Our gardens are a tremendous mish-mesh of styles right now. We’re constantly experimenting with how we grow things.
Andy has been forming his raised beds by hand with an eye hoe. Tiny variations in the beds are amplified with each iteration, so we have these gorgeous curves. He’s also planning to irrigate minimally.
Andy’s in the background of the picture, using a scuffle hoe on aisles that barely show weeds – the idea is to break up the surface just as the weeds are germinating, so they never even get a chance to get established.
River’s garlic and perennial onions, on the other hand, are in beds formed using the bed-maker implement on our tractor. We mulch them all winter long, with our own straw, to keep the moisture in and the weeds out. With all that mulch, they need to be hand-weeded to control the few weeds that do make it through. In the spring, we pull the mulch off and into the aisles.
Jon’s experimenting with strip tilling and hoeing those strips into hills. I know he wants to write about this so I won’t steal his glory.
It’s so much fun and such an opportunity for all these young innovative gardeners to try different techniques. Everyone has responsibility for different crops, but everybody helps each other out and manages to share the fields and greenhouse spaces with aplomb.