1/3 cow manure, 1/3 topsoil, and 1/3 ... what? I can't remember.
dad: (after a pause) I can't remember either.
It was at this juncture that I turned the corner into the next aisle and saw:
Far be it from me to ignore omens from out of the blue, and besides, not only did I vaguely remember peat moss being involved all those years ago, my dad thought it sounded right too. So home I went with many bags of cow manure, peat moss, and topsoil.
I planted tomatoes, yellow squash, zucchini, cantaloupe and watermelon. Yum! And nasturtiums, because they're supposedly edible too. I watered it faithfully, little green shoots sprouted, and along came the torrential rains and mashed it all to little green piles of mush. Yay.
The good news is that at least it wasn't eaten by cute little bunny rabbits.
Also, the soil texture in my new raised beds didn't seem quite right, and also, by this time I was beginning to feel a bit more ambitious.
A previous resident had put in a garden bed, larger than my little raised beds, that was direly overgrown with
weeds wildflowers, mostly the ones with teeth, which is a large part of why I had ignored it the first time around.
So I dug it all up, tree roots and cobra vines and all, tilled in some of the remaining cow manure (and none of the remaining peat moss), buried a soaker hose a couple of inches below the surface, and planted my second batch of seeds. To protect the seedlings from marauding cats, rats, mice (maybe not the mice), squirrels, possums and birds (and thunderstorms!), I constructed cages from all those basically-useless wire storage cube thingies I had lying around, planning to drape a couple of tarps over the whole thing if torrential rains threatened again.
I also decided to try the Three Sisters method of planting (and according to wikipedia, I didn't do it right). Still, I have lots of green shoots that are on track to outgrow their cages shortly.
Close up, from above:
Close up, from the side:
What much of the rest of the back yard looks like (and also pretty much what the present garden bed looked like, pre-digging):
But at least I have pollinator attractors in all that wilderness:
Given that I didn't follow instructions on this second planting, and given that we're having a bit of a heat wave here, I fully expect that there will be a Third Garden, and maybe even a Fourth, but until then, since I started this post with a cute little bunny rabbit, here's another one: