Monday, March 29, 2010

Another dirt update

It was another weekend all about dirt.

I finished the last raised bed for the strawberries and planted all 75 plants. I almost finished with the double dig in one of the other raised beds, and I started clearing the gravel out of the walkways between beds. One day I'll line the walkways with landscape fabric and cover with mulch of some kind...

Strawberry beds

The husband was busy with his own dirt project. He finished the bottom level of the terrace by the creek and is almost finished with the top level.



The lower section is about 9 feet wide and 60 feet long. On Friday I got the results from the salt test of the soil, and the woman said the dirt is fantastic. She even sounded a little jealous...

Lower terrace

Because the dirt is so good, we'll plant the entire area with more raspberries and probably also some grapes.

The top level will still have a slight slope to it. I had hoped to put in enough railroad ties and dirt to bring it even with the level of the fruit trees on top, but we ran out of fill dirt. So in some areas it is almost level and in other areas it will have a slight slope. I'll plant it with day lilies, spring bulbs, and iris.

We had a very nice day on Sunday, and the snow in the mountains above us is starting to melt. The creek is slowly starting to rise...

Creek and lower terrace

It will be an interesting few weeks to see if and how much flooding we get this year!


  1. Wow, you're making great progress! That's wonderful the soil test had good results. I wonder if there's a way to check the railroad ties for creosote/arsenic? I've read they shouldn't be used near edible crops as the heavy metals leach into the soil.

  2. I've heard the same thing about the railroad ties, so we lined the area with a really thick plastic. Some may still eventually get into the soil, but I think it would be a pretty small amount. Right now I'm thinking of doing a row of them down the middle, so they'll have about 3 feet of soil on either side of them, and then I'll put wildflower seeds or other plants in that open space. I'm still formulating a final game plan for the area, which will likely involve some more research to figure out the best use of that space. And with the way my luck has been going lately, the plan will change about five times before we come up with the final solution!

  3. Whoa! That is a lot of dirtwork! Gotta hand it to you! Big time!

  4. Loving all the landscaping updates! We finally got a "garden" planted on our tiny balcony--all in little containers, though.

    Let me know if you'd like to tap into my research of sewing machines, if and when you get to that point. I spent a lot of time trying to figure out which machine was the best for me, so I might have some useful info or links for you!

  5. That sounds like a good plan, Melissa. I knew you'd have it all under control. :-) You and your husband sure are worker bees! I can't get over the magnitude of the project.

  6. HUGE! Makes me tired just looking at it, but you're going to have a beautiful garden. Hats off to you and the Mr.!

  7. and now you both need a day at a spay!!! geeeeeez girl! and i bet Sadie was helping the entire time, or babysitting the chicks?

  8. Sadie was, in fact, a tremendous help. She kept a very close eye on the chicks, who were enjoying flying around their outdoor pavillion. She also gave her daddy numerous wet willies and other forms of encouragement. :D


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