Vegetable garden!

The new raised vegatable boxes with tomatoes, zucchini, cauliflowers in 4 colors (white, orange, purple, green), “potimarron” pumpkins, peas, string beans, lettuce varieties, carrots, onions, radishes, rocket salad, lots of herbs and aromatic plants, and lots of flowers (especially marigolds and nasturtiums) that attract bug pests, but also bees and other good insects. No fertilizer other than horse manure; no pesticides; no chemicals. The zucchinis had to be planted in spaces larger than the squares, which is why there are 3 little beds on the south side of each box.

Lots of “companion planting”: certain plants have been planted together in the same square because their presence strengthens another plant – e.g. tomatoes and lettuce; kale and beans; and some aromatics are “allies” to help either ward off bugs or attract them so that the bugs eat them instead of the vegetable: basil with tomatoes and the Brassica vegetables (all varieties of cabbage, including kale); borage with cabbage and strawberries; marigolds everywhere. Here are some interesting websites on companion planting: Companion Planting Guide; Companion Planting; les Associations des l├ęgumes (in French).

The bluish film to the north of the 3 planting boxes is an area being prepared for a small flowering hedge, to be planted very soon with roses and several varieties of small shrubs. This will provide a tiny windbreak along with more flowers to attract insects and butterflies, and it will collect the sun and heat for the planters. The film will allow the grass and weeds underneath to just die off (no herbicides!), and also help keep in the moisture for the first year or so. The green plastic borders of the small zucchini plots will eventually be replaced with wooden ones – however, this year a fast and more practical solution had to do.

There are also pots and planters in front of the house with more tomatoes, strawberries, and lots of aromatic herbs.

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