TEMPERATE: Reimmerging the gardening DNA from youth.

by Nebraska Dave
(Omaha, Ne. USA)

The gardens in my backyard are called the Urban Backyard Raised Bed Vertical Garden Growing Experiment. It all started back in my early years of life. My father owned an 80 acre farm in the rolling hills of Nebraksa, a state in the very middle of the U.S. Mom, was the gardener and Dad was a part time farmer. He worked outside the farm as a mechanic. My exposure was strictly row crop farming. Even in Mom's garden the practice was row planting. Tomatoes, cucumbers, and all the vine crops were allowed to sprawl out on the ground. Space was not an issue.

After leaving the farm and heading off to college the whole growing, farming, gardening DNA went dormant as I began my quest to conquer work place in corporate America. Through out the 40 years in the corporate cubical work place, gardening was tried but without time and space not to much success. Life finally overcame the desire to garden and decades went by with not sprouting a single seed. (Pretty sad, huh) After the kids grew up and left and the wife went on to her final reward, the gardening DNA from all those years ago began to re emerge.

I discovered magazines and books that talked about raised beds, mulching, vertical growing, drip watering and all sorts of interesting things. It was not just a new beginning of gardening for me but a total rebirth. Thousands of people were growing vegetables in a different way that required much less space than row crop. Four years ago I started with one raised bed. Two years later I expanded to three and the next year added two more. This year I'm planning to added one more with the idea of expanding one more next year.

After many years of thought on how it could be done, I've set up a 400 gallon rain water collection system that automatically waters the garden by gravity feed. After one year of building and this year of perfecting, the system has performed well. The cost was very minimal as I used an old horse tank for the main collection tank and regular garden hose for the bed distribution.

Now my thoughts have turned toward major expansion by off site gardening. My city has land that has been foreclosed because of non payment of taxes. Through a lengthy process this land can be purchased. I am considering a piece of property that's 160 X 168 feet for strictly growing vegetables. Hopefully the Land Reutilization Board will accept my bid which would allow me to expand the gardening DNA in my soul which was planted oh so long ago on that little farm in the rolling hills of middle America by my mother.

Nebraska Dave USA

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