The past three days have been pure therapy for me.  I’ve been working my butt off, along with my sweet hubby, to get the vegetable garden ready for a new season.

I have been using two 6-foot by 4-foot raised beds situated side by side.   It’s about 10 years old now.  Last year was a lost cause because of my accident, so unfortunately, the vegetable garden beds went completely untouched.  Getting them ready for this season required a lot of work.


First I had to remove the old fencing that had become too stretched out.  This was stapled all around the base, and each individual staple had to be painstakingly pried off with a screwdriver.


Then I removed the posts, the old landscaping black cloth (I’m not using that stuff again!), and all the leaves and old roots both inside and around the beds.  Finally I was able to get to the actual dirt by hand.  I used my cool antique, long-handled claw and pitchfork to till up all the existing dirt.  Then I was able to dump in four big bags of fresh, nutrient-filled gardening soil and mix it all together.


I found a lot of these guys squirming around.  I’m hoping that if they’re happy here, my future veggies will be happy too.


Because I’m a big fan of instant gratification, I had to do one side first completely. Ahh, one side so fresh and pretty and the other still a mess.


I soon finished the other side, but I had decided that while we had the beds all torn apart, why not make it better than ever?

Having such a small vegetable garden really limited what I’ve been able to plant and grow in the past,  so adding more growing capability was the priority.  I have been planning all winter and researching different ideas for vertical gardening.  I found some plans, and my hubby was kind enough to create them for me.


Pretty awesome, huh?  I certainly think so.  One of these will hold 5 different kinds of lettuces and greens in the planters, with cucumbers growing up the back and side.  The other one will hold 8 different herbs, and one green, with nasturtiums growing up the back.  I can’t wait to see how this works.

My hubby also suggested digging up the space between the beds and creating additional bed space.


Luckily, my hubby has the muscle to go along with his good looks. <3

Next came the worst part – putting up the fence.  This took the most time and effort, but the new fence looks so much better.  Don’t let this sweet smile fool you – this job was a real pain.


To add even more vertical space, we put up this section on one end.  It’s a bit hard to see in the photo, but we have nylon netting attached across two big poles.  The goal is to have zucchini and spaghetti squash climb these.  I saw a picture of this, so I know it’s possible.  I just hope my squash cooperate with this idea.

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(Please ignore the hideous hair style.  I was playing in dirt, and the worms don’t care how I look.)

My hubby also has the brains, and came up with a great irrigation system for our garden.

We laid out three rows of soaker hose, and staked it down every so many feet to hold it in place.


My hubby configured them all together with one hose connection point.


And he added an easy, snap on piece, so I can easily attach the hose and disconnect the hose.


The last step was to fill my planters with dirt.


Here’s the finished product. . . all full of promise for a big season full of home-grown goodness.  And the hours of labor to weed, feed, water, harvest etc. will provide me with countless hours of therapy.


And here I am – all covered in dirt.  And totally happy.  This is my happy place. This is my therapy.  I missed it so much last year.  I’m so grateful to have this coming season.











Written by Jennifer Cartledge