The Backyard

The Backyard

Friday, June 22, 2012

How Big is Your Garden?

Michelle Obama's White House Kitchen garden is 1,700 square feet and last year harvested produce reached 1,600 pounds.   That's a lot of food.  I was curious and measured all my gardens today.  They total 3,804 square feet, roughly twice the size of Michelle's garden.  Does that mean 3,200 pounds of food will be harvested from the backyard this year?  Dang, that's some produce.   My "garden" is actually several areas throughout the property that have changed throughout the years to eventually become what they are today.   The property started with a focus on antique roses and herbs -- vegetables were minimal -- flowers of all kinds were in abundance. Annuals, perennials, native species, and of course the herbs and roses were everywhere.  The past 5 years, I realized the importance of food production and now the opposite prevails -- few flowers except those needed for attracting beneficial insects -- and a LOT of vegetables stuck in places you'd never expect.  The rose garden, for example, once displayed over 40 antique roses.  Today, all that's left are eight large shrub roses (can't kill those old tough guys).  I now have four parts of the rose garden filled with cantaloupe, watermelon, onions, swiss chard, carrots, red beets, rhubarb and lettuces. The native plant border and wild flower meadow was left to grow in and low and behold wild raspberries are dominating both areas.  The herb garden also displayed many, many herbs at one point in time.  It placed 2nd in an herb garden contest 18 years ago.  Needless to say, as herbs died off,  vegetables filled their spot.  Almost one half of the herb garden is now a squash patch.  Here are the square feet of the various beds around the property:
The expanded strawberry plot

Herb garden - 12 x 60 feet with about 1/2 planted in squash.
Main Vegetable Patch:  22 x 74 feet.  All vegetables
Raspberry/Asparagus row:  4 x 74 feet
Strawberries/Rhubarb row: 10 x 68 feet
Rose Garden plots:  5 x 6, 6x7, 5x2, two areas each being 8 x 11, and 7x 32 feet
The wildflower meadow where the raspberries are growing is about 1/4 acre (not included in the square footage).
Butternut and Spaghetti Squash about to take over an herb garden

Total square footage:  3,804

How big is your garden?  No matter the size, as long as you are growing something, kudos to you for realizing the importance of growing your own food.
Rose garden plots.  Few roses remain.

The main vegetable garden - 1,628 square feet. Bigger than my house!


Robin said...

My community garden plots are 1200 square feet and my home garden is about 160 square feet of actual bed space.

In 2010 I only had 265 square feet of bed space and harvested 410.5 lbs. Last year I had the same as this year and only harvested 726.25 lbs. It was a bad year though. I am really hoping to double that this year.

Chili said...

That's impressive Robin. This is the first year I'm keeping track of harvests. Folks are producing a lot of food! Wow.