Sunday, June 26, 2011

The Alpine Strawberries Take Off: A View of an Old Lasagna Garden

About three years ago, this section on the south side of our house, north side of the fence, was grass. We stripped the grass because it was mostly weeds and lasagna gardened it with newspaper, compost and grass clippings. Unfortunately, we didn't have a 'planting' plan beyond that. It's been a slow process of trying to decide what I wanted in the section, this year, it's finally filling in. 
These day lilies were transplants from a friend that I planted last August. I suspect they will give the strawberries a run for their money. In the foreground, are the alpine strawberries that I planted from seed last year. This carpet of strawberries started with about four seedlings last July! (See more on alpine strawberries in this post.)

The strawberries take over the paving stones and concrete sidewalk!

Some mint that I planted from seed in a pot last year... well it kinda got away! It is now quite nicely filling a metre long section of the garden. The great thing about 'wild' mint is that it is an easy, lovely smelling plant to pull out- useful too, though I must admit that my mojito and mint tea consumption is not keeping up!

There's a 10 foot section of black raspberries, red raspberries and interspersed rhubarb at the end of this section. These two varieties of raspberries are not supposed to be planted together since a disease that the red raspberry carries, but is not harmed by, can do major damage to the black raspberries. Unfortunately, I am running out of space, and don't have anything in the yard that would be that much farther from the other red raspberry patches in the yard... So I take a risk. So far, they've been safe. These black raspberries have canes more like a blackberry in that they are looooong! But they don't sucker and so are quite a contained plant when I tie the canes to the wires fashioned by Mat. The black raspberry variety has a really different flavour and is nice compliment to a mouthful of red.

The red raspberries have been somewhat contained by, what I can only imagine, is a hatred for  potatoes. A few years ago I planted potatoes in this section, just to see how they grew in part shade. Every since, the raspberries have not seemed interested in sprouting in the past potato muck. It was only later that I read in "Carrots Love Tomatoes" that these two plants are NOT companion plants... I know nothing more about it. If you do, please comment!

The beginnings of a high bush cranberry hedge. In five years, I may be annoyed that I planted a hedge (along where the day lilies are planted now) in this narrow section of the garden. It may give our pruning shears a run for their money. But, right now, I want the fruit, the view of the beautiful colour and shape of these leaves from my dining room, and a little privacy from our south side neighbour's deck into our kitchen. I really love these leaves... and how great they look against the delicate strawberry runners.

1 comment:

Bob Barnetson said...

That is a very lovely shade strip you've planted. The wild strawberries are such low maintenance plants!