Yes, I know we're 17 days into the new year but this was the first day of 2011 that I got to really go in and clean out my garden. And it felt good. So I thought I'd share. The month of December here in Southern California could be summed up in one word: rain. While a pain, especially during the hustle-and-bustle of the holidays (which seemed especially hustley-and-bustley this year), it was great for the garden and for the cover crop I put on the two beds and in and around some other spaces as well. As the rain stopped right around the 1st, I went in and tilled the cover crop and today went in an tilled some more and started flattening out the soil. I also cut back the trumpet vine and picked a heck of a lot of weeds. Note to self: weeds like rain, too.
Instead of leaving perfectly pristine beds, I've left a couple interesting-looking volunteers. In the far corner, I have what appears to be a few sweet pea vines whose seeds must have blown over from a neighbor garden. And in between the two beds, I have a volunteer tomato. There are also various flowers that we'll leave up for the bees and beneficial insects. Crop-wise, it's the lettuces -- including my fave, arugula -- that are doing well. Naturally that's where I've placed my crow decoys to make sure that the garden's marauding squirrel family doesn't decide to enjoy the lettuce before I do. The little lettuce patch is in the same bed as one of my rose bushes, which is still in bloom. Today I decided that roses have a lot in common with cats -- they're both pretty, independent and, even when you're trying to be nice to them (say, pulling the weeds around the base), they sometimes give you a little scratch. Deep (the thought, not the scratch), right? Heck, we're just a couple weeks into the new year. Who KNOWS what I'll think of next.