Neighbours talking over the garden gate has long been a tradition. They share gardening tips, complain about the weather and pests yet are ever eager to discuss their gardens. That is what I had in mind when creating this blog. So stop by my garden gate to find out the latest happenings in my garden.

Happy Gardening!

Garden Gnome
"All my life through, the new sights of Nature made me rejoice like a child." ~ Madame Marie Curie"

Monday, October 15, 2007

Blog Action Day - Square Foot Gardening & The Environment

Today over fifteen thousand blogs with twelve million readers will be blogging on one topic - The Environment. Each of my blogs are participating, each from a different perspective so be sure to read them all.

Square Foot Garden Bed

If you have been reading this blog you will know we moved here in late June so have not set up the new vegetable and herb beds. When deciding on an environmental topic for Blog Action Day, I decided to revisit square foot gardening. I've used the square foot gardening method combined with companion planting for a number of years to grow organically. My new beds while not in a formal garden setting as my last garden will be planted in the same method. It is one of the most environmentally friendly style of gardening.

The method was the brainchild of Mel Bartholomew. Square foot gardening is based on gardening in raised beds using a grid system for form square feet. Herbs, vegetables, fruit or flowers are planted in each square based on the recommended density. When one square is harvested, it is replanted to keep a succession of crops. Often a small amount of soil is removed during this process and replenished with fresh soil so the soil is constantly being turned over creating a no till method. The soil is amended as needed with an emphasis on organic matter. Garden beds set up in the square foot method quickly set their own cycle. They are very easy to maintain!

The square foot bed pictured is one of the eight beds from my previous garden. A small portion of the herb bed is also shown. Plants are encouraged to grow upwards using trellises or other types of supports. What is amazing is the amount of food that can be produced in such a small area using this method. A typical square foot bed will produce the same harvest as a traditional row garden in 20% of the space. The raised beds and grid can be made from recycled materials as well. Old window blinds are ideal for constructing the grid, keeping them out of the landfill. All of these factors result in an environmental win-win situation. In many areas workable land is becoming scarce. Urban lot sizes in many cases are too small to garden traditionally. Digging a garden in rental units is often not allowed but the design of the raised bed is such that they be placed on legs and taken with you when you move. The method is ideal for those with only balcony space as well.

Square foot gardening is the ideal, environmentally friendly choice for anyone wanting a high yield garden in a small space!

Happy Gardening!

Garden Gnome

1 comment:

  1. Ooh, I'm just starting on using the square foot gardening type method. Actually, I'm pretty much a novice gardener altogether.


Thanks so much for commenting. Your message will appear once approved.