One really nice thing about living in Missouri instead of Wisconsin is having a 75-degree day here and there in February. It convinces a person that spring is really here (even though we know full well that there will most likely be more snow before spring truly arrives!) We have seen the beginnings of daffodils and snow crocus on our almost daily walks around the ridge.

Because of the unusually warm weather, we’ve begun to start pondering vegetable gardens. We’ve had several beautiful days here in the past two weeks and so the garden plans are in full swing. I’m not sure I ever thought about gardens before April when we lived in Wisconsin!

Rachel is our director of gardening. She plans, strategizes on how to beat the bugs, and gets the rest of us moving and playing in the dirt! The strategy for dealing with bugs this year will include pairing different plants together. After researching, we have settled on using a variety of herbs and flowers, such as basil, chives, onions, garlic, chrysanthemums, marigolds, sage, and several others, to hinder the Japanese beetles that have caused such destruction among our tomatoes in the past. She got her information from this site through Pinterest.

But first things first… we need to prepare the soil in at least three of our five gardens. The one that had the most trouble with bugs last year is getting an overhaul this season. In late fall, we dug out the top layer of clay and started dumping egg shells, coffee grounds, and all the nasty stuff from cleaning stalls and the chicken coop onto the soil that was left. We burned it a few times to control the amount of material piling up. The rest composted down, we hope! Shomrah and Rayah are observing and then getting baths since Shomrah decided to tangle with a skunk last week and still stinks!


img_2495We will need Scott’s muscles for the rototilling. Thank goodness for Home Depot’s rentals!



It’s so good to see that patch of weedy dirt transform into a garden bed! We still need to decide if we will fence the new section or plant only various squash varieties and hope that the local fauna don’t care for them!






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