Yesterday, we went to the local hardware stores to acquire things with which to build boxes for my garden. What should have been a quick trip to one store (we had a list!) turned into an epic journey that involved a second store, lots of eye-rolling and huffy sighing on my part, some math, and some inspiration. So, instead of four boxes that will fit cutely between the fence posts, we decided to build two boxes that are 6′ x 12′.

The problem stems from the fact that our backyard does not have dirt in it. We’ve got CLAY. Lots and lots of reddish clay and about 43 different kinds of weeds. The Lawn Doctor guy told me that out of the 23 or so varieties of weeds that live in this part of New Jersey, our backyard is home to at least 20 of them.

Thus we need to build raised garden beds, which we will fill with topsoil, compost, and my 72 tomato plants. The ‘throw it in the ground and see what happens’ approach we took last year was fairly successful, so I figured if we add a little planning and a smidgen of science to the garden this year, we’ll be able to do even more. We shall see.

Annnnnnnyway, we acquired our materials and built the boxes with only a little bit of cursing and no lost limbs. I’m considering the project a success for that reason alone! The only major work left to get Garden 2009 off the ground (or… on it, I guess) is to hack up the remaining sod from the area where the beds will be. Then we’ll get some topsoil delivered, dump it in, and put the seeds and seedlings in. The hacking, though, must come first and aaaaaaaaaagh.

Hard work, this hacking is. I use my garden hoe, since that seems to be the most effective method, but man oh man is it slow. Freddie used the spade which was way faster! He and Jillian were out there this morning hacking away when I got home from Mama Escape Time. We are 75% of the way there – with any luck, this week will see the end of the hacking and we can get topsoil in by the weekend and then IT IS ONNNNNNNNNNN.

I can’t wait to see what kind of resistance Mother Nature puts up this year.

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