Sunday, April 25, 2010

The Plan

In a recent post I talked about the PEI Rural Beautification Society and their annual competition here on PEI.  I have chosen to compete this year in a couple of categories and they advise that I should include a list of improvements I intend to make with my application.  Since I'm the queen of lists (as annointed by my husband) this was a chore I was more than willing to take on.  Making a list has helped me to clarify what it is I'd like to accomplish this year.  My inclination is to jump right in and start digging but a list helps to keep me organized and will hopefully ensure that I don't start too many projects without finishing them.  Today I'm sharing my list with you and we can both compare at summer's end whether I managed to keep on track or not.

#1  Compost

We moved into our home in late fall and weren't immediately prepared to figure out what we would do with our compost.  Materials began to pile up and then the snow covered it all until a short while ago.

Now that the snow has melted you can see we have a big pile stretching 5 feet across and growing.  Despite it's size very little decomposition is taking place.    My pile desperately needs some nitrogen and a container of sorts to stop it from eating the lawn.  My plan is to design a bin large enough to hold the volume needed to generate some heat and keep things looking tidy.

#2 Vegetable Garden

Next to my new compost bin I have plans to put in a vegetable garden.  I've mulled over the choice of raised beds v. rows and decided to go with the raised beds.  That means I'll need to build beds, decide how to lay them out, fill them up with soil and plant.  Although I may not complete the whole thing this year at least a couple beds should be started and some vegetables like lettuce, spinach, cilantro and onions will be grown.

Future site of my vegetable garden

#3 Flower Beds

There are several neglected flower beds scattered throughout the property that I hope to renovate throughout the summer.  Grass and weeds have long overtaken these beds and will need to be carefully removed.  Any flowers that are growing will need to be identified and possibly given a pruning to clean them up.  In one of these beds landscaping fabric was used.  I have a hatred of this stuff, which I'll explain on another occasion, and I want to remove as much as this as possible.  There is also a hose which strangely I've only been able to find one end.  Yes, it's a hose with no end in sight.  It may just be buried under weeds but I'm concerned that it may be buried in the lawn.  Not sure why that would be the case but  I will make it my mission to discover the other end of the hose by summer's end.

Honest, there's a flower bed in there!

#4 Trees

One of the things we loved about this property when we bought it was the amount of large mature trees.  But being a west coast gal I still miss the trees from home.  South Western British Columbia is a temperate rainforest full of 100 foot all cedars and fir.  I like the pastoral views here in PEI but I still crave trees.  Trees have so many redeeming features like providing windbreak, shade, habitat and food for birds and other critters, as well as blocking out traffic and noise.  I have concerns as well that our trees have seen their best days pass by them.  Their health appears to be declining and I think the best thing I can think to do is plant trees now in order to provide transition from the old trees to new ones.  So my goal is to plant a new birch tree for every old birch on our property.  My shopping list also includes 2 white ash, a red oak and spruce trees.  I'd also like to see a variety of shrubs such as witch hazel and serviceberry planted to fill in the space while the trees take their time to grow up.

A few trees line the edge of the roadway but there's plenty of room for more!
So there it is, the Big Plan.  Now I've just got to get out there and start digging.


  1. I think you have a great plan. It'll be very interesting to see your progress too. Wow, you have so much land to 'play with' ! Your gardening adventure has just begun. Now, happy digging, and bathing in dirt and sweat. That's what we gardeners like to do :)

  2. I was so excited when we first saw this property, so much room! Now I'm a bit intimidated as it feels like there's so much to do. Hopefully my 'plan' helps to make it a bit more manageable.

  3. You have a great blank canvas. Fun fun fun...