Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Winter Day Dreams of my Spring Garden!

As the days continue to get shorter, the landscape turns bare and brown before hopefully a blanket of white arrives, I'm already day dreaming about my garden in the spring! I day dream of garden layouts, new raised beds, water storage and new plants! I have to say I most excited about two new plants I hope to plant in the spring!

The first one is Swiss Chard, which is in the spinach and kale family and extremely healthy for you! It also grows well throughout the season from the cool spring days through the hot summer and cool fall! This endurance means a continuous crop through the growing season! It's also a very cool plant, the stems can come in a rainbow of colors giving the garden an interesting aesthetic! The dark leaves are rich in vitamin b's and offer a bang for your buck nutritionally! Below is a picture of colorful Swiss chard from http://www.revolutiongardens.com/?attachment_id=524

The other plant I'm excited to grow is a fruit shrub. To be more specific heritage raspberry plant. I hope to find a few varieties to plant if I have the room! Heritage raspberry seems to be the most reliable and also one of the few that produce. Crops twice a year. In fact I have read that they even produce a fall crop the first year, which would be awesome! Now raspberry plants are perennials and will take some work to maintain. Most work involves thinning canes in the summer and cutting old canes once dormant. Like blackberries, raspberries grow on canes but after the cane produces fruit it normally has to be cut down to get new growth and new fruit! Most varieties grow the cane one year and fruit the next. So once the plants are established, your efforts one summer will directly impact your crop of delicious berries the next year, I just hope I have enough room for the berry plants! It would be like growing candy in my backyard!! Below is a picture of a very healthy heritage raspberry plant from http://www.gardencrossings.com/plantname/Rubus-Heritage-Raspberry