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Friday Favorite: The Back Garden

August 18th, 2017

I have two different edible garden spaces here at Chiot’s Run. One is the potager behind the house, which is filled with lots of herbs and a few edibles each year and the main vegetable garden up behind the garage or barn. This is the large garden space where the lion’s share of our vegetables are grow. It’s also filled with flowers for cutting and a nursery bed area.


It’s slowly growing, this year it’s close to the final size. We are preparing areas to surround it with hedges and fences and probably put in a shed as well. That’s beside the point, it’s one of my favorite garden spaces even though it’s not complete. It’s really starting to come into its own. I can see a HUGE difference in it over the past 5 years, the last two years have been quite remarkable.




This garden is now about twice as big as it was when we moved here. I’m guessing it’s 60×80 ft or so at the moment, it may get a bit bigger. There are areas on three sides that may be incorporated into the garden to add 30% more space, but we haven’t decided for sure.


Pictured above is not a weed, although it certainly looks like it, it is lemongrass. I’m really hoping to make my own curry paste this fall and lemongrass was an important ingredient. So far it’s growing well, now if I could only keep the cats from munching it down.



The pumpkins pictured above are growing in the //chiotsrun.com/2016/08/23/compost-pile-gardening/”>big compost piles I made on this lower end of the garden last fall. If you’ve been reading here long, you’ll know that I started using this method of composting and growing squash on them a few years ago with much success. I’m trying to build up this low spot in the garden, so naturally making my compost piles here made sense. I’m planning on using the next few years of composting to build this side up leveling out the garden a bit more. Overall, this garden is really chugging along and I’m super happy with the results. I love the slightly less than perfectness of it since I let dill, cilantro, sunflowers, and other things seed down and grow up wherever they want.

What’s your favorite part in your garden right now?

11 Comments to “Friday Favorite: The Back Garden”
  1. Chris on August 18, 2017 at 6:59 am

    It looks really lovely, and has come a long way. I have a question though. Do you water this area manually, or do you receive enough rainfall, not to water?

    My favourite part of the garden is my plant nursery and hugelkultur beds.

    Reply to Chris's comment

    • Susy on August 21, 2017 at 9:01 am

      There is not water up in this area and we don’t have enough hoses to reach. I have a big 100 gallon tank that we put on the back of our farm truck. I use it to water occasionally, mostly in the areas of the garden where the soil hasn’t been amended as much. For the most part, with soil improvmenet and mulch I don’t have to water much unless it’s a really dry summer. Any watering that is done is done with watering cans.

      Reply to Susy's comment

    • Susy on August 21, 2017 at 9:01 am

      There is not water up in this area and we don’t have enough hoses to reach. I have a big 100 gallon tank that we put on the back of our farm truck. I use it to water occasionally, mostly in the areas of the garden where the soil hasn’t been amended as much. For the most part, with soil improvement and mulch I don’t have to water much unless it’s a really dry summer. Any watering that is done is done with watering cans.

      Reply to Susy's comment

  2. Sara on August 18, 2017 at 7:37 am

    It’s beautiful! I can’t believe you’ve been there five years already!

    I did a little row of cutting flowers in front of my vegetables this year, and it’s making me pretty happy as they start to hit their stride.

    Reply to Sara's comment

  3. Nebraska Dave on August 18, 2017 at 10:19 am

    Susy, my favorite place at Terra Nova Gardens is at the picnic table under the shade of the big cottonwood tree. My garden designs, plans, and dreams have come to life from those times. Yesterday the garden cleanup began. The first sweet corn bed has been spent for some time so I turned it over with rotted grass clippings buried at each turn. The fall yard waste will cover the ground for the Winter and be turn under in the Spring before planting time.

    Have a great day in the favorite garden spot.

    Reply to Nebraska Dave's comment

  4. Misti on August 18, 2017 at 10:59 am

    It looks beautiful, Susy!

    I’m starting to get volunteer flowers in our garden from the compost and just general wind blown sowing, so I’m really excited to get more of a potager look into the garden than it has been in the past.

    Right now I’m excited about our Seminole pumpkins thriving so well!
    Misti´s last post ..Soaking in the Summer in the Flower Garden

    Reply to Misti's comment

  5. Chris on August 18, 2017 at 5:19 pm

    Beautiful Gardens! Is that Cerinthe or what I call blue shrimp plant? I love that plant!

    Reply to Chris's comment

    • Susy on August 21, 2017 at 9:02 am

      It is cerinthe, some people also call it honeywort (or I suppose in your case also blue shrimp plant). I love it as well, as do the bumblebees.

      Reply to Susy's comment

  6. Rachel on August 18, 2017 at 9:34 pm

    A 60×80 edible garden is amazing. Good for you! It looks beautiful. I’ve always appreciated your acceptance of the less-than-perfect since it’s true to life. If you do make your own curry paste with the lemongrass, do share.

    Reply to Rachel's comment

  7. Beth on August 21, 2017 at 7:02 am

    I live on the westside of Cleveland OH and grow lemongrass every year. It freezes beautifully. You just pull off the “stalks” in the fall and keep abt 4-5 inches from the base. Remove the outer bit, wash and freeze. I thinly slice it while frozen to cook with it all through the year!

    Reply to Beth's comment

    • Susy on August 21, 2017 at 8:56 am

      Thanks for the tip, I’ll definitely be doing that!

      Reply to Susy's comment

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This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.

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