Dreaming of Spring Gardens

It may still be -30˚C outside (yes, I live in Quebec), but today I am dreaming of spring and my garden.

This is the time of year that, despite all the snow, I start to think of the seeds I would like to sow.

Last year, I lived in an apartment with a small balcony and was limited to what I could grow in containers. But this year, it’s a whole different story.

Indeed the garden is one of the things I loved most when we saw our house for the first time last summer. The previous owner did a fantastic job with the landscaping around the house with beautiful perennials, including many hydrangea bushes (my favourite). The only thing missing is a vegetable garden. Although there are two raised-beds in the back, they were not put to use. I plan on changing that!

We moved into our house in October and with all the things to be done, I had no time to do anything except prune back the existing garden and rake the billions of leaves before we were covered in snow.

Once the snow is gone and the ground has thawed, I plan to put those raised-beds into production. However, this may prove challenging due to their location. The beds are at the back (north side) of the house on our heavily wooded lot. This means they get a lot of shade and most veggies want full sun.

In the sunnier of the two beds, I plan on trying my luck with some raspberries and blueberries. These plants usually take three years to start producing fruit, so I will have a while to wait.

In the other, more shaded, bed I will plant vegetables that can survive with 3-6 hours of sun. I have decided on Rhubarb, spinach, green beans, onions, lettuce (romaine and iceberg) and beets. In the same bed I will also plant Marigolds, parsley, dill, summer savoury and tarragon to help with growth and to keep insects at bay. This website is a great source for companion planting. Around the bed, in separate pots, I will grow sage and mint. I will plant a climbing rose bush between my two beds to encourage bees for pollination and some lavender along one side. Finally, I will do tomatoes in large containers with some basil and chives, which I will place in the sunnier front-yard.

I will order all my seeds and plants from Veseys soon. They will ship the seeds immediately and the plants when the time is right. I will start my seeds indoors mid-March when I return from vacation and then hope for the best.

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