Sunday, February 17, 2013

Cement Block Salsa and Strawberry Bed

I am sporadic at heart, when I have an idea I want it to instantly appear in front of me, with little work and with big expectations.  Today I had a few hours off and a need to feel the earth in my hands.

My project is one I have seen on other sites, namely Pinterest.  I have been wanting to do this for awhile but was waiting to plant a new bed until I could grow the makings for salsa (peppers, tomatoes, cilantro) and strawberries.

Cost: Free/Reclaimed
Materials: Soil- 6 cubic feet, 8 Cement Blocks, Plant Starters
Time:  1.5 hours including planting, composting, and watering.

The set up was easy.  There have been a stack of sad looking cinder blocks sitting in the corner of the yard housing spiders and looking a bit drab.  I stacked them in the shape and dimensions of the bed I wanted and added soil.  I always give my soil some good hacks with a hoe to loosen it up.  Plants like oxygen, especially tomatoes.
After filling and smacking was planting.
Turns out strawberries don't need a whole ton of root space.  I used the holes in the cinder blocks to house them.  The roots of strawberries tend to "ball" instead of "sprawl" so each plant needs about 4 inches of root space.  The vines will also eventually cover the rest of the cement, making a pretty little border for the salsa bed.
Tomatoes, peppers, and cilantro love compost.
I has compost.
I sifted the compost using one of the plastic plant containers that had previously held my starters.  I turned it into a 30 minute full body work out by placing the holding bucket (mine is an old ceramic crock pot liner) on a surface at about belly button height.  I did a deep squat keeping my back straight and tightening my core as tight as possible.  Then, shake shake shake until your fore arms, calves, thighs, and abdomen are on fire.  Rest and repeat.
Yes, please.
I gave each plant a good shot of compost by digging a small hole a couple inches away from the plant and filling with compost.  Not too close, don't want to burn those roots!

I can't wait to sit outside on a hot summer days, eat strawberries, and dream up delicious salsa recipes.


1 comment:

  1. alright!!!1 I has a daughter with a greenthumb & creative multi-tasking mind :) I love it!! can't wait to see it in person!