I’ve always wanted a nice kitchen garden, a potager, or a kailyaird (in honor of my Grandpa McDougall) and despite all of our efforts over 17 years, it just never took off. Too many little gardens that required too many changes of the sprinkler and too much shade caused by 17 years of The Wood growing ever taller around us.
We’re decided that some large scale changes are needed here at the Beavercreek Backyard Farm. The place is messy, overrun with weeds and just not producing well. A couple of years ago we tried putting an additional veg garden in the area where the pigs were housed, but it was a weedy mess and generally not great. The backyard vegetable beds had become much too shady and the moles/voles/gophers were tunneling in and eating or ruining everything.
- The three 4’x8’x1′ raised beds and their soil was moved from the backyard to the pig garden. Each was placed onto a bed of chicken wire (cheaper than hardware cloth – the car needed repairing) and lined with newsprint to, hopefully keep weeds and critters at bay. This extends on to the paths which we hope to cover with chips if free ones become available in our area.
- The chickens had been hanging about in the pig garden, digging dust holes and making a mess so additional fencing must be sorted. We are adding pickets to the existing three-rail fence. These came from deconstructing some fence sections that we picked up for free several years ago. Additionally a new run of wire fencing is temporarily serving as a boarder between the chicken yard and the new garden. This fencing will be moved later to repair the goat fencing that has been crushed – over and over – by the neighbors falling trees.
- The 8’x8’x1′ raised bed from the back garden has one rotten board, so we will be taking that apart and repurposing it to match the others bringing the total in the pig yard garden to 4.
- I dragged an old play structure climbing tower down from it’s previous incarnation in the Upper-Fenced garden (also not too shady) and we will “plant it” later in the week for a cucumber trellis.
- The blue spruce in the pig garden is up for grabs on Craigslist and if not one wants it we’ll either move it to the edge of the wood or cut it down.
- Eventually the chickens will move up to the Upper-Fenced Garden and the blueberry plants from there will come down to the Chicken Yard making the Chicken-Pig Complex into a pretty Kailyaird with a nice potting shed, a garden bench made by my husband grandfather Ivar, and a small greenhouse just across the drive.