July 14, 2015 · Honestly thought of watering my garden, last night. So glad I didn't!
2017: We've been at this house for four years and it seems every year, so far, we have to deal with Spring flooding and Summer drought. The garden pictured seems to be off to a late start with way too many weeds already taking over. I have made an attempt at gardening this particular spot, two years in a row with pretty much the same results. I have successfully grown zucchini here! and weeds! LOL
2017 (and 2015 and 2016) was all about drought. I got a handful of peas from my dozens of dozens of plants and all my bean plants turned into sawdust after only producing one actual leaf, each. My squash plants did the exact same thing as the beans. :( The peas I got had one pea in each pod. With another year of not much left to do after July but to plan the next year, I found out about Hugelkultur and am very excited about it. I have too much water for the beginning and end of the gardening year and almost none through the Summer. Hugelkultur looks to be what we need!!!
I've started burying mounds of compost in ideal locations for each mini garden that I am planning for next year. I have also buried small bits of wood trimmings from my trees, in small and strategically placed mounds. We don't own our land and we do like it here, so I try not to do anything too outrageous. I have read about the benefits of bringing in dump truck loads of wood chips, but also feel that might be a bit more than what the land lord would appreciate on his land.
The picture of the flooded garden also shows a set of tire tracks that fill up with water with every rainfall, too. This is at the bottom of a rather steep hill and the flat space on the upper side of the tire tracks is where I park my full-sized school bus from Fall to Spring. On the hill, I have planted some lavender and Scottish heather plants. The lavender seems to be doing very well, but I think the heather needs more water during the Summer. I could Hugel some sort of kultur between the plants without actually disturbing the plants too much. This could help with the drought and the flooding each year!
I have to be honest, though. Hugelkultur is not even a new idea to me, just the term. I have a friend who told me of his gardening adventures in a nearby city. His first year was dismal and his Italian neighbour suggested tips that seem to me to be a whole lot like Hugelkultur. My friend noticed improvement every single year, after. I don't recall him mentioning any wood product, just leaves and compost, maybe even some newspaper. Sometimes we just have to work with what we have!
June 5, 2015: It looks as though we had a visitor this morning! She just came to the edge of my garden and turned around - trampled nothing! What a good girl!