I have always wanted to have a green thumb. My Mother can just look at something and it will grow but for me gardening is a lot like cooking - something I love to do but don't usually have a lot of success.
Dani, over at Gardening Under The Florida Sun has inspired me and I decided that this is the year I will have a successful garden.
The Island King has been telling me for years that he wants to grow a garden as well but I could never get him out there long enough to really help me. He'd come out into the yard, throw a few comments around and then head back inside.
But this year the gardening bug hit him and as soon as it got warm we rolled up our sleeves and outside to build a garden we went.
My parents gave us a Home Depot gift card for our birthday so we've used that to buy seeds, some small starter plants and a few other things but there were still a few other items we needed as well.
1. Some good soil to add to our sandy stuff
2. A fence to keep Buddy the Beagle out of the garden
3. A lot of mulch
We stood in the yard talking about needing to add some really good soil to the garden and he kept saying "I just have a problem with buying dirt. It's dirt for Pete's sake!"
He understands the need for adding good stuff to our sandy soil but doesn't like the idea of paying for dirt - good dirt or not.
He started eyeballing the line of redtips that grow along our side fence and said "For 15 years we've been raking up all the leaves in the yard and putting them under those redtips - I bet by now there's pure dirt gold under there."
We pulled off the top layer of leaves and the soil under there looked really rich.
"We're going to move this dirt to the garden and the garden dirt back over here" he tells me.
"And it won't cost a penny!" he adds.
So we dug up the dirt from under the redtips, mixed it with some potting soil I had and potted up all of the plants we'd bought with our gift card.
Meanwhile, the Youngest Island Boy wants to dig in the old sand pit.
Both of my boys like to dig and years ago I gave in, handed them shovels and told them they could dig in a designated part of the yard.
They spent HOURS out there digging. Their digging destroyed a good portion of the yard but as long as they were digging they weren't getting into trouble so I didn't care.
They dug serious holes and then last year the digging bug wore off. They covered the holes and haven't done much digging since.
So when the Youngest wanted to dig we told him ok. He was outside, happy, enjoying the weather and went right to work.
A couple of hours later I look over and see this.
It took almost as long for him to bury it again but he doesn't mind. Moving dirt out, moving it back in again is no problem. The boy likes to dig.
The Island Girl wanted to be outside too but being a teenager she comes attached to power cords.
We don't mind though because the girl plays awesome classic rock on her guitar and we enjoy every minute of it.
One of the cats spent the day in the birdbath that's waiting to be cleaned and filled for spring.
We spent a lot of time turning the soil in the old garden and mixing in the gold we dug our from under the redtips and then Island King constructed a sad little fence out of chicken wire.
I tried not to laugh but it was the worst little fence I've ever seen and when the Beagle stepped right over it I laughed until I cried.
The Island King shook his head and admitted that it was indeed a sad little fence and wouldn't work at all.
It was getting dark so we stopped for the day and decided to come up with another idea for a fence tomorrow.
We're definitely going to need something the Beagle can't step right over.