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Organic Terrace Gardening

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Trying organic terrace gardening…

A favorite feature of our backyard is the pretty terrace garden that my husband built for me a couple of years ago.  Wary of treated wood materials, we researched various rock or concrete products.  We decided on natural stone once my husband decided that he’d spend just as much time and nearly as much money on a similar concrete terrace.  The stone looks beautiful; I appreciate his work that went into carving out the terraces and building the narrow walls.

Our first year, it was just fun to plant anything in the terrace garden.  I think we enjoyed the sunflowers the most, because they seem to magically grow and are so fascinating to youngsters.  I don’t remember much success with other plantings on the terrace, and I think it was partially due to not preparing the soil correctly.

Our second year, we could boast about sugar snap peas climbing up their tiny metal fence, and the girls enjoyed picking them.  My homemade compost material made a definite improvement over the first year.  We grew some beautiful lettuces for fresh salads.  Yet, the spinach struggled.  And whatever good start we had with terrace squash was stunted by a family of hungry groundhogs that we caught on that hill one day.  For a few days after that, the girls and I made a game out of banging pie pans together to scare them away.  Luckily, another squash plant that the groundhogs missed went on to thrive and provide lots of squash throughout the summer.

Our family is excited about our third growing season, now with the terrace garden.  I’m hopeful about learning from past mistakes.  I’m still turning the compost pile and anxious to use that rich soil again.  Lettuce is a definite choice of something we want to grow again.  We’re still talking about what else we want to plant this spring.  My husband is coming around more and more to organic gardening methods, especially for his kids’ sake.  When I think of all of the planning and preparation, spring doesn’t seem so far away.

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