Arguments lead to blog posts!

 I got into an argument yesterday with a person about gardening at a Master Gardeners Plant Sale. We were debating if growing things like vegetables are complicated. His argument was that it is, mine was that it isn't. It is not complicated to stick a plant in the ground and watch it grow! I never said it was simple, just not complicated. So I am now on a mission to uncomplicated the process of growing things. I explained to the gentleman if you have some basic management strategies, understand some basic principles of plants and soils, and last but not least have a desire to see it through to the end success in some form or another can be achieved.

Case and garden.

I've chosen to grow organically, that's my management strategy. I understand plants have certain requirements to live. I do my best to accommodate them. If they don't find conditions favorable they die. It's that simple. I have a short attention span so I'll see it through as long as I'm still hungry for what I've planted or I just get tried dealing with it. Have I over simplified things, yes. Is it complicated, no.

I'm only a few weeks into the growing season and have decided to rearrange and redesign. I've also experienced crop failure.

Believe it or not, there are plants in there.

Believe it or not, there are plants in there.

Excuse all the perlite, I had leftover potting soil from a project and added it to my garden. 

Excuse all the perlite, I had leftover potting soil from a project and added it to my garden. 

The Broccoli, peppers, and tomatoes will stay where they are.  Everything else, which includes my eggplant, squash, and cucumbers will be  replanted because they died. I'm going to put walkways in and  create sections. This way I'm not tramping down growing space and causing compaction. Compaction can lead to reduced earthworm activity and soil nutrient issues. Given, I have some success, it will make taking care of the plants easier and lead to a more efficient harvest. It will also make it easier to take pictures. Hopefully, giving me something good to write about.

Those goofy marigolds stuck there in a row....their moving too. I really don't know why I planted them like that. Sometimes even a seasoned gardener does ridiculous things like buying them in the first place. If the rain stops, maybe some of that will get done.

I think I have actually moved on from all my rants. For now at least. The Bitch is back and will pass inspection.  I have officially fulfilled all my obligations for my last employer and now feel like I can move on to another chapter. I have come to terms that my new job, however, not my favorite is giving me valuable experience in a different but somewhat related industry. See, my therapist was goes on.

I'm Going to be Honest

It hasn't been real fun here at The Accidental Agronomist Headquarters lately. I have to admit  I've been pouting. It's not the mature adult thing to do, but sometimes it's all I feel like doing.  I'm behaving immaturely for several  reasons.

My mechanic is mad at The Bitch who has been in the same position for over two weeks. I'm now referring to it as "jacked up" because it literally has been. At this point I would like to sell it to recoup some of our mechanic would like to bury C4 in it and watch it burn. We obviously have to reach some kind of middle ground. He once asked me if I wanted a Cadillac. My response was, "They seem pretentious and overrated." I'm not going to elaborate on my thought's regarding BMW's  right now.

The main reason for my bad attitude is the self-inflicted change in career choices I recently made. I stripped myself of the title of Agronomist at the #1 organic fertilizer company and demoted myself to working for a wholesale greenhouse. But, there's the challenge I'm having. I really didn't want to leave. I made the decision for personal reasons based on the work atmosphere I didn't want to be part of anymore. I actually enjoyed the "job" part of what I did.  I learned more spending time with the farmers and growers I worked with than I did in college. No offense to higher education, I have one. So now not only is my husband, my mechanic, he has now become my therapist. He has explained that it was, in fact, my decision to leave, I need to grow up and life will go on.

Now on to another reason for my bad attitude. The rain..........Can it rain anymore in the state of Pennsylvania? Obviously, it can because they are calling for more as I'm writing. I will state for the record I'll be the first to complain about the hot dry weather once it gets here. The rain has caused havoc in my garden to the point I will be replanting over half of it. Yes, so called educated people in the field screw up too.

In honor of the rain and to talk about what is closer related to all things agronomy/gardening I'm introducing you to my rain barrel.  I know it's not high tech and nor did I need an engineering degree to do it. I simply traded a homemade banana cake with marshmallow frosting for the barrel and cinder blocks. The barrel came with the spout in it. I'm sure only because I put extra frosting on the cake. After dragging all that home for two blocks, I cut the spouting to fit into the barrel and covered the top with  a piece of screen I found in the garage. I made sure the spouting doesn't go the entire way to the bottom of the barrel. This way it is easy to move it to clean it out.

Meet My Rain Barrel

Meet My Rain Barrel

I've done some reading on all things rain barrels and don't want to overstate all the reasons you should have one. I came across an article that pointed out some maybe not so good things you should consider when using the water from your barrel. To be honest, I hadn't really taken it to consideration what the water might have in it from being run off from the roof. I know about the little gravel like crap that fills up the bottom of the barrel, clogs the spout, and causes me to curse every spring when I clean it out. But the fact that there could potentially be chemical compounds that might not be so good for the plants and me, well that evaded my thinking. However, all is not lost and I'm keeping the barrel. If you have moderately healthy soil it should act as the filter it is intended to be and remediate anything that as been added to it by the rain water. In my mind, rain waters positives outweigh the potential negatives.

Check out the following links and tell me what you think.