I didn't even realize it had been so long since I posted! Things have been crazy here, and the blog just slipped my mind....ooops again.
The weather here was just insane for a long time. We had over 5 weeks of nearly non-stop rain; some of which was approaching flood levels in parts of the state. We ended up getting the second wettest May on record! Thanks to the weather, everything outside was on hold. Everything. We've never been this late getting things going, but we had no choice. All we could do was sit and wait.
Once Ohio's surprise monsoon season ended, it was a rush to get everything started. First, I worked on the front yard; digging the two 4x12 beds from last year together; taking out the area in between; and making it one large 4x32 bed. I also widened last years small 2x16 bed for sugar snap peas to 4x24. Both beds are now planted with potatoes. The two 2x16 beds I made last year for the free tomato plants are now both full of sugar snap peas,which I managed to get in before the rain started.
I had all intentions on using the three 4x24 beds in the back to thin and transplant strawberries this spring, but by the time it stopped raining, they were in full bloom and setting berries. Rather than chance killing them with berries coming on, we used two of the beds for sweet corn, and the other for yellow onions.
The main garden ended up being last,and ended up being the worst. When it was time to till, not only did I have to deal with a massive amount of weeds to rake out, but the temperature soared to the mid 90's and got extremely humid. But, heat and misery aside, it was tilled and planted. I used stakes and masons twine to mark out the rows, and noticed that the garden was way off being square.....nearly 3 feet out of square! I marked it out, and hand dug and tilled that area, giving us just a little more space; which we ended up needing for onions.
The list for the year, not counting greens and the peas is: 15 pickling cucumbers, 4 eggplant, 4 sweet peppers, 6 italian peppers, 3 red peppers, 8 hot banana peppers, 4 jalepeno peppers, 12 cabbage, 22 tomatoes (3 varieties), 9 broccoli, 3 cauilflower, 6 brussel sprouts ,6 bush cucumbers, 30lb yukon gold seed potatoes, 5lbs green onion sets, 15lbs white onion sets, 4lbs sweet corn ,and 6lbs bush green beans.
The existing fruits are looking great. The raspberries along our parking area have more than quadrupled in 2 years; the grapes are filling out and climbing the arbors that I made last year, and again I have to thin and transplant the blackberries; which may end up becoming a second 24-30ft bed if all of the transplants take.
I'm also doing a small side job, clearing about 1/2-3/4 of an acre of brush and small trees. The area has wild raspberries nearly everywhere, and my plan is to bring as many home as I can, and transplant them somewhere in the front yard. I'm thinking alongside the ditch on the north end of the yard, but that may change depending on how many I end up bringing home. I'll also be cutting the small trees to bring home and make trellis' for the tomato plants like the ones I had made last spring. With 22 tomato plants, I'll need a minimum of 3 trees roughly 1-1/2-2" in diameter for each one, plus smaller ones for supports. I'll be hauling a lot home!!
In between what needs done here, and clearing that brush, I've taken on some basic apartment maintenance at a building a friend lives in. It's simple stuff that just needs repaired or replaced...light fixtures, drywall patching, deck boards, painting, etc. Nothing major at all. It's not a full time job by any means, but it's a few bucks here and there, and that helps. Once the apartment building is finished, the owner has a rental house that needs minor repairs too. I'll be hitting that one soon.
The job situation, obviously, hasn't changed. I'm totally disgusted at finding work. I've tried more places than I can remember...in person, phone calls, online, return visits and/or calls; and nothing. I've had so many that sounded promising, but ended up being a dud. I had my heart set on a job at the garden center 2/10 of a mile away, but they ended up having all of their seasonal employees return. I had THREE interviews at a large racing/car parts store and warehouse, but that one ended with no more than "we'll be in touch". It's saddening and highly disappointing, but it's the situation. I'm nowhere near alone in this struggle to find work though. I have friends in the same boat, and millions across the country just like me. It's a lot worse than our government lets on and that the news media shows or tells. So many people are blind to this.
Today I'm off to run errands, pay some bills, put a coat of drywall patch on a few holes at the apartment building, then run back to work on more brush clearing most likely around lunch time. It will be a long, busy day, but I've needed these after spending so many days inside over the winter and during the rain we had last month. I thought I was going to lose my mind for a while! ( I know...what little of it I have left haha)
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